The sixth grade is involved in outdoor education at Camp CILCA Lutheran Camp for three days in the fall and three days in the spring.
In the fall, the students observe the earth getting ready for its winter rest. Leaf identification is perfect for this time because leaves are falling off trees so they can study the leaves more closely. The fall is the perfect time to teach outdoor photography. God's coloration of the earth helps arouse the student's interest in capturing God's creation. The cooler days of fall are excellent for animal watching. Mammals can be seen searching for food for the winter and the reptiles can be seen sunning and are therefore easier to spot and watch.
In the spring, the student's have the opportunity to see new life emerge in nature. Classes such as Creek Walking allow the students to view how creeks have changed due to summer, winter, and spring erosion. The study of a lake's springtime macro invertebrates can lead into discussions of water pollution, insect life cycle, or water conservation.
Woven throughout the two sessions are also classes in Survival, Canoeing, Archery, Orienteering, First Aid, Language Art and Religion. The students have a chance to hike to a tree that is dated from the time of George Washington. They learn about constellations and, on clear nights, they are taken outside to observe the stars. This experience is a good time for the sixth graders to start bonding with each other. A positive outdoor education experience can help lead to positive group interaction back in the classroom and throughout Jr. High. Each year the sixth graders come back with excitement and awesome words about their Camp C.I.L.C.A. experience.