Year 12 International Baccalaureate Camp

Term Two began with an exciting three-day retreat to Eastern Beach for Year 12 International Baccalaureate students. The camp was, primarily, a workshop focusing on the main aspects of the IB programme. However, the group of thirty also had the chance to strengthen social ties that will form the basis of their final years at TGS. Engaging in team-based activities that ranged from meditation to an escape room, the cohort was kept stimulated and busy, ensuring that all would be mentally prepared for their embarkment upon the two-year IB programme.

Despite the late arrival of their bus, the IB cohort arrived at Willow Park Christian Convention Centre in good spirits. This was soon to be aided by a class on positivity and mental well being. However, the students’ days were to be filled not just with conventional learning, but team-based activities that would help them develop a more globally-conscious mindset.

The IB programme comprises a widely diverse curriculum intended to produce internationally-minded world citizens. In addition to their regular lessons, IB students are taught Theory of Knowledge, a form of philosophy which has an emphasis on learning. Strict followers of academic honesty, the IB students strive to embody traits outlined in the IB Learner Profile that include being balanced, open-minded and reflective. These futuristic approaches to learning formed the basis of the cohort’s workshops during their time away. “The camp was an amazing experience,” Ellie Brown reflects. “It allowed us to develop skills that we will be able to use throughout the International Baccalaureate course.”

A particularly memorable activity for the group was shelter-building. Divided into teams of five, the cohort was instructed to make six shelters - from limited materials - that would be both spacious and watertight. The quality of the finished product was to be relatively predictable. Though students returned to their cabins that night soaked by water accurately thrown from the teachers’ overfilled buckets, their spirits were not dampened, as the cohort was able to reach a level of closeness that could only be nurtured through this shared experience.

Despite the busy schedule imposed on the students, the retreat was a significant stepping stone in creating a group dynamic for a small cohort that will spend the next year and a half together. Impromptu volleyball games and early morning sunrise-watching brought the students closer in an unprecedented way. “I got to know everyone so well and we had a great time as a group,” says Maddie Yamaguchi. “We feel like a family now, and I’m so happy to have made so many new friends.”


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