Since the opening of the Outdoor Classroom in 1997, Whidbey Watershed Stewards has presented a steady program of K-5 lessons in spring and fall sessions. Each lesson is aligned with grade level learning objectives and is developed and guided by our staff. We have grown and adapted our lessons over the years, and continue to improve and meet the needs of teachers and students.
Volunteers are an important part of our program; we would not be able to offer these small-group lessons without them. We provide a single day training at the beginning of each session, and volunteers are supported throughout their service by our staff.
Our curriculum is updated and revised frequently to keep pace with changes in science, education theory, and the focus of the school system. In the 2005-06 school year, we are incorporating an inquiry-based approach into our lessons. A 2004 Environmental Education report commissioned by the state legislature concluded that “inquiry, systems-based learning which uses the environment as an organizing context substantially improves student learning and achievement on standardized tests.”
Bring a class or group of six or more K-5 students to the Outdoor Classroom to learn more about watersheds, salmon, and this place we inhabit. Contact Lori@whidbeywatersheds.org for more information.
The self-guided trail at the Outdoor Classroom site is open to the public year-round. We only ask that you respect the nature preserve and not disturb the wildlife and plants. Please have your dog on a leash while you walk, and pick up poop. The trail and boardwalk platforms are wheelchair accessible. A brochure at the information kiosk explains the viewpoints and the watershed system. Comments can be left in the kiosk mailbox.