Student Life

Outdoor Education

Facilitating students’ connection to British Columbia’s outdoors
The Outdoor Education experience is an integral part of the learning process at York House. With a long tradition of facilitating students’ connection to British Columbia’s outdoors, our goal is to promote our community’s comfort in, and understanding of, the natural environment and cultivate students’ confidence and skills.
In the primary grades, students begin their journey by undertaking day trips to local forests beaches, and the mountains. From Grades 4 to 7, students participate in multi-day outdoor education trips to some of the province’s most renowned outdoor education camps such as Sea to Sky Outdoor School, Camp Summit, and Evans Lake Camp. Through activities, such as hiking, canoeing, sailing, biking, camping, and environmental studies, students learn and develop self-reliance, teamwork, leadership, and responsibility.

In Grades 8 through 10, students embark on week-long excursions into British Columbia’s pristine wilderness in locations such as Manning, Golden Ears, and Garibaldi Provincial Parks. By Grade 10, students have developed the skills to plan and execute a multi-day outdoor excursion including meal planning, tent set-up, and so much more. Interested students from Grades 9 and 10 may pursue their passion for the outdoors as well as fulfill Duke of Edinburgh International Award requirements. Interested Grade 11 and 12 students may fulfill Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award requirements with a team-formulated trip under the guidance of the YHS Outdoor Education Coordinator. Senior students also have the opportunity to be Senior Leaders on the Junior School overnight excursions, building their leadership skills by taking a new approach to the outdoors and experiential learning. 

GO! Program

In their Grade 10 year at YHS, students have the opportunity to apply to be in the GO! (Get Outside!) Program, as an alternative to the traditional Physical & Health Education (PHE) stream. The GO! Cohort program aims to promote self-discovery, leadership, interactive social skills, as well as a more holistic understanding of the natural world through experiential, adventure, and environmental education. Over the course of the year and within the regular timetable, GO Program students are exposed to a variety of outdoor activities and pursuits, including hiking, kayaking, cross-country skiing, biking, snowshoeing, and bouldering. 

Students will cover important health content related to mental health, substance use, sexual education, and nutrition. Students also receive three certifications as part of the program: Introduction to Wilderness First Aid, Avalanche Safety Training Level 1, and Paddle Canada Basic Kayaking Skills. 

For questions in regards to the GO! Program, please contact Katrina Brennan, the Outdoor Education Coordinator, at [email protected]