Outdoor Education

St. Michael’s College School believes strongly in the value of experiential education, which is, simply defined, "learning by doing." Our meaningful, customized programmes engage our students physically, emotionally and mentally.

We believe that by taking students away from their everyday, comfortable environment into a place of perceived uncertainty it is possible to engage students in learning that might not be possible in an urban context or day-programme. Activities that are both physically and mentally challenging are used to maximize these learning experiences.

Research shows that through experiential education programs young people can learn significant things about themselves, including new personal and life perspectives and attitudes and a better understanding of themselves and how they relate to others.

“There is more in us than we know. If we can be made to see it, perhaps, for the rest of our lives, we will be unwilling to settle for less.”

Kurt Hahn, a pioneer in experiential education

All of our outdoor education programmes are structured to ensure success for all participants, both as individuals and team members. We strive to build a united community where young men feel they are the authors of their own lives.

While the purpose of our experiential opportunities will vary at each grade-level, rooted in each one of our trips are the goals of increasing communication skills, enhancing group cooperation, improving problem-solving skills, enhancing leadership skills, and increasing respect and trust for oneself and for the group.

Trips outside of the classroom often allow young people the opportunity to see themselves in a new and remarkable way. We feel that these experiences beyond the classroom walls will help provide our students with the building blocks needed to continue to move forward as connected, resilient, competent, confident and self-aware young men.

ALIVE Outdoors Inc, specialists in outdoor education has developed and delivers all of the outdoor education programmes for St. Michael’s College School. For more information about ALIVE Outdoors, please click here to visit its website.

Grade 7 Camp

The Grade 7 Outdoor Education Programme encourages personal growth through camper cooperation, teamwork and leadership in a supportive atmosphere, that allows students to embrace challenge in an outdoor environment.

This programme provides a great opportunity for new St. Michael’s students to foster a sense of community with classmates, while developing teamwork, communication and conflict resolution skills.

Grade 8 Camp

The Grade 8 Outdoor Winter Programme provides students with completely new outdoor experiences that enhance valuable life skills such as cooperation, teamwork and determination.

This programme also provides students with an opportunity to learn about winter survival techniques while participating in exciting outdoor winter activities.

Grade 9 Camp

The Grade 9 Outdoor Education Programme focuses on nurturing and creating self-awareness while developing leadership skills and emphasizing valuable life skills like teamwork, problem solving, and goal setting.

This programme unites new Grade 9 students with senior SMCS student mentors who assist in teaching the importance of cooperation and collaborative leadership.

Grade 10 Camp (Canoe Trip)

The Grade 10 Outdoor Canoe Trip provides students enrolled in the Physical Education Programme with a challenging environment where they can further explore many aspects of outdoor survival skills.

Students are given the opportunity to develop personally and focus on leadership, and teamwork, while studying ecological systems.

Students will canoe through a variety of lake routes in Algonquin Park, sleep in tents in designated camp sites and practice a variety of outdoor living skills.

Grade 10 Camp (The Arts)

The Grade 10 Outdoor Education Programme enhances the creative capabilities of students enrolled in the Music, Design Tech or Arts while enjoying and learning more about the great outdoors.

This programme also emphasizes the development of imagination and student life skills.

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