Caldwell Students Take Classes Outside

July 01, 2006

Every year, the sixth-grade classes of the Idaho Conference ship off to Bend, Ore., to attend Cascade Science School (CSS), which is operated by the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI). At Outdoor School, they learn about the surrounding forest. They have the privilege of going to Smith Rock, Lava Lands, and a mile-long dark lava tube.

During the week, the staff teaches the students how to test the temperature, pH (how much acid and alkaline is in the water), and DO (dissolved oxygen) in the running and calm water of Tumalo Creek.

The students make new friends while experiencing exciting and adventurous events such as Town Hall Meeting, Campfire, Night Hike, Morning Hike and Lava Lands.

Lava Lands is a national park where a cinder cone erupted about 2,000 years ago. As the students walk along the instructor tells them about the different kinds of lava and talk about some interesting plants and animals. The journey through the lava tube is very dark so they have to use flashlights.

CSS is about more than environmental safety, forest ecology and stream ecology; it is another place for education that allows children’s minds to expand outside of the classroom and the world of electronics.