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Rock Eagle 4-H Center: Environmental Education

Residential Field Study Trip Planner - Planning the Trip

Get an overview of the ins and outs of our Residential Field Study Trip program.

Reservations Cabins
Rates Special services
Deposits & cancellations Medical/emergency policies
Class selection Chaperone responsibilities
Sample program schedules Parent meetings
Teaching groups Who to call
Transportation  

Reservations

The biggest decision is to decide when to visit Rock Eagle. The Environmental Education Program is provided September thru May with limited programming available in the summer. Each season offers a unique atmosphere for your students. The following information describes Rock Eagle's environment throughout the school year. Remember, we cannot predict the weather so always be prepared for rain and shine!

Fall

  • Comfortable day-time temperatures and cooler evenings.
  • Develop bonds between teachers and students early in the school year.
  • Set the stage for successful learning all year long.
  • Does not usually conflict with state testing.

Winter

  • Cool and breezy day-time temperatures, warm up the chilly evenings around a group campfire.
  • Rekindle student's excitement to learn with a mid-year field study.
  • Use a mid-year field study to bridge the learning between semesters.
  • Does not usually conflict with state testing.

Spring

  • Weather is warmer and can even be hot!
  • Come prepared with water bottles in class.
  • Afternoon thunderstorms are a possibility.
  • Mosquitoes will be out, especially with rain.
  • Campfire and night walks are more difficult as it stays lighter later at night.
  • Swimming becomes more of a temptation for students, but is not allowed!
  • Can conflict with state testing, be sure to check calendar.

Don't forget to receive permission from the school board or school administration prior to booking. Cancellation fees may apply.

Before calling Rock Eagle, make sure you have the following information:

  • Total estimated number of students and adults attending.
  • Three date options (have knowledge of your testing dates ).
  • Understanding of what type of program your school is looking for (overnight, day, etc.)
  • School contact information with lead teacher email and phone number.

Please contact Matt Hammons, Program Coordinator at (706)484-2862 or by e-mail mhammons@uga.edu to book dates. 

A deposit and signed contract are necessary to permanently reserve dates.

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Rates

A typical field study package runs from lunch on the arrival day to lunch on the departure day. Cost includes all meals, programming, and lodging for the duration of the stay. Pricing is available for schools who wish to tailor their package for extra classes or meals.

Prices are provided as a per person cost. All adults do pay for the field study. This allows us to keep our rates reasonable compared to other programs. The following package costs are for the 2017-2018 school year. Please call for prices on additional residential program packages offered.

Package #1 Three Days, Two Nights $133.00 Per Person Traditional Cabins
    $138.00 Per Person New Cabins
Includes lodging, seven meals, six day sessions at two hours each (five sessions taught by Rock Eagle staff, one session by the visiting school), and four night sessions at one hour each (two sessions taught by Rock Eagle staff, two by visiting school)
Package #2 Two Days, One Night $77.00 Per Person Traditional Cabins
    $79.50 Per Person New Cabins
Includes lodging, four meals, three day sessions at two hours each, and two night sessions at one hour each (one session by Rock Eagle staff, one by visiting school)

Additional classes and meals may be added to the above packages for an additional fee.

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Deposit & Cancellation Policy

The Rock Eagle 4-H Center Environmental Education Program requires a deposit for all programming reservations. After a contract is sent, please sign and return the contract and the required non-refundable deposit of $300.00 as soon as possible to secure your accommodations. Your deposit will be subtracted from your final balance, which is due upon arrival. Reservations are not confirmed until the signed contract and deposit have been received!!

As it is difficult to reschedule space without adequate advance notice, we must charge an assessment for cancellations and reductions in attendance by your school. The assessment will be charged based upon your written notification to the Rock Eagle 4-H Center conference office according to the following schedule:

Number of days written notice
received prior to trip
Assessment charge
per person
+120 days No charge
60-120 days $10.00/person
<60 days $25.00/person

The Rock Eagle 4-H Center will need guaranteed counts 7 days prior to trip.  There will be a $10 per person charge for space reserved but not showing.

