Hands-on education is the heart of our Outdoor School Program.
Our Teacher Naturalists lead small groups of school students through environmental education, team building, and retreat-type activities. We work with a wide variety of great schools, from public and private to charters and alternative curriculum schools. School groups come for a one-day trip, or for our 2- or 3-day overnight programs. OUTDOOR SCHOOL FEES 2020 – 21 SCHOOL YEAR
We can fully customize a program to suit your needs.
Whether it’s team building, environmental education or a combination of both, our Camp Directors can discuss all our program options with you. Photos of some of our activities can be found in this gallery.
Overnight Programs that last 2, 3 or 4 days. Meals and accommodation are included.
A typical overnight trip includes team building, meals, activity options such as more group challenges or lessons, evening activities and fun in the cabin!
We can take up to 130 students in our overnight programs.
Our day trip brochure gives a great overview of the day for parents and can be found here Overnight Programs Brochure
Day trips are fast paced and jam-packed with activities. We have three basic types of day trips
- TEAM BUILDING – Primarily run on our Day Camp property – this program focuses on all team building and collaborative activities.
- ENVIRONMENTAL FOCUS – Primarily run on our Overnight Camp property – this program focuses on all environmental education based activities.
- COMBINATION – This program combines elements of both the above, and location is based on availability.
A typical day trip typically includes two hours at the team building course tackling small group challenges, a picnic lunch then one or two activity options such as more group challenges or visiting Pennypack Farm, shelter building, animal tracking or meeting the camp critters at our environmental center. Most day trips are scheduled around bus availability. Students usually spend 9.30am -2.15pm on our site. Some schools stay with us for extended day trips and enjoy dinner with us before heading home around 8pm. Our day trip brochure gives a great overview of the day for parents and can be found here Day Trip Brochure
We can take up to 150 students in our day trip programs.
Our lessons can be tailored to fit your curriculum needs, your students’ interests and can be tied in to your current school projects. We have a wide variety of great hands-on lessons; here are our most popular ones:
- Archaeology: Dig up camp’ past!
- Animal Introductions (we have donkeys, goats, chickens, and more)
- Forest Ecology and Succession
- Aquatic Ecology:ond, Wetland, and Stream
- Sustainable Farming
(our partner Pennypack Farm is right here on site)
- Soil Study
- Our Impact on Watersheds
- Wildlife Detectives (see our Trail Cam Gallery)
- Insect and Spider Safari
- Nature Discovery Hikes
- Wild Edibles
- Survival and Shelter Building
- Night Hikes
- Wildlife Walks
- Low Ropes Challenge Course
- Climbing Tower
Students participate in small group lessons and activities that are highly interactive and engaging. Our Teacher Naturalist staff leads most of the activities, enabling teachers to observe their students in a new learning environment. We work with teachers to enhance the knowledge gained in the classroom setting. Abstract classroom science concepts come to life when students are able to demonstrate their knowledge and apply it in their Outdoor School lessons.
We have a wide variety of lesson and activity areas, and can customize lessons to fit your school curriculum. Many lessons can be modified as needed for more inclusive student participation. More information can be found here
We follow the Challenge by Choice principle as used in many Adventure-Based Counseling programs. Participants are invited to participate voluntarily in each of the various activities and challenges of our program. A participant may choose to sit out an activity; this right is to be respected by others in the group, as well as instructors. Our staff are trained in encouraging each participant to set their own goals and definition of success. All of our training programs are conducted in a collaborative, cooperative and caring environment where choice is made by the individual and not as a result of peer pressure.
A basic description of our group challenge activities can be found here Group Challenge Descriptions plus photos of many of those same challenges can be found here
We can focus the Group Challenges to focus on Peer Leadership, Positive Communication, Anti-Bullying and much more. Contact us to discuss you needs
Students work in groups of 8 to 15 to work though several “challenges.” To succeed in the challenge, students will need to interact and discuss their options as a group. Our staff guide the students through the safety aspects of each challenge, but students decide how to achieve it themselves. After each challenge, teams spend time reflecting on how the challenge was done, and on how and why some groups did better than others — reinforcing the message that an individual is to exert and take personal responsibility choosing his/her behaviors and actions.
Our programs are designed to build respect, self esteem and an internal center of control within each person by giving individuals the choice of how they want to participate.
For more information on our lessons and how we can help customize your program contact:
Karyn Bonner, Camp Director
Joshua Davis, Assistant Camp Director
For weekend programs or rentals contact our Outreach Coordinator Rebecca Coco
I smiled all day, every day!