Ontario Wilderness Leadership Symposium (OWLS) 2021
The Ontario Wilderness Leadership Symposium (aka OWLS) is an annual COEO event organized to support the development of emerging wilderness trip leaders in Ontario. This year, OWLS transitioned to a virtual format and focused on the themes of anti-racism, anti-colonialism and anti-oppression in wilderness leadership. OWLS 2021 took place on April 30th-May 1st and received generous grant support from Cabela’s Canada Outdoor Fund.
Big thanks to all who participated, especially Tori Baird, Caleb Musgrave, Kymani Montgomery, Keegan Kesteloot, Kory Snache, Anaya Bani, Olivier Adrien and Judith Kasiama for their inspiring, informative and engaging presentations. Another super big thanks goes out to all of our amazing discussion facilitators and mentors in attendance—without their time and energy this event simply couldn’t happen. Finally, we’d also like to thank the individuals and companies that donated items to our amazing prize draw: Cabela’s Canada, Patagonia Banff, Grey Owl Paddles, Teal Paddles, and Paddle like a Girl.
Hope to see you in Spring 2022 for next year’s Ontario Wilderness Leadership Symposium (OWLS)!
COEO Community Webinar Series
Stay connected with the COEO community this season by participating in live monthly webinars. Each webinar will take place on a Thursday evening from 7:00 to 8:30pm EST. The first hour will be a live presentation, followed by a 30 minute question and answer period.
Thanks to Stéphane and Deborah for leading our April webinar, a great presentation on all that is going with OPHEA related to the Outdoor Education guidelines.
May 27th at 7:00pm – Virtual Summer Camp Programs – Barbara Sheridan (Barrie Forest and Natural Learning School), Liz Jankowski (Royal Botanical Gardens) and Danielle Barrett (Royal Botanical Gardens)
Want to explore virtual camp programming – from camp in a box to engaging online activities that extend camper experience beyond the screen? Learn about post-session opportunities for campers to build, explore, and learn at their own pace. Join three experienced outdoor educators for ideas on virtual camp programming that’s packed with interactive, hands-on activities in which kids can connect, learn and have fun!
Barbara Sheridan founded and has been lead teacher for Barrie Forest And Natural Learning School since 2012. In her nature based approach she uses child directed social and play skills, child specific and child centred programming and trains other professionals in the same approach with workshops and field trips. She is completing her masters of education in sustainability, innovation and creativity and uses her new understanding of sustainable education to expand her programming virtually, running nature based virtual programs for learners from 3-13.
Liz Jankowski is the Education Programs Officer in charge of camp and youth programs at Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington. She started out her career as a math and science teacher, but could not resist the call of wild and eventually made the switch to outdoor education. Liz has previously worked in a variety of outdoor education settings, including Evergreen Brick Works, the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority, and Norval Outdoor School; she has continued to look for ways to create innovative programming that provides children and youth with a sense of place, a connection to and appreciation for the land. Liz spends her free time exploring nature via canoe, adding birds to her life list, gardening and rock climbing. Liz seeks to connect outdoor educators of all backgrounds to share resources, spark new ideas, and grow in their experiences.
Danielle Barrett works as a Resource Interpreter at Royal Botanical Gardens, where she spends spring & fall delivering educational programs to school groups from K-12 and is involved with developing programs based on the featured exhibit during the winter months. She is bilingual and loves being able to deliver programs in French. Danielle has been involved in interpretation for over 20 years, including work at Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Museum of Nature, and Dundurn National Historic Site. She serves on COEO’s Board of Directors where she is able to share her passion about outdoor education with the COEO community and learn from other nature educators.
June 17th at 7:00pm – A Journey into Forest & Nature School – Matt and Kim Simpson (Free Spirit Forest and Nature School)
Want to register to participate in one or more of the webinars in our series?
Certificates will be available for those completing all 5!
Click HERE if you are currently a COEO member. Webinar registration is FREE for current members.
Click HERE if you are NOT currently a COEO member and would like to register for the webinars or become a member. Webinar registration is by donation ($5 or $20) for current non-members.
CLICK HERE to connect to COEO’s YouTube channel and view a recording of our FREE webinars – Engaging Students in Nature-Based Programming Online (recorded December 2020) and Taking Your Kindergarten Students Outside (recorded July 2020).
