summer camps

L&E receives prestigious Award

1 July 2021

We have been named as Winners of the Go Overseas Community Choice Award 2020…named by the people who matter most — the community (the children and families).

Thank you to all those involved in, what was a very difficult year but one that also had a lot of very special moments. We may not have had camp or travel but we had a lot of fun in other ways…


  • Online Language & Life Skill Courses
  • Virtual Camp
  • L&E Home Launched
  • 24 Hours Campfire across 6 continents
  • 30 Day Challenge for Save the Children
  • New Website
  • Global Teen Chats
  • Online Dance Classes
  • Online Circus Skills
  • Online Guitar Classes
  • New Podcast

Go Overseas wrote: “We’re thrilled to recognize Learn & Experience as one of the best travel organizations in 2020 through this merit-based award, especially after such a difficult year for our industry.”

L&E Newsletter – Dec ’18

5 December 2018

November was a busy month that brought, amongst other things the introduction of our new booking system which will hopefully allow L&E to move (belatedly) into the 21st century.  Families will have their own accounts where they can see their payment plans, make personal requests and update data to allow for an easy progression to camp.  Please be in touch with the L&E Office if you have any queries about the new system.

The L&E Roadshow got going with Julie visiting Copenhagen (see below for full story). I will be visiting New York in December and will look forward to tell you all about it in the January Newsletter. I wish you all a great festive season and really hope to see many of you in the New Year! SR

L&E Review

We are a small company that don’t have a massive marketing budget to spread the word of L&E. Therefore, we really rely on our loyal families to help us get the message out to other families.  Word of mouth has always been our main source of new families and we truly appreciate all your testimonials and recommendations.  It would be wonderful to have a permanent record on an independent forum where you can leave your honest and open reviews.  We have review pages on Google and Facebook so would be absolutely delighted if you could spare a few moments.  Many thanks in advance.

L&E in Copenhagen

Our first road trip of the season took us to the beautiful Danish capital, Copenhagen.  It was their first cold snap of the year but clear skies made it a thoroughly enjoyable trip.  

We were delighted to host 2 L&E information evenings at schools in Rungsted which is just north of Copenhagen.  The first school we visited was Rungsted Skole which is the school L&E camper Freja attends.  Along with Freja and her mother we met some new families and spent an evening telling them all about the 2019 L&E programmes.  The next evening we visited was Rungsted Private Realskole where we again met some lovely new families.  There were lots of great questions from the parents and children from ‘what is the food like’ to ‘how do we pick our activities’.  The families said how great it was to have someone explain how all L&E programmes work in person and how this really put their minds at ease about sending their children to a camp in another country.  

We have found these information evenings to be very helpful for families trying to decide upon summer programmes for their children.  They give parents and children the opportunity to hear a presentation from a L&E representative and ask any questions they might have, that includes the children asking questions!  If you would like L&E to come and visit your school, town or city then please get in touch with Julie. 

Little/Cool Sam’s L&E Working Journey

I have to tell you a quick story…Sam B has worked with us for the last 9 years and has been a key component of why our camps are so successful.  He is loved by everyone – staff/parents and most importantly, the kids.  He has always been known as “Little Sam” to differentiate from myself (who is ever so slightly taller!!)  However, in my eyes he will always be “Cool Sam”.  The main being reason back in 2012 we had a magical theme night where, inevitably I found myself hidden under a sheet in the front hall while the children searched high and low for me.  A few children rushed up near me (not knowing I was under the sheet) declaring that they’d received a clue from Sam.  One child exclaimed “Do you mean Boss Sam or Cool Sam!!??”……  My ego was crushed for a few moments but, to be fair I definitely can’t compete on the coolness factor with our beloved Little Sam.  Here’s his story in his own words….

I was very happy to have the chance to write about my experiences working with L&E over the years. I’ve been working with L&E since it began almost 10 years ago now! So I’ve had many great summers at camp and seen the impact the camp has on kids as they return year after year. I came to my first camp when I was only 19 years old and at that stage the camp was still working out what it would become in the years to come. We had some really great kids that first year, although we almost had as many staff as kids that year, which did make the staff vs camp dodgeball quite easy! As has always been the case year on year, the kids that are attracted to this camp are always great fun. An amazing aspect of camp is that each week is a completely new experience. While you may have the same size camp, in the same place, with the same staff, the camp will still feel unique, as what makes a camp is the kids and each week is made up of a new, totally unique set of characters, whose mix of personalities make the camp what it is.

I came to work at  L&E   through my family, both my two sisters and my father worked that first year and many of our friends have worked at the camp over those 10 years. The camp has always had a very intimate, family feel to it and that is something that I think was fostered in those early camps. At that stage there was roughly a 2:1 child to staff ratio and it really did feel like one big family. That ideal has largely remained at  L&E through the years and is what makes this camp so special. Despite that,  L&E  has grown every year I have been there and has added new locations and experiences to the original North Camp, such as the new South Camp and teen travel.  It would be so difficult to pick a favorite memory from my years at  L&E, however I think perhaps the most rewarding part of my time at  L&E has been to see so many children grow up over the years. I’ve seen many kids come for their first camp as little 8 year olds, very shy and unsure of how their week is going to work out, and then return for the next 6 years, making life long friends and growing up into really great people. There would be too many kids to name, but a particular highlight has been to see the likes of Tom and Baptiste, who were once kids on the camp, return as staff and be such great tutors. Apart from making me feel old ? that just highlights that the camp has an impact for kids beyond the week they spend with us over the summer. It has been an eventful first 10 years for  L&E  and I hope that the next 10 years will be the same ?

L&E FEATURE – Tennis Academy 

Adventure, Sport and Creative activities are always offered at our Camps but there are few L&E Extra courses that are a little more specialised.  Here we look in detail at our Tennis Academy…

South Camp only (1 Week max)

Just as Wimbledon, the oldest and most prestigious tennis tournament in the world ends for the year in nearby London, boys and girls will have the opportunity to improve their tennis skills at L&E Tennis Academy at South Camp.  

Along with expert tuition from our tennis coaches and first rate facilities at Forres Sandle Manor School the players have the perfect setting to improve their racquet skills.  As well as perfecting court skills the players will receive seminars on fitness training, nutrition, respect and patience.  

To ensure this is a week the players will never forget we will take them to visit the famous All England Club, Wimbledon for a tour.  They will get up close and personal with the Championship trophies and clothing & equipment donated by many of the top players.  Of course they will get to see Centre Court and the player’s entrance and even get a tase of what it is like behind the scenes in the BBC Studio.  

“Expert tennis coaching with a trip to see Centre court at the world famous Wimbledon”

  • 5 day Coaching programme delivered by qualified coaches
  • Tennis seminars on fitness training, nutrition & respect.
  • Elite Tennis facilities at private school with all equipment provided for the week
  • Tour of the All England Club, Wimbledon including Centre Court visit
  • Exclusive L&E Tennis training kit 

See previous L&E Newsletter

Hope and Homes for Children

15 March 2018

We are very proud to support Hope and Homes for Children and their amazing event “A Night of Adventure”.  This year we donated a place on one of our Teen Travel UK Tours.

So far the evening has raised an incredible £22,000!

Orphanages do not protect children, which is why we are working towards a day where every child can grow up within the love and protection of a family. Family-based care has been proven to provide far better outcomes for children, and with your support we are making an impact on the lives of children, families and communities right across the world.

Night of Adventure

Sarah, our North Camp Director, attended the evening:

The motto of the night was ‘just do it’.

It is always an amazing evening listening to these great modern day adventures. There were base jumpers, naked cyclists, mountain men, walkers and complete lunatics. But all in the name of one thing…adventure!

One of the stand out highlights has always got to be ‘McNuff’, the adventure Queen herself. Anna told her tail of cycling 5,500 miles through the Southern Andes with her best mate, Faye Shepherd, and how amazing it was to share the ‘ups and downs’ (pardon the pun) with her.

Next on my list would be the ‘Mountain Man’ himself, Charlie Walker who travelled across Mongolia with the plan of using a semi-wild pony as his mode of transport. The pony had other plans and so the tale goes that Charlie walked the pony across the majestic plains, with a wild dog in toe for company.

The list would not be complete without Ben Saunders, a polar explorer who has travelled in Robert Falcon Scott’s footsteps and completed the longest human powered polar journey in history!

I came away feeling completely inspired and excited for our summer adventure to begin at L&E, wondering what your teen travellers would plan this year! SC

Summer Camp Job – Matron/Nurse

25 May 2017

Summer Camp Jobs


We now have just one position to fill:

  • Matron/Nurse

This will be a residential post for either 2 weeks or 4 weeks between 9th July and 12th August at Aysgarth School, North Yorkshire or FSM School, Hampshire.  Applicants would ideally have nursing or matron qualification.

The main function of the Matron post is to be an adult presence in the school and to be responsible for the safeguarding, welfare and security of our children by assisting the Summer Camp Director and tutors.

We require people who have great interpersonal skills when engaging with young people, their parents and guardians. Other essential qualities include being a good listener, being reliable and having a good sense of humour. Successful candidates should be able to deal with all situations with tact, diplomacy and common sense.

Board & Lodgings are included plus suitable salary.

For more information please email us with your CV and covering letter to

L&E on the Road

27 January 2017

Julie, Sarah, Michael and Sam will be on the road quite a bit over the next few weeks spreading the word of L&E!  We’re delighted to be visiting Paris, Milan and London for some Travel/Camp Fairs plus quite a few schools.  We hope to see you there…

  • Saturday, 28th January: Franco American Community Centre Paris 2pm-7pm
  • Thursday,  2nd February: Instituto Europeo Leopardi Milan 4pm-7pm
  • Saturday, 4th February: Haberdashers’ Aske’s School London 9am-4pm

Ready for Camp Fairs

Ready for Camp Fairs

Happy 2017!

4 January 2017

A look back at 2016 and a look ahead to Spring & Summer 2017…

2016 was another wonderful year for L&E but we think Summer 2017 will be even better.

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Highlights included:

  • The online viral campaign that brought back Lenny the Landrover
  • The opening of our first camp in Madrid
  • Over 400 children attending our famous Summer Camps in the UK
  • Many school groups enjoying L&E Cultural & Language Trips across Europe.
  • Securing our third venue in the UK but first in the South of England for Summer 2017
  • Securing our second venue in Spain for Spring 2017
  • Several awards for our unrivalled Teen Travel programme
  • Director, Sam Ridgway gaining his Ski Instructor qualifications (maybe a clue for the next L&E venture!!)

Review: Summer 2016

20 September 2016


Week 1, Day1…The camp arose to a beautiful morning and a hearty breakfast which the kids thoroughly enjoyed. We kicked off the mornings activities with L&E’s famous dodgeball, which is always a favourite with the kids. After some epic confrontations we moved onto the mornings activities, a packed schedule that included portrait making, den building, quick cricket and football.

