At the French Broad River Academy, weekly field lessons provide a structured and safe environment for students to take risks, face and overcome challenges, and build confidence--leadership skills that will serve them their whole life. From canoes and mountain tops, they see the world — the real world — and learn to operate confidently and comfortably in it. Shared experiences like this also build strong bonds among teachers and students, which serve as the foundation for our relationship-based learning community.
But why the emphasis on tandem canoeing, when so many other outdoor pursuits could accomplish similar outcomes? Co-founder and Assistant Director David Byers sums it up here:
“I still believe that tandem canoeing is a great way to build social skills in middle school boys. Canoeing with a partner not only develops whitewater paddling skills and teamwork, but it also strengthens self-confidence as the boys progress down rapids and are forced to make quick decisions with instant feedback from the river. Tandem canoeing also forces socialization and communication at a level that few other outdoor pursuits do.”
Through the tandem canoeing curriculum, our students will be ready for anything - high school, college, and life.