Evening Fireside Productions, Scary Stories, Opera, S’mores and Morning Magpie Warble Wake-ups to Splendid Sunrises! (aka Year 8 and 9 camp week)!
Year 8 and 9 students recently ventured out for a week of camping. I had the pleasure of sharing this experience with nineteen Year 8 girls and can honestly say, hand on heart, that these young ladies are super-heroes. Move over Wonder Woman!
It was not only a great week but an excellent and rich learning experience. I’m sure like me, they were nervous as the week looked cold and I do love going home to my own creature comforts at the end of the day. So, why, in these Covid times did Glasshouse Christian College work hard to still make this happen?
Fear/Doubt – Courage
The most obvious reasons relate to growing in confidence as outdoor adventure camps challenge students in a variety of activities. A big one was carrying a pack of all that is needed for a few days out bush on your back. Then setting up your own camp and cooking your own food. It’s hard, heavy, tiring and can seem long and overwhelming.
Dependence – Independence
Further to the above, doing all that they needed to look after themselves is an accomplishment they will not forget. I’m sure they now have a greater appreciation for the time, effort and sacrifice needed by their parents/carers to provide for them. It was hard at times for me not to pick up the food bag and carry it or help prepare and cook but they can look back now and say – we did this on our own. Our young people need to learn to fend for themselves and doing this is the best way to learn and build confidence in this. It’s character building!
Social Concerns – Improved Well Being
Spending long amounts of time with their friends, the group leader and teacher can provide rich opportunities to build better connections. Often feedback from students about their camp experience reflects on how they have improved in their relationships or built new friendships. As well, when difficulties arise there is time to work through things so that they grow in their friendships.
Fragmented learning – holistic learning
When the knowledge needs to be applied in practice – it makes sense and is learned in a way that is rarely forgotten. From applying maths to navigation, using their reasoning skills for discussion and debate to learning character traits such as perseverance, kindness towards others and managing emotions. Many students who struggle with classroom learning shine in this environment.
I’m sure if each staff member was writing their thoughts they would be singing the praises of their student group that they camped with. My young ladies were each gems and I was so proud of how they camped, cared for each other and stretched themselves. And, I was truly entertained on the last camp night under the stars to a mini-production, an opera song, s’Mores and the best scary story rendition!
On behalf of the Year 8 and 9 students – thank you to the wonderful staff who took a week away from their families to provide this rich and memorable experience for them.
Jacqualina Vreeling, Head of Middle School
Link to Year 8 boys’ camp photos on Facebook
Link to Year 9 camp photos on Facebook