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Junior Ten TorS

 Please see the slideshow from the JTT Assembly below:

 

Junior Ten Tors 2018 - Completed!

A couple of weeks have passed since the eight Year 6 children completed the challenging couple of days on the moors that saw them walk a very long way (my pedometer said we had done nearly 25 miles!) and camp on a site with approximately ten other schools. The children were a credit to the school and it was also commented on by several groups how enthusiastic (and fast!) they were. At the campsite the girls in particular shone through. They set out to make lots of new friends even though they had decided to get into their pyjamas very early. They spent the next few hours playing, collecting wood and then performing in the talent show in their bed clothes! 

The weekend was characterised by slightly overcast mornings which brightened through the day, turning rather warm indeed. This was particularly the case on the first day and it was clear by the end of the day that the children (and staff!) had caught the sun. The children set an absolutely cracking pace as they walked. It had been mentioned at points in the JTT training that we should expect the children to walk at around 2k/h. Well not these Laira Green children! At times they must have been reaching a pace of around double that as they stormed across the moor! They impressed Ms Taylor and myself no end! Stopping frequently but for short periods of time worked for the children and we re-hydrated lots and forsook a long lunch break in favour of multiple snack breaks. This helped us make excellent time on the first day and, as we neared South Hessary Tor (the final tor on Day 1), we must have been the second or third team to arrive. An unexpected but very pleasing achievement, well done Laira Green! The pace was so fantastic on the second day that, even after rescheduling our arrival time at the final car park via text early on Saturday, we were still over an hour early and had to occupy ourselves atop the final tor as most other teams streamed past us to the finish. I hope teams in the future can match the pace, expectations have been set!

The navigation and map work was stellar on both days and the children also put their tents up without a hitch and cooked well at the camp. They were extremely lucky on both days with the weather (as they had been on all of the training walks) and the children made the best of this, despite encountering wet ground under foot (a very large bog on the way to Combeshead Tor) and some extremely windy conditions at the top of King's Tor. 

The photos (of which there are many) can be seen below. The first gallery of photos were taken by myself, the second by a camera operated by the children and the third by Eboni. 

Myself and Ms Taylor are extremely proud of the children and their efforts and I look forward to leading Laira Green's JTT adventure for years to come. 

Many thanks once again to all of the parents and carers who supported us through this venture in its first year. It wouldn't have been possible without you and we are very grateful, thank you. 

 

Mr Blake

 

 

9 th June

 

we have made it - all ten tors!!!

 

8th June 2018

Nun's Cross, before we start the last tor for the day

           -  Everyone's doing well, despite being a bit tired and sore!  

 

Combeshead Tor      

 First Tor completed                    

Junior Ten Tors Final Practice Walk (Sunday 20th May)

 

There have been a squad of children from Year 6 who have been working really hard to prepare themselves for the Junior Ten Tors event at the beginning of June. As part of their preparation they have been undertaking walks on the moor on several recent weekends in order to improve their navigation skills and become more familiar with the moorland environment. Most recently this past Sunday saw the children take part in their final practice walk in preparation for the event. 

 

With a slightly reduced route because of time constraints, the children set off up the hill in Princetown to North Hessary Tor and the mast at the Television Station. Some great views greeted them and the children deserved the sight after they had worked really hard on their pacing and navigation to make it up in good time. Using their route cards and compasses to good effect, the children took on the challenges that the moor presented to them, on what proved to be a very warm day. We stopped for drinks many times in order to stay hydrated and, in the end, made it back to the car park in good time. 

 

Overall the children worked really hard, kept to their pacing and navigated well. They should be very proud of themselves and will hopefully enjoy the main event as much

as they have the practice walks. 

 

 

Junior Ten Tors Second Practice Walk - 6/5/18

The members of the Junior Ten Tors Squad that could make it were greeted with glorious sunshine on Sunday afternoon as they ventured out onto the moor. Mrs Kennedy joined us for the walk and saw how the children coped with the terrain, the skills required of them and also the heat! The extra water that I brought along was definitely needed and staying hydrated was key given the conditions.

The aim of the walk was micro-navigation and we used the opportunity for every member there to have a go at honing their skills. These included: calculating a bearing from one point to another using the map and compass; measuring the distance on the map and translating it to the ground; identifying the features on the map and recognising what they look like in the real world. As was to be expected, their skills developed as the afternoon wore on. A few miscalculations early on were learned from and features became more noticeable as the children grew more familiar with old walls, bronze age ruins and what tors look like on the map compared to real life.

With the stop/start nature of the walk (a bearing here, a measurement there) the pace was relatively leisurely, allowing the children plenty of time for chatter and there was a lovely camaraderie building up amongst the group. The next walk however (and not to mention the event itself), will be different. Longer legs and further distances will need to be covered in a quicker time. Hopefully the team spirit will be there but I feel there may well be less conversation!

Overall this weekend was a really positive experience for the squad. They all showed themselves reasonably capable with the map skills required of them and had a lovely day on the moor too. In a way it is unfortunate the weather has been so kind to them so far! A bit of rain on the next practice will hopefully help them become more aware and able to cope in those sort of conditions.

I look forward to the afternoon of the 20th!

Until then,

Mr Blake.

Leeden Tor

JUNIOR TEN TORS

Along with over 20 other schools from the South West, Laira Green will be entering a team in the Junior Ten Tors 2018 event. This challenging experience will take place on the 8th and 9th of June and the children involved will have to use their newly acquired skills of map reading and route planning to guide themselves across some of the tors of Dartmoor. The children will be supported in this process by Mr Blake and Ms Taylor and will take part in both an after school club and some practice walks on the moor to hone their skills before the actual event. 

This page is both designed to post occasional updates of our progress and to host a chronicling of the children's experiences. It could be as they write and take pictures of things they have done and recount their journey for the benefit of both their peers and future generations of Year 6 children from Laira Green.

I look forward to reading what they come up with!

Let the journey begin,

Mr Blake