One of the aspects School Of The Forest will focus on is getting children and teens from the suburbs and cities out into the natural world. These intensives will be run at the Jack Mountain field school in northern Maine starting this summer.
Students will experience a week of living outdoors, taking part in cooking meals, building their own shelters and everything else that goes into outdoor life. At the end of the trip, they’ll get to experience a solo night, where they’ll set up their own campsite, and see all that they’ve learned over the week culminate in an experience that most will never have had.
It’s an important part of the overarching philosophy of SOTF. A love of the outdoors can be fostered at any stage of life, and we’re going to help jumpstart it early on with these programs. It’ll be a great introduction to bushcraft and outdoor skills, covering the most vital aspects of a lifestyle centered around the outdoors, as well as the knowledge to go back to their homes and learn about the ecosystems near them.
The practical camp skills will allow these students to visit any ecosystem and, paired with the first person ecology aspects, such as plant pressing and weather journaling creates an ability set that makes for more meaningful and informed experiences in the outdoors. This is the goal of every SOTF program, and it’s exciting to be able to offer it to youth that might not be able to have the experience otherwise, in a truly hands-on on setting in northern Maine.