The TRAILS Outdoor School's practices and curriculum are guided by the following principles of learning and community.

  • Children learn new concepts in relationship to previous knowledge and experience

  • The construction of knowledge by the child leads to comprehensive, authentic learning

  • Interaction with the natural world supports academic growth

  • Arts serve as the human expression of beauty allowing children to honor and communicate their experience

  • Positive social relationships are essential to a successful learning community

  • Small schools enhance student comfort and learning

  • The behavior of children indicates their emotional comfort and the community's health

  • The teacher's art is to create a stimulating atmosphere and participate as a learner

TRAILS curriculum is set up on a cyclic unit study calendar.  Units of study are school-wide concepts that incorporate science, social studies, and art as well as reading, writing and math.  Some units are on a two year cycle, while others are on a four year cycle to meet the needs of the multi-age classrooms. Below are pictures from class in cartography where students combine skills in math, history, and literacy with an application for outdoor learning.

students reading a map

students reading a map

For more information check out our outdoor education section through the academics dropdown above.