- Nature Observation Class:
Introductory class designed to acclimate students to the outdoor school environment, initiate the concept of Intelligent Design through presentation of the”William Paley Watchmaker Argument”, and focus attention on the unique aspects of each of our five senses. The students are led through exercises that enhance sensory effectiveness in wilderness outdoor school settings.
- Team Challenge:
A series of team building group initiatives at ground level, designed to provide students with the opportunity of experiencing the transition from working as an assembled group of individuals into a problem solving, supportive, creative, and coordinated “team”. Correct “spotting” techniques are reviewed and practiced. These physical outdoor school activities have the benefit of providing “real-time” experience in working together as the “body of Christ”.
- Riparian Studies Class:
The unique properties of water are introduced and its importance to all of life. After a description of the chemical composition of water students will conduct their own water surface tension test. Our Riparian Habitat is observed from several different vantage points as the various “cycles” of this ecosystem are observed and discussed. Students then divide into smaller research groups to perform 4 different chemical tests on water samples, and invertebrates and aquatic animals are collected and identified, as the students are introduced to the concept of Intelligent Design within an ecosystem.
- Bouldering Class
Beginning with an introduction in Rock Climbing knots and knot tying techniques, the students are then guided through a series of basic Rock Climbing skills while safely on a “pull-break, pinch-slide” belay. Climbing on established routes to the top of our 20′ granite boulder, the techniques of “smudging”, “laying back”, and “mantling”, are introduced and practiced; concluding with a short rappel back to the ground level. Strengthening of personal self confidence as well as learning to encourage, support, and help others are stressed in this activity.
- Ornithology Class:
Students will explore the Riparian Habitat that borders Brush Creek with its rich variety and diversity of bird life. Bird shelter, feeding, nesting, and species interaction are introduced and discussed. At the “Classroom-in-a-Box” students see the details of feather design, using our mounted bird collection, and learn about the nature of bird flight. Utilizing our private collection, students will investigate the differences between, and the complexity of, the design in bird’s nests. Concluding with a visit to our Bird Blind students will be able to observe and identify several different indigenous species in their natural environment.
- Climbing Wall Activity:
While safely on ” team belay” students face the challenge of climbing this 24′ vertical surface on man-made climbing holds. The concept of “climbing with your feet” is introduced as our trained instructors guide and encourage the students through this personal self confidence and team building exercise.
- Trees Class:
Following our trail bordering Rock Creek, and beyond, the students are introduced to the trees which are found in the Chaparral, Riparian, and Mixed-Coniferous Ecological Zones of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Ranges. The parts of a tree, including the function of each, are identified and discussed as are the interrelationship with the other life forms of this habitat. Students will investigate large diameter tree rounds and take professional “core samples” to determine rates of growth and related environmental conditions present in the past, as the students are introduced to the concept of Intelligent Design in an ecosystem.
- Entomology Class:
Posters and models are used to illustrate insect identification. Several professional insect collections are on display and used for an introduction to insect, and insect order, identification and classification. Students revisit the concept of the Evidence of Intelligent Design within a specific life form and participate in collecting and mounting insects for their very own insect collection.
- Vertical Playpen Activity:
While safely on “team belay” students face the challenge of climbing this 60′ vertical surface using man-made climbing holds. The concept of “climbing with your feet” is introduced as our trained instructors guide and encourage the outdoor school students through this personal self confidence and team building exercise.
- Archery Class:
Students are introduced to the bow and arrow, its history and proper use. Emphasis is on safety as students, and attending adults, are given the opportunity to test their skills on the Archery Range.
- Compass Orienteering Class:
After an introduction to the proper use of the compass and location of basic coordinates, students proceed in teams of two to navigate their way around a course of multiple stations. Before, and after, the successful completion of this course, students are introduced to the topographical maps of the area and given a series of tasks to complete which will familiarize them with these navigational tools and symbols.
- Zip-Line Activity:
While in a climbing harness and safely on belay students ascend 40′ to the Zip-Line Launch Platform mounted to one of our Ponderosa Pine Trees. Our Zip-Line Instructor assists each student in preparation for their launch beginning a 200 yard elevated “zip” through the forest canopy: an experience that no one will ever forget!
- Wilderness Rescue Class:
Students are introduced to basic First Aid and Rescue techniques that are unique to the wilderness environment. all students will have the experience of practicing such activities as sling making and how to build a stretcher using only their clothing and tree branches. Skills related to helping and service to others are stressed in this class.
- Stalking and Tracking Class:
Exploring a variety of trails along the perimeters of our Riparian Habitats, students are introduced to the basic skills and techniques of identifying, tracking, and stalking animals that are indigenous to the Sierra Nevada Mountain Ranges. Diversity of animal life, various gaits, associated behaviors, and interaction are explained as animal prints are located, studied, and discussed.
- Herpetology Class:
In the Herpetology Center outdoor school students will see several species of snakes, lizards, and amphibians indigenous to the Sierra Nevada Mountain Ranges and Foothills. A wide variety of Herpetology facts will be explained and discussed using the actual species for illustration. Students will be allowed to handle the animals, to a limited degree, under strictly controlled conditions. The concept of the evidence of Intelligent Design within a specific life form is revisited and discussed.
- “What Darwin Didn’t Know” Class:
Using a combination of 10 minute video segments, discussion, illustrations, and demonstration props, students are introduced to the significant problems that have been discovered within Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. The definitions of the different types of “evolution” are explained as students are shown the specific challenges that such things as the Cambrian Explosion and the Structure of the Cell pose to Darwin’s 19th century assumptions about the creative properties of Natural Selection and the supposed explanatory value that his theory brings to the question of origins.
- Nocturnal Excursion Class:
Beginning after dark students are introduced to night vision and the structure of the human eye compared to various nocturnal animals indigenous to the Sierra Nevada Mountain Ranges and Foothills. The terms “nocturnal”, “diurnal”, and “crepuscular” are introduced and defined. Various nocturnal animals including their habits and some of the unique aspects of their design are discussed and the “Bat and Moth” game is used to illustrate the role of the senses in night hunting. Using a powerful laser light constellations of the night sky are identified and the students are in techniques used to locate the North Star in the night sky. The term “bio-luminescence” is defined the term “tribo-luminescence” is introduced and illustrated through an exciting nighttime experiment that creates light through friction. The class is concluded with a closely supervised “solo walk” and a closing devotion centering on Christ as “…the light of the world.” Outdoor Science School provides opportunities to learn at night, and students love it!
- “The Gospel in the Stars” Class:
Based on the work of Frances Rolleston, Joseph E. Seiss, and E. W. Bullinger, and through careful study of the prophecies in scripture, the students are introduced to the original intent of the images associated with what we know as the 12 signs of the Zodiac; and, why it is that the Bible, so strongly and so appropriately, condemns the practice of Astrology. From the 38th chapter of Job, the meaning of the term “Mazzeroth” is defined, and the connection between the 12 tribes of Israel and the 12 major constellations located along the “ecliptic” are explained. These, and many other pertinent issues regarding the constellations of the night sky, are discussed from a true Biblical perspective. As students discover the sequence of the constellations, the meanings of the names of the constellations, and the meanings of the names of the stars within those constellations, they begin to see the “gospel story” unfold, and to understand the significance of the fact that God has named and numbered each star in the heavens that He has created.
Class Description | Outdoor School
Revealing the Nature of God through the Study of Creation
“For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.”Romans 1:20 KJV