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Ages 6-16. (Children 7 and up may attend without a parent)  

Adults and younger siblings are welcome to join us at no cost.

~ Topanga Tuesdays. (Homeschool and Afterschool) – Varying locations. 

~ Pasadena Thursdays. (Homeschool and Afterschool) – Eaton Canyon

~ Costa Mesa Saturdays. – Varying locations. 

Scroll below for more information on each class! 

Don’t wait! These classes will fill up.

This program offers children the opportunity to have fun learning the skills of our ancestors from someone who’s lived the Old Ways. It’s a beautiful way to bring balance to their technology-driven lives, understand the difference between their needs and wants, and gain the self-confidence that comes from meeting those needs directly.

This is a mentoring program. We will make fires by rubbing sticks together, learn edible and medicinal plants, move silently, feel the natural rhythm of the land, and discover ancient wisdom as we “seek what they sought.” All classes are taught with love, compassion, non-violent communication (NVC) methods, and the inherent principles of living a life in Harmony with the Earth.

Here is a partial list of experiences children may have:

  • Exploring
  • Native and nature immersion games
  • Sensory awareness, expanded vision
  • Silent walking and stalking
  • Tracking and reading animal sign
  • Camouflage
  • Safe use of knives and knife sharpening
  • Edible and medicinal plants
  • Fire making with flint and steel, bowdrill and handdrill
  • Preparing char cloth
  • Preparing tinder
  • Types of fires for warmth, signalling, cooking and the making of tools
  • Shelter design and concepts for insulation and weatherproofing
  • Shelter location based on topography
  • Water purification using primitive methods
  • Making rope/string from plants for fishing line, nets, snares, etc.
  • Digging sticks and rabbit sticks
  • Primitive hygiene (making soap, toothbrush and comb)
  • Paiute deadfall trap, quail trap and springpole snare
  • Safety outdoors (poisonous plants, insects, reptiles, bear and mtn. lion)
  • Useful knots
  • Accessing intuition
  • Navigation
  • Traditional and modern stories
  • Wilderness ethics
  • Apprentice of the Wild! Online!

  • Date: First class is April 14 but you watch the recording ANYTIME!
  • Time: recording available anytime
  • Location: Online

  • IMPORTANT! I really value direct contact with your child. I want to hear their fears, confusion, frustration and hope. The Zoom meeting will NOT be the space for that because there are too many children. One-on-one attention will happen during Q and A and in the private group.

    If you can’t make the Tuesday meeting, you won’t miss out by watching the recorded version

