Outdoor Education

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Outdoor Education
Policy Document
Ropes Course



Ropes Course 2


Attendance at the Outdoor Education Program is an essential part of the curriculum at High. Our program is sequential and comprehensive and involves a camp each year for Years 7 to 10. The camps have been chosen to allow for the development of a number of different skills with particular emphasis on rock climbing, abseiling, high ropes, navigation and water sports. Additionally, the program is designed to facilitate participation in the Duke of Edinburgh Award and to complement the activities of the cadet corps.

Outdoor Education is an important part of the school’s co-curricular activity for several reasons. Recent research has supported the conventional concept that learning through adventure improves the students’ self-concept. However, the research also found that it contributed to participants’ intrinsic motivation and capacity for self-determination. Experience also suggests that a comprehensive outdoor education program will enhance the individual student’s self-esteem, self-reliance and self-confidence and aid in the development of skills in goal development, problem solving, leadership, team building and cooperation. The whole cohort can be expected to become more cohesive and supportive as a result of a regular camp program which incorporates the Department of Education’s Wellbeing Framework and has been designed with reference to the objectives of the PDHPE stage 4 syllabus. It will also enhance experiences in several other subjects including mathematics, science and geography.


The activities undertaken by students are of a varied nature. They appeal to a wide range of interests. Activities include:

  • Abseiling
  • Rock climbing
  • Canoeing
  • Sea kayaking
  • Sailing
  • Giant swing
  • Initiatives activities
  • High ropes
  • Flying fox
  • Hiking
  • Navigation
  • Bivouac
  • Camp cooking
  • Commando challenge
  • Leap of faith
  • Expedition

Activity Descriptions

Initiative Activities
This activity is usually the first together as a group and is designed to be an orientation period for both staff and students. During this activity students get to know each other, the expectations of the Camp staff, the safety requirements and behaviour standards necessary and a little bit of information about the activities and duties they will be required to do during the week. Teamwork and cooperation are emphasised and reinforced by games and activities, which require the students to cooperate and communicate. For example, trust games and problem solving activities.

This activity presents the students with an opportunity to learn basic skills which allow them to work with a partner and try sailing. Students are shown how to rig a sail boat, the parts of the boat that are used to operate it and the practical skills necessary to sail it successfully. Safety is emphasised and life jackets must be worn. A powerboat is used to assist with staff instruction and supervision of the students while they learn to control the sail boat.

Canoeing and Kayaking
One of the most popular and challenging activities for the students. All students are given instruction in the safe use and handling of both canoes and kayaks, basic paddling skills and capsize drills. Teamwork is emphasised. Depending upon their skill and conditions, students may participate in a variety of activities on the water from games and activities designed to develop skills and boat control, to long paddles into local bush areas or alternatives such as canoe/orienteering.

During this activity the students will be introduced to the use of a compass and basic skills required to use it for navigation. Students are introduced to orienteering as an example of a practical use of their new compass skills. Six courses of varying difficulty can be attempted within the Camp grounds. Students are encouraged to work in small groups to complete the courses and set a new record score.

Ropes Course
Students are given instruction in the use of a safety harness and associated equipment before being taken to the ropes course, which is a series of challenging adventure activities. Strong cables are utilised where required and provide a safe environment. These activities require strength, balance and a certain amount of courage. Instructors demonstrate safe use use of the harness and how to stay connected to safety cables while negotiating the course. Students where full safety equipment including helmet and are constantly supervised. This is one of the most challenging activities.

Students are led on a bushwalk along some well established bush trails. Students pass through native bushland areas, temperate rainforest and marsh areas with contrasting flora and fauna. Camp staff discuss points of interest along the way and care for the environment is emphasised. A meal is cooked by the students in the busg using food they carry on the walk, prepared and cooked by themselves. Safety in the bush and basic skills such as building and safely starting a fire are taught.

A 5m and 15m abseiling tower is present at the camp site or alternatively students abseil down a natural rock wall. This activity is very safe and exhilarating for students.

Giant Swing
A highly exhilerating 15m harnessed pendulum swing.

Leap of Faith
An adrenalin rush. Quite simply leaping off a 10m of 15m poll.

Outdoor Education Policy

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