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Class Selection

After you reserve your date for Rock Eagle, the below guidelines will help you determine how many classes your field study will include.

Two Night Trips

  • Choose five day classes for Rock Eagle staff to teach and one day class for school staff to lead (independent class).
  • Choose two hours of evening classes for Rock Eagle staff to teach and two hours of evening activities which school staff will lead (independent classes).

One Night Trips

  • Choose three day classes for Rock Eagle staff to teach.
  • Choose a one hour evening class for Rock Eagle staff to teach and a one hour evening activity for school staff to lead (independent class).

Shorter/Longer trips

  • Call the Environmental Education office at (706) 484-2834 to determine how many classes your group will need.

All of our classes are built around various themes, allowing students to make comparisons and ask questions about a variety of topics within the same class. The four themes Rock Eagle offers are: Ecology, Living History, Team Building, and Outdoor Skills. Read through the class descriptions to determine if they will fit with your school's curriculum.

Independent classes are specifically designed for attending school teachers to lead. Class outlines for independent classes are available on this Web site. AV equipment is available upon request.

Our classes have been correlated to the current state standards. If you need help making decisions about classes, we will be happy to assist you.

Once the class selections are decided upon, mail or fax the class request form. Do not forget to include any equipment needed for the independent classes and to provide a tentative list of any special needs or dietary restrictions. The class request form should be sent one month prior to your field study.

Journal questions are available for most Rock Eagle instructor led classes. We encourage you to have your students keep journals while at Rock Eagle. It may help you in assessing the trip, as well as being a powerful tool in self-reflection for students. It may also be a great memory piece for them in the future. Breaks between classes and before or after meals are great times for students to write in their journals. It is most effective if they are given time to write at least a little bit at the end of every class.

Vocabulary for most of our classes is available to assist in your students' field study preparation.

Due to the unique hands-on nature of this program, it is important that we receive maximum advanced notice of any needed disability accommodations.

Sample Program Schedule

Below are sample schedules for overnight programs. Meal times are assigned to groups upon their arrival.

Two Night / Three Day Trip   One Night / Two Day Trip
Day 1 Day 1
10:30 a.m. Arrive & move in 10:30 a.m. Arrive & move in
11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
(*estimated time)
Lunch 11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
(*estimated time)
Lunch
12:30-2:30 p.m. Session #1 12:30-2:30 p.m. Session #1
2:30-3:00 p.m. Break 2:30-3:00 p.m. Break
3:00-5:00 p.m. Session #2 3:00-5:00 p.m. Session #2
5:00-6:30 p.m.
(*estimated time)
Dinner 5:00-6:30 p.m.
(*estimated time)
Dinner
7:00-9:15 p.m. Evening programs 7:00-9:15 p.m. Evening programs
Day 2 Day 2
7:00-8:15 a.m.
(*estimated time)
Breakfast 7:00-8:15 a.m.
(*estimated time)
Breakfast
(move out of cabins before breakfast)
8:30-10:30 a.m. Session #3 8:30-10:30 a.m. Session #3
11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
(*estimated time)
Lunch 11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
(*estimated time)
Lunch
12:30-2:30 p.m. Session #4 12:00-1:00 p.m. Depart
2:30-3:00 p.m. Break  
3:00-5:00 p.m. Session #5
5:00-6:30 p.m.
(*estimated time)
Dinner
7:00-9:15 p.m. Evening programs
Day 3
7:00-8:15 a.m.
(*estimated time)
Breakfast
(move out of cabins before breakfast)
8:30-10:30 a.m. Session #6
11:00 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
(*estimated time)
Lunch
12:00-1:00 p.m. Depart
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Teaching Groups

Rock Eagle tries to maintain a student to instructor ratio of 15:1. This allows for a more hands-on interactive class. We require at least one adult per teaching group. Please make sure your students know their teaching group before their first class. Please confirm your assigned number of teaching groups with us before dividing your students.