We were amazed by some of the artistic talent on display as the children painted the staff tutors portraits and the den builders built houses they promised us where fit enough to live in. Quick cricket is a traditional English sport which many of the kids had never tired, however they enjoyed the challenge of learning something new and really impressed the staff with how quickly they picked up such a difficult sport. Every morning some of the children also do English Language lessons, which today involved writing and producing an English movie. It was of an extremely high quality and is likely to feature at the camps end of week oscars.

After a well earned lunch the children begun the afternoons activities in some stunning sunshine. Many of the boys chose to make their own camp fires in the woods as we bought some snacks with us to toast on an open fire. Most of the other children chose to play football in the sun, while the others cooked delicious scones and butterfly cakes, which we all enjoyed this afternoon. Later on we had a swim to cool down before we had our evening meal.

On the first evening of L&E we always make sure play our silly Ice Breaker games, which gives the kids a chance to get to know each other better. Its great to see the friendships that are already developing and how easily the camp gets on as a whole. There were many laughs and smiles on display from both staff and kids alike, as you will see in our pictures from the evening. The camp is full of positive energy and we ended the day with hot chocolate and dancing in pyjamas. We can’t wait to see what the rest of the camp has in store, but if today is a taster for what is to come then its going to be a wonderful summer!

Day 2, Week 1….L&E camp started with some morning song as the children were awoken with a tune and more importantly…….sunshine!!

Good old English porridge was on offer for breakfast this morning…..some brave children took the plunge, but suffice to say that the pot was still rather full at the end of service.

After only one day of dodgeball the children have quickly picked up the rules and gave the tutors a run for their money this morning. Tutors 1 – Children 1.

The creative amongst us took to the concrete basketball courts where we decorated the vast area with the L&E logo. After running out of chalk to colour in the giant logo, the children used their initiative and creativity to fill in the letters with patterns and shapes…….if only we had the drone for a photograph……

Still on a high from Euro ‘16 a mix of boys and girls took to the field for a fierce game of football. Scuba Steve (Bill) was back again this year to take the children scuba diving in our swimming pool. After being shown the proper techniques and signals the children enjoyed swimming the length of the pool with their flippers and picking up weights.

The afternoon turned out to be very musical with Baptiste, our student turned tutor taking a rap session. The children thoroughly enjoyed using their lyrical skills to come up with some bangin’ beats for the Friday night’s Oscar’s. While some children were rapping, other children were singing karaoke……some old ones and some new ones and some classics.

The first campfire of 2016 did not disappoint. Our new tutors gave a spirited performance of The Banana Song which we thought wouldn’t ever end! This was followed some national anthems, with our first ever Chinese national anthem sung by Ethan. Marshmallows were toasted, wink murder was played, then the sun set on our happy campers. Whatever will tomorrow bring…….?

Day 3, Week 1…

After the epic campfire last night, Wednesday had a lot to live up to. It started off nice bright and early with Mary and Harry waking the campers up and we had a yummy treat of boiled eggs waiting for us when breakfast was ready. After breakfast the first group of adventurers headed out on the short drive to the lake ready to go canoeing whilst the rest of the camp got energised and ready for the rest of the day with the much loved and looked forward to Dodgeball. After some fast and furious games of Dodgeball it was time for the highlight of the session ‘the tutors v the children’. It was looking good for the mighty team orange until the last few minutes where there was a run of outs. The score currently stands at children-2 tutors -1 but the tutors are looking to steal a win for the week. The options for activities this morning included a tea party for the children doing English. They had to prepare and cook their own food for the party including some amazing chocolate orange cupcakes which were also enjoyed by the tutors. They participated in some traditional English party games during the tea party including pass the parcel and musical chairs. Sport took to the tennis courts having been inspired by Andy Murray’s fantastic win at Wimbledon at the weekend. I am told that some highly competitive games of ‘round the world’ were played. In creative this morning the children made pretty dreamcatchers in a rainbow of colours. After refuelling with a lunch of sausages, roast potatoes and vegetables the children and tutors were ready for another jam packed afternoon of fun! A second group of enthusiastic and keen campers set off for an afternoon of adventure on the water and a tired and slightly damp group arrived back later. Sport played a variety of different sports in the afternoon session, volleyball, badminton and uni hock and as the sun broke through the clouds they even ventured outside to play lacrosse. The horse riders also had a great afternoon getting to know their ponies better and improving their riding. And last but by no means least the creative option this afternoon was stop motion. Some fantastic stop motion films have been created ready to show at the Oscars on Friday, some even involving the Lenny the landrover model. After a dip in the pool and dinner it was deemed warm enough for the first outing of 2016 for the L & E world famous slippery slide. This is always a camp favourite especially when paired with the sumo suits. After a dash inside to get warm and clean pjs, popcorn and a movie finished the night off. What a day! Now we are looking forward to what tomorrow brings, especially theme night!

Day 4, Week 1…

We could not have had a more beautiful wake up on the penultimate day of camp! What a morning, the sun blazing down upon was the first giveaway to the day that we had coming up!

It felt like a quick trip across to channel with our Parisian style continental breakfast in the sunshine, which prepared us delightfully for the fabulous day ahead. Post breakfast we raced across to the favourite part of the morning – good old traditional dodgeball! It was, as always, incredibly intense. The tutors were miles ahead, but Mattias won it back, and somehow, by the power of ratio, the children won it back!

In L&E, Thursday means one thing only… THEME NIGHT!!! With an activity packed, fun fuelled evening ahead, everyone at camp had a post-dodgeball yoga session. With some astounding positions achieved, the hour flew past and both tutors and children were refreshed and ready for the day.

Big Sam took the first budding mountaineers across to the world famous Brimham Rocks. Everyone had the time of their lives climbing up the biggest boulders you could imagine – including Sam, even if he did get a bit stuck! Everything possible, from weasaling, outdoor caving, abseiling, and of course climbing!

Back at camp, Lizzie, Julie and Mary were very involved helping the young creative minds to transform L&E camp into SPY CAMP. Posters, banners, and spy games all being created in preparation for the evening’s festivities. Cricket obsessed Harry had all his dreams come true as he took a group of adventurous sporty kids to try out cricket for the first time. And they exceeded expectations, the standard as higher than the ashes – big shout out to Aune for her awesome cricket skills, also tutor Charlie for making a fair few catches herself.

Somehow it was already lunchtime, how the time really does fly! What more could you ask for than being refuelled by good old chicken pie, not a single crumb left on a plate. The excitement was rife with theme night looming.

Sam then took the other half of the adventure seekers to Brimham rocks, the sporty minds were whipped off by Baptiste, Sam and Quentin for a hardcore shooting and basketball session. Tan and Mike excelled, putting Basketball Baptiste in his place and showing him how to really play. Lizzie and Mary sneaked off to make a special secret spy video, and Charlie, Julie and Kate carried on with the artistically talented to prepare for the nights extravaganza!

During dinner, there was a fiasco. Somebody had stolen Lenny! WHAT WAS GOING ON?? Thankfully, the children had just left L&E and joined Spy School. My oh my, what an intense start to Spy School, talk about being thrown in at the deep end! With a debrief from Sam, the children had 5 different tasks to complete in order to locate lost Lenny; Laser beam challenge, memory tests, obstacle course, spy matching, and the classic wink murder. After completing each challenge, each group won a letter, which eventually spelt out Sherlock Holmes who gave them the clue of the whereabouts of Lenny! The intelligent team of CIA were the first to complete the mission, and found the hidden Lenny – Sam was very relieved!

What a day we had – tired eyes flooded the room as we slurped away on our hot chocolate. Straight to bed in anticipation for our final day of week one L&E 2016.

Week1, Day 5…

This morning, after breakfast and our traditional dodgeball game, Sam and Lizzie took the English class to Bedale with a list of specific British items they had to buy with £5 each. They all managed to purchase all the items and had a great morning practicing their English in an every day life situation.

Charlie and Quentin organized a water-polo game with great performances from the German duo, Tim and David. Oliver and Harry started an L&Ewood movie making with 5 pupils who came up with a bunch of great ideas to promote L&E.
Mary and Baptiste founded the UPF group with Alice, Rose, Sierra, Maria and Yasmin who offered a great dance performance.

After lunch, the traditional L&E triathlon started. Luzia won the overall race being the fastest at swimming, running and shooting hoops. Julie won the swimming and shooting race and Aune finished first at running and shooting.

After that, two groups were formed, a creative one to prepare Oscars night and a sport one with touch rugby and football. Dinner was then over and gave place to the famous L&E Oscars night, with a lot of different prizes for a lot of different winners. First week rising star is Aune and the star camper of this week is Julie, who showed great skills in a lot of different areas and who made staff’s work much easier.

Kids could enjoy the rest of their night during the disco with great songs like the Macarena or Uptown funk.

Everyone went to bed with great memories of their week here and got ready, for some of them, for the first excursion, tomorrow in York.


Week 2 – Day 1

The sun rose on another Monday morning here at camp with our new children wiping their eyes and very quickly raring to go! All the tutors and children descended upon the sports hall for an epic game of dodgeball. The rules were explained to the new children and they picked up the game scarily quickly… suffice to say us tutors found the tutors vs. children game pretty tricky. However – I’m sure we won…

The dangerous dare-deviling den-building masterminds saw an opportunity ahead of them and took it. With a solid team of 10 tenacious minds the adventurers were split into two and put head to head to see if it was possible to have one group out-build the other. My, oh my, were the tensions high! Having found exceptionally strong trees for the cavemen/women to construct their new habitats, the hunt was on to find the best materials to add to their up and coming dens. The race was on as team France went against team Europe. Pedro led team Europe into the woods and everyone found incredible things for the den. Team France observed team Europe and Baptiste took charge helping his group find the best things to build the best den. Forty minutes had passed and the tutors, Baptiste, Matt and Mary were in dismay at the talent before their eyes. The durability, structure and practicality of the dens was beyond belief, therefore they had to add another category to find a winner. The physical appearance of the den was the deciding factor. Garrance and Albane managed to win it last minute by finding some beautiful mosaic stones to design the exterior of the den and become the winners of L&E den building week 2.

The artistic amongst us skipped to the art room where painting in pieces took place. Each child either painted a section of Starry Night by Vincent van Gough or constructed clay models. For inspiration the children perused the fabulous models on display in the art room. It may have started off slow but could the tutor’s minds have been blown anymore??? Ezgi whacked out a masterpiece with her section of the picture leaving the tutors in dismay, she then was a shining star who helped the younger children create the individual section of the picture which put together created something made something more beautiful than the dazzling moon we saw during the ice breakers…

During English today, a music video was produced to the song ‘Cake By The Ocean’, where the pool was interpreted into the ocean and children ate cake. Every child got really involved and thoroughly enjoyed either filming, acting, dancing or directing the video, making into a video that Hollywood would be proud off.

After a scrumptious lunch, the children split off into three groups of campfire preparations, horse riding, football and croquet.

