Hikes & field trips
Transportation & arrangements
When you sign your contract there is a field trip form for you to sign which gives permission for your child to leave Running River grounds. The field trip form that parents sign with the contract include all field trips taken. In addition to hiking, swimming and trips to the park, there will be special trips to places such as zoos, museums, libraries, etc. These trips are arranged directly with the parents in advance so that parents can attend.
At Running River, we spend a lot of time in the field hiking. In order to effectively prevent injury, we use Safety Briefings to orient students to new environments. It is important to create awareness around hazards. It is equally important to illicit ideas and rules from students in order to create a life long ability to assess and avoid risk.
We use safety briefings any time we enter a new environment, such as walking on a trail vs. walking on a bike path, or playing in a forest vs. playing near a river. In the risk management model we use, we define Environmental hazards and Human Hazards. Then, we create rules to separate the two in order to avoid incidents. Here is an example of an environmental briefing. This particular briefing might take place before playing in the foothills.
We gather all the children in a circle, make sure they are all listening by expecting complete quiet and asking for all eyes and all ears on us. We WAIT until this happens, asking children who aren’t doing this to please do, or move them next to a teacher to make it easier.
Then we ask the children to look around at the environment. What do they see that could cause injury? They answer. Then, what rules to do they need to follow to stay safe? Which of these rules are to protect us from the environment? Which hazards could cause injury from mistakes (human error)? What could people use to help them avoid problems? They answer until we feel like we have all the rules laid out clearly.
WE PROVIDE A HIKING MANUAL FOR STAFF AND VOLUNTEER PARENTS
School Camping Trips
Twice a year Running River creates camping trips that foster community, vivid nature experiences, responsibility, skill building and plain old fun!
Every fall, the oldest classes go on a two to four day camping trip, depending on their age.
Every Spring the entire school, and all the families, camp at Rocky Mountain National Park for three days. This great “village event” is a way to complete our year all together by being in nature. We hike, play games, tell stories, play instruments and sing. and look at the stars through large telescopes we bring along. We have braved rain, snow, wind, heat and cold, and we ALWAYS have fun being together. We have done Greek Dancing, had the best s’more contests, gone fishing, viewed herds of elk and mountain goats and found skeletons of elk. We have perfected the art of cooking, with all the parents and kids pitching in to create delicious meals.
Running River Family Camp
Each summer we offer a week long camp out at the Gathering of Friends Retreat Center, a remote wilderness property in the Gila Mountains of New Mexico. We live, work, cook, play and learn together as a committed community. It is here we set our goals for the coming school year.