Outdoor Education – Immersing our students in every square inch of God's creation
ACS is blessed with a beautiful campus that offers miles of hiking trails, wetland areas, an abundance of trees that provide an opportunity for tapping and syrup production in the spring and a wide variety of plant and bird life for students to identify. There are regular sightings of deer, wild turkeys and the occasional fox.
Our outdoor education program has brought many amazing discoveries and excitement to our 37-acre campus. Outdoor education is integrated in all subjects preschool-8th grade.
There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, "Mine!" – Abraham Kuyper
Growing In Wonder
We are happy to house seven friendly goats on our property. The goats help our campus by eating many of the invasive plants. Every Spring we welcome new baby goats, what joy it is to experience new life!
Caring for creation
Each grade level at Ada Christian plays a unique role in our Outdoor Education program.
We are engaging our youngest learners in God's creation in a variety of way.
- 3's: meet the animals, story times outside in OE spaces
- 4's: planned day in OE every other week
- 5's: one hike day, OE adventure or game per week per week
Our Kindergartener's are encouraged to explore the world around them. We spend focused time on planting our salad garden as well as a tree.
Harvesting herbs, garbling, and making tea bags from those herbs!
Care for and learning at homestead (log cabin) and Native American village (longhouse, wigwam & teepee).
Care for and learning about birds on the property. This includes research and projects, filling all the feeders, tracking the species, caring for the Bluebird houses.
Veggies: Planting, harvesting and selling the plants that we grow in our hoophouse, greenhouse, and outdoor gardens. This includes running the Wednesday after school market and hanging basket plant sale in May.
Caring for and learning from our resident goats; Belle, Frannie, Joy, Beau, Raindance and Nikko. Helping with the kids that are born each spring to these momma goats.
Caring for and learning from our 50 egg-laying Isa Brown hens. This includes regular coop cleaning, egg collecting, cleaning, packaging and selling through the Got Yolk egg business. Over 1,000 dozen sold last year.
Ahh, maple syrup season at our Sugar Shack. The kids do it all. Tap, collect sap, boil it down, sanitize, bottle, and sell. Last year our students sold over 200 bottles.
Each grade accumulates money through the years through sales of veggies, eggs, plants and maple syrup. Our eighth grade decides on a project each year to fund and build.
Past Legacy Projects include:
2018 – OE Early Elementary Sandbox
2019 – Maple Sugar Shack
2020 - Log Cabin
2021 - Low Ropes Course
Observing the Wonders of Creation's King
- Studying and observing the root structure of plants
- Exploring the forest floor to collect critters
- Adopting trees to study how they change through the seasons
- Recording water loss in plants
- Studying solar angle through the seasons with shadow positions
- Creating homemade hot air balloons to discover density
- Collecting seeds and discussing dispersion
- Observing and feeding birds
- Discovering how animals camouflage themselves
- Collecting pond water to observe organisms
Come watch us grow!
Our Outdoor Education program still has plenty of excitement to come. Here are some ways we expect to grow our program:
- Permanent and Vernal ponds – promote and accommodate diverse aquatic environments (from amphibians to waterfowl!)
- Michigan Native American dwellings and cultural education area
- Numerous pathways, trees, sculptures and habitat tunnels
- Hand-hewn Michigan homestead/pioneer cabin with root cellar