A group of 4 girls travelled to the stables where the children went for a hack in the woods. With the sun shining and the heat rising they spent the second half of the session washing the horses, not sure who enjoyed it more, the horses or the children!

During campfire preparations Mathias and Pedro took the lead teaching the younger children how to build a proper fire, collecting the right sort of twigs and kindling as well as making the campsite look appealing ready for the campfire tomorrow evening. We may have accidentally chased some sheep away from some nice looking logs but we feel they found a new patch of grass to graze on.

In order to let the children get to know everyone in the camp, we all took part in several icebreaker challenges in which 6 teams competed. Each team bonded quickly during the first challenge in which they had to sort themselves into orders without speaking which is always challenging but really good fun. The dance routines were a marvel this week with an epic song choice of ‘Work from Home’. Some were better than others, but all the children danced their socks off.

Ending the night on a high with an epic egg throwing competition from the staff, hot chocolate was served with a new special recipe for them to try. The children went to bed sleepy eyed but happy. We’re set for a heat wave tomorrow… 26 degrees! I feel a water-slide coming out…

Week 2, Day 2…

The scorching day started off with a German game of tag introduced by Caraline. Then the traditional game of staff vs children dodgeball came to a quick end when the children absolutely destroyed the out numbered staff. The children then had a choice between cheeky tennis, fantastic film making and scuba diving with scuba Steve aka Bill. The lucky nineteen children to choose tennis headed off to the courts in a rare hot sunny morning. Mathias came out victorious in an intense game of around the world.

In English they took a walk down to the woods to learn how to survive in the wilderness. The children were give the challenge to light a fire with only what they could find in the forest. After the completion of there fire, they were given a scavenger hunt which tested there english vocabulary to the maximum.

The children who chose to do fantastic film were tasked with the opportunity make the L&Ewood film, Charlie and Chocolate Factory. The plethora of roles were distributed amongst the budding film makers – roles such as; wardrobe, script, director, producer and camera women/man. The children chose specific scenes involving the children’s interviews with the press when they found the golden tickets. Three hours later we had the six scenes in the bag and we felt vastly superior to any Hollywood feature length movie!

The blazing afternoon couldn’t have started off any better than with The WaterGames, an aviation game taking from Game of Thrones/Hunger Games. The children were broken up into four teams and the aim was to invade each others zones. After an epic two hour long battle the staff and children descended upon the waterslide. Thankfully the staff had prepared several bottles of fairy liquid to ensure the slippiness off the slide.

The children found shelter from the intense heat when they got the opportunity to go suba-diving. Suba Steve (Bill) lead another epic session. The children always love the opportunity to engage in such a unique activity.

Greta set the tone for the campfire when she gave an incredible performance of her vocal excellence. The night continued with some rousing national anthems around the fire.

We hope the Indian summer continues, however we feel the thunder storm approaching…

Week 2, Day 3…

After a leisurely start to the morning Sam and Ollie took the children to the sports centre for their daily fix of dodgeball. The children then had a choice between canoeing with Big Sam and Paul, kwik cricket and baking.

The sport group were hindered by the weather and confined to the sports hall. However, this didn’t dampen their spirits as Ollie and Harry taught them how to bowl. Luzia, Julian and Mike scored the most points in the bowling game. We then ended with a big game of kwik cricket with Sven particularly impressing with the bat and Julian his fielding. Patrick showed great energy and kept his side in the game on several occasions, and showed why England should be looking at him for this summer series, whilst Aune continued her development from last week and impressed in all the drills.

The creative meanwhile went with Baptiste and Quentin to test out their rap skills. Spitting bars all morning they have managed to come up with a rap worthy of a performance at this Fridays Oscars, to be lead by Greta’s vocals and bars by Luis and Nicolas.

The morning group of canoeists played canoe polo with the green team coming up on top. Following the lead from Tan (aka Jason) who capsized they finished their session with a jump into the lake.

The English group learnt the most important vocabulary – how to bake a cake! After finding their own delicious recipes, the children had the challenge of working out what each ingredient was, what their instructions were, and then in perfect English, requested each item and each quantity from the kitchen staff. It is safe to say we have some Mary Berry’s amongst us! With cupcakes baked to perfection, and a flawless creamy chocolate cake, next year’s Great British Bake off better watch out!

In the afternoon, after a quick duck-duck-goose warm up, the energetic athletes participated in a highly competitive Rounders game. It was intense, with incredible catches, heroic hits, and smashing sprinting – it was a life or death situation! Matt and Mary were blown away with the talent they were seeing. Garance wowed us with her bowling skills, and Theodore’s catches were out of the world! Understandably both children and pupils were exhausted, after a quick refuelling, we split into two groups, Mary took the diva dancers, and Matt the deadly dodgeballers – keen to up their morning dodgeball game. The delightful dancers boogied away to some classics, before Theodore and Baptiste took the role of choreographer and whipped up a masterpiece.

With the theme of this week being Roald Dahl the unlikely trio of Ollie, Harry and Quentin took the creative session. With a chilled vibe inspired by the likes of Robbie Williams, the children attempted their own versions of classic Roald Dahl book covers. Greta’s Fantastic Mr Fox book cover was full of life and mischief, whilst Yoyo’s Dahl inspired 3D book cover, with functioning origami and giraffe was a fantastic sight.

With arms full of popcorn the kids settled down to watch the striking movie adaptation of Dahl’s classic BFG. After the delights of the movie the kids headed upstairs for an early night to recharge the batteries at the half way stage of the week.

Week 2, Day 4…

As usual the day started with dodgeball to get everyone ready for the day ahead. Today the tutors won the match against the children regardless of the unfair ratio! Climbing was the main event of the day, Sam & Kate took the kids to Brimham Rocks, and would like to make a special mention to Cindy, Christine, Rose, Isaac and Tan for their great effort and ability. There was a great team spirit all round and all the climbers were extremely encouraging of each other.

One of the morning sport options was gymnastics as it has previously been very popular and was requested by a lot of the girls. We had a big group partaking in gymnastics, Mary and Lizzie would like to give a special mention to Cindy for improving hugely in just one session and perfecting her forward roll! Rose and Alice were also fantastic and their ability of gymnastics was very high. The girls used their skill to demonstrate and teach the others in the group. The gymnastic group was divided into two teams and their task was to create a floor/ dance routine. Both groups were excellent, showing what they’d learnt in the lesson and involving all team members.

Meanwhile on the other division of the sports hall, Futsal was being led by Matt and Quentin. A new sport for most to try out. The boys said that everyone who took part in the games was enthusiastic and the standard was really high! Special mention to Max who was incredible as a goal keeper! As usual, the horse riders went on a hack in this lovely British weather that we are currently graced with! All the riders doing great and improving every day.

A typical Thursday in creative, continuing making the props for the theme night coming up. All sorts were made in the art room today, from Willy Wonka’s golden tickets, invitations to each dorm to Roald Dahl’s 100th Birthday celebration and Olympic Games, to posters to decorate the dining hall with the front covers of all the Roald Dahl books. Tilda was incredibly talented and showed off her talent making different book covers, and all the children worked great together to get all the jobs done for the evening events!

And of course, the heavily anticipated, THEME NIGHT!! To celebrate the 100th Birthday of the world famous timeless author Roald Dahl, the children were all invited to celebrate with some of his most famous characters over his lifetime. Willy Wonka (big Sam) took the children on a trip to visit his good friends Matilda, James and his the Giant Peach, Danny the Champion of the World, the Big Friendly Giant, Oompa-Lumpa’s and George and his marvellous medicine. After being invited by Willy Wonka to join him on the adventure, the five teams had to complete different challenges set by Wiilly Wonka’s delightful companions in order to win as many golden tickets as possible.

The first stop was a step into the dramatic life of Danny the Champion of the world. The courageous challengers took on the terrifying gameskeepers as they had to protect a precious balloon pheasant from being popped by the gallivanting gameskeepers. Despite an injury, Lukas and Robin couldn’t have done a better job and made it through the whole forest! Next stop was a visit to George and his laboratory to make some marvellous medicine. Mixing mentos with various different fizzy pops, Kai created an incredible explosion which blew our hats off! Trudging onto meet Willy Wonka’s next companion Matilda, the children re-enacted Bruce Bogtrotter with a non-handed cake eating race… But we couldn’t be too loud, as there was a huuuuuuuugggggggeeeeeee sleeping giant not too far off, thankfully the children wanted him to have lovely dreams, so as a team, together catapulted dream fuelled water balloons at the giant to send him sweet dreams. Fantastic Mr Fox was next on the road trip, an intense L&E classic was played to steal the chicken from the middle, Tilda showed off her speedy skills by outrunning everyone! Last stop on the list, we were confronted by James’ Giant Peach! The last standing boys and girl on each team bravely took on the upflowing almost vertical rapid water slide. The challenge to be the first to the top was heroically won by a magnificent performance from Mike, which was quickly celebrated by a whole L&E fairy liquid water slide!

What an evening we had! Amazingly, every child managed to complete all of the tasks set by Willy Wonka and his pals, meaning they won enough golden tickets to experience WILLY WONKAS FANTASTIC CHOCOLATE FOUNTAIN!

With a houseful of excited but exhausted faces, there was no disputing tonight’s bed times! Conversations have already started about tomorrows Oscar night, who knows what will happen…

Week 2, Day 5

Could we have had a better week of weather in the Yorkshire Dales this week? The most delightful weather, topped with the most delightful children. Waking up to the last day of L&E week 2 2016, with the most glorious weather, a hearty breakfast was followed by the highly anticipated tutors v children dodgeball finale. Mike and Sven were letting no dodgeballs catch them, but it was Jade’s absolutely astounding adrenaline fuelled agility skills that somehow, much to the tutors dismay, left the tutors to just one man standing. Little Sam takes on the children from L&E, one final staggering shot from Luis got out the final tutor, and we had to admit defeat…

Super hyped from their victory, excitement was rife as the morning activities were announced. To Cindy and Christina’s delight, Badminton was the sport of the morning. Tutors Matt and Charlie soon understood why the girls had requested a badminton session, with shuttlecocks flying faster than Usain Bolt, and rally’s tenser than the Wimbledon final, the boys were really shown how badminton should be played.

The exploratory adventures were split into two teams, each with the challenge of creating the most daring scavenger hunt. Utilising all the beautiful grounds we are so incredibly lucky to be living in, they sent each other up huge mini-mountains, around lakes and rivers, and throughout fields of plenty. They set each other all different items to be found – the most sought after item being tutor Harry’s left shoe!

The inventive minds assembled to create their own board games. Yoyo’s incredible photographic memory helped her recreate a new version of Monopoly. Emma and Kate showed off their imaginative side by creating a whole new trivia board game, their intelligence beyond belief, questions we had no clue the answers to!

