Residential Visits… Yes or No

It would be fair to say I am tired and in need of a bit of a rest.  So are three staff from our team here too, they are shattered.  I have watched them work with the children for the past week and I made a number of observations that have made me put fingers to keyboard.

We attended Kingswood Peak Venture, which is a residential centre for outdoor adventurous activity.  The activities include zip wire from a fifty foot tower, leap of faith, which involves leaping and trying to grab a trapeze bar, 3g swing, which is best described as managed terror and climbing etc.  The list is endless, well it isn’t as there are about 70 sessions crammed into one week.

The first point of note is that we depart for Kingswood on a Sunday at 2-30pm.  The 3 staff meet the children at school and I follow them up in my car.  We do this to deal with any issues that may arise where we may need transport.  When we got there it was straight into the dorms to sort beds, cover health and safety and carry out the fire drill.

We blogged from the centre to keep parents informed about what we were doing and placed lots of pictures on our blogs.  The parents respond well to this and we get lots of comments.  The staff tend to do the blogs after children have gone to bed.  This was done each night and meant that the parents could keep right up to date with what the children were doing.

seeing the children work hard and grow in confidence during the week was rewarding for the staff that went on the visit.  It is worth pointing out that the staff who were at home took the time to comment on the blogs too.  The children enjoy the feedback and it gave us areal sense of sharing what we do.

Mr Scott is terrified of heights and yet he chose to go down the zip wire because he felt it was important to show the children he was challenging himself as much as they were.  The children responded well to this and praised him for being a great role model.  The mutual respect between the children and Mr Scott was and is bigger than ever.

You can look at some of the things we did here  The children gained so much out of this visit that there would not be enough time or space to write it here.  The self-esteem and self belief grew in each child all week.  The children who started of the week feeling homesick did really well and had an amazing time.

These experiences are the ones that will stay with the children for always and are the bedrock for times in their futures when they face challenges that seem difficult.  It is experiences such as this visit that will ensure children have the resolve to face any challenge at all.

Staff that give their time to go on these visits get little recognition but they can be safe in the knowledge that they are helping change lives.  These visits for me represent the greatest times in our school lives.

Leap Of Faith


On day four of our Kingswood visit one of our groups went on the leap of faith. The team leader Mr Scott was really honest about his fear of heights. Lots of banter took place and lots of comments were made as Mr Scott confessed it was a huge challenge for him.

at around 5pm he was harnessed up to begin the climb up the telegraph pole to the top. He was encouraged by all of the children and made it to the top of the pole. The children were very keen too see him to well and he did launch himself off. It was a courageous jump and he proved to be a great example to the children, whilst conquering his fear. He truly was “Being the best he could be.” It was a real pleasure to hear how he went for it and did an amazing thing.

A true inspiration to all of the children and I am sure he will enjoy sharing his experience with others when we go back. Sir…well done!

The Magic Of Outdoor Education

We have been at Kingswood residential for 2 nights and the children have settled in to their new routine. It has been a wonderful experience to see the children change as their self-reliance grows and they become more confident. It is one of my favourite times of year as I really enjoy the children developing new skills and working together as a team.

Our children have faced some real personal challenges so far and they have all shown grit and determination to do well. It is easy to forget how tough it is for children in these situations but I am proud to be associated with our school because of our children. They have worked very hard and set a fine example to others that are staying in the centre.

I am going to choose some of my favourite pictures so far and share them with you. Let me know what you think.

Kingswood Magic

After completing our circus skills activity and team tech challenge we now have a chance to reflect on the week. It has been interesting on many fronts and the children have been amazing. We have made so many memories and the children have been amazing.

The behaviour of our children has been outstanding. They really have set the standard here and placed other schools in the shade. There has been snow, wind, rain and gallons of mud. Children being challenged beyond their previous limits. These children have shown they truly believe in having a fighting spirit and a resolve to see any challenge through.

Young Foxy conquering his fear of heights by going along the balance beam deserves a mention. He was bursting with pride and it will live long in my memory.

My team have worked hard here and I have kept up to date with events in school from evryone there. Our staff have supported the children and although they are tired they have been brilliant. I can safely say our young people have lived up to our motto of “Be The Best You Can Be” I salute them all and I am blessed to be Headteacher of an amazing school with top people in it. Norbridge Rocks!!!!!!