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Beginning Orienteering

Class Details

3 Hours

4th Grade to Adult


Find hidden markers in the woods using a compass.

Orienteering is the challenging sport of using a compass to find assigned markers in natural terrain. After learning the history of the compass and how it works, students will be taught how to take a bearing and to pace out distances through the woods. Using these skills, students will demonstrate their proficiency on an outdoor orienteering course. The Valley Course is a half mile away, hilly, and moderately difficult. The course takes about an hour to complete.

Lesson Plan


  1. Unlike many animals, humans need tools to help them navigate.
  2. Navigating with a partner takes patience, practice, and respect for people and ideas.
  3. Challenges provide opportunities for learning and growth.
  4. Becoming skilled in orienteering leads to being more confident in new territory.
  5. When we are comfortable being in remote areas, we can begin to appreciate wilderness decisions.
  6. Find freedom away from large groups to experience the woods.


  1. Explain the use of landmarks in navigation.
  2. Describe how a compass works.
  3. Walk a straight line to a destination using a compass, including taking a bearing and measuring distances by pacing.
  4. Cooperatively work with a partner by demonstrating they can stay together, use sighting, help each other, and make