Since 1966, Outdoor School has been supplementing Oregon’s public-education system with lessons on the environment, ecology, natural resources, and flora and fauna held in a camp setting. Friends of Outdoor School was recently founded to preserve this experience for youth and to make it available to all students regardless of their socio-economic statuses.
During day-camp courses, student leaders from local high schools work with middle-school students to explore the wonders of science through hands-on outdoor activities and traditional camp experiences. Students remain active from sun up to sun down, conducting field studies, engaging in recreational activities, preparing meals, and building campfires. The student leaders emerge from the experience with greater leadership abilities and both sets of students can bring their newfound knowledge to their science and math classes.
Since 1977, the Historic Motor Sports Association has sped classic racecars toward the limelight, exhibiting their still-speedy maneuvering and encouraging their preservation. Annual races put the steel and chrome beasts through their paces once more, and guests chat with drivers and crew members and slip get-well cards into the upholstery of hundreds of other vintage vehicles no longer in racing condition.
Center Gyrotonic's spin-savvy teachers whirl students through a sequence of workouts designed on creating circular and spherical movements with the body that loosen limbs and increase strength. Muscles, bones, and joints rotate and stretch during the supervised one-hour Gyrotonic sessions, which employ specially made equipment in order to increase the body's range of motion and tolerance for being shaken by giant children. Instructors tailor these private, machine-oriented sessions to each student's needs, whether to help with injuries or increase physical wellness. The pair of one-hour Gyrokinesis classes ditches the Gyrotonic equipment, perching students instead atop a stool and sending them through 100 stretches and bends designed to use the shape of the skeleton to give tissues a massage.
Woodstock’s dozens of literary exhibitors and more than 100 participating authors shine a spotlight on contemporary American fiction and raise funds to benefit public-school writing programs. Sidescroll through aisles to encounter such text-wielding exhibitors as Hellboy publisher Dark Horse Comics and the literary journal McSweeney’s or head to a workshop on essential story structure (Sunday, 3 p.m.) to deconstruct fiction-making basics, hone sharper stories, and construct more elaborate, satirical Twitters.
Following a curriculum designed by Dr. Lin Day, a British child-development expert, the classes at Baby Sensory help to forge the bond between parents and their infants by engaging all the baby’s developing senses. Sessions begin with a song accompanied with sign language before diving into one of 40 unique lesson plans, which incorporate everything from exercise and stretches to music, puppet shows, and tactile games with scarves and feathers. Parents and children then split off into an exploratory play area—suited for both noncrawlers and babies strapped into tiny roller skates—to engage in play together and meet other families in a comfortable and safe environment. Lessons conclude with more structured sensory activities based on the latest research and developmental theories.