The Outdoor Education Program
The Outdoor Education at ACS is an extension of the school program; it offers chances for students to learn about and appreciate their environment. Outdoor Education allows students to acquire skills with which they enjoy a lifetime of creative, productive, and healthful living.
At ACS, we firmly believe that Outdoor Education is an essential component of individual, mental, and physical development, and that outdoor trips will benefit all students with never ending experiences. One of the most important components of an outdoor environment is that it is filled with first time memorable learning experiences. It merges activity with learning and emphasis on hands-on field work.
Through the Outdoor Education Program, ACS seeks to:
- Build student confidence through engagement in physically and socially challenging activities.
- Promote class bonding, cooperative learning, and personal responsibility.
- Provide students with training in lifelong, outdoor experiences.
ACS has an Outdoor Education center located in the historical city of Deir Al-Qamar in the middle of a pine tree wood. The center is visited regularly by our students. It has the facilities needed for camping fieldtrips and outdoor activities. It has also a small farm and an area for plantation. The center serves as a point of departure for many hiking trips in the nearby areas like the famous Shouf Cedar Reserve. ACS is the only school in the region that has its own outdoor ed facility.
We live in a world where people demand a greener and healthier way of life. At ACS, outdoor education became an important part of school life in order to complement the academic work in classrooms, which largely takes place indoors.
Outdoor education provides numerous opportunities and has a positive impact on our students’ mental and physical state of mind by giving them the chance to experience clarity, relaxation and reflection through physical activity, freedom and movement.
Many outdoor experiences allow students and teachers to think “outside the box”. ACS community members often find that memories of adventures and outdoor events stick with them for a long time; we hope that these experiences will become stories that our students and teachers share with their children and grandchildren in the future.
We also hope to use outdoor education to develop in ACS students a concern for the natural environment and the multiple issues threatening our natural world by exploring and connecting with nature, thus building their awareness of environmental concerns.
The outdoor education program at ACS works hand in hand with the community service program in the high school, many student activities, and a number of academic courses. Perhaps most importantly, the outdoor education program seeks to work with ACS students and faculty on team communication, building a group of learners and teachers who are able to connect both inside and outside the classroom.
Outdoor Education Coordinator