    Age: 6+. As always, I seek to teach at an advanced level. Young children will grasp the first layer of understanding while older children and adults will grasp deeper levels. Young children will need support on some projects.
    Zoom meeting: Tuesdays from April 14 – June 9 (9 classes). Noon to 2pm.
    Recorded Zoom meeting: a recording of our class will be available at all times for your convenience.
    Online Q and A: students can ask questions and I’ll answer them either in our private group or during the next class.
    Private Group: this is where all of the projects, ideas, questions and experiences are shared via photos, videos and text. Students collaborate and support each other here while receiving guidance from me. We will start out with a private group on Facebook (parental support required for kids under 13).
    Cost: $0-270. I understand that some of us have been hit hard economically by the coronavirus. Everyone should have access to this program. I appreciate full payment if you can afford it. If you are paying with Inspire funds, please request the full amount. Thank you! If you have already paid for a program and need to adjust your payment for this one, please contact me.
    For contributions between $1-269, please send via PayPal to chrismorasky@gmail.com.
    Course Curriculum
    Earth:
    Beginnings: origin stories, from single cell to multi-cellular organism
    The human body as a community of cells cooperating
    Interconnectedness
    What is a stone? What is earth? Soil? Humus?
    Go ask the Stone People
    California pocket gopher
    Earth lodge, adobe, cobb
    Are we alone in the Universe?
    Space travel
    Project: sit spot; make pigment paint from dirt and a paintbrush from a plant
    Water: 
    Our wet planet
    Water cycle
    We are mostly water, so what’s water?
    Ways to purify water: filter, boil, evaporation
    Cattails: nature’s super market
    California amphibians
    Projects: sit spot; make a solar evaporation still
    Story of water from India
    Plants (part one):
    Photosynthesis
    The energy cycle from sunlight to sugar to fossil fuels
    Plant stages/seasons: sprouting, flowering, seeding, hibernation
    Being a Gatherer-Hunter: planting back, tending, fire, receiving, processing, sharing
    Thinking like a plant: What is a seed for? What is a fruit for?
    Life is brief: annuals
    Life is long: sequoias, redwoods and bristlecone pines
    Life never ends: plants that clone themselves (aspens, creosote bush)
    Wild oats and other grasses
    The mouse that howls at the moon
    Projects: sit spot; make a tea; plant a seed
    Story: Turtle Island, Sky Woman and the first seeds (story)
    Air:
    Where does the wind come from?
    Pheromones and other scents for communication
    Sense of smell and memory
    Breath and a curious story of humanity as a coastal species
    Pollen
    Sound: heartbeat, entrainment, drumming
    Meditation, vision quest and intuition
    Healing among the San Bushmen
    Seeing the invisible: what our senses tell us vs. what is real
    Augmented reality: seeing in other light spectrums, hearing in other frequencies, and visiting Alice in Wonderland
    Cooper’s hawk
    Hummingbird
    Gray and Fox squirrel
    Projects: sit spot; slow down and speed up your heart rate; breath and your nervous system; make a predator call; sourdough
    Story: Gluscabi and the Wind Eagle story
    Plants (part two):
    Carbon
    Non-carbon-based life
    Evaluating wood: density, flexibility, habitat
    Bark bark bark!
    The story told in growth rings
    Fire: the first domesticated “animal”
    What is fire and how does it work?
    Flint and steel fire making
    Coastal live oak
    Wondrous willows
    Incense cedar
    Projects: sit spot; carving; make char cloth; making sparks
    Story: tbd
    Fire:
    Humans: the fire ape
    Sacred smoke
    Capturing and carrying wild fire
    Making a tinder bundle
    Making a bow drill and handdrill kit
    Welcoming the fire-child (ember) into the Village
    A perfect fire from start to finish
    Maintaining a fire
    Our fire addiction and changing climate
    California and fire
    Plant community successional stages and fire as a disruptive regime
    Chamise, Sequoia and Bishop pine
    Deer
    California spotted owl
    Projects: sit spot; make a tinder bundle; make a fire kit
    Story: the origin of fire
    Mammals:
    Humans and wild animals
    Humans and domesticated animals
    Tracking
    Paiute deadfall trap
    What is a mammal?
    Predators, omnivores and herbivores
    Looking at skulls
    Black bear
    California grizzly bear
    California’s weird relationship with coyotes
    Projects: sit spot; make a Paiute deadfall trap; carpet tracking
    Story: Gluscabi and the Game Bag or…
    Walking the Path:
    Stillness
    The Go and See People
    Meditation, hunting and fishing
    Omens, dreams and the subconscious mind
    Vision quest
    Gift economy
    Being Pono: finding balance with posture, emotions and thoughts
    Choosing your emotional state
    Prayer and affirmations
    Bald eagle vs. wild turkey
    Coastal sagebrush
    Mugwort
    Projects: sit spot; dream interpretation
    Community and Future:
    WE consciousness among Gatherer-Hunters
    Global technological connectivity
    Biological limitations
    Understanding exponential growth
    Limitless potential
    Natural principles
    Sloooooooow doooooooooown
    In the year 3020…
    Lichens
    Mycelium
    Projects: sit spot; unwinding and re-making rope; gratitude
  • Register for Apprentice of the Wild! Online!


  • Montana River Camp Adventure!

  • Date: July 10-16, 2020
  • Location: Jefferson River, Montana

  • Imagine exploring a wild and scenic Montana river! A huge and majestic moose might be just around the next bend! Beavers, elk, deer, eagles, bears, wolves and other wildlife live here along the Jefferson River in SW Montana. The trout fishing is word class, too!

    Welcome to River Camp! The land is operated by our good friend, Tom Elpel, whom Chris has known for almost 30 years. Here Tom runs a Hunter-Gatherer Immersion program where students learn to be a part of nature by living it.

    Sleep in a 34 foot earthlodge, one of several wickiups, a grass hut or tipi. Gather cattails and other wild plants for a pit bake dinner and make your own plant medicines. Learn a wide variety of skills from pottery to parfleche to fire making! And then fall asleep each night to a crackling campfire and the hooting of great horned owls.

    This magical experience is a week that you’ll never forget! Come immerse yourself in the wilds of Montana!

