PGL 2017

Thursday 23rd June 2017

Another fun-filled day with Abseiling, Crate Challenge, Archery, Climbing, Aeroball, Jacob's Lader and Survivor activities. A grey and mainly dull day, but still no rain, so we have definifely been luckier than some with the weather this week. After another hearty breakfast, the groups set off for their morning sessions and Mr Emery was observed aeroballing with the children in great spirits!

Hopefully you will have seen the many tweets posted on our account @cjs_derby. All staff have been busy tweeting throughout the day to keep you up to date with pictures of the children and all their achievements. The children have shown great determination and courage again today, working brilliantly in teams to help their friends achieve their goals. No matter how big or small, every one has taken an extra step higher on the climbing wall or taken a giant leap of faith to abseil down the tower. We've seen bullseyes on the archery range and crates being stacked higher and higher - it's wonderful to see the children's faces as they complete the challenges they've been set. 

In between all of the activities, we've had singing and chanting,echoing round the extensive grounds at Liddington, as the groups walk from one activity to the next. The children have taken to leading the singing themselves and you will probably get to hear them for yourselves when they are home.

Cody and Abby became our new 'groupies' at lunchtime, donning the PGL jackets and clipboards and issuing instructions to us all!

After lunch, it was out for another two sessions and then straight in for dinner.  They have had another visit to the PGL shop and stocked up on things of the usual 'gift shop' variety!

Tonight it's their last night and it's Disco Night, so a chance to get dressed up and have fun with their friends at the end of the busy week.

Tomorrow morning is breakfast followed by two final activities from Trapeze, Fencing, Challenge Course and Survivor. After lunch we will be heading home and you will have chance to find out for yourselves all about their time at PGL. 

Good night,

Mrs Slack & The PGL Team

Wednesday 22nd June 2017

A mist descended overnight and we woke up to a dull and grey morning. But did that dampen our spirits? Most definitely not!  Today's activities included Crate Challenge, Survivor, Fencing, Climbing, Giant Swing, Mountain Biking, Challenge Course and Vertical Challenge. The energy and enthusiasm that the children showed in tackling these activities is a real credit to them. We saw children (and staff) pushing themselves to do things they never believed they could do.  

The crate challenge was all about construction, balance and effective teamwork. The children competed against each other to build the tallest tower of crates. With two or three pupils standing on top as the tower grew, each team had to come up with different ways of getting more crates to the top, as the children on top became more and more precariously balanced! We saw one team get a stack of ten - brilliant teamwork.

Some of the activities involved the children mastering heights. One of these included the giant swing - two children were harnessed into the swing, while other members of the group hauled them up to 10 metres into the air. A pull on the ripcord sent them plummeting earthward. It was a fast and exhilarating drop, but it was the right balance between fear and fun!

They loved the challenge course which aimed to promote teamwork, lateral thinking, problem solving and decision making. It was also physically challenging and Miss Onion was urged on by Molly to conquer her own fear of heights and complete the challenge not once, but six times!  Another activity which promoted effective teamwork was the survivor challenge. The children were set a ‘wilderness’ scenario and they needed to build the shelter using basic navigation skills and meteorological skills to decide the layout of the site. Some great shelters although I don't think any of them would want to spend a night in them!

Mountain biking gave the children the experience of cycling off road over obstacles and changing ground conditions - great fun!

The weather didn't improve throughout the day, but it didn't get any worse and we managed to keep the rain at bay. The children's chants have got louder as the week has progressed and they are leading the singing at every opportunity.

We hope you've had chance to follow us on twitter @cjs_derby (the link is on the home page of the website), as we have all been tweeting and sending live photos so that you can enjoy the experience with us. The connectivity is not always the best in this loaction, so please bear with us if you don't see your son/daughter - we will have lots of photos to share with you when we get back.

After our evening meal, our group leaders Emma and Jordan, got all the children together, as we sang happy birthday to James. He was presented with a birthday cake to share with his room mates (sadly, it won't cut into 101 pieces!)

