To enhance the school curriculum and enrich the children's learning experiences, we arrange trips to places of interest during each school term. Many trips are organised to link with the topics studied by the children that term. Typical examples of school trips are: visits to museums and art galleries; visits to a variety of places of worship such as the church, gurdwara, mosque or synagogue; visits to the seaside or zoo. Other trips may be arranged to develop a particular skill, for example visits to the Redbridge Drama Centre.
The safety of pupils on school trips is, of course, paramount. The school has a comprehensive Educational Visits Policy and a full risk assessment is carried out prior to any trip. As part of the risk assessment, teachers are expected to visit the location before the visit takes place. If any aspect of the trip presents an unacceptable risk then it will not go ahead. All risk assessments are approved by the leadership team. Qualified first-aid trained staff accompany pupils on school trips.
We rely on voluntary contributions from parents to enable these trips to take place. We do try to keep the cost of trips down and always consider value for money when selecting places of interest/learning to visit.
School trips are regular events. Visits are always well planned to support the learning. During a Year 1/ 2 trip to the seaside, for example, children will visit the contrasting locations of a commercial area such as Southend, as well as a quieter seaside location such as Shoeburyness.
We regularly enjoy visitors in school. These may be people working within the community, such as police officers, or occasional visitors such as authors. Often parents and carers with a particular skill will come into school to share their expertise. Last year there was great excitement when the Olympic Torch came to Wells, and former Olympic boxing champion James Degale also paid us a visit!
Children love to be outside and, where appropriate, we are providing opportunities for children to learn outdoors so that they can put their learning in context. In maths for example, measuring becomes more real if pupils are measuring real life objects and distances.
Some of our staff have been trained to teach children to cycle and we have a programme of cycling activities throughout the year for all year groups. Not only do children learn how to ride a bicycle, but also to listen to instructions and work as part of a team. Our cycle training helps pupils to develop self-discipline and a greater understanding of safety.
In Year 6, pupils take part in a six-week sailing course at Fairlop Water which proves to be a memorable and life-changing experience for many pupils. This is a challenging activity which tests children's ability to work as part of a team, as well as their decision-making, and problem-solving skills.