Cabin Leader Information

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Welcome to the Marin County Outdoor School team!  Thank you for volunteering your time and effort to help enrich the lives of students attending the Outdoor School Program.  You are about to provide a wonderful and positive influence that the students will remember for the rest of their lives.  We look forward to working with you to create a week filled with adventure, learning, and personal growth.  For comprehensive guidelines about the roles and responsibilities of being a Cabin Leader at Walker Creek Ranch please review the Cabin Leader Handbook.  Below you will find some general responsibilities of a Cabin Leader. 

Day–to-Day Responsibilities of a Cabin Leader

The primary concern of all Cabin Leaders is to provide a safe environment for their cabin group and to help do this for all of the students at the Outdoor School. This is done by knowing, understanding, following and enforcing the Campus Rules, and by using common sense. First and foremost remember that every action you take while at Walker Creek Ranch should be for the benefit of all of the students all of the time.  Here is an overview of your day-to-day responsibilities as a Cabin Leader.

 Meals – Serve as a host at meals and maintain a courteous, well- mannered atmosphere at your table.  Manners, health, and consideration for others are stressed.  Each cabin group has K.P. (Kitchen Patrol) once or twice during the week, at which time Cabin Leaders will assist their group in setting and cleaning up the dining hall.

 Sleep – At night, remain with your cabin group through the night so everyone can get a good night's sleep.  The only time you should not be with your group is when it is your designated break.  The other 22-and-a-half hours of the day, they're yours!

 Cleanliness and Hygiene – Encourage students to stay clean by brushing their teeth ,showering daily, and washing their hands before meals. Be a model of good hygiene.

 Cabin Cleanliness – Supervise the morning cleanup of the cabin and around the cabin.  Sleeping bags should be aired out each morning.  If a bag is wet, notify the Naturalist or teacher so it may be washed (please keep this confidential from the other students).

 Build Teamwork – Work on developing a team spirit within the cabin and the Outdoor School.  Students in your cabin will most likely be from different schools, so encouraging integration through mixing bunk-mates and playing group games is essential to having a unified cabin. Even though warm student/Cabin Leader relationships are encouraged, the leader must maintain a supervisory role.

 Program Assistance – Assist your Naturalist as needed to enhance the educational program. This may mean working with your cabin to plan or participate in a campfire skit, and/or joining in and educational activity on the trail.  The students will follow your example so it is essential to stay involved in the program at all times.

 Be on time! – See that the students are in front of the dining hall before the meal begins, and that they are on time for all scheduled activities.

 Emergency – In the case of an injury or accident, contact the Outdoor School Principal, Teachers, and/or Naturalists.  Stay with the injured student and send two students to the Teachers' Lodge to get assistance.  Never administer any medications or first aid unless it is life threatening.

 Be Positive – Remember that a leader encourages self-direction rather than bossing.  Take a positive approach:  giving praise for the kind of conduct you expect; minimizing criticism; and talking to the student quietly in private if there is a problem.

 Check-in – The Outdoor School Principal, Teachers and Outdoor School staff are here to assist you with any problems, so please check-in with them regularly about what's going on in the cabin.  Let us know of any small problems before they become large ones.

Download the Cabin Leader Handbook HERE

~ Walker Creek Ranch ~ 1700 Marshall Petaluma Rd. Petaluma, CA 94952 ~ 415.491.6600 ~
A program of the Marin County Office of Education
Mary Jane Burke, Marin County Superintendent of Schools