Lake City Students Take To Wilderness For Active Learning Week

In today’s world students have access to more learning technology than ever before, but this week students are stepping away from their screens and learning the old fashioned way.

“They don’t get to experience this stuff all the time and I think that it’s good for the kids to get out and have cold feet and wet hands and learn what the rest of us do daily.”

Lake City Dad, Brad Gothard is talking about Camp Rotary.

This week marks the 40th in the decades long tradition of 6th grade students traveling to the wooded recreation grounds for hands on learning.

Lake City Middle School Principal, Tim Hejnal says, “We recognize that in the classroom time that children spend is really important to their learning, but as important we believe at lake city is what we call the non-cognitive pieces.”

With the rise in technology kids have plenty of cognitive learning opportunities in the classroom, but these outdoor activities have kids developing non-cognitive learning skills.

Hejnal explains non-cognitive learning as, “a lot of the character education of communicating and learning to care for one another and building confidence within themselves. Those critical pieces that will help them be successful not just in the 6th grade but throughout life.”

And as Hejnal continues those critical learning opportunities are far from sparse, “We have a rappel and climbing tower so we’re excited about that the students will be ice fishing, we have a pond study course where we have folks from the Missaukee conservation district here.”

As much as the Northern Michigan camp is an educational tradition, it’s a family tradition as well.

Watching son Brody participate in the same exercises he once did, Brad says it’s hard not to get sentimental, “It’s pretty exciting. I’m super excited for him. It’s just exciting to see that the school still makes it a priority for the kids to go with so many budget cuts and with everything being taken away from schools and it’s harder and harder to do something like this.”

And by the looks of it, students are pretty excited too.

When asked about camp this week Brody says, “Yeah I was really excited for camp. If you talk about it in the classroom you don’t really get to like experience it and do it, but If you come out here you learn it, teach it by yourself, just learn it, go.”

The Clare Michigan camp ground hosts a variety of educational camps.

If you’re interested in participating click here.