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Transportation

For a typical overnight stay, we suggest schools arrive at 10:00 a.m. their first day. This will allow enough time for moving into cabins, eating lunch, and orientation before the first 12:30 p.m. class. Schools arriving 11:30 a.m. or later and eating lunch may have their first class changed or cancelled completely due to time constraints.

Each school should bring a personal vehicle for emergency transportation and handicapped accessibility. Life threatening emergencies can be transported to the nearest medical facility by an ambulance/EMS. Some classes require hiking along Rock Eagle's trails which are not wheelchair accessible in which case the students may be driven to the class site.

Schools will depart after lunch their last day. Noon is a general departure time; however, early lunches may be provided if necessary.

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Cabins

Rock Eagle cabins sleep 22 people total. Student and adult ratio is determined by the visiting school. Rock Eagle requires at least one adult in each cabin. The number of cabins assigned will be determined by the number of total participants (including adults) and gender ratio. All beds must be filled before Rock Eagle will assign another cabin. Schools can request extra cabins for an additional cost. Please check with Becky Cronic at (706) 484-2858 for the number of cabins assigned to your school.

The Rock Eagle 4-H Center reserves the right to reduce the total number of cabins and/or buildings to be used by your group when actual attendance is lower than the original estimated attendance. If necessary, the center also reserves the right to change the designated cabin number(s) and/or building(s) being used by your group based on facility needs.

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Special Services

Handicap Accessibility

handicap clipartPlease do not let a disability keep anyone from attending our program. If anyone in the group has special needs, we are glad to do what we can to accommodate them. Accessible cabins are available upon request. However, please realize that a great portion of our programming takes place outdoors, and not all natural areas are accessible. Many of our trails are not accessible and another mode of transportation will be needed. If you have questions about whether certain special needs can be met, don’t hesitate to call or schedule a visit to our center.

Dietary restrictions

The dining hall is capable of accommodating most dietary restrictions (including peanut allergies); however, a student or adult may need to bring his/her own food if necessary. Due to health code regulations, no outside food is allowed in the dining hall. Rock Eagle can provide a refrigerator and a microwave in your home building where the individual(s) can prepare and eat their food. Take-out meals can be provided for those adults needing to eat with the students. Please inform us of any dietary restrictions no later than two weeks prior to your arrival.

Keeping Greenearth in kids hands

We appreciate your assistance with keeping Rock Eagle clean, beautiful, and 'Green'! Aluminum and plastic recycle bins and trash cans have been placed throughout center for your convenience. Please remember to carry all trash and recyclables off the trails and campfire sites. To help reduce energy use, please make sure lights are off anytime you leave a room (unless instructed otherwise by a Rock Eagle employee). Rock Eagle is working towards becoming an even 'Greener' facility and we are thankful for your help!

Worship service

Rock Eagle’s chapel may be available (for an extra cost?) for worship services. To avoid scheduling conflicts mention this need when reserving your dates as well as on your class request form.

Lost and found

Rock Eagle has a lost and found; however, we encourage students to be responsible for their belongings. Items left behind after a group leaves are kept for short periods of time and are then donated to a local community assistance program. Unfortunately, we are unable to mail back lost items unless the owner supplies the postage. Rock Eagle 4-H Center is not responsible for lost or stolen items.

Trading Post/T-shirts

The Trading Post is Rock Eagle's gift shop. To visit, schools must register on the class request form prior to their field study. Drink and snack machines are available 24 hours and the store is open from 5:00-7:00 p.m. Store items include snacks, t-shirts, stuffed animals, souvenirs for Rock Eagle/4-H/UGA, and more!

