Schools

Outdoor Education at SPL

Our interactive outdoor education programs challenge, inspire and enlighten youth in a positive and exciting environment. Through a combination of teamwork initiatives, active outdoor activities and engaging instruction, shy students shine and new stars emerge. Accomplishments bolster confidence, bonds form through shared experience, challenges are overcome and students learn leadership, teamwork and initiative.

For many schools, the annual Strathcona trip is a rite of passage and an integral part of their school community. We delight in the diversity of our school partners and are proud to work with many exceptional public schools, Francophone and French Immersion schools, as well as highly regarded independent schools such as Waldorf, Montessori, First Nations community schools, and homeschool groups.

These programs are the heart and soul of Strathcona Park Lodge. Our mission statement best sums up what we do “To teach the wonder, spirit and worth of people and the natural world through outdoor pursuits”.

 

The Benefits of Nature’s Classroom

Space and freedom to explore is an important part of child development. Experiential learning gives way for students to learn how to navigate the world around them and opens up opportunities for creativity, collaboration and for a range of strengths to shine. Students become active participants, which encourages observation, initiative, and shared experience. 

These programs encourage students to step into the growth zone. A place that cultivates expansion, mastery, confidence and awareness around their own personal resilience and that of their peers. Nature teaches us belonging, connects us to a larger system, and embraces authenticity. Many students blossom after a week spent in nature’s classroom.

School Programs

Day Program 

These programs are great for schools looking for a fun way to increase teamwork, an educational trip to boost curriculum, or a class celebration. Explore the lake by canoe, learn about local flora and fauna on our trails, practice wilderness skills, or build trust on our high ropes course. 

Adventure Program 

Our most common and experience packed week gives an introduction to the many activities we offer. Including, canoeing, kayaking, rock climbing, high ropes, zipline as well as a 1-2 night out-trip on our lake. The outcomes for this week are for groups to build trust and push their comfort zones in a safe way where they learn about themselves, each other and nature. 

Specialty Program 

Students will be immersed in a specific activity the whole week. From sea kayaking and hiking in more isolated areas to whitewater paddling and mountain biking at local favorites, students will focus on skill progression, group cohesion, and be saturated in outdoor learning and adventure. Students will spend 3-4 nights out camping. 

Information for Teachers

Thank you for your commitment to providing students with an exceptional outdoor education experience. Teachers and parents accompanying groups to SPL are integral to the success of our programs. 

  • We value individuality and work with each school to learn about how we can best incorporate the goals and desired learning outcomes unique to you. 
  • Pricing is on a per participant basis that includes meals, accommodation and instructional activities.  The trip coordinator joins for free. 
  • Our onsite programs include 1 SPL instructor per 10 students plus a teacher or chaperone and our off-site multi day programs include 2 SPL instructors per 10 students. 
  • Please have all teachers & chaperones read over our Welcome Letter before arrival. 
  • Find attached our Youth Consent & Medical Form and the Adult Waiver & Medical Form

Booking

Many of our schools come every year. Contact us early for the best chances of securing dates for your program. Planning a year in advance is recommended, especially for large groups and French programs. It’s never too late to ask if we have space or to be placed on our waitlist. 

Please email programs@strathconaprklodge.com to discuss program options, dates, and for an accurate quote. Our Program Manager is here to support you from the initial planning phase until the group departs. Include the following information in your email inquiry: 

  • School name and location. 
  • Number of participants and grade(s). 
  • Program objectives and activity interests.
  • Preferred date(s). 
  • French program inquires. 

Duke of Edinburgh

The Duke of Edinburgh Award is a United Kingdom charity program that encourages personal development for youths aged 14 to 25. All three levels of achievement (bronze, silver and gold) are voluntary and self-driven. The ‘expedition’ component of the award can be earned by taking part in a WYLD summer expedition or school based trip at Strathcona Park Lodge.

To find out more about the award, visit Dukeofed.org

If you are a group, school, or individual participating in Duke of Ed please connect with our Program Manager before your trip to discuss any requirements and preparation.

Equipment Lists

It is important to bring the correct gear for your adventure. A key aspect of our programs is learning about how to best prepare yourself for all types of outdoor activities. 

The weather on Vancouver Island can be unpredictable and can get cold and rainy at any time of the year. Consider these a list of “must haves”, regardless of the season. It should not be necessary to purchase new items to enjoy your SPL experience. We recommend borrowing, renting, or purchasing second hand gear when possible.

Select from the following equipment lists to pack accordingly. Contact us if you have any questions. 

Day Program 

Adventure Program 

Buttle Lake Canoe 

Ocean Canoe 

Canoe Portage 

Backpacking 

Sea Kayaking 

Rock Climbing 

Whitewater 

Mountain Biking 

Caving 

Thank you so much for organizing such an amazing trip, the students are still raving about their experience! What a gift for these kids to end their elementary school years with a trip like this. Thank you to all of your staff who were gracious, professional and patient.

– Principal, Vancouver Talmud Torah School