With the final English lessons depressingly here, Sam and Lizzie kicked it off with a quick fire spelling test for all the farfetched vocabulary they’ve attained over the week! Giulia and Francesca nailed it proving the week the success we knew it was! As a celebration, they all researched how to make classic British pancakes, it was flipping fantastic.

This afternoon saw the L&E weekly tradition of the triathlon. Instead of the normal bike section of the triathlon the children were put through their paces with a most intricate assault course. Over, under, kicking, throwing, they made their way through the assault course, which took the place of the normal ‘bike’ section. There were teams competing along with our tough solo competitors. There was a rousing crowd for the solo competitors as they made their way from the pool, to the assault course and finally to the mini-marathon. With Luzia and Aune neck in neck – the crowd were going absolutely insane!! Luzia managed to beat not just every individual, but every single team. Girl power!

L&E 2016 week 2 Oscars did not disappoint. With two new awards made up for this week due to some impressive fancy dress outfits and general kindness the night was a huge success. As well as new awards, the unveiling of the Teen Travel 2015 video went down a storm especially with Sierra, as she was one of the teen travelers. Along with these new awards were the old favorites, with this weeks star camper proudly named as Emma!

The children danced their hearts out in the performing arts centre after the Oscars………I’m sure there was some ceilidh dancing in there somewhere! The weather looks good for our trip to Whitby tomorrow, sun, sea, sand and maybe some sleep on the way!



Week 3, Day 1…

Another beautiful day here at L&E as the sun rose, breaking through the rain clouds from the night before. The new children were inducted into the L&E morning routine with a big game of dodge ball. If there were any tired eyes from the night before they quickly disappeared as yellow balls whizzed around the sports hall. The games concluded with a children vs tutors game, which was heavily contested, and the tutors were out to win! The balls flew fast and furiously around the room, grazing legs and arms sending children and staff walking off the court. It was down to Charlie against the majority of the children from camp. Regrettably we report that the staff were defeated this week but will be back for the win next week!

This morning the children had a wide range of activities to choose from; so much so that we got reports that the children were upset that they had too many good choices and were having difficulty deciding! The future tennis stars of this world took to the courts whilst the adventurous souls of the camp went exploring in a Robin Hood fashion to practice their archery skills. The children who chose the creative option decided to use half o the tutor’s faces to impose their own impression buy drawing the other side of their face. Their perceptions were enlightening! Whilst this was occurring the dream team of English learners were getting to know each other with some word association games.

After a short break, the morning was concluded with a team round robin of L&E ball, the first in a series of games running all week before lunch. We adapted the traditional English game of rounders, and the children used tennis rackets to belt tennis balls around the field. There were some superb catches and even better runs from base to base. The children really enjoyed getting into some team spirit and with some wins and losses under their belts they are really looking forward to continuing the competition tomorrow.

Lunch was delicious. With a plate of spaghetti bolognaise in their tummy, the children were raring to go and excited to hear what the afternoon would bring.

Our horse riders left for their first lesson this week and the young footballers amongst us, strapped on their boots for their first football lesson. The tennis was so over subscribed in the morning that it was offered again in the afternoon as well as the options for a giant pop art/classic painting or a treasure hunt around the grounds. The treasure hunt was a massive success with 4 teams entering. The winning prize however went to the French who found all 24 items including a lucky cockerel picture and an excellent Z shaped stick.

Traditionally icebreakers were the plan for the evening and it was a fantastic success. We eased into them with some ordering games and the children were getting to know more campers a little more. The after eight games, always a favourite, was completed in a new L&E record of 0.5seconds by Julian. A record that we think will stand for a long time! The children showed their amazing waitress and waiter skills as they were spun round and asked to deliver a cup of water on a tray to the pot 10ft away. The night ended with some excellent dances to JT’s, Can’t stop that feeling, and the best performances were given more resources to craft their plummeting vessels to protect their egg from, THE EGG DROP! There were some discrepancies on how ‘legal’ the created vessels were, but the true test was having big Sam throw it from the second floor. After having some eggs scrambled on the pavement, having not made the drop, there were three lucky eggs!

As a great, and very busy day one came to an end there were several mugs of hot chocolate to be enjoyed. The smiling campers made their way to bed as the L&E tutors plan the next days exciting activities.

Night, night!

Week 3, Day 2…

We were lucky to wake up to the sun streaming through our windows again this morning and bacon for breakfast so the early rise was shaken off quickly by all!

Those feeling energetic headed for the hockey pitch to learn new skills and enjoy a morning run around. Meanwhile our English students went to discuss their favourite foods from home and then pick a recipe to cook in tomorrow’s session. Other campers took to the outside to find natural materials to make exotic clothes from and our winning stylist created an eccentric bow tie from leaves.

The afternoon consisted of our elite footballers having serious team talks and tactic discussions in preparation for their match against Bedale Juniors on Thursday afternoon. One more day of finalising positions and deciding on some set play will hopefully bring in a win for the newly formed L&E ballers.

Our horse riders set off keen for their afternoon trek after a yummy lunch and enjoyed their second lesson of the week. Scuba diving was run throughout the day today, with the advanced divers learning some more technical skills including the all important skill of – what to do when you run out of air! The art room became a hive of activity predominantly with ‘one point perspective’ creations but also trying the art of henna (there are now plenty of decorated hands and feet wandering around camp)! For the other sporting characters it was a competitive afternoon of tennis; both table and on the astro turf which made for accuracy and strength skills really coming into play.

The much anticipated camp fire filled the evening not only with some additional warmth but also an array of songs from around the world. There was an amazing display of talent from all over the world this evening; we had national anthems sang with passion, rap songs accompanied with dance moves and infamous camp songs with various accents! It was a special atmosphere around the fire with everyone learning more about new friends as well as the art of marshmallow toasting.

As ever, it was a jam packed day and when time for PJ’s and hot chocolate came people were happy to head for bed to be ready for the next day!

Week 3, Day 3…

Beautiful blue skies met campers this morning, ensuring another fun-filled day of activities. The traditional dodgeball managed to awaken even the most sleepy campers. Julie and Charlie showing some impressive skills dodging, diving and ducking. After dodgeball the boys and girls participated in some very relaxing yoga, led by our very own guru master Charlotte. Then we had the daily rounders games, a very action-filled morning!

The traditional British meal of bangers and mash for lunch provided the campers with plenty of sustenance for the rest of the day. Afternoon activities consisted of a choice of Kwik-cricket, stop-motion, football and for the very adventurous canoeing. In Kwik-cricket we had some fantastic play by Alice and Nikol, both taking on some fearsome shots.

In stop-motion, where the kids made films out of modelling clay, some directory excellence was shown by Hannah and some artistic brilliance from Greta and Faye. The films will be released Friday 29th July… watch this space.

In afternoon football, things were getting serious. The greatly anticipated match of the week is approaching and ensuring the players are physically and mentally prepared falls into the hands of coaches Baptiste and Quentin Debris. In an interview with the team manager, Sam Ridgway, it was revealed that he has high hopes for the team, though he implores the team not to be too complacent. After all the Bedale team did win against Man U last year (Ridgway’s former favourite team).

The adventurous headed to the lake for canoeing, with Ivanna, David, Patrick, Theo and Robin making a splash! A water polo type game in the canoes along with some wobbly heads, knees and toes singing was enjoyed.

After dinner the team headed out onto the hillside for SLIP ‘N’ SLIDE! Sumo’s, children and tutors threw themselves down the soapy slide. Water guns and hosepipes were brandished and some impressive sliding was seen from all those involved. After the long day everyone chilled out with movie night, very much deserved by all.

Week 3, Day 4…

As the rain pattered down on the roof of Asygarth the children rose their sleepy heads to the voices of their tutors waking them up. It was a grey Yorkshire morning but the weather didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of our keen campers.

Breakfast was saucy hoops with scrumptious sausages that went down a treat. Once bellies were full it was onto dodge ball where the children duck, dove and dipped away from the flying blurs of the yellow balls. Continuing with ball sports, the sporting campers continue in the sports hall and played some badminton and volleyball. Francesca pulled out some superb serves and Lucia made some excellent strikes to win points for her team.

The creative crew started on painting some banners to support out budding footballers for their match in the evening. A group also worked with Baptiste, putting together a rap to perform for our Oscar evening.

Whilst campers were having lots of fun on site a group left for a morning of climbing, which they thoroughly enjoyed. The rain did not deter the amazing climbers from moving up the rocks like spider monkeys and abseiling down like Spiderman!

After the campers enjoyed sweet and sour chicken for lunch we hoped for a break in the steady light rain, and our prayers were answered. Apart from a few scattered showers activities went ahead, with relatively dry conditions. The creative group continues with their signs for the football whilst the football team worked hard with their L&E coaches to perfect their tactics ahead of this evenings match. The horse riders enjoyed their last lesson with a tack around the Yorkshire countryside and loved grooming their horses after arriving back. Another group of climbers scaled the cliffs and a group tried their hand at water polo, which turned into surfing around on the big floats. And due to high demand another volleyball session was put on so the die-hard fans could complete their competitive matches.

Arguably one of the most enjoyable nights during a week stay at L&E is theme night and this week it was a show down between Disney and Pixar. The scene was set, the avid Pokémon Go craze has swept the world in the past few weeks, and since all Pokémon had been caught the trainers have kidnapped the Disney and Pixar characters as they prepare to take over the world! With Mr Incredible, Peter Pan, Sleeping Beauty, Bert from Mary Poppins and Woody all captured by a Pokémon villain the children had to follow the video clues to track them down and recapture them before it was too late! There were several activities for them to complete along the way, collecting stars as a Pokémon trainer. All children had an amazing time and the energy from each group was evident as the tutors tried to put them to bed afterwards.

It was an outstanding day at L&E and our campers, tucked up in bed, are excited for what tomorrow will bring and have been thinking about the nominations for the Oscars tomorrow. Until then…good night.

Week 3, Day 5…

Everyone woke up this morning a bit tired for our last day of the week..

As always, after breakfast, the traditional L&E dodgeball activity took place and showed, once again, that some of the children have great talent! For morning activities, sport was taking place in the sports hall for a futsal game, where Julian and Theo excelled, and Max’s team won the tournament.

In creative, the children cut potatoes into shapes. Some had the word Hello on them, others were shaped like stars.. Anyway, this activity was incredible and showed how are creative activities can be really original.
Concerning the adventure activity, they were training in the swimming pool to become professional lifeguards and looking at them, you can see all the potential in these great swimmers!
After lunch, all the children put their swimsuits on to go to the swimming pool and start the 3rd 2016 triathlon… The great athlete Luzia won yet again the competition and finished this huge task in only 3 minutes ( maybe a new record ? ).
After a small break and dinner, even if weather wasn’t great, everyone was keen to get to the famous Oscar night ! Once more, a lot of new awards were given, including the raping Oscar for Daniel and the best rounders team, won by Robyn’s team. The crowd stayed quiet to listen to Julien and Sarah presenting week 3’s rising star won by Rebecca whereas Luzia won star camper and got to see her name inscribed on the L&E wall of fame !
Everyone could then enjoy their last moments at camp and for others, the end of another great week waiting impatiently for the fourth one to come…



Week 4 – Day 1…

The sun blazed down upon Aysgarth School and gave light to yet another week at L&E. The morning activities consisted of archery which taught the children how to respect the art and at the same time shoot arrows at a foam target. Everyone was exceptional however there was a standout performance from Charlie and with the added threat of homicidal sheep lead to the archer’s morning very eventful.

