How many schools look at Outdoor Education and think bushwalking, canoeing and more. Activities linked together to create a “journey”

I would like us to look at Outdoor Education differently. Less focus on the activity and more focus on the experience.

To explain what I mean I have used year 9 as my focus.


Let’s start with the following assumptions

Year 9 kids are care free

When yr 9 kids show care they have no responsibility

Yr 9 kids think they have skills but they don’t really

Yr 9 kids are just at the end of that time of life when they may listen and learn without too many preconceptions… we call that childhood


Let’s also assume the following

Yr 9 kids want responsibility

Yr 9 kids want to have control over their destiny

Year 9 kids want to be listened to AND heard


Even more assumptions…

Schools (you know structures buildings timetables and classrooms) do none of the above as well they would like.

Through no fault of their own, many teachers, in their own classes, don’t do many of the above as well as they want either (that was not a criticism), mainly because of the outside pressures. Have you ever considered all the challenges that have been thrust/imposed on schools… educate, skill up, work ready, good citizens, positive role models, leaders, team players, competitive, magnanimous, generous, understanding, and so on.

Could you do it? I don’t think anyone can, but maybe, just maybe you can open the eyes of the school and community to what is possible and start the process.


Here is the idea.

So for year 9 at your school let’s change the paradigm (great word…). Let’s do something that will make your year 9 students see the world for what it will be. Let’s take the opportunity to present them with skills to take them forward. Let’s start a process of that will help them be what the school wants, the parents want and the community needs.


What if you had the opportunity to do something great, something different, something meaningful and something real for a group of modern day students that need to learn how to move forward in a challenging world where relationships, information and so on all comes through a device. This is a world that is different now compared to when they were born, let alone when I was born and will change even more over the next generation.


My idea and thought is to take them back to the beginning. Back to a time where they are responsible but are guided in this process. Let’s take them to a place where food is what you make it, grass is real, education is learning and community is paramount. Not to mention communication is face to face.


This can start over 5 days but think what would happen if we extended the time. This would be a program that is done in bits throughout a year. It includes an extended period of living together. Not just doing physical activities but living together as a community where there are responsibilities, actions and consequences.


Maybe I am dreaming, I can’t believe I am the only one thinking like this.


If you share my thoughts and think that it is important to look at things differently, please let me know.

Of course we have programs that could do this and would love to talk to you about them.