Outdoor Education

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Learning through the natural world

Outdoor Education connects students to the wonders of nature, and inspires a lifelong appreciation for their natural surroundings. From exploring nearby beaches and expansive forests in Pacific Spirit Park, to sea kayaking and multi-day backcountry adventures, each student’s experience at St. George’s is filled with opportunities to get into the great outdoors.

Experiential learning is a powerful way for students to grow their self-awareness, deepen their understanding of the natural world and inspire a sense of responsibility for protecting it. Through outdoor experiences, students learn to problem solve, work collaboratively and build their leadership skills. Outdoor Education is part of learning from Grade 1 to Grade 12, with programs tailored to students’ developmental stage and designed to integrate outdoor experiences with learning in other subjects, like geography, science, math and arts.

Junior School: Cultivating a connection to nature

In the primary grades, Outdoor Education focuses on helping students become comfortable in the outdoors, and cultivating a connection to nature. Through half-day and full-day outings, students explore intertidal areas, go on nature walks, watch salmon swim upstream, taste salmon berries in the spring and more. They practice being prepared, getting dirty and engaging with their natural surroundings.

When students reach the intermediate grades, the focus for Outdoor Education becomes building community through camps. In addition to daytime activities, students head into the wilderness for residential camps, learning outdoor skills such as canoeing, rock-climbing, and fire-building, while learning how to work in teams.

Senior School: Building outdoor skills for life

In the Senior School, students expand their understanding and build new skills through a progressive series of self-propelled expeditions. Grade 8 students spend two days at base camp, learning foundational outdoor skills needed for adventures in future grades.

In Grades 9 and 10, Outdoor Education is a choice-based program where students select from a variety of self-propelled trips in world-class locations around southern BC. This allows students to follow their own interests into the outdoors and have adventures that may include canoeing, sea kayaking or backcountry hiking. Grade 10 students also have the option of joining the year-long Discovery Program -- an Outdoor Education intensive focused on developing leadership skills -- as part of the Grade 10 Cohort Program.

In Grades 11 and 12, students become involved in Outdoor Education in a leadership capacity, acting as mentors and guides for students in the primary grades.

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