Hear from the teachers of the Causeway School after their residential activity trip to AzuRivage.

After a year of planning, Mrs Clay and a group of students set off for France to spend a week at Rockley Adventure Camp. Rockley is a great company with an outstanding record. It has centres in Poole and the south west of France all with a lake, an abundance of water sports, equipment and fully qualified instructors. The journey by coach was the first part of the adventure as we shared with nine students from Parkfield School in Dorset. Friendships were built very quickly which meant very little sleep on the long journey!

We went to AzuRivage campsite on the banks of Lac Soustons. On arrival, breakfast was followed by the first activity—dingy sailing. It was a bit tricky in the morning with only a breeze, but the students learnt how to sail and when the wind picked up after lunch they were amazing.

The second day was cycling and raft building. The champion ‘static cyclist’ was Marc Foxall who was even better than the instructor! The best girl was Emily Wright whose 15th birthday was celebrated on the trip – she had a fantastic day with gifts and cards, Mrs Clay even managed to acquire a Rockley instructor’s T shirt and shades for her!! In the afternoon the raft building was hilarious with one successful build and an epic fail! The teams then amalgamated to build a ‘super-sized’ raft which was built under the guidance of Faith Scanes who was a natural leader and brilliant designer!

Day three was another amazing adventure with Catamaran sailing. Students learnt the ropes quickly and were literally flying. We had a funny capsize incident and a woman overboard. Wesley turned too swiftly dropping Emily off the Catamaran into the lake, and then Mrs Clay pulled the jib rope dunking Melissa!

Day Four was windsurfing and kayaking. The absence of wind changed the morning activity to paddle boarding which all mastered really well and thoroughly enjoyed. Kayaking took students through tiny rivers, negotiating twists and turns and hanging branches!

Day Five was the day out when we visited the largest sand dunes in Europe. It was a huge effort to climb and great fun to run down. We also visited Mimozen, a small idyllic town which was lovely to wander around. The final activity day before we set off for home was windsurfing and kayaking again. Having had tutoring for the windsurfing students were up and sailing very quickly. Instructors commented on how amazingly well students did as windsurfing can be difficult. The best surfer was Angel Howell who was just a natural!

The Instructors over the week were so supportive of the students, they taught them so much but more importantly we had such fun in learning. Thanks to them and to Mr Casebourne for accompanying Mrs Clay on the trip. Mrs Clay said: “I was so proud of how our students learnt so much about the activities and also about themselves. They learnt to share, support, encourage, be resilient, and look after each other. It was great to have given them the opportunity and we hope to run another trip next year so watch this space.”

Any students interested in doing a trip like this should log their interest with the PE Department. We would also like to thank Mrs Clay for her hard work and commitment to ensure students had the experience of a lifetime.


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