The ones who took English took on the challenge of a memory game. The aim of the game was to find out several things about their partners such as how many pets they have, where they are from and what their favourite past time was. It turns out, this was not challenging enough as they all remembered practically everything about their partners. We then resorted to a game of wink murderer to complete the morning activity.

The sports options were tennis and lacrosse. Tennis as the tutor put it was “great fun”, and they all played a game that Holly taught the group. Lacrosse being a more complex sport was more challenging however the children managed to grasp the skills wishing the first couple of drills. With a stand out performance form Simon.

And finally the creative option the group took photos from Harry Potter characters and cut them in half. Then they drew on the rest. Master pieces were created in that session with Faye creating a piece of art that would go for billions.

After a jam packed morning, the lunch bell chimed and the kids settled down for a hearty meal to get them ready for the afternoon. With full tummies and beaming faces the group split off to do various sports, get creative or go horse riding. The adventure activity, archery, was so popular that it ran all day! A group set off through the fields to set up their course and practice with their bows and arrows – safe to say we have a few budding Robin Hoods in our midst! After a few tentative shots, George and Nina found their aim and got to grips with this newfound hobby. Football took a smaller group this afternoon, but needless to say they still had a fantastic afternoon with Nicholas and Maciej showing what they’re made of. The third sport, volleyball, was also popular and is fast becoming a favourite in camp!

The creative team took on the challenge of making a parody of the song ‘Uptown Funk’, Darklord Funk, keeping with our Harry Potter theme this week. It is a work in progress so keep your eyes peeled for the finished product! The horse riders met their ponies for the week and the newcomers got to grips with the basics, whilst those who have been here longer continued to hone their skills.

The main building was almost empty during the afternoon break as most of the kids (and some of the tutors!) enjoyed a splash in the swimming pool. Having worked up an appetite they sat down for dinner while the tutors prepared some ice breaker games for the evening activity to get everyone to mingle. The camp was split into groups who competed in relay races, had to feed each other yoghurt, stuff marshmallows in their mouths and say “chubby bunnies”, and answer questions about the tutors. The evening was a huge success and our campers went to bed with new friends and happy faces! We can’t wait for the sun to rise and see what Tuesday holds…

Week 4 – Day 2…

Waking up to a magical misty morning was very suited in preparation for the trip we were taking to the forbidden forest later that evening…

The scene was set for the second day of magical madness in our wizarding week! Successfully making our way through the eerie fog towards the sports hall, brought on the classic dodgeball. Despite the unfair child to tutor ratio, the tutors managed to pull through… almost!

We warmly welcomed back our fantastic pal Bill who whisked the children under the sea to scuba dive and see everything the pool had to hold. Although Michael could tell us lots of his experience on virtual reality scuba diving, he had never done it in real life, and he loved it!! Some true talent amongst all the children, every single child with a huuuuggggeeee smile on their face!

The English students had their skills tested to the limit as they had to find and create their own recipes for creating the most challenging baking masterpiece, not just a gingerbread man, not just a gingerbread house, but gingerbread Hogwarts!! A challenging task, testing their English ability to research foods, kitchen equipment, and methods of cooking. After a long morning of research and planning, the class are ready prepared for tomorrow morning to create their masterpiece.

The critical creative kids created every child’s dreams for when they turn 11, the Hogwarts invitation letter. Copying from an original, they used their artistic ability to create a replica the Hogwarts sign, and design of the letters. But more importantly, the paper had to be authentic. Out came the teabags to stain the paper the genuine colour it would have been when sent out by Professional Dumbledore.

Indoor hockey went down a treat as one of the sporting options this morning, everybody getting so involved, and picking up the skills quicker than we have ever seen at L&E!

The dancing group had a slight different dynamic to the usual crown dancing attracts. We were thrilled to see the older boys getting involved with a dance off against the experienced female dance squad. But boy oh boy did they give them run for their money. With Zander pulling out back flips, and Nicholas throwing moves unseen ever before, the competition will only be decided at the real dance off during Fridays Oscars.

After a scrumptious lunchtime, everyone was thrilled to see a surprise visit from tutor Will who missed L&E too much, so just had to come back to see us all! So we set him onto his specialty and hosted a huge sporting afternoon. Ultimate Frisbee ball is always a winner when Will is about, and of course, as usual it went down an absolute treat. Playing the rules of ultimate Frisbee, but instead using a ball, the time flew past quicker than the ball did! Topped off with a killer game of kwick cricket, it is safe to say the children gained uncountable amounts of new sporting skills this afternoon!

Not forgetting one key part of Harry Potter, the word ‘quidditch’ had been flying about quite a lot… But of course the one thing missing were broomsticks! So off the artistic minds went into the woods to find appropriate branches to make life size broomsticks. Using the magical spell ‘Up’ the broomsticks flew into their hands – luckily Charlie caught it all on video!

Fajitas for dinner to refuel our budding young potential Hogwarts attendee’s for the big night ahead. And they truly needed it. Post dinner the children lined up, and tensions were rife as they waited outside the great hall, where Dumbledore would present the sorting had which would shortly be announcing their fate for the upcoming week. Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw, that was the question on everyone’s mind. Joe was one of the first up, and his ravishing red hair was the giveaway that he followed his likely ancestors by being sorted into Gryffindor. Just as the last few children found out their houses, Hagrid suddenly burst in! The children’s assistance was needed down in the outskirts of the forbidden forest to help Hagrid and his magical musical beasts with his cackling campfire!

So we wrapped up warm in all our cloaks, and headed on down to see how our musical abilities could help out Hagrid. Simona, Rachel and Zander kicked off the musical talent with a well-rehearsed rap, setting the standard super high. But that was nothing for Lydia or Laura who wowed us all with their sensational solos! It was an absolutely beautiful evening, David & Ivana’s exceptional duets, Anna and Joanna delightfully sweet German harmonies, every child showed off their bursting musical skills and made the evening more special than any of us could have imagined.

A cauldron full of hot chocolate set the children into a dreamy daze and after some musical madness, they flew up into bed, exciting for what tomorrow will hold…

Day 3, Week 4…

After our traditional dodgeball game, the English group went on a scavengers hunt looking for objects following the alphabet. Ivanna and Nikol managed to find an object for every letter.

The sport session wanted to keep to it’s true British traditions, and offered to the children the possibility to play croquet and boules.

Meanwhile, in creative, preparation of the Harry Potter theme night was a priority so the groups made ties out of cardboard with the colours of the different Hogwarts houses.
The adventure group, like every Tuesday, went to the lake to go canoeing and came back tired but entirely satisfied of their morning.
After a good lunch, the third afternoon of the week started, and in sports, whilst some children chose to go to the pool to play water polo, some others preferred playing badminton.
In creative, some of the children continued making ties and others wrote ideas of trailers they could film. An other adventure group left to go canoeing.
After dinner, the children were taken to the performing art centre to watch a movie, getting prepared for tomorrow’s theme night. At the end of the movie, everyone drank a cup of hot chocolate then went to bed, incredibly impatient to get the next day started…

Week 4, Day 4…

The excited children woke up with a slight twinkle in their eyes, as they knew the day was all about Harry Potter. Morning dodgeball got them all in the mood for the great day ahead.

Todays sport kicked off with gymnastics and football. In gymnastics the children flipped about on the mats in the indoor centre. The footballers enjoyed the sunny weather that only comes once in a blue moon.

The climbers ventured off to the nearby cliffs to experience what its like to live on the edge. They especially had to face their fears when it came to letting go of the rope when they began their abseil.

The creative children helped make theme night amazing as they all helped make the props that decorated the school. The props helped to turn Aysgarth school into an enchanting Hogwarts.

Theme night started off with an astonishing magical animal show, which consisted of snakes, rats, africa snails, bearded dragon and a tarantula. The children then all lead into the dinning, where a truly great feast was waiting for them. They were then greeted by the staff dressed up as Harry Potter characters. After the great feast the children were invited to the Hogwarts Open Day. More to follow on this….

Day 5, Week 4

Fresh from a night of mystical wonders the children tackled their daily dose of dodgeball with great vigour and enthusiasm. The game of dodgeball was one of the most tightly fought between the staff and children of the week, with the staff pulling of a stunning comeback to take the week series 3-2.

It was a very special birthday today – David! Cake and songs a plenty! We’ll be very sad to say goodbye tomorrow.

Continuing the Harry Potter theme of the week the children, in the houses that they were sorted into on Tuesday, took part in a quidditch tournament. In a round robin which was fiercely contested, Gryffindor somewhat fittingly triumphed, Ravenclaw and Slytherin shared second and Hufflepuff third.
Following this, the kids moved onto the final game of the week long rounders tournament, in which Matt’s team featuring, Axel, Simona, Trevor, Alice, Nicolas, Charlotte, Cherry, Juan and Lydia emerged deserving victors.
In the afternoon we finished the week with a Tri-Wizard tournament. The children, faced a swim, and tough obstacle course. Kieran claimed third, Thomas second, whilst for the 4th week in a row and setting a new personal best, of 2:56, Luzia once more drove to victory.
As ever we finished today with the Oscars, although this week we had a slight twist. Tonight was the inaugural L&E variety performance. In between awards we were treated to a wealth of acts, including singing, gymnastics, comedy and a touch of magic. A huge credit must go to the children who showed tremendous courage and a considerable amount of talent as they took the stage. In the awards, little Michael took the Rising Star Award after demonstrating great potential, as he took on all the obstacles he has faced over the week, pushing himself at times when he was apprehensive as demonstrated by his performance at canoeing. Bulent meanwhile grabbed the big award, Star Camper. Bulent, in his fifth year with the camp, was given the award, after pushing himself out of his comfort zone, and for showing such a startling transformation from the at times timid 9 year old who struggled on his first visit to the camp, to the confident ebullient engaging young man that he now is.


Week 5 Day 1

A windy start to the day ensured the children were down for breakfast in time for their scrumptious crumpets and cereal. With their bellies full, they headed over to the sports hall for the first session of the daily dodge ball competition. The tutors put up a good fight, however with the sheer number of children, and the poor catching and throwing displayed by the tutors, the children began their week as they mean to go on, with a very convincing win.

