Outdoor Education: Cooperative Tracking for Physical Education Class

Outdoor Education: Cooperative Tracking for Physical Education Class

Dick Moss, Editor, Physical Education Update.com

Cooperative stalking is an activity that teaches students how to walk through a natural area without disturbing it. It also increases their awareness of wildlife signs when passing through the wilderness.

How to Track
Students perform this activity in pairs as they walk through a natural area. One member of the pair walks ahead, attempting to disturb the environment as little as possible. The partner stalks a few feet behind, looking for evidence that the walker has passed. Evidence might include overturned rocks, broken twigs, footprints etc.

The tracker calls out the disturbances they find as soon as they discover them. For example, "Broken twig!" This provides immediate feedback for the walker.

After the tracker calls out three separate tracking signs, the partners change roles and continue the game.

This activity is educational and students will enjoy it because it's just like being a tracker in an old western movie.

1. Clifford Knapp, "Humanizing outdoor education - exploring the affective domain." Journal of Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, February 1989.
2. Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education. http://aeoe.org/resources/games/

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