There is a Portal to the hidden world of Akasha... and you've been invited to enter.

Hey parents!

Are you looking for something for your kids (ages 5-13) to do this school-year?

  • Do you want to your child playing outside?
  • Does your child yearn to spend time with friends?
  • Do you wish you could support your child’s learning?

Whole Earth Academy has a variety of program options to meet your family’s needs! Our camps guide small groups of students in nature-based adventures:

  • At local parks 
  • In the nature spaces adjacent to their homes

Our instructors support learning through play and exploration outdoors. No matter how students participate, they will be able to together online to complete multimedia-storytelling missions and take part in sharing their accomplishments and experiences with their peers. Whole Earth Academy camps feature storytelling, games, songs, sharing, and lots of time outdoors!

Fall 2020

Three ways to participate!

  1. Sign up for the Coyote Kids! NinjaCats program on Mondays.
  2. Sign up for Coyote Kids Elementary or Coyote Kids Middle School.
  3. Sign up for Coyote Kids! Backyard.

You can learn more about these three options on our Coyote Kids! page. Whichever option you choose, your child will also receive access to Whole Earth Academy’s online portal!

Whole Earth Academy helps your child:

  • Track their learning week by week 
  • Connect with their peers in a private discussion forum
  • Do their “Dirt Time” – optional home practice activities
  • Participate in a fun storyline that helps frame the skills they are learning
P.S. All of these options include a free 2-day camp: “Portal to the Academy”! This camp gives students foundational outdoor skills for fun and safety, guided practice using the Whole Earth Academy platform, and an introduction to the World of Akasha! See our information on Portal to the Academy to learn more about how Whole Earth Academy works and what the requirements are.

This fall Features: NinjaCats!

You are moving silently along the trail when you hear a bird give an alarm. It wasn’t alarming at you, of course. You have camouflaged your body, movement, and mind. Up ahead, you see an owl camouflaged against a tree! You add it to the map you’ve been making so you can share this discovery with your friends.

These are the skills of a NinjaCat.

The NinjaCats curriculum certifies students in the Level 1 of the Way of the Cougar Learning Pathway through a carefully scaffolded curriculum that includes lots of play, skill-building, exploration, and imagination. (We also provide guidance to students working on Level 2).

Our Learning Pathways curriculum are based on coyote mentoring techniques, in which learning opportunities are embedded in play (just as it is for most young mammals!) Behind the scenes we teach students how to be present, observe quietly, use intuition, and mentor others. From the student perspective, a fun storyline guides them in learning to master the five elements: 

Fire: careful control of your energy/movement.
Earth: becoming one with your surrounding.
Water: navigation and mapping.
Wind: expanding your sensory awareness.
Shadow: communication and intuition.

Once the students master the five elements, their sensei will lead them on missions that model how the diverse skills they have learned can be utilized together. Role-playing the use of these skills maximizes the student’s ability to integrate the skills into their regular life.

  • Camps Taught by Whole Earth Instructors
  • Form New Relationships with peers online, in a safe and educational setting
  • Develop Deeper Nature Connections just outside your home
  • Complete Challenging Missions and level up your nature awareness
  • Engage in Fun Outdoor Activities and capture them in your Explorer’s Journal
  • Share Discoveries and Accomplishments through our platform with your mentor and small group
  • Learn Valuable Outdoor Skills in an engaging fantasy context
  • Track Skills Learned in your Learning Pathways Passport
  • Express Your Love of Earth

Portal to the Academy

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“Portal to the Academy” is the first stop for you and your child on this nature adventure! In this introductory camp and prerequisite for all Whole Earth Academy programs,  you’ll open up a portal to the hidden world of Akasha and learn everything you’ll need to know about this magical realm, and quite a few things about the world right outside your door, before you journey further into additional camps.

This camp gives students foundational outdoor skills for fun and safety, guided practice using the Whole Earth Academy platform, and an introduction to the World of Akasha!

Your child will begin to learn about the exciting world of Akasha, with its four distinct lands where all of the skills of nature can be discovered. They will use their own nature spaces adjacent to their homes to experience these skills first-hand. 

Four Whole Earth instructors, “Professors” who have learned from highly esteemed members of each land, will give your child an introduction to each land through engaging videos. Your child will be prompted to choose their own nature name and can even be called by it during the camp! They will have opportunities to heighten their senses, walk like a fox, and be trained in how to play Snack Sentry. They’ll want to play that game with you! Later they’ll learn one of the most important skills of nature survival, and will perform a science experiment to discover more.

Are there hazards outdoors? Yes, and more than just cars and such. Your child will specifically look for hazards and report back to the group so that through sharing all students can learn about how to stay safe outdoors.

