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St Thomas More Catholic

Primary School

Christ is the centre of our School community, where we live, love and learn together

Year 6 at Conkers and Alton Castle

3 to 5 November 2008

Our Year 6 children visited the fabulous 'Conkers' outdoor environmental centre. The centre is set in the heart of the National Forest and gives children the opportunity to discover things about their environment in a safe and tranquil setting.

While at the centre, the children took part in activities that link to their curriculum: discovering sculpture in art, orienteering for PE, problem solving in the labyrinth (it's not a maze) linked to maths and lots of science activities.

The children really immersed themselves in the day. Oh yes, and they had fun at the playground and on the assault course too!

As part of their continuing faith journey, the children in Year 6 take part in a residential activity at the Diocesan Youth Retreat Centre at Alton Castle in Staffordshire. The centre offers the children the opportunity of taking part in some really exciting outdoor activities whilst considering their spiritual impact too.

At the castle, the children quickly found their rooms (imagine sleeping in a real castle) and became familiar with the layout.

The castle staff were great at leading the children in their activities which ranged from team games to rock climbing. It was great to see some of the children taking part in team activities and getting more and more confident as the days progressed. All of the children thoroughly enjoyed the biking, archery, rock climbing, trekking, talent night and team games but they also found a great deal of satisfaction in the spiritual aspects of their retreat too.

Each night, the children took part in night prayer; rooms were set to be peaceful and calm, with candles burning and quiet music playing. They readily took to taking part in open prayer; praying for their hopes and concerns. The children helped to organise Mass and learnt a new song, which we now sing regularly in school, and they took part in a service of thanks on the final morning.

Our trip was a real success, and we are now putting our improved team work skills to use in school.

Picture 1 'Conkers'
Picture 2 "I made it!"
Picture 3 Relax... take it easy!
Picture 4 Trekking.
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