A note on membership: Being a COEO member means that you are part of a strong and active community dedicated to promoting and celebrating the value of outdoor and experiential education. As a member of COEO, you add your much-needed support and voice to the work being done by the organization, including webinars and other resources developed specifically for outdoor educators like the quarterly Pathways journal, Outdoor Learning Tips, this monthly e-newsletter and more!
Outdoor Learning Tips Document – Now available in French!
CLICK HERE to check out the French translation of our popular Outdoor Learning Tips document – Conseils pour faciliter l’apprentissage en plein air. Many thanks to Jennifer Bernier from Ecole La Fontaine, in Kleinburg, ON, for translating the English version and to Danielle Barrett (current COEO Board member) for editing. Feel free to download and share this version of the document with any French speaking colleagues!
Diversity & Allyship in Outdoor Education
Wondering how to support diversity in the outdoors and be a better ally to BIPOC folx within our industry? Here are some great resources to get you started and some incredible organizations already doing the work to increase diversity in outdoor activities.
Watch this video Black & Safe in Outdoor Spaces, a conversation between Demiesha Dennis and Jacqueline Scott. They discuss what it means to be Black outdoors, both within the city and out on Canada’s trails, how safety considerations impact the way Black communities navigate these spaces, and the historic roots of these issues.
Support Demiesha Dennis, founder of Brown Girl Outdoor World, in her efforts to create a Gear and Equipment Library (based in Toronto), either through a monetary donation or equipment donation. Check out her Instagram and read more about her work on her website.
Read about the movement Bird Names for Birds and sign the petition.
Check out this great webinar Black Outdoors: The Connections Between Race and Outdoor Space put on by the Toronto Public Library, featuring Jacqueline L. Scott in conversation with Demiesha Dennis.
Support the work of Colour the Trails by becoming a member. Find out more about the organization and their work advocating for inclusive representation in outdoor spaces on their website, colourthetrails.com
Support Project Love Run, which is all about women’s mental health, community and running. Find out more about them here.
COEO Awards – Ongoing Call for Nominations
COEO Awards provide an important opportunity to recognize individual and group efforts, as well as to celebrate the varied expression of outdoor education within our organization and throughout the province of Ontario. Click HERE for more information about the 5 separate categories of COEO Awards and consider nominating a deserving colleague or organization. Award nomination forms will be received on an ongoing basis. Simply fill out a COEO Awards Nomination Form, then email the completed form to: firstname.lastname@example.org (Liz Kirk, COEO Past President). Thank you for your nomination of an outstanding outdoor educator or organization in Ontario!
OTHER OEE & RELATED NEWS
Book of the Month
Serving as a foundation for critical discussion about the importance of the past, Sport and Recreation in Canadian History covers the historical events, people, and moments that shape Canadian sport in the present and future. While this text focuses on sport and recreation practices on these lands now claimed by Canada, it is set within a larger historical context of interconnecting social and cultural practices to speak to the sustained tensions, complexities, and contradictions prevalent in Canadian society.
The editor, Dr. Carly Adams, and her 17 contributing experts from across Canada bring the latest research in all areas of Canadian sport history to life and present a thorough look at the nation’s past events. The text challenges the dominant narratives and encourages students to think critically about Canadian sport history. It examines how gender, ethnicity, race, religion, ability, class, and other systems of oppression and privilege have shaped sport and recreation practices, with Canadian sporting culture reproducing many of the same oppressive systems that exist on the larger scale. For more details click here
Use code B503 to receive 40% off regular price Offer expires 5/31/2021
TDSB Launches New Outdoor Learning Website
We are excited to launch a new outdoor learning website for staff and families in the TDSB. This portal brings together information, ideas and resources to help support and encourage learning in the outdoors. While many educators regularly integrated the outdoors into their daily learning, the pandemic has encouraged all staff to look beyond the walls of their classroom and find innovative and creative ways to learn outside.
This portal provides valuable and current information for educators, including research, resources and best practices, to help them get started or explore new ideas. Staff are also encouraged to share their outdoor learning in action with #TDSBoutdoors on social media to inspire other educators interested in trying new learning opportunities outside.
The Family Resources area of the site provides tips for preparing for the weather, resources for why and how to get started as well as a comprehensive list of activities for families to enjoy together in the city. The website will continue to be updated with new information and resources and will continue to serve as a hub of ideas and innovation that educators use not only in the coming months, but for years ahead. Check out the website HERE.
