Art of Mentoring, 2017

DATES: Aug 7 -13th, 2017

LOCATION: Camp Navarro, in the beautiful Anderson Valley of Northern California.

REGISTRATION: REGISTRATION IS OPEN! To sign up, please visit the 8 Shields Art of Mentoring info page.

COURSE DETAILS: Scroll below for details on the adult, youth and teen programs at the Art of Mentoring. We hope to see you there!

Quick Links

Adult Program
Youth Program
Teen Program
Ring 2 Program – (returning adult participants)
Deer and Fawn Program (parents and children 4 and under)

The Art of Mentoring

Deep in all of our roots, there are stories of our ancestors living in healthy, regenerative communities—villages where people of all ages were in deep relationship with the land, each other, and themselves.

The Art of Mentoring is an immersion into a living, learning culture of nature and self-awareness. It strives to confirm knowledge, tools, and practices that deepen the relationships that allow you to sustain a culture of connection in all aspects of your life, community and projects. Our curriculum draws on a combination of approaches from modern education, indigenous wisdom, and principles observed in nature. The Art of Mentoring program works to remind us of the old ways and learn to apply them in modern times. It is an experience of immersion in a hopeful outlook of what communities can emulate when the cultural fabric that holds everything together is fixed on things that serve individual, community, and environmental health.

All photos on this page by Raleigh Campbell

It Takes A Village to:

  • Enact the teachings of those before us
  • Create successful pathways for our teenagers
  • Make sure parents are supported and flourishing
  • Bring babies into a world of open arms
  • Engage in deep connection and gratitude in all relationships
  • Understand your personal gifts and how to use them for good of others

The Art of Mentoring model has successfully helped individuals, families, communities and educational organizations for more than 25 years.

Who Is This Experience For?

This experience is for those who seek to understand how to create and live in a healthy regenerative community, that is deeply connected to nature. The unique teachings of this course are based on what connects us as humans beings to ourselves, each other and the earth. The Art of Mentoring is ideal for parents, children and teens, educators, grandparents, teachers, mentors, coaches, community creatives, and lovers of nature.

What Happens at an Art of Mentoring?

AOM-Round2Art of Mentoring participants come together to experience, learn from and co-create a joyful, engaged learning community.

We will share tools and embodied practices of regenerative community design, mentoring techniques, deep nature connection, and for creating an amplified passion for learning in those around you. The learning container offers the opportunity to be mentored, practice mentoring and learn about mentoring in a really fun and powerful context.

Our hope is to activate and inspire you through tools that increase connection with family, community and the natural world while helping you to facilitate healthy and supportive community activity right in your own back yard!

The course is taught through group experiential activities, lectures, storytelling, and music. We will be outside exploring in the field, as well as learning in our outdoor classroom.
This course will emphasize powerful small group mentoring experiences focused on learning the language of the birds and the core routines of nature connection.


  • Mentoring in small group settings with skilled mentors
  • Tried and true mentoring techniques that create connection to self others and nature.
  • A personal connection with nature through plant medicines and edibles, tracking, bird language, fire skills, wandering and much more…
  • Discussion of insights from real-time mentoring moments with the large group and the AOM leadership team

Art of Mentoring Is A Family-Friendly Event!

Creating a village—where the whole family is welcome, supported and growing together—is an important element to the Art of Mentoring culture.

In that spirit, there are youth nature connection programs for children 4 and under, 5-12, and a teen program for youth ages 13-18.

Both the teen and youth programs run concurrently with the adult program, overlapping for most meals (read further for more information).

Youth Program

The Youth Program for children 5-12 years-old make it possible for the whole family to attend the Art of Mentoring and are a critical part of creating a holistic mentoring experience. The children (and the future generations!) make the need for healthy mentoring communities that are deeply connected to the natural world all the more real!

The Youth and Kids programs include sensory awareness games and exercises, earth living skills, scout skills, arts and crafts, music and storytelling, and deep nature connection practices. Children learn these skills and knowledge through artful mentoring that taps into their passions and curiosity.

The youth program schedule runs alongside the adult program schedule and there are sessions when the adults and youth are all together for programming. Please note that the youth are with their parents during all meal times (including lunch) and during the early evening and bedtime. All evening programs are family friendly, but please be aware that there may be some activities that a parent needs to miss in order to best tend to the needs of their child or children.

For more information, please email Ann@8shields.org

Mountains to Sea Teen Rendezvous

Guided by a team of experienced nature connection mentors, the participants in the AoM teen program will connect more deeply to the natural world, their peers and themselves through daily activities including primitive skills, tracking, awareness games, scout skills, team building, etc.

The week will culminate with a “Mountains to Sea Rendezvous”—a two night backpack leaving from the Art of Mentoring base camp and heading out from the mountains to the sea and back again.

Enriching the experience and making it more than “overnight camp,” the Teen Program will have connections with a community of elders, aunts, uncles, and youth that have formed around the Art of Mentoring. The teens will leave with an embodied experience of what it might be like to live in a village surrounded by adults looking out for them. They will play an important role in bringing back the stories of the landscape to the village at large.

For more information, please email Ann@8shields.org

Ring 2 Program

AOM-Round-RING2The Ring 2 Program is designed to support returning AoM adult participants on their nature connection journey. If the aunties and uncles of the community are on their own personal nature connection journey, they’ll be authentically modeling it to the younger generations!

The program will primarily be in the field, focused on embodied nature connection and immersion in the core routines. This is the Southeast place on the wheel—the place of childlike wonder and curiosity, passion for adventure and learning, scout skills and crafts, naturalist knowledge, play and wandering, and a thirst for life!

Drawing on the teachings in Coyote’s Guide and the Kamana Naturalist Training Program, the Ring 2 Program Facilitators will be creating experiences that draw out these qualities and bring back those stories and attributes to the AoM village at large.

Please note that as a Ring 2 Participant, you won’t be participating in all of the regular lectures and stories during the day. We have a limit of 20 in this program.

Deer and Fawn Program

The Deer and Fawn Program will meet in the mornings with a mentor and the other parents and children under four. Afternoons are free to put younger children down for naps, wander in the redwoods or sit in on lecture and activities. We ask that a parent or caregiver accompany their young child during the morning with the mentor.

Other times of day young children are in the care of their parents. We leave the afternoons in the deer & fawn program unscheduled to best meet the individual needs of each child 4 and under (various nap times, etc). Parents often choose to create play/support groups so that some can attend lecture. Parents in the deer and fawn program are encouraged to support each other in the afternoons. The outdoor classroom is set in the shade and close to many trees, so families are welcome to come and be there as well.

There is a space set up for parents with young children to relax and play together. There is also a wellness tent and relaxation area, a ceremonial fire that is open 24 hours, a women’s space (kiddos welcome), and so on. So even if you aren’t able to attend a lecture in the afternoon, there are plenty of places to be that are also all staffed by wonderful adults and elders helping to create the Art of Mentoring program container.

Art of Mentoring, 2017

DATES: Aug 7 -13, 2017

LOCATION: Camp Navarro, in the beautiful Anderson Valley of Northern California.

LODGING: Onsite camping is included with tuition. Camp Navarro also offers cabins and other indoor accommodations for an additional charge. For more information, or if you are interested in one of these accommodations, please visit Camp Navarro’s Art of Mentoring Accommodations page.



For more registration information or to inquire about group payment options, please email Ann@8shields.org