Warsaw Outdoor Education Centre
1515 English Line (County Road #4)
The Warsaw Outdoor Education Centre is located on the Warsaw Caves Conservation Area. The park boasts many habitats including fields, mixed forests, and a river which is a 25 minute hike away from the portable. Great recreational opportunities include ski and hiking trails, picnic and camp sites. Geological features of the conservation area include caves (which we do not use), the Indian River, the kettles, and the limestone plain. The Outdoor Education Centre is a portable classroom with electricity but no running water. Washroom facilities include outhouses situated throughout the park. For a map of the park please click here and note that we predominantly use the area by group camping.
OUTDOOR EDUCATION at WARSAW - BRIEF HISTORY
Outdoor Education has a long standing, strong, tradition in this area. The former Peterborough County Board of Education had Outdoor Education since the 70's when a Naturalist would travel around the area in a mobile outdoor education centre (a van filled with gear and program supplies) taking students to local parks and working in school yards. In the 80's, a deal was struck with the Otonabee Region Conservation Authority (ORCA) and a portable classroom was put on to the Warsaw Caves Conservation Area. When the Board amalgamated to become the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board, Outdoor Education strengthened as three outdoor education centres in the south joined our one existing centre in the north. Today, Outdoor Education is alive and well in our Board as over 3000 students visit each of our sites a year. Each site also has waiting lists of classes who didn't get in each year. Over the years many things have changed: the booking system has become more sophisticated and is now done completely online in the Spring for the following year; our programming is much more sophisticated and is completely in line with the Ontario curriculum; the equipment has been updated (we now have a complete set of cross country skis which have the Solomon binding system); the portable has been upgraded and is a nice place to be; and the forest has almost taken over the fields. What hasn't changed is our commitment to students and teachers, our passion about the need for children to spend time outdoors and our respect for the environment.
Naturalists, Kim Dobson and Sharon McGee, have been sharing a full time position at the Warsaw Outdoor Education Centre for many years! They both bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the job. Kim graduated with a double degree in Outdoor Recreation and Natural Sciences, Sharon graduated from Trent University with a degree in Environmental Sciences. Sharon works Mondays and Tuesdays, Kim works Thursdays and Fridays and they alternate Wednesdays. This is a CUPE position within KPRDSB. And, yes, they do know that they have the best jobs in the world!
PROGRAM / CURRICULUM INFORMATION
All of our programs are directly linked to the Ontario curriculum. We try our best to provide relevant, fun, educational outdoor experiences for every grade and ability level that we see. We have programs for Kindergarten through to the Secondary level. For a full listing of our programs, please see pages 12-20 of "A Guide to Visiting the Outdoor Education Centre".