Vermont Wilderness School builds long-term mentoring relationships rooted in community, nature connection, and earth living skills. We are a non-profit 501(c)3, based in Brattleboro, VT and founded in 2000.  Explore our work and contact us to learn more.

Spring / Summer Programs for Adults, Youth, and Families 

The Vermont Art of Mentoring – Registration Now Open!  

There are a handful of spot left for the Vermont Art of Mentoring, a six-day experiential, nature-based training with concurrent programs for ages 3 to 99, August 29 – September 3, 2016.  The week is facilitated by a veteran leadership team, representing more than 90 years of collective experience in nature-based mentoring and culture design. We bring together additional instructors from throughout the Northeast and beyond to staff the concurrent programs that make up the Art of Mentoring.

VWS Bird Language Club* New Program* – Next two meetings are Sunday, August 21 and Sunday, September 18.  Brattleboro, VT.

Bird Language is an approach to studying the calls, postures, and other behaviors of birds that leads the attentive, trained observer to deduce the location of predators and other forces on the landscape. The VWS Bird Language Club is an open community of learning for birders and trackers of all experience levels and will take place during a series of meetings this year.

Final Weeks of Summer Camp

Missed out on Otter Day Camp or Shambhala Warrior and Nature Camp because they were full?  Want MORE camp experiences like those?

Earthfriend Discovery Day Camp at the Manitou Project land in Williamsville, VT (20 minutes from downtown Brattleboro), will return this year. For ages 7-12.

  • August 1-5 (Camp Director: Amy Hyatt)
  • August 8-12. (Camp Director: Bob Etzweiler)

Camp Waubanong  We’re thrilled that this Brattleboro institution has re-opened this summer.  Last year VWS invited our friends Sean Ashcraft and Nancye Good to take over leadership of the camp, and they’ve done an incredible job upgrading the site and creating a new curriculum focused on nature connection and traditional skills.  If you like the camps VWS offers, we think you’ll love the new Camp Waubanong!

There are five camp weeks this summer (more in future years), starting July 10 and ending Aug 18.

Age groups: 3-5, 6-11, 8-11 (overnight optional), 8-13 (overnight), 14-15 (overnight). They are also looking for skilled Leaders-in-Training, ages 15-17.

School-Year 2016-17  Programs for Youth

Foxwalk Forest School – Now registering for the fall 
Ages 5-7
September through early June (with an extended winter break). Tuesdays, 10 am – 2 pm. Putney, VT.

Guided by longtime VWS lead instructor Bob Etzweiler. Kids explore the natural world, learn ancient wilderness living skills, and build self-confidence, teamwork, and knowledge of self, nature, and community.

Oyase Community School 
Ages 7-15
October through May (includes a Spring Equinox overnight). Thursdays, 9:00 am – 3:15 pm, Dummerston, VT

Join us for our 17th year of exploring, playing, and learning how to be at home in the woods taking care of ourselves and all the creatures and plants we live with from autumn to winter to spring. 

Full Moon Girls

  • September through May. Fridays weekly in Conway, MA (Ages 9-16)
  • September through May. Saturdays monthly in Montague, MA (Ages 7-16)

Full Moon Girls Saturdays starts up again September 24th! Join our girls in woodland adventures, learn practical crafts, and forge friendships thru play. Do what you love and immerse in the teeming wonders of nature. Here we build friction fires, harvest wild edibles, and climb trees! Embrace your aliveness in this village of girls, guided by women mentors. Contact FullMoonGirlsInfo@gmail.com to learn about joining the program this year.

Fall to Spring, 2016-17  Programs for Adults

Essentials for Resilient Community

Looking for opportunities to develop your skills as a mentor and community builder? This seven-month workshop series is a great opportunity to develop your skills and go deeper with the Art of Mentoring.  Amy Hyatt will be your facilitator and guide through a variety of themes ranging from “Mentoring, Learning & Human Development” to “Peacemaking and Restorative Relationships.”  You can sign up for the full seven-Month Series or for individual weekends (pending open spaces).  Starts with the November 5-6, 2016 weekendApply now for 2016-2017 Series and reserve the dates on your calendar!  Discount on full 7-Weekends if you enroll by October 1, 2016.  Financial Aid available including assistance with housing and travel.

Kamana Nature Study Group starting at Wolftree Programs 

The Kamana Naturalist Training Program is a home study course designed by Jon Young to help you develop a deep knowledge of and connection to nature. A small group of adults is forming, with the intention of completing the first 2 workbooks of the 4-book Kamana course.  We’ll meet in Montague Massachusetts, Thursdays from 9:30 am – 2:30 pm, over 30 weeks from September 2016 to June 2017.  Neill Bovaird, founder of Wolftree Programs, will join the group one day a month to provide teaching and guidance, and other guest teachers may also be added.  If you are interested in joining the group, contact sam@vermontwildernessschool.org.

SCHOLARSHIPS ARE AVAILABLE FOR ALL VWS PROGRAMS.  Thank you to our many donors for their support of VWS’s Great Blue Heron Fund for scholarships.

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