Tuesday 21st March 2017
Our first morning at Boreatton Park…. exciting! Not so much fun for the girls though as they struggled to get out of bed after talking into the early hours. Gypsy seemed to be suffering the most as she unwillingly had to be forced out of her duvet and didn’t have much time to do her hair (tragedy!) Every girl has faithfully promised that they will never stay up past 9pm again; you read it here first! The boys and a few of the girls were feeling much more enthusiastic and were keen to take part in a 7am game of football. As the sun shone down, George M and Rhys ran their socks off, scoring many goals and we eventually had to put them on opposite sides to even up the teams.
After a breakfast of bacon, omelette, toast and cereals (Harrison broke the record for weirdest combo of breakfast ever: Weetabix, rice krispies and cornflakes, all in one bowl with no milk), we were all off to our first activity of the day which was canoeing. This is the first time in several years that St John’s have taken part in water activities and the children were all very excited. However, this excitement was rather short-lived as whilst it was fun to be in the canoe, what was not so thrilling was that they had to work together as four pupils to one vessel. There was much hilarity amongst the teachers and the PGL staff as we listened to the children quarrelling and blaming each other for not being able to guide their canoe in a straight line down the river. But it was not long before they all realised that they had to cooperate and work as a team if they were going to get off the river bank. Throughout the session, the PGL staff played games with the children, including getting numerous body parts into the water and being allowed to jump in at the end (voluntarily). William claims that he purposefully jumped into the water but most witnesses agreed that he fell. At one point, Gypsy was so fed up that she just jumped in of her own accord to fetch her shoe which was drifting downstream. And without Riley and Samantha in their teams, two of the canoes definitely would not have come back at all. Overall, whilst on the river, the children had a fantastic time, but I know that when they return home they will say that this was the worst activity but this is only because they were so cold and wet on the walk back.
In the afternoon, each group took part in different activities including rifle shooting, tunnel trail, the giant swing and low ropes. You may think that we are crazy to let some of the children handle rifles but once we were assured that they could not actually do any harm, we reluctantly agreed. Leo proved himself to be a professional marksman, hitting the bullseye on several occasions. Tunnel tail involved the children manoeuvring themselves through a series of underground tunnels, some of which were narrower than others, but all equally as muddy. Many of our pupils really enjoyed the thrills of the giant swing. If you zoom in on the photos then you can see for yourself their reactions. Even Miss Holloway bravely had a go on this one; you may have heard the screams in Worksop. Finally, the low ropes is a series of balancing and team work games. Unfortunately for Bradley, he had a little slip and fell in a rather delicate position but is walking now.
After a delicious dinner of lasagne, we marched off to enjoy a campfire… in the rain! I was so proud of all the children as they joined in with all the singing as if it was the middle of summer.
And by ten o’clock, everyone was asleep, apart from Emma who was trying to tell the girls in her room a story despite the fact that they all had their eyes shut.
Peace at last ...