Given what the weather forecast was before we left and some of the weather they have had in the surrounding area, we have actually been quite fortunate. It did rain for a few hours this morning but cleared up this afternoon and we have seen the sun for the first time since Monday! That in no way slowed down the children or dampened their enthusiasm. Although everybody was tired this morning, the children really continued to push themselves and have enjoyed every minute of their trip.
Today it was group 1's turn to try some BMXing as well bushcraft. Taking to the BMX track first, the children showed a steely determination and every child in the group managed to complete the challenging course - this is a rare occurrence indeed. Although there were a few spills and bruises, it never stopped any of them as they continued to persevere. In the afternoon, the children had to work together to build shelters and learned skills that included how to start a fire using a flint. They even had an opportunity to enjoy some campfire popcorn and hot chocolate.
It was group 2's turn to try some gorge walking today and due to the rainfall last night, they had to use a different location from the other groups. They loved it nonetheless. They also had the opportunity to explore an old, disused railway tunnel (which does become completely pitch black for several hundred metres). Again, it was a challenge for many but they never slowed down and continued to show excellent resilience.
Group 3 began their day with bushcraft learning survival skills and shelter building. Later in the day, it was their turn to try the BMX track. This group really embodied the Godwin motto of working together. There were several children in the group who were less confident on a bike but they were assisted by their group mates in learning. In some cases, children even held the handle bars on both sides for another child, running along side them, until they were confident enough to attempt the ride themselves. It really was truly remarkable.
To round off our final day of activities it was group 4's turn to try their hand at canoeing. It may have taken a bit of time for them to learn the techniques but their ability to work in teams was a fantastic sight. The children were patient with each other and really improved their communication skills.
With just over twelve hours until departure, there are still activities going on but one of the most interesting ones is upon us - packing!
Fortunately for us, today showed a remarkable improvement in the weather. Although it was still not your average June temperatures, it sure was warmer for our activities and lucky for us the rain held off until the evening. There were some signs of the dreaded 'Wednesday dip' early this morning but once again the children demonstrated some excellent perseverance and really made the most of the day.
Group 1 took to the canals to try some canoeing today. There was some arguing as children found their feet and learned how to canoe but by the end of the session everybody was working together excellently and had a wonderful time. Nobody managed to capsize today but we did have several who fell in although it appeared to be somewhat intentional!
Groups 2&3 ventured deep into the underground of Wales to navigate the endless caverns in a caving expedition. Their teamwork and communication was sublime. There were a few nervous students (and members of staff) but they conquered their fears and for many of them, caving has now become their favourite activity. It just highlights with the children the importance of at least trying something before making a decision about it.
It was group 3's turn to tackle the gorge walk and the indoor climbing. They excelled at both activities! There was an exceptional level of teamwork required in order to be successful and they clearly proved that they were up to the challenge.
All in all, it was another incredible day from a wonderful group of children. They have really embraced the challenges thrown at them and worked exceptionally well together.
Let us all hope they continue to work hard and enjoy their final day tomorrow. Where has the week gone?
It is June right? Well the weather has certainly posed some interesting challenges for us today. We seemed to have missed the torrential downpours that affected the other parts of the country but we certainly have not been immune to the lower temperatures. What effect has that had on the children? Nothing! They have all been stars and taken it all in stride. Aside from having to put on an extra layer or two, it still has been another incredible day.
The children continue to embody the Godwin values - especially resilience and working together. They have demonstrated that there is nothing they can't succeed at if they put their minds to it.
Group 1 and 3 were able to try two different activities today. They had an opportunity to experience some of the 'famous' gorge walking as well as tackling the imposing indoor climbing walls. During the gorge walk, both groups worked exceptionally well together and had a fantastic time trying some of the natural slides and diving into some of the deeper pools. During the climbing, they all worked very well together and just about everybody reached the top of the wall - this is no mean feat.
Group 2 canoed down some of the local canals developing their communication skills and patience with each other.
Group 3 rocked the BMX track. There were several children who were not able to ride a bike at the beginning of the session but all children were able to attempt the track by the end of the session - incredible. That group then moved on to learn some important forest skills such as shelter building and fire starting.
There are a few tired faces around this evening but the children show no sign of slowing down. Let's hope their positive attitude helps us all to over come to the impending 'Wednesday dip' tomorrow.
Well day one is nearly in the books and it has been an amazing adventure all around. Given how late we arrived last night and how much of a rush it was to get beds made etc, the children have been brilliant. They have faced every challenge head-on, worked well together and listened to all (well mostly anyway) instructions and followed them well.
Groups 1 and 4 took the plunge into some deep, dark caverns to try some caving. The instructors of both groups commented on how excellent the children were at facing - and conquering - their fears. They showed an excellent ability to work together as well great communications skills and never shied away from a challenge.
Group 2 demonstrated some excellent cycling skills as it was the first time a Godwin group had every single child complete the entire BMX track - this is no easy feat! They also developed thought out and well built structures when learning about forest skills.
Group 3 proved to be very capable canoers. They also exhibited an excellent ability to work together and developing communications skills. They had the opportunity to canoe down some of the local canals and thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it.
In the evening, all the children have taken part in a unique orienteering challenge as well!
We have been very fortunate here today as the weather has been lovely with sunshine most of the day and only developing into a light drizzle in the evening - let's hope it stays that way for the rest of our trip!
Well it’s been an adventure so far - to say the least. With the coach arriving three hours late and severe traffic delays on the M25, the children have maintained the excitement level as well as their high spirits. We haven’t quite arrived yet but hope to be there soon!
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