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Posted on April 26th 2016
UKSA Girls sailing trip
Seventeen excited Year 7 and 8 girls left HIAC early to make their way to the Isle of Wight via coach and ferry, followed by a short walk.
After having lunch on the ferry, we arrived at UKSA in East Cowes. Students were greeted by their instructors and briefed on equipment and safety. Once students were familiar with the grounds, the girls went straight out onto the water, where students gained water confidence and played team-building games. The girls were not too sure what to expect; they knew they’d get wet but they challenged themselves even more than they had expected to. All the girls were jumping into the water confidently by the end of the session.
Following the afternoon water confidence session, students dried off and had a buffet style dinner and some free time to settle into their rooms. Students’ evening activities involved more team games involving raft building. Raft building was especially challenging as students had to keep their raft afloat The girls showed teamwork, enthusiasm, creativity and great communication as they constructed their rafts.
They took to the water to race their rafts. Occasionally the rafts started to sink so students had to work together and balance out the raft to make it back to land. A special well done to April and Jemima for being the motivators in their group and being the clear captains of each team.
The girls woke up to a clear and bright day, starting the day with a buffet breakfast.
During the morning activity the girls took part today in Paddle boarding, showing great determination and character to be successful. The students were highly competitive whilst kneeling and standing during the paddle board races, desperately wanting to beat Ms Richardson. Students completed various activities, such as building a giant paddle board for all the students to sail on and the challenge of building a strong paddle board bridge for students to cross and jump off. It was so rewarding to hear students talking to one another about how confident they felt jumping into the open water and taking on new challenges. A special well done to Kayleigh and Mariah who were both apprehensive at times but both thoroughly enjoyed the activities once they got going, Kayleigh for pushing herself out of her comfort zone and Celesty and Debbie for giving every challenge 100%, despite not being water confident.
After lunch, the girls took part in a kayaking session. Students were determined not to fall in the water and to keep their Kayaks afloat. This activity required students to work in pairs and paddle in unison. Amber was mentioned by the instructors as the star student of the day as she got involved in every challenge and had such a positive attitude.
The evening activities involved a variety of problem-solving tasks, some very similar to those we do in PE lessons. Students were encouraged to work with others whom they may have not worked with yet. The activities were focused on team-work and communication, all valuable life skills. Bethany took more of a leadership role this evening and demonstrated great patience with her group.
Students and staff were up early ready for day three of activities. Students helped themselves to a large cooked breakfast, followed by room tidying and suitcase packing ready for our departure.
The weather was beautiful and conditions perfect. During the morning activities the girls participated in Dingy Sailing. The dingy boats required students to pair up and sail together, working in partnership, each having different roles on the dingy. Despite the occasional capsize, by the end of the morning students were confident dingy sailors and were them towed back to shore.
Students had lunch at UKSA and then departed ready for the journey home. Students and staff had a fantastic time and the girls’ attitudes, determination and commitment throughout the trip is to be celebrated. I know this experience will not be forgotten in a hurry.
We would like to congratulate all the students for participating in all the activities, the willing and the unwilling, but they all followed through, in TRUE INVICTUS STYLE! A number of students, for us and the instructors, really stood out for various reason.
Amber, Jemima and April- for their leadership skills, encouraging and motivating the group
Annabel- struggled slightly but really achieved a lot by the end of the trip. I’m sure her screams were heard across the island. Pure resilience!
Kayleigh- vocalized her nervousness and anxiety but overcame these feelings and followed through and got on with everything, rose to the challenge.
Mariah- very reluctant and was not aware the trip involved getting wet but gave it her best.
Lilly Mai- very brave and supportive of her peers.
Briony- quietly got on with all the activities
All the girls have performed amazingly and have been taken out of their comfort zone, but risen to the challenge. Well done Invictus girls!