Bronze DofE Expedition
86 pupils in Year 9 headed to the Chilterns Hills for their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh training weekend.
A dozen groups of pupils arrived at Chalfont and Latimer tube station to begin their adventure, carrying tents, trangias, blister plasters and plenty of snacks. Armed with maps and compasses, the girls navigated their way around the Hertfordshire countryside, through fields of cows and up some rather steep hills. Walking between 14 and 17kms each day, they honed their map-reading, problem-solving and teamworking skills. One team reports back on the experience:
“On the first day, our instructor taught us how to use landmarks around us to stop us from getting lost. After lunch, our instructor decided that it was time for us to practise navigating on our own… We worked together relatively well and were nearly at the campsite when we reached a number of paths and were unable to work out which way to go. After walking for a short while, we realised we were in the wrong place and had to call our instructor. Luckily, we hadn’t gone too far off track and arrived at the campsite in time to pitch our tents before it got dark. We made some pasta with tomato sauce and hot chocolate and slept very well in our cosy sleeping bags, so felt well-prepared for the next day. On our second day, we managed to not get lost which we were all extremely proud of.”
The Duke of Edinburgh awards scheme is well-established and perennially popular at South Hampstead; over 85% of the Year 9 cohort typically embark on the Bronze Award and many more continue with their Silver and Gold Awards.