Outdoor education, or exposure to the outdoor environment in any form, is often referred to as a natural therapy or even a free medicine. Sometimes, when feeling unwell , depressed or upset, simply stepping out of a door into fresh air can make us feel better.
Outdoor education works on the principles of experiential learning. Why imagine something happening when you can experience it for real and learn from the outcomes? Young people can learn in a practical, hands on environment where they can see, hear and feel things happening.
Sometimes outdoor education can provide an opportunity for young people to be pushed a little further outside of their comfort zone, perhaps being at height, on water, or in bad weather. When carefully managed this can be where young people discover what they are capable of and where their limits are. Activities such as canoeing, climbing, kayaking, orienteering, ropes courses, camping, cooking, raft building, hill walking or teambuilding all provide ideal platforms for this.
Outdoor experiences can generate significant outcomes including leadership, trust, responsibility, life skills, risk awareness, fitness, independence, team work skills, friendship and most importantly having good fun.