The morning session offered the choices of Tennis where Miles and Simon in particular demonstrated fantastic technique and were the stand out players. Archery and den building were the adventure options today, giving the children the opportunity to build their own waterproof den, and to then work on their target practice in archery. Creative offered the children the chance to channel their inner Monet with half face drawing of the tutors, and taking a section of Monet’s famous “starry night” and joining them all together to show our own L&E version of the beautiful piece. The English students took part in their own scavenger hunt where they had the chance to explore the wonderful grounds on offer to the children here at Aysgarth school, as well as finding objects that represent every letter of the alphabet. The morning session was completed with an entire camp rounder’s tournament that allowed all children to have the chance to bat and field and work as a team to earn the highest score possible. The children demonstrated some fantastic teamwork as well as some superb hits and catches, and the results table currently stands equal as we head into the next session on Wednesday.

As the weather cleared ready for the afternoon sessions and the horse riders trotted off for their first session of the week, a number of children took to the outside courts to show off their basketball skills and slam dunk their way to victory in the basketball tournament. The creative session saw the children continue their half face and Monet painting, and Hitoha was the stand out artist of the day, with her incredible half face picture. The adventures continued on their archery mission, and having been inspired by the English students, the adventures took part in their own scavenger hunt giving them the opportunity to explore the beautiful Aysgarth grounds.

The evening made way for usual first night icebreakers, which saw some spinning, feeding, dressing up, spilling, dropping and building and more importantly, some new friendships being created. Gaia once again proved herself the ultimate champion of ‘chubby bunnies’ somehow managing to fit 15 marshmallows into her mouth whilst still being able to say the phrase ‘chubby bunnies’ with ease.

After enjoying a warm hot chocolate the children settled themselves into bed ready for all the excitement that day 2 has to offer.

Day 2, Week 5….

The children didn’t need much rousing this morning as the smell of bacon butties was enough to draw them from their snug wee beds. As the children ventured to the dodgeball arena, tensions were high for the second day of the week long dodgeball fanatics. With some of the children still in their infancy stage of dodgeball techniques the seasoned returners showed them the ropes.

Despite some of the children still acclimatizing to the height of British summer, tutors were astounded by the blazing sun.

The creative activity kicked off with an Olympic themed extravaganza. The budding artists created Flags, rings and board games. One of our younger campers created an excellent snakes and ladders style board game presenting all of the events in the competition with polevault poles and waterslides.

The sporting option for the morning was Long ball, which for the uninitiated consists of a fielding and a kicking team with kickers aiming to score runs after kicking the ball without the fielders catching or hitting them out. Our new camper Jacob was our stand out performer in longball today delivering some excellent kicks and achieving a plethora of runs. The football fanatics were ecstatic as the football was released from the grasp of ex semi-pro footballer, tutor Ashleigh. Boy oh boy, what a game. France and Brazil, watch out – Axel and Alan are coming your way for 2018 Qatar.

The spectacular Scuba Steve (Bill!) was back with the weekly scuba diving sessions. The children’s faces lit up as last weeks campers could reminisce on their exceptional experience from the previous week. Every child made a splash during the underwater experience, the sights they saw in the L&E Scuba diving pool making the Great Barrier Reef below average.

A well deserved lasagne and garlic bread for lunch were consumed in the blink of an eyelid, refuelling for a super active afternoon.

Bench ball and Volleyball caught the eyes of the sporty soles in the Olympic L&E camp. A quick insight into what is going to lie ahead in our upcoming Olympic Theme Day this Friday… Talent is high. Skill is high. Friday Olympics will be undoubtedly epic.

Keeping with the Olympic theme, our creative clan took off to the kitchens to bake some exceptional Olympic Ring Cookies. Not only did they taste like gold, the intricate Olympic designs were second to none.

In preparation for the upcoming equestrian events, our riders went all out. Trotting was yesterdays news as our horse riders were quickly cantering around the school. It was simply beyond belief! One of Asad’s first few times on a horse, yet he was keeping up and surpassing expectations.

Back to camp for an ever so popular swim session, creating the appetites for Mexican night – FAJHITAS!!!! The dining room was a lot quieter than normal as the children (and staff) became incredibly stuck into their delicious dinner. But of course, that didn’t last for long! Tuesday night means one thing… Camp fire! And with two new staff this week, that means two new solo performances! However, for the first time in 2016 L&E, the English weather didn’t quite hold up for us… But have no fear, with a quick switcheroo the cinema was all set up, popcorn was being popped, duvets were down, and Cool Running’s captivated the children! Laughter could be heard for miles as the Jamaican bob sleigh team showed us how to compete in the winter Olympics – Cool Running’s style!

A lovely warm hot chocolate for everyone upon arrival back from the cinema, and then straight to bed, eager eyed for what Wednesday has to hold.

Day 3, Week 5…

The sun was shining and this morning at L&E after an intense game of dodgeball we took some time to relax and find our zen. Guru Harioli (Harriet) led a calm and relaxing yoga session for everybody over 10. From head to toe every inch of our bodies was stretched out. We were replenished and refreshed for another exhilarating new day at L&E! The mini under 10s had a slightly different warm up with a crazy active gymnastics session with Mary and Jules, where they wowed them with their Olympic potential despite not even being in double figures!

Then it was time for the penultimate day of rounders never have as many rounders been scored at L&E – the yoga had clearly paid off. The admiral adventurers however had a slightly different morning as they drove off into the wild with Lenny to take on the canoes. Everybody was drenched from top to bottom after purposely capsizing every boat.

Lunch went down a treat, sausages never fail to disappoint. Then it was straight to afternoon activities. In sport today we had plenty of chance to show off impressive rhythm in dance and learn some new tricks in gymnastics. From Ballet led by the wonderful Emy, to an intense Olympic Gymnastics session, with Laura landing her side areal which was stupendous!

With the second half the brave adventures out canoeing with Sam, the others ventures out into the woods with Harry and Adam to learn some life skills and build deadly dens. But that wasn’t their only task, as tonight we were having CAMPFIRE! Down to the bonfire they went, making sure everything was ready and set for the exciting night ahead…

In creative we had an explosion of colour as the children created tie dye patterns on huge different sheets, and then moved on to concrete creations, and decorated the playground with anything from a hippo to the Eiffel tower!

Dinner was, as always, an absolute delight! We may have all heard a little pitter patter on the windows, but nothing was going to stop us from the bonfire bonanza! Coats on, and we wrapped up warm before heading down to the campfire. But we need not have worn that extra jumper! The campfire was GINORMOUS and kept all the children (and their marshmallows) lovely toasty and warm! Some beautiful voices silenced the crowd, and won over the hearts of everyone. Yet again, an evening sweeter than the marshmallows we toasted. An absolute delight of an evening, setting the atmosphere beautifully for the next fantastic few days we have!

Day 4, Week 5

Campers and staff alike rose today and were met as usual by a hearty breakfast and a hotly contested dodgeball session. This has been a difficult dodgeball week for the L&E tutors in the staff v campers match and as a result the orange shirts arrived keen to avenge a string of defeats. No such luck however, as the excellent campers made light work of beating the staff in record time! No wonder the campers embarked upon their morning activities in high spirits.

For some, next up was English which involved an old classic ‘word association’ before everyone reviewed their favourite films. Josephine and Tai in particular seized this challenge very well and showed they have all the talents for a career as a film critique! Elsewhere, those who chose sport for their morning’s fun remained in the Sports Hall for Futsal. Toma and Niamh amongst others showed some real flair, with Niamh scoring an absolute screamer! The session was wrapped up with a game of crossbar challenge, which saw Miles end the morning victorious!

Creative today comprised two activities. Some went to the art room to begin preparations for tomorrow’s big event – the L&E Olympics! In additions to the nations flags, a huge banner proudly emblazoned with the Olympic rings was created by Bulent, Charlotte and Simona, while Francis’ innovation was shown when using loom bands to create a musical instrument ready for rousing campers at the opening ceremony tomorrow.

The rest began their morning at Aysgarth School but by the time they sat down for lunch had visited toured Tokyo, Paris and Rome before soaring like a bird through mountain ranges and swimming with whales. However, this was not another of L&E’s excellent excursions – some children had chosen to build their own ‘Virtual Reality’ goggles. While the instructions made this look a daunting task at the start, everyone pulled together and by the end had used their goggles to travel around the world – amazing!

After a delicious lunch it was time for the decisive matches in this week’s rounders tournament. After some humoungous hits and cracking catches, a clear winner was decided. I can say no more here though – the victorious team will be announced at the Olympic closing ceremony tomorrow night! A quick change into swimgear and the children were ready for the weekly ‘L&E’ mudder challenge with children aiming to dive, slip and slide around the course in the quickest time possible. A memorable afternoon was had by all, campers and staff alike!

Everyone had earned their scrumptious supper and it was after this that a change of plan was announced. While usually Thursday night would be theme night, with the Olympic extravaganza planned for tomorrow, tonight would see teams take part in the L&E quiz! Children were put through their paces in all kinds of subjects, including recognising staff form their baby photos. Everyone did excellently considering the intense day which had just ensued, and by the end everyone was glad to enjoy their hot chocolate and head to bed – ready for an Olympic Experience like no other tomorrow!

Day 5, Week 5….

Where has the week gone? It has simply flown by, we cannot believe it is Friday already!!

Last night was the beginning to what turned out to be an exceptional not just theme night, but theme day at L&E!

Waking up to the glorious sunshine, the children hopped out of bed and down to the Olympic dining room for the breakfast for champions, AKA sausage and beans of course! Head to toe in sports gear, we all headed across to the Olympic warm up studio for an Olympic warm up, because, you guessed it, our theme day was of course all about THE OLYMPICS!!

I don’t know whether it was the beans and sausage, or the children could just sense the Olympics in the air. But out Olympic warm up, AKA dodgeball, was absolutely beyond belief. Dodgeballs thrown faster than Usain Bolt’s running, ducking and diving to put Tom Daley to shame, it was out of this world!

Straight from dodgeball, we headed over to the theatre, where the children were welcomed and introduced to the day. Personalised programmes were handed out as Monsieur ‘Arry, our very own Olympic commentator, gave us a background to the Olympics, and spoke us through our itinerary.

Then it was to the tactical team talk. Faces were painted, banners were made, flags were conjured, and most importantly, national anthems were learnt! First up it was China, interesting is perhaps the best adjective for their unique performance, next up a more audible USA took to the stage and belted out The Star Spangled Banner! Followed by performances from Kenya, Australia, Greece, Jamaica! And then we were off, onto the first event of the day – Sumo Wrestling!

But what’s that we see the children asked? We’ve only gone and stumbled upon two Acro Gymnasts warming up! We were fortunate enough to see Mr Zander and Miss Laura practising their routine, with back flips, back somersaults, aerials and every stunt imaginable! Simone Biles may have won the individual, but Zander and Laura have the duo down to a T.

After that short distraction it was to the sumo ring! Each country had one representative who fought incredibly patriotically, Rachel was adamant she would not let China down, but Alan was just that little bit too strong. Staying undefeated, Alan won the Sumo wrestling putting Jamaica in the lead!

