Year 9 Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Practice Weekend
On 20th April 2023, we took 71 Year 9 students to the New Forest for their Bronze DofE Practice weekend.
We arrived on Thursday afternoon to set up camp and students put up their tents and cooked their first meals on the trangias - some more successfully than others! On Friday, we set off in four different groups so students could practise their map and compass skills, preparing them for their independent walks the next day. Luckily, the weather held out and all students completed their walks on Saturday and returned to camp for their final meal and night in their tents.
As a group of staff, we were so impressed with all of the students who showed brilliant courage and commitment throughout the weekend. Despite the challenges, they persevered and we are so proud of how well they get on. We are looking forward to their Final Expedition on the 13th - 14th May in the Ashdown Forest!
Read how some of our students go on below.
DofE & Enrichment Coordinator
Last weekend, me and my friends went on the DofE Bronze Practice in the New Forest. It was very fun and because of my amazing map skills we didn't get lost once! I didn't have any blisters so that was a bonus too! The food we cooked was great although we ate it all before the last day as we were hungry. We completed the hike as a group and enjoyed it. The evenings were fun when we all sat around the trangia, played football and volleyball. I think the most fun part was walking in a swampy area after trying a shortcut!
When we arrived on Thursday evening, we set up our tents and we cooked food on the trangias. We made noodles for dinner then made hot chocolate after. The walking was very long but we didn't get lost! Jamie P did get his boots stuck in the muddy swamp. Kaden managed to cook some bacon on the trangia and it even turned out ok! Jamie P cooked pasta but it wasn't very successful. Ben also drank a jar of pasta - it was great! Overall, we had a great weekend and are all looking forward to the final weekend and signing up to Silver next year.
Will S, Ben F & Kaden J
Last weekend, we went to the New Forest for our practice Bronze DofE. When we got there, we set up our tents and started to make our dinner on the trangia. We ate homemade spaghetti Bolognese however the pasta was a bit under-cooked because we were impatient! The next day, we ate our breakfast and went out for a practise hike with our teachers to practise our compass and map skills. On our last day, we went for a trek in the New Forest by ourselves. We had to stop at checkpoints to eat and carried on with our journey. After a very long walk, we couldn't wait to sleep and go home the next day.
Me and my friends participated in the Bronze Duke of Edinburgh's Award. It was good to socialise and have independence when we were walking. Rather than being restricted, we were free to walk with our groups we had chosen and navigate our own way around - we did end up in a swamp but got out in the end! Our food was a bit manky but that was our own fault! Overall, I would really recommend the experience.
I completed the DofE Practice which I found quite challenging but rewarding. On the first full day, we walked for around 4-5 hours and the next day we completed a walk independently. At first, me and my group got quite lost, however, after the first checkpoint, we managed to make it to the final checkpoint without having any problems. On this walk, we walked for around 6-7 hours and all found it quite tiring! Overall, I think it was a really good experience.