Week Without Walls Trips
What is Week Without Walls
Week Without Walls is an action packed week that encourages middle school students to pursue learning outside of the classroom. It is designed to give students the experiences that will inspire them to become caring, global citizens. Students will engage in sustainable service and/or gain awareness of issues that transcend national borders. They will develop an understanding of issues of poverty, indigenous peoples, and environmental degradation and preservation while simultaneously helping people and/or building up cultural awareness and sensitivity. Students will often plan and work as teams, strengthening their teamwork for a common goal of greater good. Week Without Walls is planned to accommodate every student by offering local and international trips with a range of activities.
Each WWW opportunity is uniquely designed by a professional provider called Camps International and its affiliated partners. GEMS US faculty chaperone each excursion with our students.
See below for an overview of the 2019-2020 trips which took place this year.
MIDDLE SCHOOL TRIP
Some of our sixth and seventh grade students journeyed to Nepal for this year's adventure. During this trip our students explored the natural landscape of the country by trekking, biking and rafting around many areas of of the countryside and visiting local communities.
Students also gained insight into the local culture while visiting a school in the Bathali area. They played games and taught each other about their own cultures which both the Nepalese youth and our students found mutually enlightening. Our middle school students also had the opportunity to visit a bustling city and take in the vibrant culture while visiting temples and learning about Buddhist traditions.
This trip involved a significant amount of adventure and physical exertion from hiking in the Himalayan mountains, biking through the countryside and white water rafting down a river. They even had the opportunity to enjoy rock climbing which many found difficult, but also a lot of fun!
Many of our 6th and 7th graders participated in an outdoor survival experience provided by Ecoventure. This trip is meant to provide exposure to the natural environment through outdoor education while supporting students as they gain independence, confidence, assertiveness, and decision-making skills.
HIGH SCHOOL TRIP
In high school, students in grades 9-12 had the opportunity to provide service in Cambodia. This group set off to develop friendships, offer service, explore a new culture and have fun!
Students participating in this WWW opportunity chose to do so based upon the following:
Our students built water wells to provide fresh water to remote communities and built structures to provide proper sanitation. They also visited a school and had the opportunity to instruct children and play games, which they found fun and joyful.
Overall, our students came away with greater knowledge, more skills and the insightful recognition that we can all make a difference in the world by helping others.