Classes & Schedule
The Camp Cardamom schedule consists of Core Programming (sessions attended by all students) and Elective Programming (activities chosen by campers).
Attended by all students
Morning Yoga, taught by Nikhil Bhansali, the owner of Yoga Fit studio in Chennai
Afternoon Group Session: A 90-minute period that incorporates a varied range of programming
Short field trips to nearby areas of interest such as a jaggery factory, a sandalwood reserve, a banyan tree park, or a local waterfall.
Agricultural activities on our site such as tending to and harvesting vegetables, learning about mulberry silkworm cultivation, or tending to farm animals
Ayurvedic education in our test garden and kitchen
Lectures and discussion led by our Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies faculty in residence focusing on Indian history, religion and culture.
Fine arts: Taught by assorted visiting artists in residence. Drawing, painting, pottery, fabric arts.
Meals: Meals double as opportunities for conversation. Students in our language immersion programs sit with their language groups and native-speaker counselors.
Cultural exchange: Shared programming with our partner tribal school that might include classroom activities, traditional Indian games, or sports such as football (soccer) or cricket.
Evening group session: Presentations, OCHS lectures, music and singing, or campfire activities. Or students will be given free time to play and socialize with each other.
Weekly field trip: Once a week we pause regular programming to take the camp on an extended field trip to one or more destinations of interest. Possibilities include a sangeet exchange with a tribal village, Thoovanam Waterfalls at Chinnar National Wildlife Refuge, Erivakulam National Park, tea and cardamom plantations, and Ayurvedic gardens.
Students pick a total of three electives. Most electives are offered in a variety of skill levels to cater to different ages and abilities. Classes range from 60 minutes to 90 minutes in length depending on activity and skill level. We can offer specialized schedules for students who wish to focus on a particular elective.
Tabla drumming: Classical and garba beats
Dance: Bharatanatyam, garba and bhangra. Focus will depend upon the interest of campers.
Kalaripayattu: The world’s oldest living martial art, Kalari, or the Science of War, combines martial arts with yoga and Ayurveda. Kalari weaponry such as spears and swords will only be used in demonstrations by instructors or performers. Lower-level Kalari instruction focuses on stretching, flexibility, and elements of self-defense.
Waterfront activities: Swimming, fishing, and boating in our traditional vallams, overseen by trained lifeguards
Mixed sports: Kabaddi, cricket, football (soccer), and traditional Indian country games.
Rock climbing: The surrounding hills offer superb conditions for rock climbing. We will do both bouldering and top-rope climbing, administered by highly trained staff.
Archery: One of the oldest sports in India, dating to the Vedic period, Archery is offered for multiple skill levels.
Language instruction: Conversational language sessions (Tamil, Malayalam, Hindi, Gujarati, English) in small groups.
This schedule will remain the same for all students with the exception of electives, which will vary based on camper preference. We may make small changes to it prior to the start of camp based on enrollment and our mix of campers.
6:30: Wake Up
6:50 to 7:30: Morning Yoga Class on Roof Terrace
7:40 to 8:20: Breakfast
8:40 to 9:55: Dance (elective 1)
10:10 to 11:25: Waterfront (elective 2)
11:50 to 12:40: Lunch
13:00 to 14:00: Art class
14:15 to 15:15: Kalari (elective 3)
15:30 to 15:55: Snack
16:00 to 17:30: Afternoon group session
17:45 to 19:00: Dinner and evening discussion with counselors
19:00 to 19:50: Evening group session, journaling, or free social time
20:00 to 21:30: Shower
22:00: Lights out