Residentials: Lived experiences generate academic excellence!

On Wednesday, 23 September, Mr King, Senior School Geography and History Teacher, wrote about Outdoor Education, explaining how critical it is for enhancing our curricula and providing our students with the skills they require to be successful at school and in their future.

Click to read Mr King's article: Words alone are not enough to learn about our planet Earth 

This week our Senior School students have been out of the College on their residential trips, engaging in a range of exciting activities across multiple locations.  Residential trips enhance the curriculum and push our students to achieve better academically. They link real life experiences to the content and knowledge gained in the classroom, which embeds their thinking and understanding on complex topics. By encouraging and guiding our students to Live WorldWise through their residential trips, we are ensuring their ability to Graduate WorldWise and become competitive applicants to the world’s most prestigious universities.

Mr Ingram, Head of College and Dulwich College Shanghai Puxi expands on this, and highlights why we feel so strongly about our students completing residential trips, regardless of the challenges they posed this year;

We believe in the value of Outdoor Education for personal development and as a springboard to academic success in the classroom.  Although COVID-19 has had an impact on the venue for our programmes, it hasn’t changed our aims and aspirations for our Senior School students.  They deserve this opportunity.  I am particularly proud of our Year 10 and Year 11 students rising to the challenge of the Duke of Edinburgh International Award.  This is a significant achievement that will stand them in good stead for university and beyond.

Below, follow along and enjoy learning about the residential trips our students have experienced this week;

The Year 7-9 students visited Zhujiajiao water town, where they played lawn activities. They have met residents and learned yoga at Zhongshan Park and practiced kung-fu with masters. They then ventured to Chongming Island, an alluvial island at the mouth of the Yangtze River known for its peaceful rural lifestyle and agricultural history. Cycled around the island through rice fields and orchards……harvested taro and picked fruit and made their own rice cakes. Finally they rounded up the trip by building their own camps and enjoying a bonfire BBQ with smores, singing, laughter and friendship.

Throughout the trip the students have bonded with one another, reinforcing old friendships and forging new ones. They have learned to live independently, built new skills and overcome adversity. The students returned today, slightly different to when they left. These experiences have strengthened them and made them wiser.

The Year 10-11 students engaged on a slightly different adventure, undertaking the Duke of Edinburgh International Award.

The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award is a global framework for non-formal education and learning, which challenges young people to dream big, celebrate their achievements and make a difference in their world. Through developing transferable skills, increasing their fitness levels, cultivating a sense of adventure and volunteering in their community, the Award helps young people to find their purpose, passion and place in the world.

This year, our students undertook the International Award under the shadow of COVID-19, limiting the location, but not the ambition to engage in a meaningful and challenging week of skill development. Throughout the week students learned to orienteer and navigate while kayaking and hiking……building their own campsites and cooking for themselves across Chanxing and Chongming Islands. Through grueling treks over a range of landscapes and terrain, the Year 10 and 11 students where pushed to learn new skills, including archery and food preparation.

A few pictures can barely describe the experiences these students have enjoyed over the past week, but for now we enjoy having them back on campus, where they can share their tales for themselves and reflect on the skills and experiences they have gained throughout this International Award residential week.