Alternative Education students learned survival skills this spring, including net tying and fire building, in partnership with Coastal Rivers Conservation Trust.

The Lincoln Academy Alternative Education program spent much of this spring learning about wilderness survival skills through a competition inspired by the History channel reality show “Alone.” In exploring the topic, students did assignments for several classes, including Psychology, Biology, Ecology, Wellness, P.E. and Art.

In addition to learning new skills from Alternative Education teachers, students met with Sarah Gladu from Coastal Rivers Conservation Trust where they learned a new topic and were given new tasks to work on each week. Topics and skills included making fishing gill nets and trot lines, building shelters, foraging for wild edible plants, fire building, and navigating without GPS.

To simulate tracking and hunting, students set “snares” on the Lincoln Academy cross-country trails. They surrounded different types of bait with flour so that footprints could be recorded. They “caught” squirrels, deer and an apple-loving rodent of uncertain species. Student Madison Dodge studied this in greater depth as part of her Alternative Education required independent Biology project, researching which foods were more likely to attract herbivores, and which would attract omnivores.

As part of their Wellness curriculum, students researched their own basal metabolic rates, identified nutritional values of food that can be found in the local area, and calculated how much volume they would need to consume to maintain healthy weight in an extended survival scenario.

There was also an art complement involved in the project, as students designed and printed T-shirts for the challenge as an art assignment.