Educational Renaissance 2.0 – How the core principles of outdoor education are vital to the modernisation and success of mainstream education for generations to come.

Mr David Gregory1


As our world faces massive technological and social changes, education has reached a pivotal juncture. Our current education system remains shackled by the ‘satanic mills’ of our distant industrial past. Just as the Industrial Revolution influenced a massive shift in education, we’re now at a point in which another dimensional shift is taking place. Our schools can either embrace it, or be scattered to the wind by it.

The Industrial Revolution style of chalk, talk and exhaustive content has lost its impact in a world full of devices that can answer any question instantly. With our world changing rapidly from one year to the next, jobs coming and going more quickly than ever before, we need to facilitate innovative and effective ways in which students develop an adaptable skill set that’s needed to not only survive, but thrive in this new world.

Through examining and effectively applying the educational philosophies of Dewey & Hahn, we can plot a positive way forward and modernise our antiquated education system. Consequently, outdoor education has a vitally important role to play as one of the primary drivers in the modernisation of mainstream education.

Throughout the presentation, I’ll explore the connection between outdoor education, effective integration techniques and the importance these play in the STEM focussed world of school education. I will demonstrate how it can be applied to reshape education, ensuring our students develop the core skills they need, to be adaptable and resilient in the ever-changing, tech-focussed world in which we now live.


David Gregory has been an outdoor educator for over 16 years and has worked throughout Australia and internationally as an instructor, teacher and program director. David has developed and run residential outdoor programs for secondary schools and consulted on operational and risk management practices. David’s work has been strongly influenced by the need to provide great educational opportunities for students to develop and grow personally and academically through experiential education.

From a 5th grader’s first overnight camp to immersive 6 month long residential programs, David’s worked with a diverse range of students at Scots College (Glengarry), Kinross Wolaroi, Xavier College (Kew), Snowy Mountains Grammar, SCECGS Redlands and Trinity Grammar School (Sydney). The core philosophy behind his continued work is how positive social and emotional development needs to be effectively integrated as part of an overall education program to improve student engagement and well-being.

Author and keen educational blogger, David’s published two books, one on bullying in schools and one on outdoor education and writes weekly on all sorts of experiential education topics.

David’s personal interests include hiking, kayaking, mountain biking, snow skiing, tennis and reading.

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