    ***This event is limited to 20 participants.

    Day One:

    Arrival/Set-Up
    Introductions and tour of the area with Tom Elpel
    Make a grass rope and join the Tug-of-War!
    Swim in the pond, go fishing and explore your home for the week
    Dinner (Receive Gourd and Spoon Blank)
    Burning and carving to make a spoon
    Campfire Stories

    Day Two: 

    Morning stalking / bird language
    Plant walk and gather materials for fire-making kits
    Coiled and Pinch-pot Pottery
    Canoeing Instruction (on the pond)
    Evening Games
    Campfire

    Day Three:

    Pony, Montana

    Travel to Tom’s permaculture homestead and tiny castle!
    Gather and begin processing of natural earth pigment
    Botany Card Game intro to plant medicines
    Plant Identification / Foraging Walk
    Medicine Making from local plants
    Permaculture Homestead Tour

    Day Four:

    Free Day! Choose your own adventure:
    Float Trip on the Jefferson River (no cost/unguided)
    Fishing
    Botany
    Local History
    Wildlife Viewing
    Bird Language
    Complete fire kits and other projects
    Campfire

    Day Five:

    Primitive firemaking
    Fires for many uses – Learn about the 5 basic types of campfires
    Outdoor cooking methods with a special wild meats and plants pit bake.
    Introduction to parfleche (rawhide containers) and primitive pigments
    Campfire

    Day Six:

    Complete parfleche and pigments project
    Complete other projects
    Enjoy our last full day (hiking, canoeing, fishing, tracking, weave a basket, new projects and more)

    Day 7: 

    Closing Circle and gratitude for an incredible week!
    Break Down Camp/Departure

    *Each student leaves with a gourd bowl, wooden spoon, pottery drinking cup, 2 jars of medicine, an earth pigment decorated Parfleche carrying case and memories of this trip-of-a-lifetime.

    Parfleche decorated with natural earth pigments.

    About your instructors:

    Chris Morasky is a wildlife biologist with over 35 years experience teaching ancient skills and nature connection and is considered one of the top Stone Age skills experts in North America. He lived in a tipi for 6 years, homesteaded along the most remote mail route in the lower 48 states and led totally Stone Age expeditions into the wilderness of Idaho and Oregon. His teachers include Lakota, Shoshone, Arapaho, Crow, Blackfeet and Serri tribesmen, many wilderness skills experts and life itself. Chris’ workshops focus on awakening instincts, ancient skills and deep nature connection as doorways to understand more fully who we are, why we’re here and where we’re headed.  

    Chris Morasky

    Thomas J. Elpel is the founder of Green University® LLC and Outdoor Wilderness Living School, LLC (OWLS), as well as HOPS Press, LLC and the Jefferson River Canoe Trail. He has authored seven books and produced seven videos on topics ranging from wilderness survival and botany to stone masonry, sustainable construction, and green economics.

    As a child, Tom was mentored by his grandmother, Josie Jewett. Together they explored the hills and meadows near Virginia City, Montana, collecting herbs, looking for arrowheads and watching wildlife. Grandma Josie helped Tom to learn about native plants and their uses, igniting a passion for nature that has inspired him ever since.

    Tom’s first serious exposure to wilderness survival skills began at the age of 16, when he went on a 26-day, 250-mile walkabout in the desert canyons of southern Utah with Boulder Outdoor Survival School. The following year he and Grandma Josie went together to Tom Brown’s Tracker School in New Jersey. From there Tom spent thousands of hours practicing, developing, and teaching survival skills in his “backyard” in the Rocky Mountains. 

    Tom’s basic philosophy is that wilderness survival skills are useful to connect with nature, yet you shouldn’t run away from the problems of modern society. Instead, we need to apply the lessons of living close to nature to the challenge of solving our worldly problems.

    Tom Elpel
  • Register for Montana River Camp Adventure!


  • Wild and Free: For Modern Humans – Adult Series

  • Date: One Sunday each month - January through June.
  • Time: 11am-5pm
  • Location: Various locations throughout Los Angeles.

  • Join wildlife biologist and Stone Age skills expert, Chris Morasky, for a day that you’ll never forget! Awaken your instincts while learning natural movement, how to make rope, tracking and reading the landscape, making fire with sticks, building a shelter and so much more! Learn the best plants in our area for food, medicine and tools! Over 50 species!

    This ain’t no book learnin’!

