Thursday, November 02, 2017

Outdoor Recreation is where the fun begins!

Fishing at North Dakota Game and Fish
“Huff Hills was one of the most fun days through my entire high school years!”                                   
~Missy Domagala- now a freshman at NDSU (pictured on right)

Outdoor Recreation is where the fun begins with being active! 

Is there a better way to spend your Physical Education class than being outside and participating in fun and exciting activities in the community?
First fish he has ever caught!

Outdoor Recreation is an elective class that meets two hours at a time, once a week for the whole year.  We partake in different community activities that give students the experience outside of school to promote lifelong fitness and wellness.  Outdoor Recreation allows for the students to enjoy the outdoor environment and learn to find exercise beyond the gym. There is something that can be said about enjoying activities in the outdoors and taking in the fresh air.  This class can spark an interest in an outdoor activity that you never knew of or tried.  As the OPENspace Research Centre puts it: “Physical activity in the natural environment not only aids an increased life-span, fewer symptoms of depression, and lower rates of smoking and substance misuse, but also an increased ability to function better at work and at home.”
Forty feet off the ground conquering fears
at the high ropes course!

“Outdoor Recreation was a great experience for me, it allowed me to try new things in an outdoor environment which I loved! Being able to try those new activities, that I probably never would have tried on my own, was really an eye opener to new things I could enjoy as a hobby on my own time.” 
~Brenna Hanson- now a freshman at UND (pictured on right)

I personally believe that by having an outdoor program and exposing students to different activities that they might not have the chance to do on their own will positively impact their lives.  The students may find some hidden strengths and hobbies that they may want to pursue further beyond the classroom experience.
“We got to do things that I’d never do on my own.”                                             ~Heidi Hilz- now a freshman at NDSU (pictured on left)

Having this class as an elective for students provides an alternative for those that do not care for competitive, physical education gym activities.  However, we are still in the school environment.  The social aspect is present, and students can still have some independence and grow confident in themselves.  “Your child spends most of their academic life in the classroom, but well-rounded secondary schools recognize the invaluable benefits that fresh air and nature can offer to each student’s personal well being” as stated by an outdoor teacher from the Independent Lakefield College School.
“I really liked outdoor rec. It was fun and really active. It's a class where you get to go outside and be active instead of being in a classroom all day. My favorite activity we did was when we went to the high and low ropes course. I highly recommend this class.”                                       ~Brady Oberlander- senior LHS (pictured on right)
Legacy High School is creating memories within our Outdoor Recreational class that will last a lifetime. Whether we are kayaking, playing sand volleyball, hiking, golfing, curling, ice skating, sledding, skiing, fishing, throwing horseshoes, shooting archery or conquering our fears on a high ropes course, my students are engaged in lifelong active learning.  These activities allow students to be free and individuals.  Hearing the students laugh when we go sledding is priceless, an activity that most of them say, “I have not done this in years; I forgot how fun it is.”  Seeing the smiles and excitement when we go to Huff Hills proves that ALL students are having fun and trying to learn the activity.  A true sense of belonging is created when students support and help beginners to learn and take on the challenge of the ski hill. 

Huff Hills Ski Trip
I am hoping to inspire a love of nature and outdoor opportunities that my students can do to be active in the community.  They learn that lifelong fitness opportunities do not require going to the gym.  Learning can be fun!
“It was amazing! Very fun experience!”     ~Haley Starck- senior LHS (pictured on right in pink coat)

Come check out the fun in Outdoor Recreation 
by watching the video.
Thank you students Kailey Weigel for making the video and 
Alexi Ness for the video clips!

Twitter Tuesday Questions:  
  • How can we expose our students to new experiences that can positively influence their lives?
  • Being outdoors is healthy for everyone! How can you add an outdoor element to your daily life?
  • Competitive vs Non-competitive. Which type of activities to do prefer? How can we recognize that difference in our students? 
  • Offering Outdoor Rec gives students more choices. Share one simple thing you can change right now to give students more choice.
  • Lifelong learning is important for everyone. What’s one thing you want to learn? 

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