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Outdoor Education



Thanks to our prime location in and around the Pacific Rim National Park, we are able to offer rewarding Outdoor Education options at both 
Alberni District Secondary School and Ucluelet Secondary School. 

Alberni District Secondary School:  Outdoor Education - Exploring Nature, Adventure, and Leadership

The Outdoor Education course at Alberni District Secondary School is designed to provide students with an immersive and experiential learning experience in the great outdoors. This course combines classroom instruction with hands-on activities and adventure-based learning to foster personal growth, environmental awareness, and leadership skills.

Students will have the opportunity to explore the natural wonders of Vancouver Island, including its forests, lakes, rivers, and coastline. Through a variety of outdoor activities, students will develop essential outdoor skills, teamwork, problem-solving abilities, and an appreciation for the environment.

The course curriculum encompasses a wide range of topics, including:

  1. Outdoor Skills: Students will learn essential outdoor skills such as navigation, shelter building, fire building, outdoor cooking, and first aid. These skills will empower students to confidently and responsibly navigate outdoor environments.
  2. Environmental Stewardship: Students will develop an understanding of environmental conservation, sustainable practices, and the importance of preserving natural ecosystems. They will engage in projects that promote environmental stewardship, such as habitat restoration, trail maintenance, and waste reduction initiatives.
  3. Adventure-Based Learning: Adventure-based activities, such as hiking, kayaking, rock climbing, and orienteering, will challenge students both physically and mentally. These activities will foster personal growth, self-confidence, and resilience, while promoting teamwork and effective communication.
  4. Leadership Development: The course emphasizes the development of leadership skills through experiential learning and team-building activities. Students will have opportunities to take on leadership roles, make decisions, and collaborate effectively within a group setting.
  5. Outdoor Safety and Risk Management: Students will learn essential safety protocols, risk assessment, and risk management strategies in outdoor settings. They will develop an understanding of responsible behavior, emergency preparedness, and the importance of personal safety while engaging in outdoor activities.
  6. Cultural and Historical Connections: The course will explore the cultural and historical significance of the local Indigenous Nuu-cha-nuulth communities, as well as the natural and historical landmarks in the surrounding area. Students will gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of the cultural and historical connections to the land they are exploring.

Throughout the course, students will engage in reflective discussions, journaling, and project-based assessments to deepen their understanding and connection to the natural environment. They will also have opportunities to collaborate with local community organizations, experts, and Indigenous knowledge holders to enrich their learning experience.

The Outdoor Education course at Alberni District Secondary School aims to provide students with a transformative learning experience, fostering a lifelong love for the outdoors, personal growth, environmental stewardship, and the development of leadership skills that can be applied in various contexts.


Overnight hike at Flores Island

Caving at Horne Lake Caves

Skiing at Mt. Washington

Hiking (various locations around the district)

Kayaking (West Coast)

WildPlay (Nanaimo) 


Trap Shooting

Disc Golf

Survival Skills

Shelter Building

Fire Building


Edible Plant Identification 

and more. 

Ucluelet Secondary School: Outdoor Leadership and Indigenous Studies 10-12

This Ucluelet Secondary Outdoor Education course offers students a dynamic and immersive learning experience in outdoor leadership, Indigenous studies, and environmental awareness, deeply rooted in the local environment, Indigenous ways of knowing, and coastal activities. Through a combination of hands-on activities, practical skills development, and cultural exploration, students will develop essential skills, knowledge, and a profound connection with the natural environment, local Indigenous cultures, and coastal activities such as surfing, tides, currents, and riptides.

Course Highlights:

  • Outdoor Leadership in Coastal Environments: Students will immerse themselves in the unique coastal environment, including pristine beaches, lush rainforests, and majestic mountains. They will learn to navigate and appreciate the diversity of these ecosystems while developing essential outdoor leadership skills specific to coastal environments.
  • Indigenous Ways of Knowing: Students will engage with local Indigenous communities and knowledge keepers to gain insights into Indigenous ways of knowing. They will explore traditional ecological knowledge, cultural practices, and the deep connection between Indigenous peoples and the land, fostering a profound respect for Indigenous perspectives and traditions.
  • Coastal Activities and Safety: Students will learn about coastal activities such as surfing and gain a comprehensive understanding of tides, currents, and riptides. They will develop the necessary skills and knowledge to safely engage in these activities, including surf etiquette, beach safety, and understanding ocean dynamics.
  • Environmental Awareness and Stewardship in a Coastal Setting: Students will develop a deep appreciation for the local environment, including the fragile coastal ecosystems and their significance. They will learn about environmental challenges specific to coastal areas and explore strategies for sustainable practices and environmental stewardship.
  • Experiential Learning in Local Natural Spaces: Students will embark on field trips and outdoor excursions to explore the local natural spaces, including visits to beaches, coastal trails, and Indigenous heritage sites. These experiential learning opportunities will deepen their understanding of the local environment, Indigenous cultural significance, and foster a sense of wonder and connection with the land.
  • Social Responsibility and Cultural Sensitivity: Students will explore the importance of social responsibility, cultural sensitivity, and ethical engagement with the local environment and Indigenous communities. They will learn about Indigenous protocols, cultural practices, and how to minimize their impact while engaging with the land and respecting traditional territories.

By participating in the Ucluelet Secondary Outdoor Education course, students will develop a profound connection with the local environment, beaches, and Indigenous ways of knowing. They will gain invaluable skills in coastal activities such as surfing, tides, currents, and riptides, while fostering cultural appreciation, environmental stewardship awareness, and a deep respect for the interconnectedness of the land, sea, and Indigenous cultures. This course will empower students to become informed, responsible stewards of the natural world and advocates for the preservation of local environments, Indigenous knowledge, and safe coastal practices.

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