World Orienteering Day

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World Orienteering Day is an opportunity for people all over the world to try our fun map navigation sport. The International Orienteering Federation organizes this annual event to increase the visibility and accessibility of orienteering to young people, increase the number of participants both in and outside of schools, and to help teachers implement orienteering in a fun and educational way.

The goal is to have each club get in touch with at least one school. Because teachers might need help to implement orienteering and to make the lessons fun and exciting, the IOF provides an excellent 52-page booklet (now updated for 2018) with a bunch of great information and ideas. It is suitable for sharing with teachers, or for club members to use themselves.

"The skills that are taught in orienteering include patience, map knowledge, and confidence through successes and failures. These skills will follow the participants in their lives, hopefully sparking a love of nature along the way."

There are 7 steps that the IOF recommends:

  1. Register your event at the WOD website. OUSA asks that you also register the event on your club's website and on Attackpoint so that we can link to it from the national website. Please put your club's abbreviation first, as in "DVOA - French Creek State Park Central".
     
  2. Promote your event. OUSA has a draft press release that you can use. Send it to local media outlets (TV, radio, newspaper, school administrators, parent email lists). Talk about the WOD event itself, but also how families can try out the sport at your public events. Provide a link to the OUSA website so people can learn more about our sport and find other events around the country.
     
  3. Draw a map. The map you use for your event can be super simple, or a full-blown orienteering map. OCAD is supplying WOD with 200 licenses. You can also try the free Open Orienteering Mapper program. But even a hand-drawn map of a playground or gym or maze you create with flagging tape and sticks works just fine!



    < A schoolyard map by Ed Despard (click image for a larger view)


     
  4. Make courses. See the WOD Guidelines for some great ideas. Aim your activity at the ages of the children (or adults) involved — the point is for them to associate orienteering with having fun!
     
  5. Implement your event. Get help from your club or school.
     
  6. Give WOD diplomas to participants - see the WOD website for examples.
     
  7. Report your event at the WOD website.

Previous years

2017

Photos

Dominick Boettcher, senior at New Prague ALC in 2017 and leader of the orienteering course implementation, said "Some schools are diving further and further into the digital age at the expense of experimentation with the outside world and nature.  Outdoor experiences create adventure with just the slightest bit of imagination. I believe that an orienteering course is one of the better ways to take students from behind a desk and phone and put them outside behind a map. The skills that are taught in orienteering include patience, map knowledge, and confidence through successes and failures. These skills will follow the participants in their lives, hopefully sparking a love of nature along the way."

2017 World Orienteering Day article


posted 10 May 2018