New Zealand Trip
Saturday 7th October saw 16 Year 8 and 9 pupils depart for New Zealand as part of a school exchange with St Peter’s College, Gore accompanied by Miss Gatt and Dr Robinson.
Pupils arrived in Auckland Monday 9th October full of energy despite the 38 hours of travelling!
No time was wasted in exploring the city and our 1st stop was Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium followed by lunch on the beach at Mission Bay. That evening we walked up to the Sky Tower which offered 360 degree views of Auckland on a lovely clear evening.
Tuesday morning the pupils were up bright and early (despite a 5am fire alarm in the hotel requiring a full evacuation onto the street below!) and ready to board the ferry to Rangitoto Island. A good hours walk up the inactive volcano in the sunshine gave beautiful views of Auckland and beyond.
Wednesday we departed Auckland for the South Island landing in Queenstown late afternoon, where we were meet by staff and some of the host families from St Peter’s College, Gore. Once in Gore pupils were met by the rest of the host families and taken back to their new homes for the next couple of weeks.
Pupils, staff and New Zealand buddies were reunited on Friday 13th October to travel down to Te Anau for two nights. Host families also attended assisting in making meals for all and supporting on organised trips. Over the course of the weekend pupils travelled to Milford Sounds, where they had a 2 hour boat ride around the beautiful Sounds seeing waterfalls and seals, and to Te Anau Glow worm caves.
Pupils then started school with their buddies on Monday 16th October for a full week of activities. The pupils were then lucky to have a long weekend for Labour Day, so carried out various activities with their host families including visiting Cadbury’s chocolate factory, viewing the Royal Albatrosses and trying to see the fast declining yellow-eyed penguins.
On Thursday 26th October we commenced our 40 hour journey home to the U.K. All 16 pupils were returned safely to parents eagerly awaiting their return at Ratcliffe College. The pupils thoroughly enjoyed New Zealand growing in confidence and maturity throughout the trip, showing resilience and adaptability to their new environments, where communication with their peers was key to the success of the trip. The pupils were a credit to themselves and Ratcliffe College.