The Outdoor Education program at Punahou immerses students in experiences that fit within a mindful progression of K – 8 outdoor education experiences. These are designed to:
- Meet the changing needs of children and the world around them oIntegrate and enhance the School’s inquiry-based curriculum goals
- Immerse students in age-appropriate, memorable experiences that enhance a sense of place, both local and global
- Build a foundation of self-confidence, independence, awareness, exploration and inspiration by challenging the body and mind
- Connect them physically, mentally and spiritually to Hawaiian culture
- Enable them to form a meaningful relationship with the natural world
Age appropriate grade level experiences include:
- First-grade nature hikes and explorations of the living, natural world through gardens and on-campus green spaces
- Second-grade evening trip to the Honolulu Zoo and `Ualaka`a trail hike
- Third-grade Hawaiian studies trip to Kualoa Beach Park
- Fourth-grade “Adventure Week” exploration experiences
- Fifth-grade landmark trip to Hawai‘i island
- Sixth-grade four-day Camp Timberline experience
- Seventh-grade combination of three off-campus experiences at Waimanalo, Kualoa/Hakipu`u and Waiahole Valley
- Eighth-grade retreat at Camp Mokuleia; a culminating event before entering high school strongly built around values education and bonding experience.
Specific connections are reinforced through these grade-level learning experiences, including: student-to-student, student-to-teacher, grade-level-to-school and school-to-environment.
Ultimately, the program aims to build a deep connection to the natural world as a key step in developing students who care about the earth, are effective stewards of our natural resources, and are equipped to take action towards global sustainability.