Trips & Retreats
At UMEI Christian High School, we believe students learn best through experiences. That’s why, as a school, we prioritize off-campus education through a variety of trips and retreats. It is because of our small size that we have flexibility to incorporate so many trips within each student’s education. What’s more is, thanks to our active Student Parliament, many students fundraise 100% of their trip expenses!
End of Year Off-Campus Education Trips
Each year, all students go on off-campus education trips. The focus of these trips is education, but the learning goes beyond what you’d expect from museums and landmarks. Students learn skills such as public transit and budgeting, as well as teamwork and time management. The typical structure is:
Grade 9 – Silver Lake Mennonite Camp (3 days)
Grade 10 & 11 – Ottawa or Toronto on alternating years (4 days)
Grade 12 – Chicago (4 days)
However, teachers are flexible with planning trips depending on circumstances. For example, the entire school has traveled as a group to New York City, Washington D.C and the Alberta Rockies.
Vocal Choir Trips
Students in grades 9-12 are invited to take vocal choir as an elective course, which involves a number of trips. The most important is the annual Mennonite Schools Council choral festival, which takes place at a different Mennonite school across North America each year. This trip is an opportunity to join with approximately 500 voices in 4-part choral singing, meet new friends and see new sights. When travel across the border is not possible, our vocal choir participates in the Edvance choral festival.
The vocal choir also participates at many local concerts, including with the Three Tenors at Caesar’s Windsor, and the Windsor Symphony Orchestra. The choir sings at local churches, long-term care homes, and at Chamber of Commerce events.
On top of regular game travel, UMEI teams participate in OCSSAA tournaments against other Christian schools. These weekend tournaments are a great opportunity for team bonding and exploring new cities together. It also builds mentorship in athletics between grades.
Service Project Days
Twice per year, students travel to different local service organizations and volunteer for the day. These days are built into a UMEI education as part of living out our Christian faith and being the hands and feet of Jesus.
Students on the Lightning Robotics Team compete across Ontario and potentially internationally in the First Tech Challenge and First Robotics Challenge.
Extracurricular Club Trips
UMEI’s many clubs partake in field trips throughout the year. For example, the Agriculture Club travels to the Royal Winter Fair, and Woodstock Farm Show. Faith in Action travels to Windsor, Detroit and Toronto to learn more about homelessness and poverty and how to give back. Other clubs have gone to Cirque du Soleil and other local and provincial opportunities.
Course Subject Trips
Teachers at UMEI find ways to build trips into their curricular learning. Some examples include:
- Functions learning how to model sinusoidal functions by visiting local windmills
- Physics learning about velocity by visiting the local toboggan hill
- Senior English classes taking in a Shakespeare play in Stratford
- Recreation and Leadership hosting elementary school tournaments
- Grade 9 Science flying over Essex County
- Grade 10 History visiting local historic sites
- Hospitality & Tourism visiting local restaurants and chef kitchens
- Senior classes learning more about truth & reconciliation by visiting Caldwell First Nation