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Year 4 residential to Kingswood

Day One 

Oggy oggy oggy oi oi oi (our new greeting here!) - Hello from West Runton - we arrived in the rain but the clouds soon cleared and we were welcomed by our host. The children's first challenge was to make their beds and we had some very organised rooms. Well done to George, who had hidden his secret talent of making beds and who helped get the boys organised; the very organised girls dorm also created their own system using their 'Teamwork Tamwar' skills to great effect. Each girl had a job: Charlotte was on the pillowcases and Esmee the quilt covers and before long, all 7 beds were made. We soon met our activity leader Charlotte and took a site visit before our first activity - orienteering; quickly, we were put into groups of 3 and ventured out across the whole site to navigate the clues. The children all did a fabulous job of following the map, searching for clues and charging back to Charlotte to see if they were successful; everyone had great fun, including Mrs Rutter (who thought she was on an episode of Challenge Anneka and showed her competitive side!) before torrential rain stopped play and we went indoors to complete another challenge.

Charlotte gave out two bags of large Meccano and challenged both groups of children to work as a team to build anything they would like to showcase. Team Wicks worked successfully as a team to make a shoe rack ( which fitted everyone's shoes on!) and Team Waite worked creatively to make a flying aeroplane bike (William was rather keen on trying it out in the rain!).

We have just returned from a delicious dinner of lasagne, chips, nuggets, salad, ice cream...and plenty more; bellies are full and excited children couldn't wait to try out the showers and dress up for the evening. Team Newport are currently heading off for their evening entertainment....eyes down for BINGO!


Day Two

After dinner last night, the group worked with Charlotte, our course leader, on what they wanted to achieve from their stay; many rounds of bingo then followed, with winners from Bianca and Henry getting a line each and James W shouting 'full house' - every winner had to perform a dance move to the class, which was well received. 

The evening finished with a class bedtime story in the largest dorm and every child shared their highlights of the day, before settling to bed.  

Today started with birds tweeting, the sun was shining and then came the pitter, patter of tiny feet from the bedrooms! The children slept well and were ready and raring to go for day two...( it was only 6:30am!). We are proud to say all children have had a shower and brushed their teeth today...that was achieved between 6:30 and 8am!


After a quick game of 'Rock, Paper, Scissors' tag before breakfast, we then ate well and as James T remarked 'I can't believe it is a full English!' Children loaded up with toast, cereal, more cereal and more toast - and a full English breakfast and Eddie even created his own special breakfast toast sandwich (see picture); we all sat and ate alfresco under the canopy - a perfect start to the day. 


The day's activities started with Team Waite playing laser tag on an outdoor course; well done to Barnaby for his excellent leadership and tactics and Vicky (our instructor) commented how respectful the children were towards each other and on their honesty when playing. Meanwhile, Team Wicks were challenged by Jacobs Ladder - a hanging 45ft large log ladder, with increasing tread size, which the children had to climb in pairs; Henry and Oliver both used their 'Focussing Flick' skills effectively to navigate their way up the ladder and Ronnie and Lucas used creative techniques and 'Teamwork Tamwar' skills to communicate well. Well done to Charlotte for the highest rung for the girls and Seb, Lucas, Barnaby and Arthur for all getting to the very top and standing and admiring the view! A special mention too, to Skaiste and William for overcoming their fears with using their 'Reflective Ron' skills - true heroes! 


Just before lunch, we took a shopping spree at the shop; the children loved having cash in their hands and most of them purchased a cuddly toy and almost all managed to spend their full £10! Hot dogs and wedges, with plenty of salad, was our 'Al La Carte' meal for lunch and again, we ate outside in the glorious weather; some children were lucky enough to have double helpings by using their sweetest smiles to the servers!


After lunch, children enjoyed a much needed chillout in their rooms for 30 minutes - firstly to let their lunch settle and then to recuperate their energy for the afternoon's activities. We then split into our groups, with much camp chanting and trundled off to enjoy Aeroball and low ropes.


