Students interested in this pod will find adventure on the rocks of Vermont & New Hampshire, learn of and gain certification in the principles of Leave No Trace, and engage in the process of curriculum design and create curriculum for a local school/non-profit organization. Several off-campus overnights are required.
Enrollment Requirements and Options:
Students may enroll in any combination of the 4 courses in this pod; however, they must choose between Introduction to Rock Climbing and Advanced Rock Climbing. There are TA opportunities for Introduction to Rock Climbing and Experiential Curriculum Design. Students in this pod may co-enroll in Independent Studies, Senior Year Research Projects, or online courses depending on how many of the available credits in the pod they select.
This pod includes the following courses:
Introduction to Rock Climbing 3 cr
Crag, cliff, and beyond dealing with challenging situations, trusting in others and ourselves, moving through fear and doubt to attain goals. Outdoor sessions begin with an introduction to the history of rock climbing and then proceed to ground school training in knots, rope-handling, and belaying. Next balance, movement, and technique are practiced on the climbing wall. In addition students are introduced to rappelling. We then climb at more extensive sites, while practicing all the basic skills and working as a group to ensure each member feels both supported and challenged. Final activities include simulated mountain rescue scenarios to provide a group challenge and teamwork practice.
Advanced Rock Climbing 3 cr
This course challenges students to integrate and build upon all of the skills learned in AS190 or AS225. Students in this class will further develop their rock climbing techniques, rope management skills, safety and rescue protocols and site assessment. Exposure to multi-pitch climbing and management may be reached by the end of this course. To supplement work in the field, students will explore the current structure of mountain guiding in the United States as compared to around the world.
Leave No Trace Trainer 1 cr
Content includes an overview of the history of the Leave No Trace organization, basic teaching techniques, presentation skills, and an introduction to the seven guiding principles: Plan ahead and prepare, Travel and camp on durable surfaces, Dispose of waste properly, Leave what you find, Minimize campfire impacts, Respect wildlife, Be considerate of other visitors.
Experiential Curriculum Design 3 cr
Explores the cognitive and social foundations of an interactive learning environment. Students study experiential learning theory from a variety sources including (but not limited to) John Dewey, Circles of Courage, and Coyotes Guide. Students will develop and implement lesson plans for in class use and external projects. In the past, external projects have included curriculum development for a high school environmental science class and a collective of home schooled students. Students complete the course with a project connecting personal interests and/or their senior capstone experience to the area of curriculum design. Special features of this course include a high rate of student led class sessions, hands-on curriculum development experiences, and interactions with a variety of educators.