    This is a brief yet deep dive into truly natural living. For 99.99% of the time that we’ve walked upright, we lived as egalitarian (sharing everything), immediate return (what you eat today is what you gather today) Gatherer-Hunters. We were in tune with natural processes… a part of nature just like coyotes and chickadees and deer. Our social strategies ensured cooperation through ego dismissal, transparency, heart/mind entrainment, ritual and stories.

    It seems as though we’ve forgotten so much, but ancient memories are just beneath our modern veneer… waiting for a gentle reminder. This series of classes is the perfect reminder of what it’s like to live natural, free and whole! It’s the first time I’ve offered an adult series of classes in this format and it’s going to be AWESOME! I hope that you’ll join me for the full series, but you also have the option of choosing a la carte.

    Don’t wait! I expect these classes to fill up.

    One Sunday each month for 6 months.
    11am – 5pm
    $69 per class or save and pay just $375 for the whole series!

    Inspire funds are accepted for adolescents and parents to share these skills with their children

    This is an adult-level course but is also available to mature adolescents age 12+

    Jan 19: Secrets of the Stone Age!  

    Hahamongna Watershed Park, Pasadena

    Core Skills Covered:

    • Awareness
    • Silent movement
    • Sit spot
    • Tracking
    • Cordage
    • Conscious and ethical foraging
    • Harvest and begin prep of Stone Age fire kit (handdrill and bow drill)
    • Knife safety
    • Edible, medicinal and useful plants walk
    • Medicine for wounds, immune stimulation, centering, lucid dreaming

    To be a whole human, we must awaken the ancient memories that lie within our bones. When these memories of living in community with nature are awakened, we relax, our troubles slip away, and we begin to smile. We find that it’s easy to meet our needs directly from nature… and that our “wants” are not so important. This class lays the foundations for all of the following classes. If you can only make one class, come to this one. We will explore the beliefs, languages, and core skills of the Hunter-Gatherer and awaken the Hunter-Gatherer in you.

    Feb 16: Spoon Carving!

    Gould Mesa Trail Camp, La Cañada Flintridge

    Core Skills Covered:

    • Intro to Stone Age fire making and maintenance
    • Knife work
    • Edible, medicinal and useful plants walk

    Carve a beautiful wooden spoon! This class will include wood selection, knife safety and natural perspectives on creating a functional work of art that brings harmony to the journey of carver and the one-legged (tree) being that supplied the wood. The bowl of your spoon will be burned with a hot coal from the fire (which, by the way, we’ll start with a hand drill in the Old Way). We’ll also go on a 2.3 mile walk and learn some of the edible, medicinal and useful plants along the way. Join me at one of the very few campgrounds near LA that allow campfires for this fun day!

    March 15: Yucca Sandals!

    Orcas Park, Lake View Terrace

    Core Skills Covered:

    • Making sandals from yucca leaves
    • Wild soap
    • Water purification
    • Sit spot
    • Tracking
    • Edible, medicinal and useful plants walk
    • Medicines for arthritis and deep nourishing of the body

    Join me for a fantastic day in nature as we learn the ancient skill of making sandals. We will receive, prepare and weave yucca leaves into sandals and then go for a walk! We’ll also learn some edible, medicinal and useful plants and look for oyster mushrooms (yummy!) and medicinal turkey tail mushrooms. We’ll share our noon meal and go deeper into our inner Hunter-Gatherer as we learn to meet our needs directly and easily from nature.

    April 19: Stone Age Fire Making, Traps and Weapons!

    Hahamongna Watershed Park, Pasadena

    Core Skills Covered:

    • Stone Age fire making with handdrill and bow drill
    • Deadfall traps and snares
    • Lizard snares
    • Rabbit sticks
    • Sit spot
    • Tracking
    • Edible, medicinal and useful plants walk

    This is a BIG day as we learn ancient lessons about fire and life. These teachings go deep into the origin of our species. Our relationship with fire goes back over a million years! And although there are easy modern methods of making fire, nothing compares to spinning up a coal from sticks and blowing it into flame!

    We’ll also learn how to efficiently set primitive deadfall traps and snares. I’ve lived Stone Age and relied on these skills in the wilderness of Idaho, Oregon, Montana and British Columbia. We’ll also practice with the simple yet effective rabbit stick and hunt the rabbit-stump! We’ll then go for a walk to learn more about the edible, medicinal and useful plants of the area. No animals will be harmed and all traps will be removed at the end of class.

    May 17: Wild Medicines and Meadows!

