Friday 14th June 2013
The morning began with the weather looking a little ominous but fortunately the skies brightened and the sun poked through by the time our minibuses drew up to the Blashford Lake Education Centre.
Michelle was our instructor for the day and what she didn’t know about minibeasts and habitats was really not worth knowing! She guided us through our first activity – pond dipping – and enthused the children as they hauled out water boatmen, caddis fly larvae, pond snails, damsel fly larvae, mites and even a couple of newts.
Next stop was the woodland habitat where the children were delving into undergrowth and searching under logs for woodland fauna. Some protected smooth newts were found along with the standard collection of woodlice, snails, slugs, spiders and beetles!
Lunch is always the favourite activity of the day and we ate, bathed in sunshine, behind the centre. Our ‘Waste Free’ lunch was weighed by Michelle and we had a commendably small amount of waste but it prompted us to think about how we could reduce our waste further thus moderating the amount that goes into landfill.
For our next activity after lunch, we sat silently in a warm meadow, surrounded by grass, waiting for the damsel flies to dart passed us and listening to the click of the crickets and grasshoppers. We then swept the long grass with our nets and discovered the enormous array of minibeasts to be found hiding in the meadow habitat.
Finally it was time to get wet! We walked to Dockens Water and, armed with another net, trawled the river for yet more animals! Some patience was required as the river-life seemed to be hiding from us but the children managed to catch, amongst other things, a minnow, some flat worms and a leech (which Kate Simmonds bravely held in her hand!). Not all the wellies turned out to be water-tight so we had some squelchy socks by the end of the day but the children had learnt and experienced so much, that it didn’t matter!
Blashford Lakes is open to the public every day (except Christmas Day) with plenty of activities running for families and children during school holidays or at weekends. We hardly scratched the surface and I am sure all the children would fully recommend a return visit to see what other treasures are waiting to be discovered! A 5 STAR DAY OUT!! Catch us hard at work here.
Ambulance visit & First Aid training from the British Heart Foundation.
Whilst I hope they never have to use the skills they learnt today, the Year 8 boys and girls were all in agreement that the British Heart Foundation’s Heart Start Course was a valuable and important lesson for life.
Having learnt CPR and other basic first aid our children thoroughly enjoyed themselves whilst learning a number of essential skills.
Swim the English Channel
Our Year 8s were set the considerable challenge of swimming the equivalent of the English Channel – All 21 miles of it, in order to raise money for ‘Together for Short Lives.’ This also equates to 33, 797 metres or 2024 lengths of our 16.7 metre length pool.
Their attitude, energy and determination in grotty weather was superb. They eventually managed 2908 lengths or 48, 563 metres and therefore the grand total of 30.35 miles.
It was a fantastic effort and regardless of swimming ability they all pushed themselves to achieve.
Saturday 8th June 2013
A team of 22 very excited (and a little bit nervous) middle school athletes travelled to Hordle Walhampton School on Saturday for the annual Junior Wessex event. Following last year’s competition being cancelled because of the weather, the FSM athletes were keener than ever to get base camp set-up and get warmed up ready to go. From the off, it was a hive of activity with 6 field events being run at one time, alongside the track competition. There was so much to watch and wherever you looked, an FSM athlete was running, jumping or throwing their way to personal bests and in some cases, new school records. Amazing stuff from children so young. Each one of the competitiors tried their hardest, and best of all, they did it with a smile on their face! As the competition progressed we often heard FSM being mentioned on the tannoy for gaining a place in a final or achieving a top 3 place in their event. The future of athletics at FSM is in very good hands.
Well done to all of the children for taking part and special congratulations go to, Milenka (3rd in U11 girls High Jump), Aidan (2nd in U10 boys 200m), Esme (2nd in U10 girls Long Jump), Freddie (1st in U10 boys Long Jump), AJ (1st U9 boys Long Jump), the U10 boys relay team (1st) and Georgie (1st in U9 girls 75m and 3rd in U9 girls rounders ball throw). See them achieving here!
Thanks to Mr Ward, Mr Clarke, Mrs Drummond, Miss Gainsford and to all the wonderful FSM supporters.
When a parent at Forres Sandle Manor School visits for a show and tell day, the children are rarely disappointed. However, Friday’s event was on a much grander scale, as Luke Gamble from Sky 1’s “Vet Adventures” arrived with the world’s only 6 x 6 high-tech, all-terrain mobile veterinary hospital.
Pupils, staff, and the Rt. Hon. Desmond Swayne MP all gathered excitedly on the lawn with Luke’s dedicated team for a tour of the truck, whose tyres overwhelmed even the tallest of children! They were delighted to set off the sirens, climb to the roof and see where the operations would take place.
Yet, while the pupils remained awestruck, Luke was keen to remind us of the enormous and sobering part the truck would play in his next challenge: Mission Rabies. “In India a child dies of rabies every hour. There is a fear of dogs with rabies, and so they shoot them, but all that does is cause a vacuum for meaner dogs to fill the void. The Mission Rabies Team aims to vaccinate 2 million dogs in India over the next 3 years, therefore reducing the overall numbers of rabies cases.”
With the support of Dog’s Trust and Worldwide Veterinary Service (WVS), Luke and his team will be travelling across India with a pledge to initially vaccinate 50,000 dogs in just 30 days. If this wasn’t enough to keep them busy, they will also be involved in a surgical training programme, offering Indian vets and veterinary students the skills they will need to humanely control the huge number of infected dogs. See more pictures here.
Below you will find a link to the run down of the day for the Wessex Athletics Event at Bournemouth on Wednesday 12th June.
Team sheets can be found in the usual place in the sportrs fixtures section.