Unexpected snow storms meant youngsters enjoyed a five-day outdoor adventure with an extra wintry twist. Year 6 pupils from St Mary’s Catholic Primary School, Forest Hall, braved the elements on a residential trip to High Borrans in the Lake District, where snowfall caused a creative change to the group’s itinerary.

Our focus of the week was to develop the children’s teamwork skills, independence and resilience,” said teacher Bob Dunn, who accompanied the class, along with Deputy Head Deborah Thompson and Higher Level Teaching Assistant Michelle Atkinson.

However, on our second day, all the plans had to be changed as we got a lot of snow, meaning the mini-buses couldn’t leave the site. The team at High Borrans are extremely experienced and were able to make suggestions as to what we could do instead. These included hikes up a nearby mountain, snowball fights, sledging, climbing trees and abseiling, orienteering, independent walks, rope courses, and team challenges – to name a few!

As well as outdoor adventures, the 29 children developed their independence by taking responsibility for jobs around the Centre, such as making beds, clearing away dishes and tidying. However, there was plenty of time for the group to relax too.

In the evenings, once the Centre staff had gone home, we had a birthday party for one of the children, a film night, a quiz night, and a table tennis competition,” continued Mr Dunn.

The children also have the opportunity to complete a diary to record what they have done each day, and visit the High Borrans Gift Shop.

It was the third time that children from St Mary’s, which is part of the Bishop Bewick Catholic Education Trust, had visited High Borrans, with a further trip planned for next year.

While the weather meant we had to change the format of the trip, it also meant that the trip was truly magical for both the children and staff to remember forever,” added Mr Dunn. “The Lake District looked like a winter wonderland, and it was lovely to see the children enjoying and playing in the snow.

Trips like this are invaluable for the children. They get to explore the outdoors with friends, develop new skills, and try new activities. Overall as an experience, it is something they will remember forever. As a teacher, it is really rewarding to see them overcome fears and achieve so much – whether this is a fear of heights, of being away from home for the first time, or the challenge of making a bed for the first time!

The children returned full of stories and confidence, having succeeded at so much in a short space of time.

Sent on behalf of Bishop Bewick Catholic Education Trust and Barking Dog Media. For more information contact david@barkingdogmedia.co.uk or call 07754 271086.