Exploring some of the most beautiful places in the country.
Heritage places a high priority upon getting outdoors and engaging with the real world. We want our pupils to appreciate nature and be introduced to some of the most beautiful places in the country – places to which they might return later for refreshment and inspiration. Toward this end, every pupil at Heritage from Year 4 and up goes on a school camp – always under canvas – each year, thanks to the enthusiasm of staff and parents.
Pupils in Year 4 are introduced to the Outdoor Education Programme with a local one-night camp. During this, they learn to work as a team, pitch a tent, eat and sleep out of doors and enjoy a variety of activities including whittling sticks and fire lighting. We always enjoy sitting around a camp fire in the evening.
Years 5 and 6 then join together for a three-night camp in the Peak District. Camping skills are further developed. Activities have included caving, rock climbing, zip wire, a high ropes course, cycling on the Monsul trail, weaseling, and learning bushcraft skills. A long day hike, up onto Kinder Scout for example, is also a regular fixture.
Our Senior Camp for Years 7-10 lasts for a week, from early Monday to Friday evening, and takes us to a different part of the country each year. In the last three years, we have gone to the New Forest, the Gower Peninsula and Cornwall. Activities have included fishing for mackerel, cycling, crabbing, mud obstacle courses, pony trekking, sailing, surfing, coasteering, sea kayaking, and more. We always enjoy wide games, campfires, and long hikes too – for example, on the Isle of Wight, out to Worms Head, to the summit of Pen y Fan, or on the Roseland Peninsula. During the Senior Camp, pupils in Year 9 and Year 10 undertake a Bronze or Silver Expedition.
Year 11 pupils doing the Silver Award undertake their final expedition after exams finish in June.
These experiences not only encourage pupils to be confident campers but also to enjoy the outdoors. Relationships are strengthened by spending time together in a different context. Pupils also embrace substantial personal challenges and leadership opportunities; they develop a confidence which translates into other areas of life. We depend upon, and are grateful for, parent volunteers who help make all of our Outdoor Education activities possible.