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Beyond the Classroom: The Significance of LCS's Algonquin Expedition

For several decades, Lakefield College School graduates have continued a cherished tradition, embarking on a four-day canoe trip in Algonquin Provincial Park. This annual expedition is more than just a journey into the wilderness; it's an opportunity for students to connect with nature, form new bonds, and develop valuable life skills at the start of the new school year. 

The Algonquin Expedition instills a deep appreciation for the natural world. It teaches students to tread lightly on the earth, to understand the delicate balance of ecosystems, and to connect with the environment on a deeper level. This understanding fosters a sense of stewardship for the planet and a commitment to sustainable living—qualities we aim to instill in our students at LCS.

Perhaps one of the most significant aspects of this tradition is the bonds that are formed. The shared challenges of paddling, portaging, and setting up camp create a unique kinship among participants. Classmates quickly become friends who've shared in the challenges and triumphs of the wilderness.

Beyond these bonds, students also develop crucial life skills. They learn the importance of teamwork, communication, and leadership as they navigate the waters and portage their canoes. They gain resilience as they overcome physical challenges and adverse weather conditions. These skills are not only applicable to the expedition but serve as tools for success in all aspects of life.

As the tradition continues to evolve and adapt, one thing remains constant: the profound impact of the Algonquin Expedition on the lives of LCS students. It is a journey of self-discovery, a celebration of nature, and a testament to the enduring spirit of adventure that defines the LCS experience.

When asked about the most important attitudes and skills that students would take away from the trip, their responses reflected the profound impact of the experience:
  • Disconnecting from the Outside World: Students highlighted the importance of separating from the outside world, both in terms of phones and devices, as well as letting go of the stress, anxiety, and problems of normal life.
  • Teamwork and Helping Others: The expedition reinforced the value of teamwork and the significance of extending a helping hand to someone in need.
  • Togetherness and Appreciation of Beauty: Students mentioned the profound sense of togetherness, the formation of new bonds, and a heightened appreciation for the natural beauty of Algonquin.

  • Courage to Push Limits: The trip encouraged students to push their limits and step out of their comfort zones, fostering personal growth and resilience.
In terms of their best and most challenging moments, the students had this to share:
  • Best Moments: Memorable experiences included the simple joys of hanging out and making new friends, engaging in meaningful conversations, and sharing meals. These moments of connection and camaraderie were treasured.
  • Challenging Moments: The day featuring six long portages presented a formidable challenge, but students felt a deep sense of accomplishment once they were completed. Overcoming physical obstacles and pushing themselves beyond their limits became a source of personal pride.
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School Information

4391 County Road 29, Lakefield Ontario K0L 2H0   705.652.3324   admissions@lcs.on.ca


Lakefield College School is a private, coeducational boarding and day school for students in grades 9 through 12, located in Lakefield, Ontario, Canada.

We respectfully acknowledge that Lakefield College School is located on the Treaty 20 Michi Saagiig territory and in the traditional territory of the Michi Saagiig and Chippewa Nations, collectively known as the Williams Treaties First Nations, which include: Curve Lake, Hiawatha, Alderville, Scugog Island, Rama, Beausoleil, and Georgina Island First Nations.
Lakefield College School respectfully acknowledges that the Williams Treaties First Nations are the stewards and caretakers of these lands and waters in perpetuity and that they continue to maintain this responsibility to ensure their health and integrity for generations to come.

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