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Young Navigator Star Award

The Outdoor Discovery Award or ODA is ideal for people of all ages who wish to learn basic navigation skills at a gentle rate, encouraging them to gain and improve personal confidence to get out and get active.  The Awards has been developed to help group leaders introduce the basic elements of navigation to people who want to explore outside.

Previously known as Young Navigator Star Awards (YNSA), the revamped and updated ODA continues with the core ethos of the YNSA: Encouraging exploration and journeying in local areas using simple maps such as street maps, pictorial park maps and orienteering maps.

The ODA levels are aimed at all age groups and abilities.

There is a gradual learning progression via One Star, Two Star and Three Star levels, with certificates and badges available for achieving participants who have undertaken the ODA with a group leader who is registered with NNAS as an accredited ODA Course Provider.

The ODA award can be delivered on your school grounds.  

ODA syllabus outline


The syllabus operates at three different levels – 1 Star, 2 Star & 3 Star

At each level the syllabus uses five headings:

  1. Engage with the outdoors
  2. Making your own map
  3. Journeying
  4. Understanding the concept of symbols and scale

Setting the map

1 Star
Make simple maps and sketches to show journeys

Undertake journeys for fun, using a simple map or plan

Gain a basic understanding of symbols, scale and map setting

After taking part in the 1 Star ODA, participants will have acquired basic navigational skills and will be able to make short journeys in familiar terrain using their own and other people’s sketches or representations of the area.

2 Star
Use building interiors and / or the immediate outdoor area when learning skills

Develop mapping and map setting skills

Undertake slightly longer journeys, considering scale and distance

After taking part in the 2 Star ODA, participants will be able to make journeys in their local area using their new and revised navigational skills to interpret maps and will have an understanding of standardised symbols.

3 Star
Plan and follow straightforward journeys around familiar and unfamiliar areas

Discover and investigate points of interest during the journey

Understand basic walking safety issues and have respect for the environment

After taking part in the 3 Star ODA, participants should be able to plan and follow journeys in unfamiliar local areas using appropriate maps.

Young Navigator Star Award