Year 11 Revision WeekendPosted on 18th Mar 2022
This academic year has seen the return of school trips after a break of two years and the Year 11 residential weekend at Caythorpe Court, Lincolnshire was one of them. This trip has become a regular fixture on the school calendar with Year 11 students attending alongside their Maths, English and Science teachers for a weekend of revision and outdoor activities. On Friday 18th March, 18 students plus Ms Battell, Mrs Collin and Mr Griffiths set off with Mrs Tyrer following behind the coach (Mr Hinton was to join the group on Sunday). We arrived two hours later and were met by our PGL guide, Kirsten.
Once settled into our accommodation we had supper. The food has become legendary with regular Caythorpians! It seems that you only have to blink, and you find yourself queuing up for another meal. Harvey C was concerned that he wouldn’t have enough to eat but most of us agreed that there was plenty!
After a quick tour of the grounds with Kirsten, where Harvey J decided he had found his natural home, the first evening’s entertainment for students was Ambush. I have never properly understood the rules, but it seems that it is the opposite to hide and seek, with those in hiding trying to ambush those pursuing. After two hours of skulking around in the dark, the students returned for some relaxation time in their rooms, before lights out and bed.
We were up at 8am on a bright, crisp, sunny morning for another feast, with as much toast as you could possibly ever want, in addition to cereal, yoghurt and a cooked breakfast.
Revision was to start at 9am and this year our classrooms were in the old house, Caythorpe Court itself. We established the routine of an hour each of Maths, English and Science revision, in a rotation of three small groups. The students were enthusiastic and appreciative of the materials provided and the guidance their teachers gave. In fact, they were a joy to be with!
After lunch and a period of down time where the students could relax, we got into two activity groups for the afternoon. The Saturday activities were trapeze and rifle shooting.
Almost all the students took part, and I am always impressed with how brave they are at climbing the trapeze pole to jump off the top! The students were brilliant and so supportive of one another, cheering each other on and giving encouragement when the climbing and jumping got tough. Our instructors were good too, particularly Aaron, who was very entertaining. Mr Griffiths gets a mention here as the only teacher who completed the trapeze - very impressive! Also impressive were Ruby’s fabulous trousers and DMs, which didn’t hinder her climbing skills!
There was an element of competition in the rifle shooting for students and between Mrs Collin and Mr Griffiths, although it was Ms Battell who got the highest score by one mark.
After some more down time, we were back in the canteen for tea followed by a visit to the gift shop where a very unhealthy amount of pick and mix was purchased!
Saturday evening’s entertainment was a campfire by the lake. It was a cold clear night with a full moon rising. Marshmallows were toasted for those who wanted them, and Kirsten provided us with a speaker through which students could play their music.
Sunday saw a repeat of Saturday with breakfast and morning revision to start with. Mr Hinton drove up from Norfolk to deliver the English revision sessions – dedication indeed! While the Science team had set up an outdoor orienteering activity for their sessions.
Following lunch, the afternoon sessions were fencing and vertical challenge. I think I speak for most of us when I say that we were not very good at fencing! However, Jonnie was a natural - having done quite a bit of fencing before - while Harrison was also rather good. We always choose activities that are low level, as well as the more challenging high-level ones, so there is something for everyone to get involved in.
Vertical challenge was fun with the students tackling a mixture of rope ladders, tyres, climbing wall and netting to get to the top. Mari and Harvey C had a climbing competition, which needed to go to video evidence to find out who had reached the top of the climbing wall first. Popular opinion, after reviewing the footage, was that it was a draw.
By the time we were queuing up for tea (yes, more food!) the coach to take us home had arrived.
Maisie organised a chain gang of students and staff to get our luggage outside and to the coach. All pitched in so that we were ready to return to Norfolk by 6.30pm. We thanked Kirsten, who had been so helpful and friendly all weekend and said goodbye to Caythorpe for another year. The journey home was quiet and we got back to Attleborough at around 8.30pm without a hitch.
I would like to thank all the teachers involved with this trip for giving up their weekend to provide our Year 11s with a revision boost and some great memories. I would also like to thank Mrs Briggs and Mrs Allen for their behind-the-scenes support with setting up the trip. Lastly and more importantly, I would like to thank all 18 students who were so fabulous all weekend. They are a credit to their parents/carers and to Attleborough Academy. Kirsten told them that they were the best group she had ever looked after, and I know she meant it.