Our Kids Are More Capable Than You Think!
Year 6 Camp is a highlight in my calendar each year. I love seeing the girls away from school, being brave when facing challenges, and their smiles when they overcome these challenges. The challenges for each girl are different. It could be being away from mum and dad, sleeping in a dormitory and organising their own gear, overcoming a fear of heights or working in teams and building new friendships.
In talking to our Year 12 leaders this week about their happiest memory during their years at Santa Maria, Year 6 Camp rated highly. For many of us, camps are among the most enduring memories we have of our school years. What could be better than a sleepover with friends, fun activities, and a world away from the classroom and little brothers?
The focus of our Year 6 camp is ‘Challenge by Choice.’ The girls are encouraged to have a go at all activities such as archery, low ropes and high ropes, rock climbing, orienteering, and other team challenges.
This camp assists in developing social interactions and the skills of patience, sharing, helping and including others. Teamwork was evident in every activity they completed. Students were encouraging and cheering each other on and celebrating their successes, whether it was reaching the top of the climbing wall or getting a little higher than previously.
It’s important that we grow brave children and camps do just that. They are structured to teach skills and provide opportunities that push students out of their comfort zone. When we take girls on camp, they demonstrate just how capable they are. Sometimes they surprise themselves with what they are capable of achieving. The reality is that to learn bravery, they need to be challenged, especially physical, outdoor challenges.
Camp enables our girls to develop the confidence to try new and different experiences and make new friends. Being independent helps them realise they can manage very well without mum or dad close by, and the encouragement boosts confidence, like completing the high ropes course.
The wonder of nature, waking up to the sounds of birds, seeing kangaroos hopping nearby, patting horses and a frog in the dormitory, to the starry night sky were all enjoyed by the girls. These experiences help them to have a greater appreciation and respect for the world around them.
I would like to acknowledge the incredible work our staff did in the lead-up to, during, and after the camp. They certainly gave their all to ensure the girls had the best experience possible.