The annual P7 residential took place at Killyleagh Outdoor Education Centre from Tuesday 23rd June - Friday 26th June. The residential was something that all the pupils were particularly looking forward to and the four action-packed days were well worth the wait!
After arriving at Killyleagh on Tuesday morning, the pupils were shown to their dorms (and even had to make their beds!). The delicious food was a highlight throughout the week for many pupils (especially the daily tray bakes) and on the first day a hot lunch was provided before we all set off to Tollymore Forest Park for the first activity.
The first activity was an adventure walk/bouldering. The adventure walk involved walking through the forest park, climbing over and under trees, crawling through tunnels and water... and lots of mud!
As you can see, some pupils got very muddy!!
Luckily we were able to jump into the water, swim down stream and clean off all of the mud!
The second day of activities saw the pupils hit the water and the bike trails. After splitting into groups that rotated, before and after lunch, the pupils took to the sea in kayaks. Many of the pupils picked up the skills needed very quickly and were able to travel down the coast and out around a chimney in the open water. This was very fun! After the kayaking, the pupils jumped on the back of a banana boat and were driven around the lough, over waves and round corners. After falling off once, the pupils soon learnt that if everyone leans together in the direction the boat is turning, it is very hard for the driver to make you fall off.
After drying off, the pupils made the short journey to Castle Ward, where they took the mountain bike trails through the forest. The instructor even stopped halfway to give us marshmallows!
The third day of activities saw the pupils once again hit the open water. This time, the pupils were in bigger teams, working together to travel around different islands in Strangford Lough. One of the islands we stopped at was home to seals and otters. Another island had an old look-out tower that had been used for training exercises during World War Two. This was all very interesting.
In the afternoon, we ventured to the indoor facilities, where we took part in archery and attempted to climb to the top of the climbing wall. There were certainly some quick climbers in Primary 7!
On the final night, even after three days of activities, we were still very busy. We had a party, celebrated a birthday, watched 2 DVDs, ate lots of food (and even took a few selfies!). A great last night!
The final morning involved packing and tidying dorms. But we still managed to fit in a trip on a speedboat, visit a shipwreck in Strangford Lough (find a fish!) and stop for an ice-cream. Well worth the journey!
By the time we arrived home on Friday afternoon there were a lot of tired pupils (teachers and classroom assistants). It was no wonder, having participated in four days full of activities. The P7 pupils deserve much credit for their exemplary behaviour throughout the residential. Furthermore, all the pupils tried their best at all activities, giving everything a go, overcoming fears and excelling in many areas. Well done everyone!