Colomendy 2022 – A week the Year 4 children at BCS will never forget!
Setting off from school on Monday seems like a distant memory now, having packed in so many activities over the last couple of days. From the moment we arrived it really was non-stop.
After eating lunch, and much anticipation, the children who they would be sharing a dorm with. They were so eager to find out where they were sleeping and see their rooms, I think they could have easily spent the whole afternoon in them. However, the first activities started shortly after they had unpacked. It was either orienteering or bushcraft shelter building, both enjoyed by all. This took us up to dinner, time to refuel before the children set off again for two more activities. The final activity of the evening, being the Campfire, was a perfect way to end the first day. Sharing funny stories and toasting marshmallows, it was lovely to see so many of the children enjoying themselves in a completely different environment with one another. This brought us to the end of the first day’s activities. We headed back to the cabins and the children settled quickly for the night, well most of them!
I was pleasantly surprised to not hear many children rise before 6.30am, I think the long day and fresh air had resulted in a good night’s sleep! Ready and raring to go for Day 2, we started with breakfast at 7.30am.
Today children took part in a variety of activities throughout the day ranging from the obstacle challenge, raft building, nightline and climbing. Raft building is always one of the favourites. The children worked together as a team to build a raft that needed to withstand the whole group to successfully paddle towards the other side of the lake. All of the groups worked co-operatively, demonstrating excellent team cohesion. It’s always such a pleasure to see them preserve through tough challenges together and observe new relationships develop along the way.
Experiences like Colomendy are a great way to enable children to try new activities. Over the course of the two days these activities push many of the children out of their comfort zone, with many children building resilience, developing their problem solving, communication, teamwork and co-operation skills, among many other life skills. We thought these needed to be acknowledged and so we arranged an Award Ceremony. Below are the recipients’ names:
Exceeded Expectations Award
The Best Shelter Award
Ellie Wongso, Jack Hinton, Freddie Wood, Junius Zhao and Carlino
Arya Madhavan, Arya Bhala, Alayna Latif, Maliha Muhammad, Siyona Rao, Edith Pemble and Kyra Sandhu
The Bravest Award
Anika Moholkar – Overcoming her fear in the raft building challenge
Jessica Zhang – On the Nightline challenge
Krish Rupal – Showing perseverance in the raft building challenge
Umar Ayub – During the rock climbing challenge
The Best Raft Award
Teams 20, 22 and 23
The Best Map Reader Award
Tuesday evening ended with all groups taking part in a night walk. Colomendy is set within an area of outstanding natural beauty. It is deep in the valley surrounded by scenic hills and woodland, brimming with wildlife and with views of Moel Famau, making it a beautiful way to end their last night.
As we arose on Wednesday morning there were many children asking if we could stay longer! They were already reflecting on how much they had enjoyed their time away.
After breakfast they quickly went back to the cabins to strip beds and pack away belongings. I’m sorry Mums and Dads I can imagine there were a lot of wet, smelly clothes inside those cases! A sign that lots of good fun was had though! Shortly after this, the children participated in two more activities before it was time for lunch and then the coach journey back home! With many children falling asleep on the journey back, I think they were all suitably exhausted from having lots of fun! Job accomplished.
For many this was the first time the children had been away from home. It is amazing how well they all embraced the whole experience. There were so many laughs and giggles along the way. The children and the staff will have made memories that I’m sure will last a lifetime.