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Washington State University Extension

4-H Adventure Education

Preparing Today’s Youth for Tomorrow’s Challenges!

Our Mission

To develop capable, caring, contributing citizens through research-based, guided adventure exploration and experiential learning models.   We accomplish our mission by building life skills using the natural environment and adventure-based activities within a full value community.

“Every child has inside him an aching void for excitement and if we don’t fill it with something which is exciting and interesting and good for him, he will fill it with something which is exciting and interesting and which isn’t good for him.”

— Theodore Roosevelt

Our Vision

The 4-H Adventure Education Program builds the foundation that enables participant-centered life-long learning.  Through collaborative partnerships with students, schools and agencies, we build the capacity for:

  • Developing learner centered skill-building processes.
  • Creating fun, safe, stimulating and engaging activities in unique supportive environments that push growing edges through appropriate social, emotional and intellectual risks.
  • Utilizing the latest research in youth development, including: adventure-based learning, experiential education, and service-learning models.
  • Accessing tools, training, resources and educational materials.

It is our goal to provide local community members, agencies and schools with training in all aspects of the educational models we employ, empowering them to utilize and adapt these models within their own groups and organizations. Through this process we:

  • Provide training, mentoring and certification.
  • Provide direct support, consultation.
  • Provide quality programs designed to meet or exceed the highest industry standards.
  • Provide oversight and evaluation of risk management relative to program activities.


Our Philosophy

Youth need more than knowledge to be successful and productive members of society.  Youth also need social and emotional skills, such as communication, leadership, cooperation, respect, trust, self-confidence, conflict resolution, decision making and problem-solving skills frequently referred to as “emotional intelligence.”

canoeIn today’s world of standardized testing and increasing pressure for academic success, students are having fewer and fewer opportunities to develop these life skills.  4-H Adventure Education, has developed student centered curriculum that uses activities, teaching these critical life skills through hands-on, fun, stimulating and engaging ways.


Our Audience

Unlike other adventure based programs that only work with a select population in our region, 4-H Challenge collaborates with any local school or agency that is interested in developing life skills though experiential education activities.  Although we are eager to work with all youth groups, traditionally our largest use has been from groups that serve low-income, at-risk and under achieving youths.



Click here for “Facilitating the Experience: Mastering the Art and Science of Group Dynamics”