Natural Curiosity Awards – Nominations DUE May 14th!
Are you an educator or educator candidate with a deep commitment to environmental education? For the 12th year, Natural Curiosity is grateful to support you through our annual Burtynsky and Suzuki Awards for Teaching Excellence in Environmental Education.
In light of the extraordinary circumstances that educators and students have faced throughout the pandemic, the Natural Curiosity Award Committee is committed to providing equitable considerations for all applications. We hope that this application process may serve as an opportunity for you to celebrate your hard work and to find joy reflecting on and sharing your practice during these trying times.
Please submit your application by Friday, May 14, 2021. Find out more about the awards HERE.
LSF’s 2021 Earth Steward Teaching Awards – Nominations DUE May 14th!
This award is offered by LSF, with support from Ontario Teachers’ Insurance Plan and TW Insurance, to recognize exemplary contributions to sustainability education in Ontario and Alberta.
Prizes: $1000 to each winning teacher (Elementary and Secondary) PLUS $1000 to each of the winners’ schools – to be put towards a sustainability Action Project. Runners up will receive $500 and $500 for their school.
Nominate yourself or another educator by May 14th, 2021! More information can be found HERE
CANOPA – Canadian Outdoor Professionals Association
CANOPA is (Canadian Outdoor Professionals Association) a national nonprofit organization started in 2021. Stemming from the need for a unified voice for outdoor professionals, CANOPA’s main goals are to EDUCATE outdoor professionals on their rights and responsibilities, to AMPLIFY and include marginalized voices and reduce barriers for folks with diverse backgrounds, to ADVOCATE for a more sustainable industry, and to SUPPORT the community of outdoor professionals through events like OWLS and more! To get involved and stay informed about future opportunities with CANOPA, sign up for a membership and/or follow on Instagram (@canopa_org) or Facebook (@canopa.org). Contact us at canadian.outdoor.instructors@
Get Kids Paddling – Why Paddle? Visual
Together with Erica Bota from ThinkLink Graphics, Get Kids Paddling has produced a stunning visual to capture a 2 hour discussion where 7 people spoke openly about their paddling experiences, primarily on canoe trips. Opening the link will show you the illustration displaying how Erica captured the conversation. GKP-Why-Paddle-Visual.pdf
Science Education and Local Communities
We would like to invite you to participate in a research project exploring Ontario educators’ perspectives and experiences integrating local school-community resources with your science teaching or school planning.
The online survey will take approximately 10 minutes to complete, depending on your responses. Your survey participation does not require prior experience collaborating with local school communities. Your contribution is greatly valued because it will help us better understand how to improve and support science teaching and learning using the local school community. All your survey responses will remain confidential and anonymous. At the end of the survey you will have the option to enter a draw for a Chapters Indigo gift card. Click on the link below to enter the survey:
If you have any questions regarding the survey, please contact Xavier Fazio (email@example.com)
Thank you for your participation!
OEE P.D. OPPORTUNITIES
Adventureworks! Associates Inc.
Assistant Ropes Course Instructor (Level 1)
June 2-6, 2021 Canterbury Hills, Ancaster
Ropes Course Instructor (Level 2)
June 9-13, 2021 Canterbury Hills, Ancaster
Outdoor Experiential Education (OEE) Additional Qualification Course
Outdoor Learning Webinars, hosted by LSF:
- A series of webinars designed specifically for and by secondary teachers
- Tips for getting outside even in cold winter months!
- Connecting primary and middle school math curriculum to the outdoors
Check out the recorded webinar sessions for each grade group:
- Kindergarten/Early Years: Webinar recording | Webinar slides
- Grades K-6: Webinar recording | Webinar slides
- Grades 4-10: Webinar recording | Webinar slides
Webinars from Natural Curiosity:
Recordings for all past Natural Curiosity webinars series are available through a “pay-what-you-can” model on the University of Toronto Press website! CLICK HERE to access these webinars.
NAAEE 2020 Annual Conference and Research Symposium – Inspiring Change
The focus of the 2020 NAAEE Conference and Research Symposium was positive change. Virtual workshops explored the ways in which environmental education informs and inspires, and how it builds human capacity, influences attitudes, and galvanizes actions to create healthier communities and a healthier environment for all.
Recordings of almost all sessions are available for on-demand viewing.