 Students will use their portal to connect to Akasha (their computers/ tablets/ smartphones), watch a video or listen to or read a short story or mission prompt, and then head right outside their home door into the yard or immediately-adjacent nature space to complete the mission and then head back in to share what they learned and experienced. Sometimes they will be sharing to their mentor in their own 1:1 coaching area, or with their mentor and small peer group in the Great Hall community space. Other times they’ll be connected through a live video with their camp mentor and peers as they work together to accomplish goals, again connecting then heading outside to complete the activity and then back to their portal to engage with their Whole Earth mentor and peers in real-time. Longer camps will have much more live-mentoring included, but even our free Portal to the Academy is staffed by our Whole Earth Instructors and includes real-time mentoring and live video connection with instructor and peers.

Portal to the Academy will not only engage your child with a caring mentor and their group of peers while they explore the nature spaces just outside, the camp is also carefully designed to teach you and your child how to progress through chapters and missions, communicating with mentors and other students in the Great Hall, and the basic background knowledge on the hidden world of Akasha where all of the storylines take place in conjunction with their home and neighborhood.

This first camp is designed to guide students and their parents/guardians to build a foundation of knowledge, allowing students to participate with future camps more independently. Even in Portal to the Academy, the further your child progresses the less support they need from you to advance. 

Requirements for all Academy camps:

  • An internet-connected device (what we call the camper’s portal)
  • The contents of the Academy Welcome Packet (Welcome Letter, 60-page Explorer’s Journal, Pencil, Learning Pathways Passport, Whole Earth Academy sticker, and Cotton Bandana!)
  • The ability to read and type, or someone who can do that for you
  • A yard or easily accessible adjacent nature space

Recommended:

  • Webcam to make easier for the instructor and your peer group to interact with you (many computers and tablets have this built in, as do smartphones)
  • Smartphone or camera to upload photos of outdoor accomplishments

COST:
$9.70 (includes shipping and handling of hte Camp is free (including live instruction with our staff and student peers), and the Welcome Packet with supplies is free. You only pay $9.70 for shipping and handling. The Welcome Packet includes: Welcome Letter, 60-age Explorer’s Journal, souvenir pencil, Learning Pathways Passport, Whole Earth Academy waterbottle sticker, 100% cotton bandana.

DATES:

Coming soon.

AGES:
Ages 5-8

Ages 9-13

Start Times:
Ages 5-8: 9:40am
Ages 9-13: 10:20am

Camp missions begin at your start time. Live mentoring begins 40 minutes after start time. Camp lasts approximately 4 hours each day.

You may begin preparing as soon as you receive your Whole Earth Academy welcome packet. There are a few activities detailed on the welcome letter.

our four Learning Pathways...

This learning pathway includes…

  • Foxwalk in their environment.
  • Demonstrate natural camouflage
  • Learn Aidless Navigation

This learning pathway includes…

  • Botany
  • Wildcrafting (Food & Medicine Making)
  • Caretending

This learning pathway includes…

  • Research with field guides that convey information
  • Identify natural hazards. 
  • Ability to Analyze Patterns & Relationships (Ecology)

This learning pathway includes…

  • Build shelters from fallen sticks and debris.
  • Fire skills and Safety
  • Tool techniques and safety

...and the mythical lands they come from

The people of Felidae wear scrappy leather and fur clothes, with splashes of mud camo on their face. Everyone aims to blend into the landscape, though that skill is epitomized by the Earth Ninjas who studied under the NinjaCats to master the skills of moving without being noticed and disappearing in an instant, following the guidance of our intuition, which some call the sixth sense, and reading the signs in nature to know if someone has been here, or is just about to arrive. What’s to like about Felidae folks: respect for ancient ways, spiritual, strong tribal loyalty, peacemakers, quiet.

The people of Procyon wear fern crowns or daisy chains and other plant decorations in their hair, ornamental swirls of stone pigments on face/arms. Clothing tends to be plant-based (includes cotton) and dyed all different hues. They live in towns along the river that are centers for arts and culture, led by wise druids. What’s to like about Procyon folks: interested in new ways, cultured and creative, big communities, foodie culture, songs & art.

The people of Procyon wear fern crowns or daisy chains and other plant decorations in their hair, ornamental swirls of stone pigments on face/arms. Clothing tends to be plant-based (includes cotton) and dyed all different hues. They live in towns along the river that are centers for arts and culture, led by wise druids. What’s to like about Procyon folks: interested in new ways, cultured and creative, big communities, foodie culture, songs & art.

The people of Gulogulo wear geometric designs in charcoal on their face and arms. They may look a little worse for the wear, but their hodge-podge modern outfits like cargo pants are chosen for practical survival. They live in sturdy stone/log villages in mountain clefts sheltered from the wind. After going through their rite of passage and surviving for one moon on Survival Island with just clothing and a knife, you are no longer considered a child but a full Gulogulo. What’s to like about Gulogulo folks: focused on practical solutions, crafters and doers, hardy.