Outdoor Wilderness Lab

Outdoor Wilderness Lab Opportunity
Posted on 10/01/2019

October 1, 2019 

Dear Parent/Guardian, 

The purpose of this letter is to inform you about the expansion of the D51 Outdoor Wilderness Lab (OWL) and find out whether your 6th-grade learner might be interested in participating during the 2020 spring semester. 

The Outdoor Wilderness Lab began in 2012, when a group of motivated teachers from Bookcliff Middle School and officers from the Colorado Parks and Wildlife took thirty-three 6th graders on an unforgettable outdoor learning experience. Their mission was simple: get kids outside, engage them by connecting them to the natural world and to each other, and focus on their overall well-being. 

This school year, the Outdoor Wilderness Lab (OWL) is expanding to provide outdoor learning opportunities to 6th grade students at all D51 middle schools. The OWL school is located in Gateway, Colorado and 3-day-long sessions chaperoned by classroom teachers will be available from March 2 to May 20, (2020). Lessons range from wildlife biology and stream ecology to archery and hunter safety. Personal growth, team-building, and problem-solving opportunities abound as the learning experiences take students beyond what they thought was possible. OWL staff includes D51 teachers and administrators, high school counselors from Central High School, nursing students from Colorado Mesa University, CPW officers, and many other passionate volunteers from the community. The cost is $80 per student and includes meals, lodging in canvas cottages, transportation, and instructors. Scholarships are available for students with financial needs. 

In order to determine how many sections of the OWL school are needed for each middle school, we need to find out how many students are interested in attending. If your student is interested in participating, please complete the brief pre-registration form at http://bit.ly/2nLYAyw by October 25, 2019. Depending on each school’s pre-registration numbers, a lottery and waitlist for individual schools may be used. The formal registration form will be available on December 2, 2020 on the D51 website. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions. 

Warm Regards, 

Greg Weckenbrock, OWL Lead Teacher (greg.weckenbrock@d51schools.org) Maria Deuel, Coordinator of Innovative Programs (maria.deuel@d51schools.org

“This is a beautiful experience with the forest all around. The classes are very interesting. You will love this, I promise. You will make new friends and remember this for the rest of your life! This may be my favorite memory of sixth grade. I have never felt so good, and so brave before." Sierra Conrad, 2018 Participant 

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