Duke of Edinburgh

Six of our students have recently completed their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Expedition at Cannock Chase.    Having completed their practise expedition back in April, where the weather was particularly tough, students were well prepared for another two days of hiking and camping.  Due to this been their ‘qualifying’ expedition, students would have to rely on each other to navigate and set up camp opposed to staff. 
They did superbly and worked really hard as a team to complete the route in a really positive time.  Their camp craft skills and have developed throughout and it was fantastic to watch them set up camp and cook for themselves before resting some tired legs for the evening.  Our assessor was full of praise for the group and everyone at the Orchard Centre is immensely proud of their effort. 
This is the first time students at Orchard Centre have undertaken the Duke of Edinburgh award and we are very much looking forward to celebrating  more success in the coming months and years as the award becomes a central part of the School’s curriculum and ethos.
Well done!

Practising old skills – Outdoor Ed

Last week was all about toasting marshmallows over the fire, this week has been all about the hot drinks. The weather has been dry for most of the sessions but we’ve had a couple of very cold days so the hot drinks have been very welcome. The photo doesn’t do justice to the impressive rainbow that took the edge off the one rainy session this week.

It’s been a week of practising old skills and learning new ones. Students have been honing their use of the storm kettle to boil water, practising starting a fire with a steel and fire rod and learning how to manage larger fires and how to extinguish them safely.

We’ve had a couple of new students join groups this week and both have fitted in really well. It’s been great watching the social interactions between students working in pairs of teams to build a fire and serve drinks. A fire and a brew has been a great tool to help our new students find their place in the group and for some our existing students to come out of their shells more.


Science Experiments!

Groups S & T merged to take part in practical experiments to see the reactions of group 1 metals and how compounds are made. Students demonstrated how magnesium oxide is formed.