Nord Anglia Education
Nord Anglia
09 June, 2019

What’s So Good About School Residential Trips Anyway?

What’s So Good About School Residential Trips Anyway? An article by Ms. Nonie, Head of Primary

I have just returned from spending a day with our Year 6 students and staff on their residential trip in the northern hills. I arrived at the Shimisen Outdoor Base, which is close to the Great Wall, at 8am, in time to join the group for a very delicious breakfast whilst enjoying the children’s recounts of their exciting first night whilst on residential. Although ‘hard beds’ was mentioned frequently, it was clear that the children were already having fun and enjoying their adventure away from home and school.

School residential trips play a vital role in the development of students from Primary pupils right up to those in IB. Whether it be a simple day of outdoor activities or a trip to a foreign country the residential trip is proven to boost learning and self confidence in children and young adults.

Everyone agrees that the following are the very obvious benefits of residential trips:

  • Improves and enhances student-teacher relationships
  • Builds friendships and resilience
  • Enriches the regular curriculum
  • Engages and motivates all students
  • Personal, emotional and social development
  • Children unplug from technology
  • Independence and empowerment
  • Mental stimulation and physical activity

But most of all – the children have fun, are interacting with each other and their supervising adults as well as being gently pushed out of their comfort zone all day long. As I hiked along with the group through the very beautiful Yunmengshan Park – several kilometers and several hundred, felt like thousands, steps – conversations were taking place all around. Children were laughing, talking, helping and encouraging each other. It was not an easy walk; in fact, it was a challenging few hours. However, the students were amazing in their resilience, positivity and ability to rise to the challenge. Many said it was one of the most difficult things they had accomplished; all were proud of their efforts at the end of the hike and all certainly deserved the delicious lunch we then enjoyed.

As teachers we know that we need to find ways to develop more than just the traditional three ‘Rs’ – reading, writing and arithmetic – in students in our schools today. We also need to encourage and find opportunities through which to develop the skills of collaboration, team-building and problem-solving and the attributes of resilience, positivity and reflection. All of this can be accomplished over the course of one residential trip.

Ms. Nonie Adams

Head of Primary

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