Survive    Thrive    Stay Alive

See Your Backyard in a Whole New Light

Join one of our Edible & Medicinal Plant Classes

The 2018 classes are filling up now.

Browse our full line of Survival and Self Reliance Classes

Survival Training - It's not learning how to weather the storm.... its learning how to dance in the rain!

We offer a Full Line of Outdoor and Survival Products

Rediscover what your Grandparents knew

Our Classes are a GREAT Family Experience

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Survival Tips


Our School

Tom Laskowski founded Midwest Native Skills Institute, Inc. in 1997 to provide small class sizes with individual instructiuon to teach comprehensive wilderness survival/self-reliance,, all at affordable prices. We pride ourself on the fact that people who attend our classes leave being competent with the skills they came to learn. All of our classes are hands-on Instruction. We limit most classes to 15 people or less to help insure this.  

A safe, fun, educational, and quality experience is our priority.  All classes at MNSI are taught by Tom and his instructors and not "summer helpers" or people new to the skills.


We use non-military Wilderness Survival techniques. Physical fitness is not required to attend a class. 80% of "Survival" is the knowledge of what to do" and only 20% is actually doing it.  You will never be "put on the spot" or be embarrassed while learning the skills. Students learn at their own pace with individualized mentoring (or coaching) by our instructors.

We also offer other "Self-Reliance" skills classes such as Edible & Medicinal Plant Classes, Soap Making, Food Canning, Wine Making, Cheese Making, Candle Making, Bee Keeping in the City, and personal growth classes such as Reiki and Shamanic Journeys Classes.


Tom Laskowski - Founder and Director of MNSI
Glen Monaghan - Air Force Lt. Colonel (retired) and primitive skills researcher for 30 years
Ray Reitze - Master Maine Guide for 45 years
Dave Middleditch - (Hunting Guide and primitive skills enthusiast
Brad Rockwell - primitive skills enthusiast
Jerry D. - primitive skills enthusiast and Paracord designer for MNSI
Doug Meyer -

Upcoming Classes