Quick lunch break for the ever so popular fish Friday as a good omega refuelling, then it was straight out for the swimming gala! Swimming hats on, and the hype was unreal, the atmosphere was electric! Michael Phelps had better watch out, especially with Lotti’s exceptional start, and Georgi’s fantastic finish.

The competition then moved on to rhythmic gymnastics which saw the campers display an impressive array of twists, turns and twirls to dazzle the onlooking audience. With the judges suitably impressed (and amused) by some outstanding performances from Zander and Charlotte in particular, attention turned to archery. The Olympics leaderboard remained very tight and everyone knew the deadly accuracy of the archers could give one nation a crucial lead. As it happened, Bulent and Paula’s impressive bullseyes gave China the lead in this event to deafening applause!

With the wind howling around the Table Tennis arena, the competition was moved to an indoor arena. This turned out for the best though as it meant everyone was right on top of the action to cheer on Nihaal and Dany fought off the competition to reach the final. The Kenya crowd roared with appreciation as Dany brought home the gold with some phenomenal ping pong!

Next up was the eagerly anticipated 100m sprint. There was silence amongst the onlooking crowd as the racers awaited the starting call. All the racers got off to a great start and showed tremendous pace but as the race went on Javier’s long stride proved crucial and handed USA a huge victory moving into the final event – the tug of war. A favourite event for staff in particular – guaranteed to produce hilarious scenes. The teams huffed and puffed, moaned and groaned while the tutors laughed at some of the outstanding facial expressions on show. After a fiercely contested exhibition of brute force the USA won the tug of war!

The Olympic closing ceremony was combined with the finale of any week at L&E – the Oscars! During the closing ceremony the USA were crowned Olympic champions after an incredible day of sport and the Star Spangled Banner rang out across the hall before Rob and Harry’s teams were announced as winners of the rounders tournament. As with every week, the Oscars are an important opportunity to recognise the achievements of campers across the week and for tutors to show their appreciation for the great effort and attitude shown by the L & E campers. Amongst a range of prestigious awards, staff and campers alike agreed that Niamh thoroughly deserved the star camper award, and this was affirmed after her rousing (yet simple) acceptance speech.

What a week it’s been at L&E! Attention now turns to our exciting excursion at York tomorrow, and welcoming our newly arriving campers on Sunday for what should be a wonderful week 5!



Day 1, Week 6:

Surely not? It can’t be? The last week of L&E is here already?! It just doesn’t feel right! We’re not quite ready for the fun to end yet! But that means just one thing – this week is going to be the best week possibly imaginable!

The weather set us off to a dazzling delightful start to the week, and BBC tells us we’re in luck all week round! The bell rang and the children raced down to the smell of a French Boulangerie and devoured pain au chocolates and pain au raisins, steadily fuelling them for an action packed day ahead!

And it was time for the first of many intense dodgeball warm ups. Some of last weeks reigning champions had better watch out – Alan Javier and Jennifer have definitely got some new competition for their morning routine… Rounding up with the classic tutors v children, despite our best efforts, they somehow managed to clear the floor. With just Lizzie left standing for the tutors, she was attacked and the children managed to beat us! 1-0 to the children, 4 more games to go…

Katy, Ashleigh, and Charlie took the creative clan under their wing and into the art studio where they conjured up some absolute masterpieces with clay models. Ashleigh was particularly proud of her blue whale – his name was Jonathon, the children less impressed than she was, unsurprisingly their models were drastically more impressive!

Ollie was hugely impressed with keen adventures who all tried out archery, many of them for the first time. A special mention has to be given to Ahmed who managed to hit the balloon on the target before anyone else!

It was tutor Adam’s last day with us at L&E L so of course, we had to do his favourite activity – Longball! A good mixture of football, dodgeball and bench ball, all create this extravaganza that is a well-loved L&E sport! Trinity dragged her side back into a keenly fought contest and managed to secure a last gasp victory for her team.

This morning also saw the next instalment of our rounders tournament. After a slightly sedate start as some kids struggled to grasp the concept of the game, a fierce contest aroused. With the emphasis on sportsmanship the children got involved and played in a great spirit and we saw some excellent catching by Jacob especially to dismiss tutor, Harry.

This afternoon, the kids were spoilt for choice with the adventure option, as lifesaving and a scavenger hunt were available. The scavenger hunt saw some of the most innovative and out of the box thinking that we have witnessed throughout the whole duration of the camp. Meanwhile Matt taught the basics of lifesaving to the kids who ventured to the pool.

With the Premier League season now underway, the sport option, football, was as ever immensely popular. With a few drills and skill based games first, the children were then split into 2 teams. In the ensuing match, the tika-taka brand of football played by Olivia’s side proved triumphant over Adam, and a more Sam Allardyce styled approach.

With the fine weather prevailing at last, we were able to open up the water slide after a week without. At this moment in time it seems just to give a shout out to the human crashmats of Ollie, Matt, Rob and Harry. Despite the battering of the male members of staff, a great time was had by all.

Ice breakers were attacked with their usual vigour. However the highlight of the show was undoubtedly the bin bag fashion show. In an echo of Milan, the teams created an outfit using merely 2 bin bags and any foliage they could get their hands on. After commanding and owning the catwalk, it was Charlie’s team that prevailed. After the ice breakers, as ever it was our secret recipe hot chocolate and bed.

Day 2, Week 6

Spirits were high this morning as the sun was once again gleaming brightly over Asgarth School. The children were extra excited this morning over their tasty tomato and succulent bacon, as Scuba Steve was coming for his weekly scuba-diving lessons.

Morning warm up of dodgeball took place in a not so regular fashion as children were split into team depending on what they had for breakfast whilst the first group of divers took to the pool. Once the children were warmed up, the tutors stepped in for the daily tutor vs. children dodgeball game in which the tutors managed to fight back and become victorious, 1-1!!

For those who didn’t get the chance yesterday, archery was this mornings sport option in which the children showed great strength and aim, competing in different courses, and testing the archers ability. Trinity showed great skill, hitting the water balloon on target on an early shot.

As suggested early today, Thursday’s activity night will take place under the theme of SUPERHEROS! The creative amongst us headed to the art room to craft superhero masks.

After lunch, with the sun strong, the creative option was brought outside. The budding artists therefore took to the basketball court to create some super spectacular recreations of different superhero’s icons, brightening up the court.

Ultimate Frisbee was the sporting option, and although the children were slightly apprehensive to begin, they quickly picked up the rules and the game quickly became very competitive, with both teams fighting for a win.

A special mention to George, who, after dinner, took the camp for a relaxing (yet very amusing) yoga session, before we all headed down to what was the last L&E campfire of 2016!! And what a fantastic way to spend the last campfire! All the children took part in the festivities, joining in with the songs, telling jokes, riddles and performing to perfection! After a cup of L&E’s luxurious hot chocolate, everyone went to bed weary eyed, and ready to face what will be another splendid day here at Asgarth School.

Week 6 Day 3

There seems to be an egg crisis in camp! After too many egg drops and egg throws to count, the camp is in egg crisis therefore breakfast this morning consisted of crusty bread accompanied with Aysgarths finest cheese and ham on offer. The children devoured this in what seemed to be world record time, and were well on their way to dodgeball ready to show the tutors what they were made of. After 3 practice games, the tutors were feeling more prepared to challenge the tutors, however, this preparation went to waste as the children annihilated the tutors yet again. With 2 days to go and not a win to their name, the tutors were beginning to show slight traces of panic in their game!

After being informed that the camp choice theme night was going to be ‘superheroes’ the children arrived at the creative option inspired and ready to kit out the tutors ready for their dress up for theme night. Some fantastic superhero logos were created, a special mention to Kyla who created an incredible Katniss Everdeen ‘Mockingjay’ logo which guarantees that Katy is going to get the award for ‘best dressed superhero’ on theme night. The adventurers headed off for their weekly canoeing slot, with the weather in their favour, they were certain to have some incredible views of the lake below them, and more appropriately, some warmer than normal water underneath them to fall into! The english students took advantage of the beautiful Yorkshire weather to venture into Bedale on Lenny the defender. There were 3 groups of 2, each group was given a budget of £5 to buy some typical english goods. for example, a granny smith was on the cards as was an eccles cake and a Yorkshire mix. With origins from japan brazil and Italy, we were expecting hours upon hours before returns however, in just one measly hour, there was a little knock at the door and we saw Tai and Rui at the door, having completed their list! The sporting option of the morning was the ever popular Badminton and Volleyball in which Joseph and Jacob shined, in particular Jacob, who had never played before today, but showed fantastic concentration and determination to create some amazing rallies!

After a filling lunch of sausages, the children were ready for the afternoons activities, firstly, with the adventurers off to the lake to do some more canoeing in the continued beautiful weather, followed quickly by the horse riders ready to continue their in and out learning of their horses. The sport option this afternoon was indoor hockey, and with the inspiration of the women’s GB olympic hockey team reaching the final, each child put in incredible amounts of efforts to reach their full potential. The creative option was continuing on with the superhero theme to create super hero logos for the tutors, which also saw some wonderful masks an props created for theme night from Freya, Zara and Sam.

As the beautiful weather continued, it was only appropriate that the afternoon would end wet, having completed a group choice game of capture the flag, the tutors decided to ambush the children with the water balloon catapult, which saw Georgi take a hard hit to the leg, however she trooped on and was soon to get her own back, having cornered and soaked Ashleigh from head to toe. Matt and Ollie definitely won the award for the most soaked tutors!

After an exciting afternoon, the children had a relaxing evening in the cinema getting ready for the ever looming theme night. Avengers age of ultron was the film on offer with all the children completely engrossed, learning about the characters that they might potentially be meeting on the forthcoming theme night.

It seems impossible to think that we are halfway through the final week of L&E 2016, however the children are ensuring that this final week is going to be one for the history books. We may only have 2 days left, but children and staff alike are on tenterhooks awaiting for the next 2 nights of theme night and oscars which are sure to be the most exciting and successful nights of the L&E so far being the final theme night and oscars of 2016!!

Week 6, Day 4…

The day started with everyone’s favourite…….eggs!!!! There is no better way to start a day than with good old boiled eggs on toast. Some children simply crack the top off their eggs and eat them with a teaspoon, where some like to spread the yolk on some well-buttered toast. We also sang our hearts for Taisei’s birthday – 13 today! Happy Birthday, Tai!

Our penultimate dodgeball session was an intensely fought battle with the children again beating the tutors in the final showdown. We better pull up our socks for the final match tomorrow…!!!!

As the sun was scheduled to break through in the afternoon our rounder’s tournament was put on hold until after lunch. Video making was a most popular choice for the creative amongst us in the morning, and in keeping with the theme for this week, a superhero themed music video was chosen. We will have to wait with bated breath until the Friday night Oscars to see the end result in all its glory! A popular activity in previous weeks has been synchronised swimming, and this week proved to be no different. Some examples were shown, but not much direction was needed, as again a superhero theme proved to take over the session – lots of supermen splashed around in the pool, which made for a most fabulous routine.

