Taking the Classroom North

The beautiful blue waters off Shark Bay were the backdrop for our Year 11 Outdoor Education girls during the first week of Term 2. While on the trip, the class completed four sailing and boating units towards their Certificate II in Outdoor Recreation and also completed a number of practical and written tasks for their General Outdoor Education course.

Students travelled 11 hours to reach Denham before setting sail on the high seas for four full days. The girls sailed in four boats, in crews of 3 – 4 people. Each morning the girls walked their barrels, dry bags and food boxes our to their boats, rigged their boats, pulled up their anchors and either power boated or sailed to the next location.

The group often stopped for morning tea and lunch at different bays and beaches. They enjoyed a snorkel and a walk over the dunes to the ‘Dolphin Graveyard’, a place that only a handful of people have visited. The group saw dolphins, turtles, shovel-nosed sharks, stingrays, emus and goats!

Each afternoon, the girls would pull up at a new beachside camping spot, anchor the boats, unload all the boats and set up camp.

In order to keep an eye on the boat fleet overnight, the girls had to do night watch each. In pairs, they were allocated 1.5 hours where they were required to be awake, sit in the night, watch the tent and check that everything was in order. Night watch started at 8.00 pm and finished at 6.30 am. Sometimes a pair had to do an easy shift such as 9.30 pm – 11.00 pm and sometimes they would have the graveyard shift from 2.00 am – 3.30 am.

The Marine Education Boatshed run this program every second year and their knowledge and expertise is greatly appreciated.

“Although the ocean is not new territory, being on a fairly small boat that was sailing in the middle of the ocean with my classmates sure was! The feeling of absolute serenity was beautiful and irreplaceable and so were the skills that I have obtained throughout the duration of sea trek, both in and out of the boat. I can defiantly say that the girls that I shared this experience with are now more than just my classmates.” Megan Cranley

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