Our outdoor science camp staff is hand selected and hired based on their experience working with kids at kids camps and elsewhere, their desire to make a difference in the lives of the students and a love for the outdoors. Each staff member undergoes a thorough background check as well as a drug test to assure our child’s safety at kids camp. Our staff is a very dedicated, energetic, outdoor-loving, kid-friendly group of people. They work hard every day making science camp a special occasion in the lives of the children who come to Arrowhead Ranch’s nature camp.
We have cabin leaders who stay in the cabins with the children overnight. They go out on the trails with the students and attend all meals with them. Your children are NEVER left alone. On hikes, the cabin leader walks behind the hiking group while the naturalists navigate the trail to the next lesson area.
Our Directors are very experienced camp professionals who have dedicated their lives to ensuring that our Environmental Education program meets all of the California State Science Curriculum Standards. They are always updating our science camp programs to keep them current and exciting, meeting both the educational requirements of teachers and parents while still making every day fun and exciting for the students at nature camp.
We also have at least one full-time medic on staff at our outdoor science camp at all times. Our medic deals with all of our child related issues including homesickness, headaches and stomach aches. They assure each child will receive any prescribed medication sent to camp at the appropriate time.
Our Naturalists are college graduates with a four-year degree in one of the sciences. All of the teaching that is done comes straight from The State of California Board of Education Science Framework. Naturalists have a desire to teach the camp kids about the environment and the way people affect our environment. We train our naturalists in an intense week of on-site training for our outdoor science school. The naturalists are introduced to the lesson material, then shown how to create an outdoor lesson plan. The kids camp staff collaborate on different styles and ways of teaching the students who come to our program. Props, games, science activities and our unique natural environment are what we use to reinforce the curriculum. Once the Naturalists have been through training, testing and lesson planning, they are ready to take a trail team on a hike. A trail team consists of one girls cabin group and one boys cabin group. Numbers in these groups range from 18-28. It varies from school to school. The Naturalist will meet with their trail team at a prearranged meeting area on the outdoor science camp grounds. One of the cabin leaders are also present and hiking on the trails with the kids.
Teachers are encouraged to come along as well. The teachers observe the outdoor science camp naturalists as they teach. The teachers also assist the students while hiking.
Kathy Graves Farley is our Owner/CEO of our camp for kids. She is the mother of two boys. Kathy started working for Arrowhead Ranch in 1993. Being a mother herself, she found it to be one of the most eye opening, life changing events for every student who came to the camp’s overnight school. Over the years, Kathy has worked in every position the outdoor science camp offers. She began as the administrative assistant and moved into the Director of Marketing position. Later, she taught subjects such as earth science and has even been a cabin leader for the overnight school. In 1998, Kathy bought the controlling shares of the Corporation and made her own changes to create a safer and better alternative learning environment for the children. Because Arrowhead Ranch is an overnight school, Kathy mandated the intense background checks and drug testing of each staff member working with the kids. When Megan’s Law became available to the public she was able to use this as another avenue of ensuring the student’s safety. She maintains a close family feeling among staff to ensure that things run smoothly in this alternative learning program. Weekly, staff discusses events of the past week, focusing on the positive and implementing solutions for anything negative that might have happened. Kathy also contributes to the community by serving as a board member to the Lake Arrowhead Chamber of Commerce and volunteering for various events around the community. She actively participates in her children’s activities and as a classroom volunteer. When she is not the woman in charge of Arrowhead Ranch outdoor science camp for kids, she is with her children. They enjoy horseback riding, wake boarding, snow skiing, dirt bike riding, hiking on the local trails and having family time.
General Manager– Responsible for all personnel matters including hiring, training, recognition and discipline. Works with the Directors in leading the daily operations; works closely with the Program Director in maintaining a quality program that is current with the California Dept of Education Science Framework. Visits schools for teacher/parent presentations, and communicates with the owner on all aspects of the Outdoor Education program.
About Charlie – I grew up in camps starting my first summer camp job in 1988 and have never looked back! I earned an A.S. in Recreation Management and a B.S. in Health and Wellness. I have been a Director of some sort in four different camps in New York State, three in Florida, and now my journey has brought me to Sunny Southern California!! I had no idea that it snowed here, but even through that set back I have fallen in love with the mountains, the great many beaches, and of course the wonderful people of Southern California who have been great to me in my four seasons at Arrowhead Ranch – A place I want to finally call home!!
Hometown – Buffalo, NY
Director – Responsible for the safety and well being of all students that come to camp. This includes dealing with student discipline, ill students and supporting camp staff in the day to day responsibilities. Hikes and oversees Naturalist teaching staff. Communicates with the teachers to make sure they are informed of every issue and situation as it occurs. Conduct daily staff meetings to inform staff of any changes/updates in program, and to discuss any issues currently going on in the camp.
About Paige- I was born and raised in upstate New York and never once thought about heading out to California – Now I’m not sure I ever want to leave. Although I love the beach and ocean, the mountains are pretty amazing too. I graduated from SUNY-ESF with a B.S. in Wildlife Science and since then have worked at petting Zoos and nature centers teaching people of all ages about wildlife and nature. Arrowhead Ranch has been a great adventure so far! I started working here as a Naturalist in the fall of 2012 and can’t wait to create many more memories and experiences by teaching and learning from all of the students.
Hometown- Rome, NY
Program Director – Academics Responsible to make sure the Outdoor Education program is operating under the most current Science Framework, according to the California Department of Education. Responsibilities include training the Naturalist teaching staff, their professional development and their quarterly evaluations. Continuously strives to improve the program, equipment and activities.
About Lauren – Though I am originally from Florida, I have fallen in love with the mountains of southern California! I graduated from Florida State University in 2012 with a B.S. in Biology, and a B.A. in classical history. Since graduating, I have lived all over the country working as a naturalist and wildlife biologist. My passion is conservation education, and I believe that the biggest impact we can have in saving the environment is through teaching and inspiring the next generation.
Hometown – Coconut Creek, FL
Assistant Director - Responsible to assist the Director to assure the safety and well being of all the students and staff, and making sure the program is running well. This includes student support and discipline, communicating with Teachers, working with the medic, and occasionally serving as a Naturalist and/or a Cabin Leader. The asst. Director acts as the Director in his/her absence, and occasionally serves as Director. Plays a key role in training, motivating and disciplining staff.
About Ginger - Hey friends, I’m Gidget! I graduated from DePaul University with a degree in Elementary Education and am a licensed teacher in Illinois. I have taught in a typical classroom and also volunteered in the education department at the Shedd Aquarium. I am super passionate about educating young people and sharing my love of the natural world with them! I am lucky to have a job that incorporates all of my passions into one, including singing crazy camp songs! I can’t wait to hike with you!
Hometown - Chicago, Illinois
Program Lead - Responsible to assist the Leadership Team in assuring quality program delivery to our students. The Program Leads will also assist in managing program supplies, the nature centers and assist with social media on behalf of the camp. When needed, they will be asked to step up as an Assistant Director at one of the two camps we operate and fulfill those duties. Program Leads also continue to serve as Naturalists and Cabin Leaders as needed.
About Radleigh - As a child of a military parent, I grew up all around the country but have called Virginia home for most of my life. I graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2017 with a B.S. in Biology. With my degree I was able to work as a field researcher studying birds in Panama and Brazil before coming to Arrowhead Ranch in the Fall of 2017. I have a strong passion for environmental education; working at Arrowhead Ranch gives me the opportunity to influence and teach students about the wonderful world around us and how we can help save it for future generations!
Hometown - Richmond, Virginia