Low ropes saw children first learning all about partnership and trust and they learnt all about working in a pair to lean, make a bridge and complete a trust fall, as well, strike a Ninja Squirrel pose! They then ventured out onto the low ropes course to complete challenges with partners...some even tried this blindfolded! Well done to Arabella and Charlie who displayed excellent 'Ninja Squirrels' at a moments notice and really had the trust of their partners; Harry and Gracie were also excellent 'Teamwork Tamwars' in the trust fall games and really supported their partners well. 


In Aeroball, children worked in teams of two to challenge each other to basketball style matches whilst bouncing furiously on mini trampolines; needless to say, the children were soon tired after 5 mins of intensive aeroball matches and tagged in and out of many games, until an eventual winner was titled - well done to Bianca, who was the ultimate champion and a special mention to Esmee, who was a super bouncer using her arms to propel her - a real Tigger on a trampoline!


The children are looking forward to tonight's meal (even more food!) and fun and games at the entertainment with our leader Charlotte; teachers, on the other hand, are looking forward to a little more sleep!

Day Three

Last night’s evening activity consisted of ‘rocket making’ and the children worked collaboratively, as two teams, to build the best rocket using a bottle and scraps of material. The brief was simple: the rocket had to protect the water balloon inside and also be able to launch into space. Both teams enjoyed the challenge and worked well together to design and build their rockets; our rockets were pumped with water and we then set them off in the evening light and they flew high, causing our course leader to be sprayed with water. We ended the evening with a class story time and a brilliant sharing session where the children shared their highlights of the trip, which included: teamwork, jokes, triumphs and stories of heroism!


During the night, the children did an excellent job of playing ‘sleeping lions’ and slept peacefully, with many needing waking first thing! They then were true pros at stripping their beds (special mention to Henry for organising the laundry room with Mrs Waite and to Harry who helped organise in the boys' room) in preparation for leaving and some were good at packing, although many discovered that your belongings seem to expand when you pack to come home. With cases and bags packed, we were ready to start the day.


Our day began with another cooked breakfast and cereal bowls with many mixed cereals, which gave us energy to complete the final few challenges of the trip; both groups were soon on their way to begin. The two teams took on challenges of: problem solving and leap of faith.


It has been amazing to see the children’s resilience and confidence grow over the last two days; children who wouldn’t take on any height have today, climbed to the top of a 10ft pole and leapt off! Eddie was the first one to get to the top of the leap of faith and actually catch the bar and set a great example to the rest of team Newport, who were then spurred on to do the same; many others reached the top and grabbed for the bar. Gracie took on the challenge twice, first reaching the platform and then, on second try, standing atop and leaping – showing great use of our ‘Persevering Penny’ skills! Bianca and George took on the challenge, even though they were both nervous and they accomplished exactly what they set themselves as a challenge. It was also great to see Harry, William and Seb pushing themselves to the limit and truly enjoying the experience.


In problem solving, many children showed their excellent team and leader skills, including Harry, Arabella and Esmee, who all communicated so well with the group; the children used their ‘Roman handshake’ and ‘proposal’ skills to get everyone to climb a vertical wall without harnesses. George and Evie were great at using these skills to encourage the whole team to get to the top.


Our last activity of the day, which we had all been looking forward to, was the zip wire; harnesses were put on, helmets were tightened and children took great delight in hurtling through the sky on the wire whilst whooping, screaming and cheering (and that was just from the teachers!). James W overcame his fears, as did Lucas; Ronnie's face was an absolute delight to see as he hurtled down and it was great to see Evie, Oliver and Charlotte taking the plunge with pure delight. 


We leave Kingswood with happy faces, full bellies and great memories of an amazing trip; all school values have been shared by the children through their stay and they have been a real delight to accompany on their first school residential. I am sure the weekend will be full of sleeping, eating and many stories of achievements by all.