Bonding trip for Year 8 to Blackland Farm

June 27, 2017

Farlington School’s Year 8 girls enjoyed their three-day bonding trip at Blackland Farm in East Grinstead as part of the Key Stage 3 Physical Education curriculum and to develop peer group relationships.

The camp is run every year for the 12- and 13-year-olds and develops and enhances their team building skills, initiative, independence and self-confidence. The girls have to work outside their usual friendship sets as they are divided into different groups for outdoor activities, doing chores and sleeping in tents.

The outdoor challenges included low ropes, an assault course, tunnels, orienteering, rock climbing, kayaking, abseiling, bungee jumping and crate challenge. These activities were in addition to the worthwhile, and for some, first, experience of camping: having to pitch a tent, cook on an open fire, wash up for themselves and sleep under canvas!

“Our favourite activity was abseiling, where we had to walk, or jump, down a wall whilst wearing a harness (fortunately)! Those of us who were too scared to abseil were soon motivated to do it by a little singsong (to the theme tune of SpongeBob) and we all managed to jump our way down independently,” said Hannah C, Year 8.

“We also enjoyed tunnelling, memorising our way to each different numbered exit, even though it smelt like a cow was living in there, permanently, and it felt like we were crawling through the Thames at some points. Most of us got out with only wet arms; however, some of us got out with t-shirts that had turned from white to brown and had mud in their hair, but that didn’t ruin our fun!”

The teachers were ably assisted by Sixth Formers in the process of doing their Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award, who were excellent and gained great leadership experience.

Sara Whittaker, Farlington’s Director of PE and Games, who organised and led the trip said, “This trip is an invaluable experience before the girls enter Year 9: it builds relationships and co-operation across the year group.”