I hope all Year 7 students are excited and looking forward to our camp on 8 to 12 February. We have a number of meetings with the Year 7 group in the next two weeks where hopefully all questions can be answered.
Of course, Mrs Rowe will be providing all the comforting advice for the students who perhaps are not used to a few nights away from home.
Our Outdoor programme aims to assist in the slow and gentle journey from young child to young adult and the journey will involve a transition from dependence to independence. From being totally directed to needing initiative. From comfort to some discomfort. From working as an individual to needing to be part of a team.
In an age when every piece of the curriculum puzzle is scrutinised and many schools are avoiding the challenge of an Outdoor programme, the value is consistently reaffirmed through the obvious growth from the students in their brief time away.
Four nights from home can be a little disconcerting for some of our young students. I have a suspicion that students' homesickness is sometimes outweighed by parents missing their children. It is always comforting when a student feels the pangs of anxiety, that a quick phone call home followed by a little loving support from Mrs Rowe has the students smiling again and ready to embrace another night away from their comfy beds.
It isn’t just the abseil or the high ropes that provide avenues for growth. Adventure activities challenge students to overcome fear and ultimately gain a real sense of accomplishment without the stress of competition. It’s often the small things that provide some of the most valuable life lessons. Students setting the table for others, cleaning off their plates, pouring drinks for their table, cleaning the bathrooms, assisting others with their tents, planning their own clothes for the week, organising their toiletries, et cetera. While these skills are simple, they are often taken for granted, yet they do need to be learnt at some point. Often the consequences of being lackadaisical at home are not critical but on camp the consequences can cause real discomfort and a lesson not easily forgotten.
This cohort of Year 7, I am sure, will be outstanding in their willingness to work together, undertake new challenges and embrace the camp experience.
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