Rock Eagle t-shirtT-shirts can be ordered prior to your arrival.  Fill out the order form and fax it back to Audrey Stadler at (706) 484-2888 at least one month prior to your visit.  This will ensure the order is filled on time.  T-shirts can be picked up at the Trading Post from 4:00-7:00 pm on nights of your stay.  Schools do not have to sign up for the Trading Post to order t-shirts.

Cost is $14.00 ($15.00 for XXL). T-shirt design and colors can be found online here.

 

 


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Medical/Emergency Policies

Medication/permission slips/etc.

Visiting schools' lead teachers are responsible for collecting and maintaining field study permission slips. Rock Eagle does not require permission slips to be turned in nor is liable for visiting groups' insurance. Schools are required to maintain their own insurance. Rock Eagle does not have a permanent nurse on duty and is not responsible for medication. School nurse or teachers will be responsible for any student medication.

Families may call the administration office at (706) 484-2899 in case of an emergency. If it is after hours and they have an emergency, they can call the security guard at (706) 484-2821. If it is not an emergency, they can leave a message at the Environmental Education Office number. Someone will return their call as soon as possible.

First Aid/Emergencies

first aid crossRock Eagle staff is not authorized to treat accidents or illness. We suggest schools bring their own first aid kit; however, Rock Eagle does have a first aid station in the Environmental Education Office (downstairs in Administration Building). An adult from the visiting school must provide any medication or first aid to the injured or sick student. An extra vehicle for emergency transportation is also recommended. In case of an immediate or life threatening emergency, the local 911/EMS service will be called and the victim will be transported to local medical facilities. For after hour emergencies, schools can contact the security guard at (706) 484-2821.

Fire

The fire alarm would alert individuals of a fire. All people would be evacuated from the building. No one would be allowed re-entry into a burning building. Evacuations should take place around the outside of buildings.

Rain cloud clip artWeather

Rock Eagle runs classes rain or shine. The most comfortable participants are those that are prepared with ponchos, rain jackets, hats, and/or rain pants. In the event of lightning, we will move classes indoors until we haven't heard thunder or seen lightning for at least 15 minutes. In sudden severe weather emergencies, move inside as quickly as possible (take cover) and stay away from windows and appliances. If you are trapped outside, avoid tall trees and open fields, and lie flat in a ditch if necessary.

Security Gate

Rock Eagle supplies a security guard 24 hours a day while school groups are on center. The guard will be able to assist with emergencies (ex: directing EMS) and be an after-hours contact if needed.

Any vehicles who are not originally with the school upon arrival (ex: parent pick-up or drop-off), must be pre-registered with security. The person's name, arrival time, and the location they should go to (cabin number, home building, etc.) must be provided by the school's lead teacher upon the school's arrival. Entry will not be provided unless security knows ahead of time. Upon the school’s arrival, the lead teacher will need to provide a cell phone number which will be given to security.  

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Chaperone Responsibilities

Please arrange for at least one adult (chaperone or teacher) to accompany each teaching group. The chaperone's responsibilities are to supervise and discipline students when they are in class, moving between activities, and during free time. Chaperones must be present at all classes, meal times, trading post times, recreation times, and sleep in the cottage with the students.

Please meet with chaperones before the trip and cover responsibilities and expectations. We want everyone to feel comfortable, a part of the program, and learn along with the students. The more the chaperones, teachers, and Rock Eagle instructors are informed and work as a team, the smoother the overall experience for everyone. We suggest that you have a chaperone meeting a few weeks before your trip to provide them with guidelines and fill them in on their responsibilities. A list of complete responsibilities is provided later in the trip planner.

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Parent Meetings

The trip planner provides various handouts for parent meetings. Please feel free to use these handouts at your discretion.

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Who to Call

Name and Email Phone Questions about:
Matt Hammons, Program Coordinator (706) 484-2862 Any programming needs.
Josie Davis, Assistant Program Coordinator (706) 484-2834 Any programming needs

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We are here to help make your field study planning easier! Please call or email if you have any questions.

Good luck and we'll see you at the Rock!

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