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Outdoor Adventures Elective ~ Student Perspective


The class organized our new camping gear and also sorted through the supplies we had for the year. The camping gear was organized in our back room, and then we would directly grab what we needed for the day. On a few nice days, the class brought out the tents, hammocks, and air mattresses. Together the class practiced setting up our camping gear outside on the lawn, and afterwards neatly taking it back down. In class, we made a list and discussed the supplies we would need for a small camping trip.
We started planning our trip a few weeks ahead in class. We worked together as a class to figure out when we should do this, what we’ll do and what we should bring etc.. On the day of the trip most of us met at the school parking lot. We went in the school with Mr. Betrus to gather our supplies then we went to a nearby trail and started hiking. On the way to our destination we geocached. Once we got to our destination, which was a bridge that needed some maintenance, we took a break and had some snacks that were brought. We ended up gathering rocks for a drainage pipe to help level it out so a vehicle could drive over it. We also helped level out the bridge because it was slanted. Once this was done, we hiked back down the trail and went to Mr. Betrus’ designated camping property. We hung out and put up hammocks, started a fire (safely), snacked once again and some people went geocaching. Throughout the rest of the day we all had a lot of fun. We hung out, ate dinner, played cards and sat around the fire and had s'mores. At the end of the day, we all got to know each other more and became closer as an Outdoor Adventures Class. We also understood what exactly an outdoor adventurers class is and what to expect.
In the beginning of October, our class decided to go on a “camping trip”. This turned into a day of hiking, geocaching, hammocking, fishing, and last but not least, cooking. In the weeks prior to our trip we discussed what we would like to eat. An idea that came about often, was the use of a dutch oven. We looked up several recipes involving the dutch oven, and finally decided on making monkey bread. A few students on the trip started to put together ingredients, although we lacked measuring cups, we still were able to successfully mix together the ingredients. After the ingredients were ready, we put the oven over the fire. At one point, the fire became a little too hot, and ended up burning the bottom and edges of the monkey bread. However, the middle was just perfect, and tasted delicious.
In outdoor education we have had a few opportunities to go “Fishing”. The opportunities have consisted of learning the correct knots to use and how to use a fishing pole. We have gone down to the tennis courts and learned how to cast the poles using plastic fish and lures. We have also had opportunities to learn different styles of fishing.
Paracord is a very interesting factor of the Outdoor Adventures class. You can weave it into basically anything you desire. In class, each student made a paracord survival bracelet. The bracelets have a rescue whistle, flint and steel and a compass. Some students went further in the project and made a paracord belt and a wrist sling for a bow. Paracord is a staple of the outdoor adventures class, and is essential for outdoor survival.
CPR is important to learn in case of emergencies and if the class learned CPR and first aid we could help someone in need. The class learned how to legally ask for permission to help someone in need and if they are unconscious, implied consent is given. Each student can now help and maybe do CPR unless a person has a bracelet that says do not resuscitate. The class had a chance to get their certification in CPR and first aid. Within our first couple weeks of outdoor education, we covered first aid. We all came up with scenarios that we may encounter in the wild. As a class, we brainstormed and researched solutions to the given problems. This activity prepared us for a multitude of situations that we may encounter and was necessary for the class.
During the geocaching unit, students learned about the history and culture behind the activity. They all registered accounts on geocaching.com and viewed local caches. We went out as a group to a local cache and participated in two local mystery caches. Students ended the unit by designing their own geocache, including the container, its contents, its location, and its online description. They then placed these caches around the community and will be leading younger students on a geocaching adventure; the success of which will be considered their final grade for that unit.
As an introduction to orienteering, the class paired up and learned the steps to orienteering with a map and compass. The pairs tested other groups on their own map. After that, the class as a whole picked 4 control points around campus and created the directions to follow. This orienteering challenge will be tested by Mr. Almekinders’ fifth-grade class as an authentic assessment.
Submitted by STUDENTS in Mr. Betrus' Outdoor Adventure Class.
 

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Naples, New York 14512
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