It is important to understand that Outdoor Education is not accidental nor just seen as this ‘fun’ part school but it is strategic and deliberate. At Adventure Alternatives the places that the students are taken beyond their comfort zone are safe but they are also designed to challenge.
Take for instance the student who is about participate on a high ropes course for the first time. The situation is safe because the staff are qualified and have planned the experience but the perception for the students is that it is dangerous and they feel some degree of fear and anxiety. In this scenario, the student completes the challenge successfully with the help of staff and friends and in the process discovers not only that they enjoy the experience but also their ability is better than they imagined. They also discover that they have a new mate who is very impressive in the challenge– they learn interdependence.
In this example, the student has also become aware of the beauty of the surroundings and develops a sense of their insignificance at one level and at the same time the intense nature of their own existence. This student is now better equipped to assist and support others not only because they have completed the challenge but now they have a heightened sense of empathy towards others and feels empowered to take the lead if called upon – they understands what it is like to feel vulnerable and the need to be dependable.
The many experiences available through Outdoor Education potentially give students a new appreciation for life that may include things like:
- The way that we view the passage of time and the way we use it
- Respect for the natural world with all its complexity
- Differing priorities in relationships
- Sense of compassion, empathy an increased sense of personal responsibility
Our aim at Adventure Alternatives is to inspire individuals to drive their own learning, to challenge their concept of the norm, their comfort zone, their beliefs of others and their own ability. We want individuals to explore, discover the marvel at the environment we adventure in and find comfort in the unknown.
We care for the students, we care for the teachers, we care about the outcomes we provide and we care for our staff that deliver amazing experiences for the students because we understand what it takes to develop the child in our care. We have experiential learning techniques, diverse learning environments and structured, sequential programs and ensure a scaffolding approach to student learning whilst on program with us.