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A group of students on paddle boards, showcasing resilience, self-management, and care for themselves and the world

Expeditions at NIST empower students to realise they are more than they think.

The Expeditions element of our NIST Learning Programme offers structured and developmentally appropriate opportunities to engage in outdoor education-based activities. 

In the mid 20th century, educational philosopher Kurt Hahn declared to his pupils “Plus est en vous” (“There is more in you than you think”). The way that Hahn, and numerous other outdoor educators, suggested we access, explore and understand ourselves more deeply was through engaging in challenging experiences outside of our normal, often comfortable, daily routines. Expeditions at NIST offer a unique opportunity for students to understand that they are capable of more than they think, and develop resilience, self management and care for themselves and the world.

Our Expeditions programme starts with our youngest students and challenges them with a self-contained overnight experience with their classmates on the school campus. With each successive year, these expeditions increase in remoteness, duration and skill level until our NIST students are planning and undertaking their own expeditions. We align our more advanced expeditions with the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award programme offered to students from Year 10 to Year 12.

At all levels, teachers play a significant role in our Expeditions programme. Our influence as educators is felt both inside and outside the classroom and students gain a tremendous amount from sharing their experiences with their teachers. There are many opportunities for interested teachers to be involved in the International Award trips and other optional expeditions with students.

NIST Learning Programme Swirl-Expeditions
Year 6 Trip

Outdoor adventure challenges, rope courses, bush walking and Thai culture, are all part of our Year 6 trip, along with working alongside a local not-for-profit organisation to learn more about environmental conservation.

Year 7 Action Week

Our Year 7 students enjoy an Unplug & Connect programme as they undertake a variety of outdoor activities intended to enhance their transition from elementary to middle school, and to bond as a year level.

Year 8 Action Week

All students have different ideas of what an adventurous challenge is, and in Year 8 our Action Week caters for all students as they learn outside the classroom achieving their own goals, in the activity of their choice.

Expeditionary Learning - Standup Paddleboard

The International Award sees students traveling along the River Kwai on paddleboards, camping and preparing meals, as they learn navigating and team building skills, and connect with nature.

Expeditionary learning - Trekking

As part of the Bronze International Award students trek through the jungle of Chiang Mai, working as teams to navigate challenges, while learning outdoor skills and building independence.


Over the past three decades, NIST has cultivated a reputation for academic excellence.


True learning and growth requires challenging yourself and stretching your boundaries.


Service to the community is an important lesson for all future global citizens.


Wellbeing is when people flourish and find meaning through connections to a caring community where they feel safe, secure and supported.