Year 12 Outdoor Education Camp

February 28, 2019 at 5:46 PM

At Saint Kentigern, Outdoor Education is offered as an examinable subject at NCEA Level 2 (Year 12) and Level 3 (Year 13). It is not for the faint-hearted, and prospective students must demonstrate a real passion for the outdoors and be prepared to meet the many challenges! The course aims for students to become actively knowledgeable, skilled and safe in selected activities, with care for the environment a paramount focus. Over the course of two years, the modules provide a range of outdoor challenges as diverse as sea and white-water kayaking, bush craft, mountaineering skills, mountain biking and scuba diving, along with the added challenge of a solo overnight experience. The students examine the concept of outdoor education as a worthwhile, life-long interest as well as its potential for employment.  

For those selecting the subject as a new area of learning in Year 12, an outdoor experience is offered early in the year. The whole Year 12 Outdoor Education cohort of 37 students spent two days camping at Tawharanui Regional Park last week, where the students were involved in a variety of activities including white water kayaking skills, snorkelling, the ecology trail and ABL (Adventure Based Learning) activities, which challenged the students to work as teams to problem solve good outcomes. In addition, they undertook a beach clean-up to offer service. 

They were fortunate to be blessed with stunning weather for their trip and the students made the most of the small pockets of free time to head to the beach for some body surfing and a much needed cool down.

The students slept out under the stars under fly sheets and were woken up at 6am for a morning run and beach work out. This was followed by a morning swim as the sun rose! Their cooking abilities were tested as they had to cook their own food for two days from a budget of $30 per person. Some groups showed some creative thinking and the smell of bacon spread across the campsite, whilst others relied on the student staple of 2 Minute Noodles and dry Coco Pops to get them through! Much was learnt about budgeting, pooling resources and making wise decisions! 

It was great to see the group bond over the two days as they demonstrated their social responsibility and leadership. This initial trip was great preparation for their next outing which will see them head down country for a tramping and canyoning expedition towards the end of term. These experiences are vital as the students work towards gaining valuable outdoor skills to supplement their classroom learning. Hopefully by the next trip, it will not be so hot!

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