The keen adventurers went climbing to Downholme in both in the morning and the afternoon today with all the children tackling two different climbs and two different abseils. Georgie overcame her fears of both climbing and abseiling, and then gave some sound advice to the younger children.

The afternoon started with some ultimate frisbee, which in the blazing sun was a real treat. This fast paced game saw a heated battle commence with both teams making some amazing throws and catches!! We have been waiting all week for an origami session as we have been watching our Japanese children tinker continuously with paper craft. The session did not disappoint and we were inundated with some fabulous creations!!

We left this week’s theme night choice up to the children and very diplomatically asked them to note down three inspirational ideas. The winning idea was, as you may have guessed……SUPERHEROS! And so the night began. All the children were invited into the performing arts studio where a group of special guests awaited. The children sat down patiently as a friendly Catnis Everdeen entered the stage to introduce herself and her superhero friends. Shortly after this introduction there was a MURDER… Mrs Incredible was incredible no more… Why had she been killed and who had done it? Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watsonia were immediately summoned to help solve the mystery murder case – however, they must have been getting slightly long in the tooth, as they needed some young minds to rejuvenate their detective abilities. Thankfully there was a group of young budding minds there at hand to help solve the case. The Superheros were sent to retrace their steps and were situated in different places around the school where they had been at the time of the murder. A plethora of clues were thrown about with a couple of red herrings in the mix to keep them on their toes. To everyone’s astonishment, including Sherlock and Dr Watsonia the murderer was in fact just the jealous teacher……with and astounding Australian accent. The cat was out of the bag and a fair few of the young detectives correctly guessed the murderer! What. A. Night.

Day 5, Week 6…

How did it come so soon? We’re in disbelief that L&E has come to an end. An absolutely spectacular 6 weeks have been had, meeting wonderful new faces from all around the world, and catching up with the old faces from the returners from as far back as 6 years!

We’ve had some exceptional weather this week, but in true British style, we’re celebrating our final day of camp with a short but sweet showering! But nothing can stop us!

After the most intense week of dodgeball we’ve had, the competition between children and tutors has been closer than ever before. So to grant the children’s wishes, we extended our morning dodgeball warm up session into a dodgeball tournament extravaganza. With a quick boys v girls match to warm up, the boys just took the lead, despite Sofia’s valiant efforts. And then it was time for what we had all been waiting for. The deciding match for the overall tutors v children.

With Mary being hit out almost the second the whistle was blown, it wasn’t looking a very promising start for the tutors… But Ollie’s fire arm made it slightly more optimistic, eliminating key competitor Javier. However, much to the tutors dismay, and despite the powers of ratio, it soon became clear that the children had got it in the bag. We had been defeated once and for all, as the children won the dodgeball cup!

But dodgeball wasn’t our only week long running competition. There had been high talk about who would walk away with the final Rounders cup. With all four teams still within shot of winning, every single child put their absolute all into it. Throwing and catching, running and hitting, laughing and smiling. A delightful morning, only made possible with our wonderful staff and charming children!

It wasn’t quite lunchtime yet though, and the tutors had a surprise up their sleeve… With tonight being the last night of L&E, it was only fair that we planned a flash mob for the evening, unbeknown to Sam! So the music was chosen, the routine drawn up, and enthusiasm levels raising the roof! Only tonight will tell how well it will go!

Save the best until last – that must have been the moto of the kitchen staff as we devoured an absolute divine feast for lunchtime! Ever plate completely clear, and suitably fuelled up for a hectic afternoon!

To the last afternoon of activities! To round off the year, we had some favourites over the past six weeks. The adventurers headed straight to the pool for an exceptional show of Water Polo! Hats on, and they were off! It was incredibly high scoring, one team was winning 7-1, and however, the opposition brought it back to 7-7 WHAT A GAME!! Nail biting to watch!

Inspired by last night’s superhero murder mystery, Rob Smith collected a creative crew of comic fanatics, and gathered together to make their own incredibly impressive comic books – well worth a read!

And of course, going by the rule of choosing the ever most popular sports, due to popular demand from the boys and girls, it was an afternoon of football for the sporty lot! Taylor showed everyone how it was done with her mad skills!

Time flew by, and it was almost time for dinner. But we had one more trick up our sleeve. However, the tutors cannot take credit for this, the children were outstanding! We proposed the idea of doing a short film of all the L&E evenings, and they absolutely nailed it! It was mesmerising to watch, they worked spectacularly as a team to produce something in record breaking time. Just 20 minutes, no rehearsal, and one take. Something even we couldn’t dream possible!

After a scrumptious last supper, it was up to change into our gladrags for the most anticipated evening of the week – the Oscars! Where the Star Camper will be revealed…

Brief security checks all done and dusted, and we were off. It was an evening to cherish for the rest of our lives. The flash mob went down a treat, Sam had no clue! A beautiful dance performance inspired everyone to take up ballet, and finally it was time for the big reveal of Star Camper. It could not have gone to a more deserving person, Jennifer won over all of our hearts with her beautiful thank-you speech, and made the evening even more special than we could even have imagined.

Thank you to everyone who has made our past 6 weeks even more magical than we could have imagined!


12 January 2016

Sport England says its This Girl Can campaign is “changing behaviour” a year on from its launch.

Independent research says 2.8 million women aged 14 to 40 who recognise the campaign say they have done some or more activity as a result.

And 1.6 million of those women say they have started exercising.

The snapshot survey asked a sample of 1,000 women in November 2015 about the physical activity they did and their awareness of the campaign.

The initiative aims to inspire women of all ages to participate in physical activity and exercise.

“I’m very encouraged by these new figures,” said Sport England chief executive Jennie Price.

“They show This Girl Can is not just being talked about, but is also changing behaviour.”

However, she added that there is still work to do.

“With a gender gap of 1.73 million fewer women playing sport compared to men, we need to keep getting the message out there that women come in all shapes and sizes and levels of ability,” said Price.

“They should all feel able to exercise and play sport.”

Did you know?

▪This Girl Can films have been viewed 37 million times on the campaign’s YouTube and Facebook channels alone.

▪540,000 women and girls have joined the This Girl Can social media community.

▪There has been 660,000 tweets using #ThisGirlCan

▪The campaign has been talked about on social media every single day since it launched on 12 January, 2015.

▪The campaign has been talked about in more than 110 countries.

Source: BBC – Jan, 2016

Members of The Summer Camps Trust UK

11 November 2015

We are delighted to announce that Learn and Experience are an official member of The Summer Camps Trust.  We look forward to working closely The Summer Camps Trust…

“The Summer Camps Trust aims to raise awareness of the social and eductional benefits of the unique experiences that summer camps offer
The Summer Camps Trust want to enable many more young people in the UK to enjoy the fun and the learning from taking part in residential summer camps.

The Summer Camps Trust believe:

Residential summer camps offer real benefits to children

The Summer Camps Trust want children in the UK today to get the chance of running about and playing together, of having adventures, of making new friends in new places, of exploring the countryside, of laughter and excitement, of having stories at bedtime

The Summer Camps Trust want to support summer camps as a way for children to have real, exciting childhood experiences away from the world of TV, computer games and advertising. The life skills, the positive attitudes and the insights summer camps give are vitally needed

Summer camps should be a treasured national asset

The whole of society and education would gain from wider national recognition of summer camps, similar to that in America and France. The Summer Camps Trust want weeks to be regarded as important parts of educational provision for young people from all walks of life in the UK”

SCT News

13 September 2015

The Summer Camps Trust

Information about progress with establishing the Trust and starting its work.

  1. Moves to create a Summer Camps Trust as a new charity began during 2014, following responses to the Campaign for Summer Camps and a widespread feeling that if many more young people could be enabled to take part in well-run residential summer camps it would be of great benefit to them, their families, their schools and the nation in general.
  1. A decision was taken to establish the Trust as a charity run by a board of Trustees. The Trustees have been recruited from (a) the world of outdoor education / adventure activities, and (b) the political establishment, with a view to ensuring the right expertise combined with all-party support for the idea. The Board of Trustees currently consists of the following:
  • Ian Lewis FRSA, convenor of the parliamentary all-party activity group (Chair)
  • Rob Collier, volunteer worker in summer camps
  • Keith Hagon, Chief Executive Christian Camps International
  • Ben Harris, British Council Education Dept.
  • Martin Hudson, recently Chair British Activity Holidays Association
  • Sir Bob Russell, recently Lib Dem MP for Colchester
  • Rt. Hon. Jacqui Smith, recently Labour MP for Redditch
  • Chris Green MBE (Convenor).

A Conservative politician is being actively sought.

  1. Lord David Ramsbotham GCB, CBE has kindly agreed to be President of the Trust.
  1. The Trust is building up a list of member organisations, who pay an annual subscription to support the Trust’s work. Members receive all papers for meetings of the Trustees, are welcome to attend meetings and to speak, but do not have a vote. It is felt important that the Trust is seen to be a body operating for the national interest rather than a lobby or pressure group on behalf of summer camp operators. The following organisations are currently members:
  • The Active Training and Education Trust (ATE Superweeks)
  • Dalesdown Family Trust
  • Learn and Experience
  • Let Me Play Ltd.
  • National Citizens’ Service
  • Natural England
  • Outward Bound
  • PGL
  • XuK (Cross Keys)
  • Youth Hostels Association.
  1. After some delay charitable status has now been agreed. The Summer Camps Trust is registered charity number 1162580.
  1. A bank account has now been opened, and the Trust is receiving subscriptions from members plus some donations.
  1. Efforts will start at once (i.e. from early September) to secure start-up funding from official and / or grant making Trust sources, in order to appoint a Development Officer early in 2016. This person will set about raising the profile of the Trust and of residential summer camps. He / she will also look at ways of raising a more substantial sum of money, to finance a major national campaign of PR to “change hearts and minds” and encourage many more British parents to look for good summer camps for their children. The aim of such a campaign will be to ensure that no child in the UK is ignorant of the fun and benefits to be had from summer camps, no parent is ignorant of the growth in confidence, social skills and general positive attitudes available to their children, and no school is ignorant of the beneficial effect summer camps could have on the motivation and application of their pupils.
  1. Research may need to be carried out (a) to demonstrate that the many benefits of summer camps anecdotally reported can be proved to be real, and (b) to look at the reasons why so many British parents are currently reluctant to consider residential summer camps for their children.
  1. During the summer of 2015 Trustees have undertaken a programme of visits to summer camps to familiarise themselves with the work being done by a variety of the  operators currently offering well-run residential summer camps. The standard of what we have seen is impressive, as is the real enthusiasm with which the different operators run their holidays.
  1. The Trust will continue to seek more members and supporters, and hopes to get rapidly to a stage where we can begin to make an impact on our national life, and notably on attitudes to summer camps.

(Chris Green, September 2015)

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