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Forest Dwellers – RAVEN CLAN

February 15 - June 22

The Forest Dwellers Program provides youth ages 8-14 with an exciting, safe and meaningful way to explore and engage in the natural world.

Register Here

Learn how the animals live every day in the wild, finding all their food, medicine, shelter, and water.  Learn the old skills that have allowed kids all over the world to thrive in nature.  We will play games, go on wild adventures, make crafts, and cultivate a deeper sense of our place in the natural world.  Through activities, challenges, and song, youth will discover greater self-confidence, learn cooperation and teamwork, and gain a sense of environmental care taking.

Each week will be a new adventure on the land: playing games, hearing nature-based stories, building fire, carving primitive tools, weaving baskets, foraging for food and medicine, journaling nature mysteries, learning bird language, expanding our senses, exploring the pond, tracking wild animals and more!

What makes Thriving Roots Youth Programs different?

Thriving Roots Wilderness School uses the 8-Shields Mentoring Model – an educational approach that is based on natural cycles and ancient mentoring practices that:

  • Encourage creative thinking rather than providing answers,
  • Help students develop problem-solving skills and self-sufficiency,
  • Take learning to a deeper, embodied & contextual level.

We prioritize small group learning and one-on-one mentoring to really get to know your child and bring forth their natural passion and curiosity for learning while ultimately drawing out their own unique gifts. Driven by inquiry and connection, we will create a group experience that time and time again has demonstrated increased confidence and self-expression, compassion and understanding and a deep love for self and the natural world.

Our instructors bring a variety of skills, personal experience and compassion. They have all been trained in 8-Shields mentoring, Wilderness First Aid and CPR. Read more about them on our Staff Page.

Whether you’re new to Thriving Roots or have done our classes before, we will be learning all sorts of exciting skills together and having lots of fun!

Read more about our Youth Program Mentoring Philosophy and Curriculum.

My daughter’s confidence has really grown in the past few years in this program. It has really helped her socially, in part because of the multi-age environment. Her knowledge of the outdoors becomes deeper each year, and her ability to express it and teach others is so amazing! This program let’s her be her wild self, without school teachers or parents. I really value the style of mentoring and the guidance it gives while still maintaining each individual’s needs and ideas.” – Thriving Roots parent

Program Details:

Register Here

Ages: 8-14

Dates: Alternating Thursdays 9:30am – 3:30pm.  Feb 15, Mar 1 & 15 , (No class over spring break.) Apr 12 & 26, May 10 & 24,  June 7, 21 – 22. The last day of class is an overnight camp-out with dinner and snacks included.

Cost: $595  Payment is available with a bi-monthly “3 installment option” that you can choose upon registering. First payment is due upon registration. Subsequent payments will be charged automatically every two months. All details on registration form. Joining both clans? Select “Both Clan” Option when registering and save $100!

No one turned away due to lack of funds.  Apply for Program Scholarship here.

Registration is limited to 20 students and will be closed when it’s full.

Instructors: Dragonfly (Alaina Hallett) and Frog (Gordon Mallonee)

Location: 5990 Old West Saanich Rd. Victoria BC

Cancellation and Refund Policy


Join weekly by signing up for both Clans!

Take your nature connection journey 10 steps deeper by coming every week! Both the RAVEN Clan and the RACCOON Clan are continuing this Spring. The only difference is the instructors and the dates.

Students who come weekly will have the opportunity to learn more skills, make more projects and ultimately find more peace and connection. The more often we enter the “Forest Dweller mindset”, the deeper that mindset will permeate our everyday life.


Can students in public school attend?

Yes! For years we’ve had students opt to take two days off of school per month to spend the day learning and adventuring with us in the woods. It almost always ends up as a win-win-win for the student, parents and teacher. Many parents have claimed that it helps their child be even more successful at school. Much research exists to support these findings. See this article from the Child Mind Institute to learn more about how spending time in nature is beneficial for your child’s education.



February 15
June 22
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