Welcome to the Shelter Pathway. Shelter is a core skill necessary for survival. Below are the skills requirements to lead youth through this pathway. This course is designed to lead students through a 6-10 week program (ex. after school), though you can also combine all of these skills into a weekend or week-long (ex. summer camp) program.
- Tarp knots/pitching a tarp
- Carving wooden stakes/ghost grommet/knots/reuse plastic shelter (knife safety skills)
- y sticks/debris shelter/head shelter water test
- Food hang/cooking on fire
- fire/smudge sticks, Cordage
- Make a hanbo
- Hanbo skills
Student Experience/Covering the Basics
If you have new students we recommend that you teach the 4 Level 1 NiN skills and Knife Safety to the new students throughout your sessions. This is a great opportunity for experienced students to become teachers to the new students.
Introducing Shelter to Students
Here are some ideas for introducing the theme of shelter:
- Why do you need it? The risk of exposure (hypothermia or heat exposure).
- What types of shelter do people build in nature (debris, scout pit, sun shade, hammock/above ground, snow/quinzie, etc.)
- What could you use in an emergency in the wilderness of your region to build a shelter?
- Personal instructor stories of sleeping in a shelter
Skill #1: Tarp knots/pitching a tarp
Supplies needed: tarp, cordage
Tarps are a great way to introduce a quick shelter and knot tying. Below is a link for three helpful knots to teach.
Demo tarp- it can be helpful for kids to see an example tarp that you set up together or before class so they can see a correct set-up.
Ninja mission: Break kids into groups. Give each group a tarp and enough rope to set up a tarp. Give them a designated amount of time to pick a site and set up their tarp. After tarps are up, do group tours to compliment/critique their tarp designs.
- Use the group tarp as a location for flags for playing capture the flag
- Give them the challenge to set up a water catchment using their tarp to capture rain (they will need a container to catch the run-off). When visiting each tarp, pour water onto the tarp to see how well their rain catchment works.