Case study: St Joseph’s School residential

Wondering what it’s like to take students on a residential trip to Calshot?

Mar 17 2022

An archery tutor teaching a student.

We spoke to Mandy from St Joseph’s School about her experience bringing a group of students from Year 6 to the centre in September 2021 for a week of action-packed learning, activities and fun!

Note that some of the activities mentioned may differ depending on the time of year, and that our teams will work with you to create an experience that helps children build skills and have fun – all year round.

What made you choose Calshot for your residential? Have you been before?

‘The school itself has been coming to Calshot for ages – at least 10 or 15 years – but last year was my first trip to the centre, and it was a great experience. It was very well organised.

‘Because the school had been before, we were familiar with the programme and knew first-hand the quality of the team onsite and how enjoyable the activities are for the children, so we didn’t have any concerns.

The only difference was that we went at the beginning of the school year this time round, whereas in the past the children visited at the end of their Year 6. This meant that we were able to focus on team building at the start of the year to help the students gel, which was something that really came across in the way the staff spoke to the children. They were very well-versed in building up team values and encouraging students to work together.’

Students preparing to climb The Wall.

After the visit, did you notice the children displaying any of those values of teamwork and communication that they were taught during their time at the centre?

‘It certainly made a difference, even though it’s a different environment at school, so you might see it in different ways. I do think it was well worth it, especially after three lockdowns and a period of online learning, where the children hadn’t had to collaborate with anybody. Teaching the students to work together is such a valid thing to do.’

What do you think the children get out of learning-focused activities like the field studies excursion?

‘I think the children got a lot out of the field studies exercise. We were taken a couple of miles up the coast, where we could walk along the beach and directly see the effects of the environment. The learning element of that helped to feed into the work they do in their science and geography lessons.’

Students trying out the high ropes at Calshot.

And overall, what kind of benefits do you think there are to the students?

‘The social side of things was really strong actually. So things like sitting down to eat with friends, and spending time away from home (maybe even for the first time!) are great for children to flex their social muscles and learn a bit of independence.

‘I also noticed some really nice moments where children were able to exceed their own expectations – especially during the physical activities like climbing, skiing or kayaking. Climbing in particular was very popular – lots of children hadn’t done it before. And because they did it twice they were able to build on their skills from one day to the next. Being able to track their progress was great for morale!’

If you’d like to get in touch about booking a visit to Calshot for your school, fill in our enquiry form and we’ll be in touch to discuss it with you shortly.