Custom Programming

OWLS programs are custom designed based upon learning outcomes that are identified by your group leaders. OWLS is able to provide experiences that are physically, socially, and mentally appropriate and compatible for every group’s needs, thus producing optimum results.

While individual programs vary greatly; a basic progression is common for most every program delivered. This progression involves a series of skill building activities that build upon each other as groups move towards fulfilling their goals.

Let us know if you’d like to do something not listed on our website. We are happy to customize your experience!


Multi-Program Progression

Multi-Program Progressions are a great way to experience everything OWLS has to offer. Some examples include:

  • Teambuilding Multi-Program Progression
    • Half or Full day teambuilding program for 6th graders or Freshmen at their school, nearby park, or at OWLS, in preparation for starting a new school and meeting new people.
    • One or two day teambuilding program for 7th graders or Sophomores at OWLS including low ropes, the Climbing Tower, and more if the schedule allows.
    • Two or three day overnight teambuilding program for 8th graders or Juniors and Seniors at OWLS, including more advanced low ropes, campfire at night, either Power Poles, Crate Stacking or Dangle Duo, and then the High Ropes course as the finale. Seniors could take on additional leadership roles during the activities for an added challenge. Other recreation activities such as Boating or Archery can be added as well. A great way to end the school year and prepare for high school or college.
  • Outdoor Education Multi-Program Progression
    • Half or Full day outdoor education program for 4th grade students at their school, a nearby park, or at OWLS with classes such as Forest Ecology, Animal Ecology, and Outdoor Living Skills
    • Two or three day, overnight outdoor education program for 6th grade students at OWLS with classes such as Lake Ecology, Predator/Prey, Adaptation Auction, Archery, and Fishing. Swimming is also available, and a Night Hike can take place for the evening activity.
    • Three, four, or five day overnight outdoor education program for 8th grade students with classes such as Geology, Meteorology, Lakeshore Hike, Orienteering, and Astronomy. For an added bonding experience, students can spend a night or two tent camping and cooking over a campfire. Teambuilding, Low Ropes, and any of our High Elements can be added as the schedule allows.

On Site & Traveling Programs

OWLS can bring the adventure to you! If you’re unable to make it out to our location, we can come to yours. We can meet your group at your school, office, or a nearby park. We will bring all the materials for Ground-Based Initiatives, Trust Sequence, some of our portable Low Ropes Elements, or some of our Outdoor Education Options. If you’re planning a progression of programs for different age groups, this is a great option.


Learning Through Experiential Education

For over 30 years the OWLS program has brought the benefits of experiential education to thousands of participants each year. Utilizing teaching techniques that emphasize learning through hands-on experience opens opportunities for self-discovery and growth that traditional education techniques all too often fail to identify or allow to flourish.

The following are key components of Experiential Education according to The Association for Experiential Education (

  • It is a process through which a participant constructs knowledge, skill, and value from interactive experiences.
  • The participant is required to take initiative, make decisions and be accountable for results.
  • The learning occurs when carefully chosen experiences are supported by reflection, critical analysis, and synthesis.
  • The results of the learning are personal and form the basis for future experience and learning.
  • Relationships are developed and nurtured: participant to self, participant to others in the group and participant to the world at large.
  • The facilitator and participant may experience success, failure, adventure, risk-taking and uncertainty, because the outcomes of experience cannot totally be predicted.
  • The facilitator’s primary roles include setting suitable experiences, posing problems, setting boundaries, supporting participants, insuring physical and emotional safety, and facilitating the learning process.
  • The facilitator recognizes and encourages spontaneous opportunities for learning.
  • The design of the participant experience includes the possibility to learn from natural consequences, mistakes and successes.

OWLS programming uses many of the ideas explained in the following definitions of Constructivism

Constructivism promotes using curricula customized to the participant’s prior knowledge and emphasizes hands-on problem solving.

Under the theory of constructivism, facilitators tailor their teaching strategies to participant responses and encourage students to analyze, interpret, and predict information. Facilitators also rely heavily on open-ended questions and promote extensive dialogue among students.

Constructivism calls for the assessment process to become part of the learning process so that students play a larger role in judging their own progress.