John Muir Outdoor School takes class outside

At the John Muir Outdoor School, integrating nature with education happens every day.

Posted: Aug 27, 2019 3:42 AM
Updated: Aug 27, 2019 7:50 AM

ASHLAND, Ore. -- Trickling water, bird feeders and leafy greens. This courtyard often doubles as a classroom and even cafeteria at the John Muir Outdoor School. 

"We get to go outside a lot and the teaching is different," said eighth grader Nico Moore. 

It is different. Students do learn about core classes like social studies and literature in the classroom. But on Fridays, they have class outside at Lithia Park or a place called Earth Teach. 

"It's really important to not just have an outdoor education week where it's one week of the whole year where they do outdoor stuff, but every day," said Outdoor Education Coordinator Elliot Drake-Maurer. 

Eighth graders even go on backpacking trips each year. Teachers said experiences like this encourage students to care for the environment. 

"It's still our responsibility as a school, as a community to make things better," Drake-Maurer said. "Even though it's not caused by me, I can still do something to make it better."

And become future leaders. 

"These kids are going to be doers and stewards of the Earth," said Principal Rebecca Gyarmathy. "And think of ways to reverse the damage that we've done to our Earth."

Nico said he's already got some experience being a leader. He's been at the school since kindergarten and now he's in the eighth grade. 

"Other middle schools don't have kindergarteners and fifth graders," Moore said. "So, it's good to have people who look up to you." 

The school recently got approval to add the word "outdoor" to its title this past summer. Teachers said that the school's outdoor curriculum is popular and that's why students have to apply to get in. 

The school will have a bubble class next year. That means they can enroll more students than normal. That bubble class will be for the kindergarten grade. The school will be able to enroll a total of 20 new kindergarteners. There might also be open spots in different grades. 

Teachers said the school's unique, outdoor curriculum is popular because it helps students think about the world around them.

"When it comes time for them to make choices, vote, decide where they spend their money, they're going to remember these positive outdoor experiences," Drake-Maurer said. "And go, that matters to me. I want to keep that safe."

You can fill out an application at the school or online. Applications will open in late February or early March. They will close in April. All applications will be entered into a random lottery. 

Siblings of students already enrolled at the John Muir Outdoor School are prioritized. 

For more information about the application process click here

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 3927

Reported Deaths: 148
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Multnomah104058
Marion90525
Washington69017
Clackamas29010
Deschutes1190
Linn1169
Umatilla1113
Polk9610
Lane672
Yamhill657
Jackson570
Benton555
Clatsop450
Klamath410
Coos310
Malheur280
Josephine251
Jefferson250
Douglas250
Wasco181
Columbia160
Hood River120
Morrow120
Lincoln90
Tillamook60
Curry60
Union60
Crook50
Wallowa20
Sherman10
Grant10
Harney10
Baker10
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 94020

Reported Deaths: 3754
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles450172106
San Diego6559249
Riverside6464290
Orange5336131
San Bernardino4365176
Alameda284793
Santa Clara2617139
San Francisco236740
San Mateo183376
Kern182429
Tulare164175
Santa Barbara155112
Fresno144822
Contra Costa132136
Sacramento129356
Imperial114523
Ventura91230
San Joaquin75233
Stanislaus62928
Kings5172
Sonoma4824
Solano45520
Monterey3958
Marin38814
San Luis Obispo2581
Merced2516
Santa Cruz1922
Yolo19022
Placer1849
Napa1013
Humboldt932
Madera842
El Dorado740
San Benito702
Nevada411
Sutter402
Shasta364
Butte340
Mono341
Yuba281
Del Norte230
Mendocino210
Inyo191
Mariposa151
Calaveras130
Lake120
Glenn120
Amador100
Siskiyou61
Colusa50
Plumas40
Tuolumne30
Tehama31
Alpine20
Lassen20
Trinity10
Sierra10
Unassigned00
Medford
Clear
56° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 56°
Brookings
Clear
52° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 52°
Crater Lake
Clear
44° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 44°
Grants Pass
Clear
55° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 55°
Klamath Falls
Clear
44° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 44°
Hot temperatures next week
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events

Latest Video

Image

Sunday, May 24 evening weather

Image

Sunday, May 24 morning weather

Image

Saturday, May 23 evening weather

Image

Saturday, May 23 morning weather

Image

Nate Bittle wins Prep Boys Basketball Player of the Year

Image

The City of Ashland is deciding what's next for the city hall building

Image

Friday, May 22nd Evening Weather

Image

Grants Pass optimistic amid tax revenue loss

Image

Ashland projects millions in tax revenue losses

Image

Tax revenue takes big hit during COVID-19