Isle of Wight 2019

Thursday 2nd May

The final day! This morning we completed our daily routine and shimmied into wetsuits for the final time. The first cohort were kayaking again today, however this time instead of staying near the centre the instructors were happy enough with our paddling ability to let us journey further away down the River Medina. All of the teachers were so impressed and remarked on how persistant the children were with travelling a further distance. Our destination was Croc Creek, (allegedly) where Queen Victoria raised her vegetarian family of crocodiles! After a couple of games of Splat and World Domination (another Finnish victory), we paddled back to the centre for lunch with the other half of the group, who had just finished taking out their rafts they had built in the morning for a spin! The children had been left with some logs, a couple of surfboards, a tangle of ropes, their joint intuition, and knowledge of knots to lash together a seaworthy vessel. Although the instructors had to intervene sporadically, the children worked extremely collavoratively and would have impressed Bear Grylls with their survival skills! Once their crafts had departed, the children competed in various challenges, syncronising paddling and relay races After lunch the usual swap occured, apart from Mr Church who enjoyed crocodile spotting while kayaking so much he went again! The children completed their final activity, hung up the wetsuits for the last time and snuggled into their onesies in preparation for dinner and the most anticipated moment of the week: ice cream. With milky moutaches, the children slurped through their 99's just in time to start watching the feature film, Moana. The couple running the ice cream van commented on how polite and lovely the Pound Hill children were, a sentiment shared by the instructors and us teachers, who have been so impressed by the excellent behaviour and 'Life Skills' the intrepid sailors have shown all week. Despite the fun had by all, the children are all looking forward to seeing their parents tomorrow! We will keep the office updated with the status of our journey tomorrow.
Wednesday 1st May After another 'breathtaking' breakfast, the adults and children found it easier to wriggle into their wetsuits and were raring to go for their activities. Half of the children would be 'supping' (Stand up paddle boarding). The children worked in pairs and had to hone their balancing skills in order to complete games and challenges given by the instructors. 'World Domination' was a clear favourite, with Finland's famous Navy eventually reigning supreme. The other group travelled to another beach on the island to try their hand at Windsurfing. Although this was quite a physically demanding activity, the children persisted and managed to get some decent speed up. None, however, could match the pace of Mr Church! The children and adults kept their wetsuits on for a well received lunch at the centre before swapping over for the afternoon. The weather held out, and upon finishing there was a mixture of disappointment that the day's activities were over with relief that wetsuits could be removed and everyone could get clean and warm in preparation for pasta and meatballs for dinner! The children are currently getting ready for swimming and team games, run by the ever energetic and enthusiastic centre staff. We are all really looking forward to what tomorrow brings!
Tuesday 30th April
What a day! After a lovely calm wake up from the teachers, the children drifted to the canteen for a full cooked breakfast that was described as 'yummy', 'divine' and 'nutritious'! After eating their own weight in sausages, half of the children squelched and into their wetsuits for kayaking, which involved various games and challenges requiring teamwork and communication and lots of diving in! The other half embarked on a 'keelboat' onto more open water where they learnt how to manipulate the sails and steer their boat along the Solent. There were certainly some aspiring Shackletons. 
In the afternoon, after lunch, the groups swapped over and completed the corresponding activities in glorious sunshine. Currently the children are sensibly completing their booklets and reflecting on their action-packed day while Mrs O'Connor conducts the compulsory room inspection; needless to say there are some nervous faces in the room! This evening half of the children are swimming while the other take part in some team activities. As always, the behaviour and manners of the PHJS children has been impeccable. 
We have arrived! After a seamless coach and boat journey, we had a quick lunch and tour of the site and the children are already in wetsuits having a splash around. Keep posted for more updates.