WAB Wild, our outdoor education department at the Western Academy of Beijing, has run more than 20 outdoor expeditions and day trips each year for over a decade.
Taking learning outside the classroom and into nature, WAB Wild has a strong environmental focus incorporated into all its programs.
In the wild, we challenge students to challenge themselves, and think and reflect on how they interact with the environment, heightening awareness of the global issues facing our planet. Our team structures programs unique to each grade level, gradually increasing in difficulty and steadily building independence. The goal is to meaningfully engage students, and to foster a love of nature and respect for our interconnectedness.
Video: Reconnecting with Nature through Outdoor Ed
Video: A Year of Adventure in Nature Kicks off at WAB Wild
The WAB Podcast: Reconnecting with Nature through Outdoor Ed
Using WAB’s Miao Liang camp set within the beautiful mountains north of Beijing as our classroom, small groups of students move skillfully through, what is to most students, an unfamiliar environment.
They have the chance to make their own decisions about how to progress, to consider risk, and to act responsibly. In small teams, they explore how to lead without being overbearing, how to listen when they want to be heard, and how to reach consensus as a group. Students can safely push themselves towards the limits of what they think they can do, and often surprise themselves by being more capable than they at first thought.
“These experiences are not unique to Outdoor Education, what is unique is that Outdoor Education sets out specifically to achieve these goals,” said Rob Starmer, WAB’s Head of Outdoor Education and Director of Miao Liang.
Hear a complete conversation with Rob about the importance of reconnecting with nature, the value of experiential learning, and outdoor education's role in the future of learning in Episode 24 of The WAB Podcast.
WAB… where dreams and visions become reality through true collaboration and teamwork.
Students have opportunities to learn and experience:
- Multi-day expeditions into the wild over land and water
- Interdisciplinary experiential classrooms, including Science and Geography
- Radio communication
- Survival skills
- Rock climbing
- Kayaking and canoeing
- Rescue training
- And much more
The following opportunities are available specifically to each of our school sections:
Grade 5 Transition Camp: Helping students to ‘Step Up & Out’ and make the transition from Elementary School to Middle School as smooth and engaging as possible.
This team-orientated camp has programmed challenges targeted to help students gain a better understanding of how to strike a balance between nature and themselves.
Nestled among the majestic Mi Yun Mountains on the banks of the beautiful Bai He River, WAB’s Miao Liang Environmental Education Center is the perfect base of operations for a variety of activities and programs for a diverse range of user groups.
WAB students from Grade 6-12 make use of Miao Liang for curricular and extracurricular programs including environmental science, geography and also for study and team building retreats.
Living at Miao Liang, students embrace the environmentally sustainable lifestyle that this center offers, and reflect on the current and future technologies as we address the global issues faced by our planet. The Center features environmental technologies including solar PV system for electricity, solar hot water, dry composting toilets, as well as biodigestor and ecological grey water systems.