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NEOC Board member Jeff Saeger, together with Janet Porter of DVOA, were presented with Orienteering USA's 2013 President's Award, for their "long time service to the Junior Orienteering Team." See the OUSA website for the full story and a photo.

Congratulations, Jeff!

by Andy McIlvaine

A gigantic celebratory congratulations to all the NEOC members who qualified for the 2013 U.S. World Orienteering Championship team!

NEOC Members (current & former) on the U.S. Senior Team:

Alex Jospe, Brendan Shields, Anna Shafer-Skelton, Isabel Bryant, and former members who moved out-of-state Samantha Saeger, Ross Smith, and Ali Crocker

 NEOC Members on the U.S. Junior Team: 

Meg Parson, Carl Underwood, and Isabel Bryant

These competitors will proudly represent USA this year at the World Orienteering Championships in Finland and the Czech Republic!

NEOC member and perennial winner of the finish split Ben Gallup enjoys playing around with data in his free time. He generated the following visualization of the Billygoat by grabbing the GPS tracks of participants off the orienteering community website, Attackpoint, and animating them. Check out the results...

It's finally here!  The 2013 orienteering season kicked off in NEOCland this month with two events by first time course setters Anna Shafer-Skelton and Tobias Karlsson.  The unpredictable New England weather took its toll by dumping a pile of snow on Belmont and forcing the cancellation of the Beaver Brook event on March 23, but that event has been rescheduled for May 12.  Last fall, the Board of Directors voted to continue the membership policy started in 2012: NEOC members run free at all local events.  

What will 2013 bring?  

Orienteering is a great activity for the classroom.  It teaches kids about map reading, topography, and use of the compass.  There is an opportunity to do distance estimation and practice using arithmetic in a real-world application.  But above all, it teaches critical thinking skills: Where am I? What is the evidence that I am where I think I am? Where do I want to go? What are my choices for how to get there, and which are the best, and why? What will I see along the way as evidence that I am going the right way?  

Orienteering can also provide an opportunity to get outside of the classroom, experience nature, get some exercise, and build kids' ability to work successfully in teams.  

NEOC member Barbara Bryant has worked with several schools in the Boston area over the past ten years.  In that time she has developed a curriculum that she varies in age-appropriate ways for the students and teachers she works with. Here is a link to a slideshow that gives an introduction to the curriculum. Barb would be happy to speak with teachers who would like to include orienteering in their classroom.

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