We don’t want cost to be a barrier, especially in these unprecedented times when many in our field have been hard hit by the Coronavirus pandemic. Access to recordings is available at reduced rates.
More information can be found on the event website: https://naaee.org/conference
Place-Based Education in Simcoe County
Lakehead University is running an intensive two-week place-based education course this June. The course will involve canoeing, hiking and biking through Huronia region to learn from this place, through place, and about pedagogies of place-based education. Leaders will include Kory Snache, Elder Gertie Beaucage, as a well as many other teachers from the region. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
OSEE (the Ontario Society for Environmental Education) is excited to announce that their EcoLinks Conference 2021.
OSEE’s mission is to support and inspire all educators in Ontario to incorporate environmental education into their practice.
This year, OSEE will host their conference virtually over 2 days, Friday May 7th (6 – 9:15pm) and Saturday May 8th (10am – 5:15pm). EcoLinks is designed to build capacity for, and between educators in environmental education (EE). EcoLinks offers a diverse menu of workshop and webinar experiences as pathways for building knowledge, scaling out comfort, connecting with peers, and implementing new learning in EE.
We’re excited and grateful to be hosting a small but mighty menu of 10 workshops led by passionate and knowledgeable educators who represent organizations doing amazing work. We encourage you to explore the work of each presenter and organization for further learning opportunities. On May 8th, we’ll also provide time and spaces for small peer-to-peer reflections and networking in virtual “tea rooms”.
The conference is a welcome space for everyone. Content is curated for all formal & non-formal educators across all subjects, students, and anyone with a stake in environmental education. Content may be Ontario specific in some cases, but there will be great value for environmental education champions across Turtle Island.
Canadian Outdoor Summit
September 29 – October 2, 2021, Virtual events across Canada
This inaugural event is about bringing people together to celebrate contributions and tackle some key structural challenges affecting all outdoor programs from coast to coast to coast. This national gathering is aimed at celebrating our contribution to Canadian society and solving key challenges faced by outdoor programs. This project is a collective effort of the outdoor sector, therefore your perspective and contribution offers tremendous value. More information can be found on the event website: http://canadianoutdoorsummit.com/ and social media channels. Please follow and share: Instagram, Facebook, Canadian Outdoor Summit Promotional Video
Association for Experiential Education (AEE)
November 11 – 14th, 2021, Virtual
AEE’s 49th Annual International Conference will convene attendees to promote, definine, develop, and apply theories and practices of Experiential Education. Our Conference is intentionally designed to create a collaborative environment where you can grow your career, discover valuable new strategies to integrate into your work, and develop lasting personal and professional relationships.
Join hundreds of Experiential Educators from around the world for four days of engaging workshops, meaningful networking, and informative presentations…all from the safety and comfort of your own home!
Find out all the details and how to register HERE
Technical Staff, Outdoor Recreation, Parks and Tourism, Lakehead University
This position may be for you if you like maintaining equipment and working in the outdoors helping students achieve their goals and build skills in wilderness contexts. It’s also for you if you enjoy collaborating with Faculty in classrooms and on committees planning safe and exciting field based experiences for students. We are a dynamic team of problem solvers, dreamers, doers, and innovators with respect for each other and the Land upon which we learn, the traditional territory of the Anishnaabe part of the Robinson Superior Treaty of 1850. We are looking for someone to join our team who is excited about fostering enthusiasm for the next generation of ORPT students. Someone who embodies ORPT’s culture of respect principles with a commitment to equity, social justice and desire to teach and learn with a dynamic team in sometimes challenging contexts.
Outdoor Education/Community Service Teacher, Muskoka Montessori School
The Muskoka Montessori School is currently seeking a part-time Outdoor Education and Community Service teacher to work with our Grades 7/8 students on Fridays. As a teacher at the Muskoka Montessori School, you will have the opportunity to work with a small class of students to connect classroom lessons with real world experience in the natural world.
We are looking for someone who has strong technical skills in areas such as canoeing, camping, orienteering, etc. and an ability to integrate life and earth science curricula into outdoor activities. The goal of the outdoor education program is to engage students in rich experience with nature so as to foster a love and respect for the natural world and to guide students toward stewardship of our world.
Candidates will also have the opportunity to engage the students in community service activities and projects. Some examples of past volunteer work has included trail clearing and maintenance, work at the Table Food Bank in Huntsville, planning and organizing donations and support for local wildlife and refuge centres, etc.
