The philosophy behind our Field Class Programs stems from the pedagogical practices of Experiential Education. Although this can mean many things in many places, here at Quarrybrook it means that our curriculum and all field experiences are carefully designed to engage students in learning through investigation and discovery, questioning and problem solving, creative and critical thinking, and in reflection for meaning-making. We believe that students need to be physically, emotionally, and cognitively connected to the field experience in order to be doing their best learning.
Our objective for the Field Class Program is to provide hands-on learning experiences that support and enhance current academic goals in formal education, while also fostering a love for nature and lifelong learning. In support of this, each participating class is asked to commit to three field classes per school year. These can be booked close together to extend a single lesson and delve deep, or can be spread out over different seasons.
Guided by Common Core and Next Generation standards, each field class is comprised of a two-hour lesson that takes place along the forest trails at Quarrybrook. Led by our educators, in collaboration with the visiting classroom teachers, students explore a myriad of STEM topics. Additionally, we explore subjects such as history, language arts, and creative arts.
One of our core features is the co-teaching model we employ with our participating classroom teachers. Quarrybrook educators co- lead the field class together guiding their students, step-by-step, in carrying out the activities and challenges presented. To facilitate maximum engagement of the students, activities are often conducted in smaller sub-teams, with Quarrybrook educators, teachers, and chaperones each working directly with a sub-team throughout the lesson.