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Challenge Academy

Year 6 had a great time on their school trip to Challenge Academy on Monday.

The day was based on communication and teamwork, whilst challenging individuals to push themselves as far as possible. The day was divided into two sections. Half the day was all about working together as a team. The girls took part in a variety of fun activities which involved much focus on listening to and following instructions, working under a strict time pressure and having to develop strategies to complete a group task. The girls were constantly asked to review their performance and soon realised the importance of clear communication, focusing on your individual role in the team, sharing and valuing ideas and the fact that your team are only as good as the weakest member – therefore everyone needs positive feedback and support. It was fantastic to see the progress each team made in a very short time.

The second half of the day was very physical. The girls completed a nets course that is 4 metres above the ground – high enough to get the legs shaking for some. It involved 8 ‘treehouse’ bases that were surrounded by safety nets, so no harnesses were required. The aim was to traverse between the treehouses without falling in to the net. Many of the girls really enjoyed a large bounce net in the middle of the course too. There was an obstacle course with 15 challenges where the girls needed to scramble, swing, jump, climb and crawl which finished with the bouldering wall challenge.

The most demanding challenge for many was the high wire course. This involved 3 metre aerial obstacles, a 9metre aerial traverse (which some girls managed to attempt with their eyes shut). To return to ‘terra firma’ the girls had to take a leap of faith (a powerfan descender) and step off the 30ft platform for a freefall descent. For many of the girls this was their favourite activity as they felt like they were flying. Most managed to land beautifully on their feet, unlike the staff who generally landed in a heap on the floor – apart from Miss Wilby!

The persistence and determination shown by the girls throughout the day was phenomenal!