In addition to local trips to museums, plays, and concerts, OFL is proud to partner with Pathways In Education to provide students with once-in-a-lifetime adventures. Pathways camps and programs are developed for OFL students to help guide them toward their dreams and goals through hands-on activities and unique cultural perspectives. From high ropes courses to historical reflections, Pathways’ opportunities afford students extraordinary lessons in teamwork, leadership, and self-confidence. The best part? All of these programs are 100% FREE to OFL students!
Located on 240 stunning acres in Mendocino, California, Blackbird Farm is a safe and welcoming place where participants are educated in sustainable farming and healthy eating while connecting with nature and peers. Like most Pathways Experiential Programs, participating students are nominated by their teachers and complete an essay and interview before final selection, and will earn school credit for their involvement.
Students at Blackbird Farm enjoy:
- Campfires with storytelling and s’mores
- Harvesting fruit from orchards of pears, apples, cherries, plums, and walnuts
- Fruit-preserving and cheese-making
- Attending farm-to-table classes
- Tending to chickens, sheep, donkeys, and cows
- Participating in high ropes team-building courses
- Journaling their farm experiences
Rocky Mountain Pathways Ranch
Rocky Mountain Pathways Ranch (RMPR) is located on 56 acres in Allenspark, Colorado, on the edge of Rocky Mountain National Park. RMPR allows students to take over the operations of a traditional dude-style ranch while earning school credits and community service hours. Day-to-day ranch tasks present new challenges to students, pushing them beyond their comfort zone to develop critical collaboration and leadership skills. Students leave the ranch with life-long lessons, friends, and memories.
Trips to RMPR include:
- Tending to horses, chickens, llamas, alpacas, and angora goats.
- Saddling and riding horses
- Nature hikes
- Team-building and personal growth exercises
- Cultural and historical Colorado-themed classes
Pathways In Education takes students to Cuba to help further global understanding through cross-cultural exchange. Students attend classes in Cuban history and culture to prepare them for in-depth discussions with Cuban students, teachers, artists, and community leaders, and are encouraged to share stories of American culture and daily life. During the eight-day trip, students visit the homes of average Cubans, and tour organic farms and important landmarks, teaching them about Cuban economy, history, culture, and nutrition.
Cuba trips include:
- Tour of an organic farm
- Visits with local Cuban students
- Tour of University of Havana and participation in college level discussion groups
- Photography workshop
- Culinary school visit and demonstration
- Tour of Las Terrazas, the UNESCO world heritage site
- Visit to Finca Vigia, Ernest Hemingway’s home in Cuba (as a pre-requisite, students must read The Old Man and the Sea)
- Workshop at Central Pro Danza, a dance school for barrio children
During a five-day, four-night trip to explore our nation’s capital in Washington DC., students earn elective credits while learning about American history as they tour museums and monuments. Student activities include visits to the Capitol building, White House, Smithsonian Museum, and the Lincoln Memorial. Students get a chance to develop their leadership styles by analyzing the historical influences they observe during the trip and are encouraged to reflect on how these lessons can inspire them to leave their own mark in history.
An 11-day trip through Venice, Florence, and Rome immerses students in Italian culture, cuisine, and history as they come face-to-face with priceless works of art, learn how to make pasta, and tour the Vatican and Roman ruins. Students explore the rich artistic heritage of Italy by taking art classes, meeting local artists and touring museums. And, of course, no trip to Italy would be complete without trying authentic Italian gelato and pizza!
Students spend 14 days discovering local treasures, indulging in local cuisines, and journeying through urban cities. From the Great Wall to the Forbidden City, students will gain insight on Chinese culture and its historical importance. With an emphasis on full cultural immersion, students will partake in activities including a lesson on Chinese calligraphy in Beijing, feed baby pandas at the Dujiangyan Panda Keeper Program, visit the terracotta warriors in Xi’an, and much more!