Tonight it's Cluedo - the PGL take on the classic board game. Teams need to complete a series of challenges to solve the mystery. PGL Staff join in as characters and the children are involved in various challenges including problem solving and investigation. Was it Mrs Edwards with her garden fork?  Or Mr Gadsby with his cricket bat? Or maybe Mrs Atwal with her hair straighteners? 

Well, time to sign off. Where has today gone?  I'm guessing the children will be ready for their beds tonight.

Good night.

Mrs Slack and Your PGL Team

Tuesday 21st June 2017

A late night (as expected) as children were far too excited to settle down for their first night's sleep. Lights went out at 10.00 pm, but it was somewhat later before the last whispers and giggles were heard in the corridor. Some staff enjoyed a few hours of peace and quiet - others were not quite so lucky! 

Wake up call was at 7.00 am but there were quite a few who were up, showered and ready before then. Despite the predicted rain (every member of staff has got the local weather forecast on their tablet/phone), the day started promising with a glimpse of the sun and light cloud.

Breakfast was a veritable feast, with a choice of cereals, a traditional English or vegetarian breakfast, as much toast as you could eat and drinks and fresh fruit.  Fed and watered, the children made their way to their groups, ready for the two morning activities.  There was canoeing, fencing, aeroball and Jacob's ladder as well as other activities taking place.

The canoeing was out on the lake and the children listened enthusiastically to their instructors and quickly learnt the basic paddle manoeuvres before heading out on the lake.  They had a really good session and took to it like ducks to water (pardon the pun!). Mr Gadsby's group definitely took to the water (and in it).  

The fencing was also fun - not least trying to get strapped into all the protective clothing and headgear. We learnt our 'en garde', parry and riposte, attack and lunges.  There were some impressive engagements and a good time was had by all.

There was another great choice of food for lunch and after a quick visit to the PGL shop, we headed off for our afternoon of activities.

Aeroballing was great fun and Miss Onion showed off her Goal Attack netballing skills to net 20 points, beating all the group.  Jacob's Ladder is a fun exercise in teamwork and co-operation. Working in teams of three, the idea is to climb to the top of a suspended ladder of logs with the gaps between each log becoming wider the higher you go. It was fantastic to see the children push themselves, conquer their fears and get as high as they could. We captured their achievements on camera and the smiles on their faces says it all.

After a quick shower and a hearty evening meal, the children are now taking part in 'Robot Wars'. I left Mr Gadsby, Mrs Shaukat and Mrs Edwards judging a 'best model' competition.

So in a couple of hours time, it will be almost the end of our first full day and I can honestly say, the children are having a great time. We have kept the rain at bay and we are all hoping for a good night's sleep. With a slightly later breakfast tomorrow, we might get a few extra minutes in bed!

Tomorrow we welcome Mr Emery and look forward to seeing him at Liddington.

Good night,

Mrs Slack and Your PGL Team

Monday 20th June 2017

Arrived safely at PGL to glorious sunshine - everyone in good spirits and raring to go.  Our groupies, Emma and Jordan, introduced themselves to us all and after the safety talks, each group had to come up with their own chant. 

Some enthusiastic and imaginative chants, won by Mrs Atwal's 'Awesome Owls'.  The photos show the children presenting their chants.

Dinner - an amazing choice of hot food, an endless salad bar, dessert, fresh fruits and drinks.  Our first PGL birthday too - happy birthday Hannah B.  It's downtime now and the children are out and about playing games (the hope of them being tired enough to go to sleep, is keeping us going!)

In 15 minutes or so, the groupies are taking them for their first activity 'Capture the Flag' - a chance to hone their orienteering skills.

That's it for now - time for me to run about and let off steam too.

Yours enthusiastically,

Your PGL Team

Contact the School

Chellaston Junior School

Maple Drive, Chellaston, Derby, DE73 6PZ

Main Contact: Mrs Maureen Slack, School Office Manager

Tel: 01332 701460

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