Saturday, 13 May 2017

Ambassador Residential- SPA Geog and Peabody

Reach your peak in Geography- Become an Ambassador!
SPA GEOG & Peabody
Ambassadors’ Residential
The Geography department took two days of interviews to select 22 Geography Ambassadors. We witnessed over 40 interviews and a high quality of applicants, which meant much deliberation and a challenge to choose our final students. The two key questions were: How would you promote Geography? Why should you be an ambassador? Let me introduce the final students who will represent Geography and Peabody as ambassadors!

The Geography and Peabody Ambassadors from Year 10 and Year 11 in their new hoodies. Top left: Kwabena, James, Nathan, Precious, Una, Yetunde, Princess, Miguel, and Giovanni. Bottom left: Gareth, Luke, Marcell, Amy, Temi, Klaudia, Anna, Lilly, Shanelle and Eljay. Others missing: Stephen, Sammy and Chantal.
As part of the Peabody ‘Young leadership’ accreditation certificate the group attended a fully paid (courteous of Peabody) weekend residential.  The aim of this trip was to firstly work on team building and implement skills that underpin leadership and teamwork. Examples of activities embedding these skills included Blackout sensory walks in teams, building towers out of marshmallows, military drumming and an assault course carrying a bucket of water, to name a few.

The residential started on Friday 3rd March, with the group travelling with Mr Davis and Diana Webb to Lambourne End Outdoor Centre, and ended on Sunday 4th March. The company Oakley Adventures should be commended on a comprehensive program that worked towards building a rapport amongst the students and developing skills that underpins the Ambassador initiative.

Diana and Mr Davis in the new leader hoodies.

These students epitomise the high quality and excellence that St Paul’s Academy exhibits, within and outside of the classroom. We can expect very exciting times in Geography with these students leading as role models. Congratulations to all for your participation and making the weekend enjoyable by the staff and teachers. A special mention needs to go to Caroline and Steve from Oakley Adventures for organising the event and Alison Wood from Peabody making this all possible.

For photos and videos of the activities please look below:

Camp fire

The camp fire included popular camps songs, dancing and roasting marshmallows. Mr Davis showed the students a few dance moves and also how to make the best smoors. The excitement of the day got too much for some (as you can see by Amy opposite)!

Group marshmallow and spaghetti towers:

Students were given a time limit to make a structure that was free-standing and able to withstand shakes. Much of the weekend was geared towards team-work and gelling as a group. It was successful with friendships that will last a lifetime. 

Military Drumming:

 The SPA ambassadors were involved in a military drumming session on the Sunday. It takes coordinator and being in sync with each other to be able to drum effectively. It was remarked by Steve from Peabody that the group "were one of the best that I have been involved in!" This is a testament to the group and how they have developed as a unit over the weekend.

Firelighting and popcorn making:

Students were taught how to make fires from scratch using cotton wool and vaseline. When the fires had been lit, the ambassadors were able to make popcorn.


Students got to try archery during the Saturday day. After they had initially mastered the art of shooting they worked in teams to earn points by shooting the target and hitting balloons. 

Daily Life (travelling and around the camp):

 The pictures are around the residential. The students worked to lay out the table and wash up. Fabulous food were supplied by Oakley Adventures to cater all tastes. Precious and Yetunde made friends with the local dogs. Other activities included chilling out, twister and hot chocolate before bedtime. The team worked with Oakley Adventures to discuss what made a perfect Ambassador, which underpinned the activities of the weekend. At the end of the weekend the students were able to describe their favourite moments and nominate key individuals that displayed ambassadorial skills.

OS Map Challenge:

Students worked on OS Map skills. This was a valuable skill to revisit as all students are studying Geography at GCSE. This lead to challenges in the outdoor environment in teams whereby they hid objects for the other team to find. Students were taught map symbols and 6/8 grid references.

Blind Night hike:

This was the ultimate test for the SPA Ambassadors on the Saturday night before the campfire. Each team had to use the art of communication and rely on their senses of touch and sound to navigate their environment and make it around the course. 

Military Assault Course (which featured on The Apprentice in 2016):

 The aim of the assault course - which was an integral part of the team-work challenge - was to navigate the course with a bucket of water and not spill a large amount. The ambassadors working proficiently and were successful in getting around the obstacles. The students then had to navigate the water obstacles [about 6 ft of smelly water below]. Some were more successful than others! Have a look at the photos.

#Where is your next Geography classroom? 

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