Date: 15th Dec 2018 @ 3:09pm


What a fun residential we had! Two days full of fun activities, friendship and challenging ourselves!

Day 1

As soon as we said goodbye to our mums and dads and everyone else, the Christmas spirit took off and the children kept singing their favourite Christmas carols until we reached CHET. We were greeted by the friendly CHET staff who explained to us all the rules around the centre to keep us safe and then gave us our first task – to make our own beds.

This proved a challenge despite some children having had practised at home, however, I was pleased to see a lot of team work. Walking into a room, it was not uncommon to see two children inside a bedsheet cover while the two other children were trying to stuff the quilt inside on top of them, which resulted in the first pair getting stuck and the other pair trying to navigate them out of the bedsheet. Some children stacked all of their quilts and navigated someone inside a bedsheet to grab one and try to wrestle it inside. In the end, we all managed to make our own beds and were ready to have some biscuits and juice and then wrap up to go outside.

Well, to say we had fun would be an understatement. The gigantic adventure course consisted of tires, tunnels, ladders, nets, hanging ladders, swinging ropes, monkey bars, more tires and mud. Once all of the obstacles were demonstrated to us and explained, the children were set free. (See if you can spot Mrs Allison and Mrs Buckley having a go at the adventure course!) There was a lot of team work, supporting and encouragement, something that the children displayed throughout the residential and even the CHET staff commented on it. Because of the size of the adventure course and no need for a harness, the children did not have to wait for different obstacles, which was something that I knew would appeal to them when I booked the CHET, so they really got a good run for their money (excuse the pun)!

After our lunch, which the children enjoyed and many went for their seconds, the children were given cleaning duties – two rooms would be brushing the floor and wiping tables after the meals, so that everyone would join in by the end of the residential. They were super excited about the idea of using child sized dust pans and brushes and  having the responsibility to leave the dining room clean – I am sure they will gladly demonstrate these skills after Sunday lunch, if you ask them ๐Ÿ˜‰

We had a bit of time to work on our Residential journals, colouring and word searches and then had another two activities ready for us. In two groups, the children created their own photograms by placing objects onto a photographic paper and exposing it to a source of light for 4 seconds and then developing this in the chemicals that are usually used in dark rooms. All of this in dark, with only a bit of red light! The children then hang their photograms onto a drying line and they have taken these home, so ask them to show you!

The other group had a go at pottery, something we will be exploring in Year 3 in the Summer term. They created their own owls, using different objects to create marks and textures. Amy from the CHET centre was very impressed with the children’s listening skills and creative approaches, with each owl being unique and completely different.

Then the groups swapped so that everyone could do both activities and produce two pieces of work. The owls are currently drying in our classroom and after Christmas, we will be painting them so that they are ready to go home.

After a lovely roast dinner, we got all wrapped up again and tested our torches, ready for a night walk with Phil. He took us around the estate and to a 400 year old church that only opens up once a year for a service. We also discussed what it must have been like for local monk to live off the land – where he got his food and clothes from. I was very proud of children’s suggestion of using a flint to make a fire – definitely good knowledge from our learning about the Stone Age!

Once we got back, the children decided it was time for bed – a good sign of a day filled with engaging activities! After a few last hugs to scare the homesickness away and some story readings, all the children fell asleep and by 10 pm, even the teachers went to bed! The children definitely needed their rest because the first knock on my door was at 7 am, just an hour before the breakfast. 

Day 2

The breakfast itself deserves a mention, because I have never seen a child eat as much cereal as some of Year 3 children did! It was definitely the right thing to do though, with the temperatures plummeting and the morning being frosty.

As soon as we got all packed and stripped the beds, we wrapped up one last time and went to the woods, where we had two activities ready for us – maze games retrieving pieces of jigsaw and nightline, using our senses except for sight to navigate ourselves through an obstacles course, following a rope. The children had lots of fun with these, and all had a go, which was great to see.  After a quick break with biscuits and juice, we headed to a nearby forest.

The children were split into three teams and they were given a task of building a den big enough to fit a group of 10 children in (plus a teacher)! It was lovely to see the children working as a team, carrying heavy logs and making sure the base of the den is stable, there are seats inside and it is nice and warm. Amy was very impressed with us, so she could not pick a winner, but decided all of us deserved s’mores and chocolate biscuits. We made a little fire, discussed what is needed to make a fire (once again, the children blew everyone away with their knowledge that sometimes the year 5’s and year 6’s struggle with when doing this activity) and enjoyed the gooey s’mores.

Unfortunately, that was our last activity. By this point, I must had been asked thousand times how many hours before the coach was there and if I could ring and tell them to come later๐Ÿ˜Š We headed in for our last lunch, tidied up and then assembled in the lounge to be presented with certificates and thanked by the CHET staff for lovely two days and looking after the centre really well.

Back on the coach, singing Christmas carols again and back in Cronton in no time!

I would like to thank all of the parents are carers for getting on board with the whole Christmas time residential idea. kitting out their children, keeping up with all the letters and forms and payments and most importantly, trusting us with their children to keep them safe and happy. And who knows, maybe, this could have been a perfect opportunity for elves to come into the children’s homes, arranging for some presents and wrapping them in time before Christmas…?

Lastly, big thank you to all the children. Me and Mrs Allison and Mrs Buckley could not have been any prouder – the children have amazed everyone with their enthusiasm, energy, good manners and responsibility. The CHET staff even mentioned to me few times that they have not had such a polite, fun and well-behaved school visit in a long time, and would welcome Cronton CE back any time! It was wonderful to watch the children to grow confident in an unknown environment, thrive during the challenging and fun activities and their little personalities developing together with their friendships. ๐Ÿ˜Š

Miss Rogers

P.S.: Check out the photos in the external photo gallery.



I could not have uploaded all of them here because of limited spaces and I wanted the children to have memories and the parents to be able to talk about the photos with the children too, so we took literally hundreds! Also, ask your children about their Residential journals – they can work on them at home and remind them to bring those on Monday, so that we can spend the morning discussing the residential, looking at photos and sharing what we have learn about ourselves!



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