    Musch Meadows, Topanga

    Core Skills Covered:

    • Make a healing oil or salve
    • Nerve tonic
    • Pain liniment
    • Keepin’ it at 98.6. Shelter and insulation
    • Sit spot
    • Tracking
    • Edible, medicinal and useful plants walk

    Today we explore a beautiful expanse of forest and fields and learn about lots of different plants that are edible, useful or medicinal. We’ll make several kinds of medicines for you to take home. It’s easy and fun! We’ll also learn how to make a proper shelter to stay warm and dry plus other techniques to keep your core body temp at 98.6 degrees.

    Special materials fee: $15

    June 14: Wild Adventure into the Lost World!

    Topanga Creek, Topanga

    Core Skills Covered:

    • Crayfish hunting
    • Stone tool making
    • Make a fork, spoon, straw, container from cane
    • Make a fishing spear
    • Sit spot
    • Tracking
    • Edible, medicinal and useful plants walk

    This is one of my favorite places! Although we’re just outside of Los Angeles, I’ve tracked mountain lions here. Journey with me into the Lost World of Topanga Creek where we’ll discover an amazing assortment of creatures and a wide diversity of plants. We’ll learn about the many uses of arundo cane, which was introduced by the Spanish 500 years ago. And we’ll hunt the (also introduced) crayfish that abound there. Wear sturdy shoes and come prepared for a bit of boulder scrambling. This is awesome!

     

  • Register for Wild and Free: For Modern Humans – Adult Series


  • Wild and Free: For Modern Humans – Stone Age Firemaking, Traps and Weapons

  • Date: April 19, 2020
  • Time: 11am-5pm
  • Location: Hahamongna Watershed Park, Pasadena

  • Core Skills Covered: 
     
    • Stone Age fire making with handdrill and bow drill
    • Deadfall traps and snares
    • Lizard snares
    • Rabbit sticks
    • Sit spot
    • Tracking
    • Edible, medicinal and useful plants walk

    This is a BIG day as we learn ancient lessons about fire and life. These teachings go deep into the origin of our species. Our relationship with fire goes back over a million years! And although there are easy modern methods of making fire, nothing compares to spinning up a coal from sticks and blowing it into flame!

    We’ll also learn how to efficiently set primitive deadfall traps and snares. I’ve lived Stone Age and relied on these skills in the wilderness of Idaho, Oregon, Montana and British Columbia. We’ll also practice with the simple yet effective rabbit stick and hunt the rabbit-stump! We’ll then go for a walk to learn more about the edible, medicinal and useful plants of the area. No animals will be harmed and all traps will be removed at the end of class.

  • Register for Wild and Free: For Modern Humans – Stone Age Firemaking, Traps and Weapons


  • Wild and Free: For Modern Humans – Wild Medicines and Meadows

  • Date: Sunday May 17, 2020
  • Time: 11am-5pm
  • Location: Musch Meadows, Topanga

  • Core Skills Covered:
     
    • Make a healing oil or salve
    • Nerve tonic
    • Pain liniment
    • Keepin’ it at 98.6. Shelter and insulation
    • Sit spot
    • Tracking
    • Edible, medicinal and useful plants walk
    Today we explore a beautiful expanse of forest and fields and learn about lots of different plants that are edible, useful or medicinal. We’ll make several kinds of medicines for you to take home. It’s easy and fun! We’ll also learn how to make a proper shelter to stay warm and dry plus other techniques to keep your core body temp at 98.6 degrees.
    Special materials fee: $15
  • Register for Wild and Free: For Modern Humans – Wild Medicines and Meadows


  • Wild and Free: For Modern Humans – Adventure to the Lost World!

  • Date: Sunday June 14, 2020
  • Time: 11am-5pm
  • Location: Topanga Creek, Topanga

  • Core Skills Covered: 
     
    • Crayfish hunting
    • Stone tool making
    • Make a fork, spoon, straw, container from cane
    • Make a fishing spear
    • Sit spot
    • Tracking
    • Edible, medicinal and useful plants walk
    This is one of my favorite places! Although we’re just outside of Los Angeles, I’ve tracked mountain lions here. Journey with me into the Lost World of Topanga Creek where we’ll discover an amazing assortment of creatures and a wide diversity of plants. We’ll learn about the many uses of arundo cane, which was introduced by the Spanish 500 years ago. And we’ll hunt the (also introduced) crayfish that abound there. Wear sturdy shoes and come prepared for a bit of boulder scrambling. This is awesome!
  • Register for Wild and Free: For Modern Humans – Adventure to the Lost World!


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