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Bryan VanderZwaag

CITACamp® Teaching Director

Greetings from the CITACamp® Teaching Director


Welcome to CITACamp® Bilingual Afterschool, an adventure in the Outdoor Classroom!

At CITACamp®, it is our goal to expand students' learning outside the classroom and experience the world around them first-hand. Learning “outside the box” is our philosophy, bringing together educational techniques from across the globe, combining the wisdom of East and West. California International Teachers’ Association instructors are committed to meaningful education for ALL students.

Each week, we combine Sports, Arts, Literature, and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) to focus on a theme.

For example, Week One’s focus is on Awareness and Observation. 

  • On Monday, we will introduce the week’s theme and preview our activities, then participate in a fun group activity, getting to know each other!  

  • On Tuesday, we will approach our theme from a scientific perspective.  First, we will use STEM to build a periscope or magnifying glass to help us see things we never expected! Then we will start a nature journal, focusing on awareness of the world around us.  

  • On Wednesday, we will write about our observations with a focus on literature and language arts. We will read an example of classic literature, then describe the things that we have observed using language arts to expand our vocabulary and writing abilities.  

  • On Thursday, we have a lot of fun with a group activity focusing on Awareness of our five senses. How would we “see” our world if we had no sight? If we could not hear, how would this change our sense of reality?

  • On Friday, we wrap up our week with artistic activities. We will draw, paint, or write about our experiences this week observing the world around us. We will leave with an all-new awareness of the Natural, Outdoor Classroom!       


Each week, your student will expand their knowledge and understanding of the world around them by applying the best of arts, sciences, and physical exercise.  



A typical day at CITACamp® Outdoor Classrooms:

  • Every day at CITACamp® starts with “Homework Support”, an opportunity for students to get their homework done with the help of our CITA instructors.

  • As students arrive, they pick up their camp bag, containing everything they will need for the day’s session.  

  • When everyone has arrived, we begin our activity!

  • Depending on our focus, we might do some writing in our journals, play some games, work on a STEM project, or do something artistic like painting, singing, or even acting or dancing! But don’t worry, nobody is forced to do anything that makes them uncomfortable. There is a place for everyone in our Outdoor Classroom.

  • At the end of each session, we wrap up the day’s activity and work on our homework or relax until everyone is picked up to go home!