Outdoor Based Learning Returns to The Whitefield School Spring 2022

Eileen Armstrong
The Whitefield School

For Immediate Distribution: June 9, 2022

Outdoor Based Learning Returns to The Whitefield School Spring 2022
White Mountains Regional School District

Whitefield, NH: The Whitefield School is excited to reinstate two of their outdoor based learning opportunities this spring. The Wilderness Explorers, a co-curricular program, was founded in 2011 by Janet Steinert, former Assistant Principal of The Whitefield School. Through the course of the program students, parents, and staff have spent Saturday mornings exploring and enjoying the White Mountains of New Hampshire as they build up their stamina and self esteem to complete an overnight hike and hut experience with the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC). This program has given the opportunity for students to be able to experience and explore the natural wonders and history of the local area while working on personal goal setting, leadership experience, and stewardship.  

This year's Wilderness Explorers program had the opportunity to hike Mount Willard, North & Middle Sugarloaf, Mount Crawford, and they just completed their overnight trip to Carter Notch Hut in Pinkham Notch. Highlights of the trip included some of the best and most beautiful views in the White Mountains, the famous boulder field known to hikers as “The Ramparts”, and very important lessons about risk management and respecting nature delivered by AMC staff members.

Their second outdoor based learning opportunity is the Outdoor Leadership Classroom. The Outdoor Leadership Classroom has on campus and off campus opportunities coordinated by the onsite coordinator Aaron Giragosian and the AMC.  This year's program was offered to seventh grade students. Students had the opportunity to learn about themselves as individuals, group dynamics, team building and the components of what it means to be a leader in the outdoors. The Outdoor Leadership program enjoyed off property hikes to Weeks State Park, Pondicherry Wildlife Refuge, Cherry Mountain and will conclude their class with an overnight hike and hut experience at Lonesome Lake. In addition to their hiking experiences they have been diligently working on the on campus trail system at The Whitefield School. “The trails have never looked better.  This program will allow the stewardship and improvement of the on campus outdoor classrooms and trails of The Whitefield School as future classes continue the work.”  said Aaron Giragosian, program lead, WES.   

Photos Enclosed

Photo 1 Jeremy Simino, Wilderness Explorer taking in the view.

Photo 2 Students that participated in the Wilderness Explorers program having an on trail lesson with the AMC.  

Photo 3 Blake Whitomb and fellow classmates performing trail maintenance at The Whitefield School

Photo 4 Outdoor Leadership students clearing trails at The Whitefield School