We have just completed the last of our Grade 11 Outdoor Camps for 2015. Each House spent a Saturday evening and Sunday involved in activities that develop group dynamics, recognise leadership styles, and highlight personality and character traits of the boys as they take over the reigns as leaders in the school.
After a night walk on Saturday evening after sport, they arrive to a Pick-a-Can Potjie challenge with a potluck selection of canned foods. Sunday morning they have a brisk run to the top of Table Hill, and select their ‘preferred’ route back, often resulting in an icy water crossing. Breakfast is, once again, an event, making Ziploc omelettes. This year the groups were made to do some honest ‘hard labour’. They cleared The Pit, and some experienced how to use a shovel for the first time. Mullins and Graham got to clear alien reeds. Up to lunch time, they are involved in games and challenges that get them to think critically, and to use their personnel resources effectively. We ask them in a questionnaire to identify the various leadership styles that they have experienced first-hand.
The idea of the camp is not to select prefects, but to work towards a better working relationship between all future Grade 12s as a leadership group. Is it enough? Probably not, but it certainly is a point from which we can develop a discussion on leadership issues.
The boys, for a brief period of time, learn to appreciate nature, and return to school a changed person in some small way.