Celebrating 30 Years of Service
Hawk Circle Class Trip Intensives
When a class of students come to our wilderness center, they are led through a detailed orientation, and tour of our facilities, which will be their home for the length of their stay. They begin to go through a curriculum of earth skills, wilderness adventure, nature crafts, and social games, that all work together to help them see themselves and each other in a completely new way. The lessons they learn are milestones that a teacher can use throughout the year, as we develop their capacity for team building, communication, focus, attention to detail, problem solving and shared leadership.
The students also experience what an immersion in a beautiful place can do to help them feel grounded, centered, relaxed and inspired.
Class teachers can modify the program to suit the unique needs of their class, in terms of challenge, intensity, crafts, wilderness study, games and group experiences. Each trip is carefully planned after an in-depth interview with the class teacher, followed by a conference call, so parents can ask questions about individual aspects of the program, hear about a typical Hawk Circle 'Day' and cover things like the menu, ticks, sleeping arrangements, supervision, medical care and more. This takes the pressure off the Class Teacher to provide all the answers, when they clearly have plenty of other things to focus on in teaching their class!
Note: Hawk Circle Class Trips are designed to be positive, successful experiences that today's youth will find inspiring, fun and successful. We are not a 'bootcamp' or a 'constant challenge' program. We understand that students often arrive with little outdoor camping or nature experience, so we focus on giving them activities that are appropriate for their skill level. We focus on building a real relationship with our students, forming friendships that can last long after the program is over.
Renewal Transformation Grounding Connection
Seeing through Native Eyes
In this program, students are introduced the skills of earth living as if they were a young native boy or girl. We build shelters, cook over an open fire, learn to make stone jewelry, play awareness games and explore the woods like a tracker!
The Earth Builder
This program focuses on one predominate project throughout the week, each morning, usually a thatch hut, debris shelter, hogan or wickiup, that is created from scratch using things from the forest. We surround those sessions with grass mats, cordage skills, tool creation, games and campfires and cooking! It's a great program that lasts a lifetime.
"The Eye of the Needle"
This program is a rite of passage to social consciousness through skills of survival and the art of fire. We learn and practice one match fires and flint and steel and friction fires all week, and end with 'The Vigil', were each student makes their own fire and sits with it for an hour in the evening, enjoying it's warmth and light. Powerful.
We also teach lots of crafts and games too!
The Wilderness Survival Challenge
In this program, students build shelters as a team and sleep in them for a night, along with fire challenges, stone tool tests and wild foods quizzes. It's intense at times, but balanced with good food, campfire games, social connections and play. Great for Seventh Graders who are experiencing difficult social dynamics that often occurs at their age.
Eighth Grade Rite of Passage
This program helps students complete their middle school experience by offering them a space to enjoy each other, learn earth skills, and have a final adventure in the heart of nature. We learn to listen to that inner voice that can guide us when all else fails, and we use our hearts and our hands to make beautiful baskets, bows and arrows or spears, wooden bowls and spoons or other native crafts too.
By the end of our time, students can be clear and share this last program before they head out into the next stage of their educational journey.
Hawk Circle for Your
Custom designed program co-created with Class Teacher and Hawk Circle Staff.
Safe timber-framed cabins can handle any weather.
Hawk Circle instructors mean you as the teacher can observe your class without having to provide constant supervision.
Healthy and delicious home-made meals.
Gluten-free menu and food allergy support.
Authentic native crafts, skills challenges, awareness and social games.
Beautiful wilderness retreat setting with low tick and poison ivy presence.
Cozy and comfortable teacher's cabin!
New bath house with state of the art bathrooms and showers.
(coming in Spring, 2018)
Eagle House, a beautiful indoor class room for inclement weather.
"Needless to say my class had a wonderful time. I still get goosebumps when I remember walking that trail on our last evening - seeing them each tending their own fire.
I never thought a fire could reflect the personality of the builder, but each one of those sure did... I was filled with awe as I travelled the path in the dark and watched them - their faces illuminated by their tiny fires - as they met this challenge. More importantly, they had this wonderful, magical time alone in the woods with their own fire. On the way back, they were each twelve inches taller - from pride, enthusiasm and the excitement of success. This was a very special moment for them and for me. I am so proud to know that you guys are doing the work you are doing.
I think you guys are heavy hitters. In my book, you are doing vital work. Thank you so much for being out there. And thank you again for the great week they gave to my students."
Princeton Waldorf School
Time spent in nature helps your students to unwind, contemplate, reconnect as a class and get inspired.
How to Register
To register your class for a trip, or to inquire for further information, please contact Ricardo Sierra at firstname.lastname@example.org. He will answer any questions you may have as well as help you schedule your program with us. Once scheduled, we require a non-refundable, 50% deposit to hold your spot. We will schedule a time to discuss your class' needs and create a curriculum that will best support your students.
Note: We generally fill fast for the year and typically offer programs in late April, May and the first week of June. We also offer programs in September and October, and occasionally, in January/February/March for classes who want to experience a winter survival program. The earlier you contact us, the better your chances of getting your preferred dates that fit with your school's calendar.
For the Teacher...
As a teacher, bringing your class to Hawk Circle allows time for you to step back. Maybe for observing your class and seeing them in a way you've never seen them before, or maybe for taking a much need break for yourself.
Our staff are with your students from the time they finish their breakfast to well into the evening - we handle everything! For you, the only times where we need you to take over is during siesta - a time when many teachers check in with their students and weave in lessons from school that relate to their Hawk Circle experience, and at bedtime.
You will have your own private cabin with a fully-made bed conveniently located within steps of your students' cabins.
Prior to your trip, we offer a conference call with you and your students' parents to answer any questions or concerns. This relieves you from having to address parental concerns.
After you have your trip scheduled, please fill out our online form, answering questions that will help us to
prepare for your class' arrival.
For the Parents...
We will be scheduling a conference call with the class teacher and parents to answer any of your questions or concerns prior to the trip, but here are answers to a few frequently asked questions!
Where will my child be sleeping? We have hand-built, timber frame cabins that sleep 5-6 campers. Please check our equipment list for proper gear!
What are the meals like? All our meals are home-made, kid friendly and healthy. We are able accommodate most allergies and food sensitivities. Please see below the details.
Are there ticks? At certain times of the year, we do find a few ticks but fortunately they are minimal in comparison to most areas. Doing regular tick checks is a part of our daily protocol to insure safe time spent in the woods.
Can my child bring their cell phone, iPad, or Kindle? No, we don't allow any devices. We have found that having any technological devices alters the cultural experience and inhibits deep connection with friends and the natural landscape. Even Kindles disrupt the health benefits of sleeping in cabins with no electricity by producing artificial light.
Parents, Please Download!
Does your camper need gear?
Check out our store for carving knives, stainless steel water bottles and t-shirts!
Hawk Circle meals are made in our farmhouse kitchen using the freshest of ingredients. While they are kid friendly, they are also healthy with fruit and vegetables offered at every meal.
Favorite meals include our Breakfast Sundae, warm peaches, yogurt with granola on top, creamy Macaroni n'cheese with cooked carrots and collard greens and Taco Tuesday with a variety of fresh peppers, onions and cilantro.
We are well-versed in gluten-free menus as well as a variety of other food sensitivities and allergies. Unfortunately, we do not accommodate vegan or macrobiotic diets. However, we are happy to send you a copy of our menu so you can provide your child with appropriate meal substitutes. There is an additional fee for gluten-free diets.
If your child has a severe nut allergy, please notify us well in advance so that we can eliminate cross-contamination and be fully aware of your child's needs.