Interested candidates should possess solid experience working with children and teens, and preference will be given to those with a Bachelor of Education and teaching experience. Additional qualifications should include certification in first aid and CPR. Strong interpersonal and communication skills will also be an asset.
If this position interests you, please send your resume to the school co-principal, Jennifer Daynard (email@example.com).
Multiple Positions, Adventureworks! Associates, Inc.
Hiring now! Challenge Course Installers and Program Facilitators. To see complete job postings, CLICK HERE
Multiple Positions, Outward Bound Canada
Forest School Educator, The P.I.N.E Project
The Forest School Educator will be a core component of our forest school staff. Working with our innovative approach to nature education, this role provides the opportunity to creatively deliver our program curriculum on a daily basis, and relate it back to the Ontario curriculum. Naturalist knowledge, experience working with children and working in the outdoors are key elements of the role. In addition, a teaching certificate is required for this position. Forest school educators work to embody respect, gratitude, awareness, life-long learning, and resilience, in alignment with our core values.
To view the posting CLICK HERE
Road Less Travelled Academy (RLTA) – Full Time Outdoor Educator
The Road Less Travelled Academy (RLTA) is a not for profit, charitable educational organization that has been in operation since 2017. A nature-based elementary school is seeking two outdoor educators for full-time positions to join our small but growing team to work with children ages 4-8. We do currently have two indoor classrooms, which are Yomes (yurt/eco-domes) heated with wood stoves for the colder months. The school campus is located on a working farm setting and there is ample opportunity for adventuring through farm, forest, and fields with the students. Nature is our classroom. Our integrated curriculum and activities focus on real-world themes (for example, food/animal systems, health & wellness, social justice & servant leadership).
OLE Instructor and OLE Support, Pine River Institute
Pine River Institute is an innovative co-ed residential treatment program for teens struggling with addictive behaviours. We are a family-centered program comprised of 4 phases: Wilderness (Outdoor Leadership Experience), Residential, Transition, and Aftercare. Every student, upon entering the program, spends 8 or more weeks in Huntsville before moving to the residence. Day-to-day activities in wilderness include canoeing, hiking, snowshoeing, group initiatives, group and individual therapy, and journaling. Youths live and work in nature in groups of up to eight, with three staff.
Our campus is situated on 200 acres of spectacular Niagara Escarpment land near Shelburne, Ontario. The program here includes outdoor education, individual, group, and family therapy, expressive arts, athletics, and life skills, as well as the more traditional academic offerings.
We are currently seeking experienced Wilderness Field Instructors to help us deliver this unique program, primarily in Huntsville or Algonquin Park and also at the Shelburne campus.
We are looking for individuals with the qualifications and related experience in Wilderness field work. This individual will demonstrate patience, integrity, commitment, and an ability to maintain clear boundaries, and a sense of humour.
To view the postings, click the links below.
ONTARIO CAMPS ASSOCIATION – JOB BOARD
The OCA Job Board is always an excellent place to find job postings in the field of outdoor education. Check out their website, as many full-time positions at outdoor centres and camps are now being advertised. Are you a natural team leader and a creative problem-solver? Do you enjoy giving back to the community and inspiring others to do good? Katimavik is looking for open-minded, resourceful individuals to lead youth development projects. This challenging and rewarding position provides leadership for up to 11 youth at a time, guiding them through a six-month experience of volunteerism, learning, discovery, growth, and accountability. The Project Leader will reside in-house with the group.
Find us, friend us, like us, tag us or follow us online:
Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/coeo.org
Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/coeo.org
Twitter https://twitter.com/COEOoutdoors @COEOoutdoors
ABOUT THIS ELECTRONIC NEWSLETTER
For consistency, the COEO electronic newsletter is now published on the first of each month. Anyone having an item of interest to outdoor & experiential educators and desiring publication in this newsletter needs to submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org at least two days before the publication date.
The newsletter is generally organized according to the following headings: COEO News, Other OEE & Related News, P.D. Opportunities, Opportunities for Students, Resources, Job Postings. If your organization wishes to post information (e.g., notice of upcoming events, etc), it needs to be an organizational member of COEO.
If you would like to be removed from COEO’s eNewsletter mailing list, please send an email to email@example.com and ask to be unsubscribed.