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boy holding branches in wooded area of Pocklington School filed
Leanne Maycock

Year 2 pupils enjoyed an action packed day of learning during Survival Day.

two boys practicing bandaging as part of first aid in a classroom

Year 2 Pocklington Prep pupils enjoyed an action packed day of learning recently, when they embarked on the much-anticipated annual Survival Day. The main part of the day was to be the survival adventure, but prior to that the children spent the morning preparing for their expedition and learning about basic survival skills from two experts.

First to visit the classroom was Pocklington School Health and Safety Adviser, Mr Clark, who taught the children some basic first aid like how to put on a plaster and a bandage and what to do in different scenarios, for example if someone cuts themselves or has a fall.  They also learnt how important it is to know which number to call for help and to know their home address.

The children were visited by a real-life Desert Rat, Joshua King, who talked to them about how he survived on his adventures in different harsh environments. He showed the children equipment that he used to survive in the rainforest, desert and arctic conditions and asked the children where they would rather survive. After learning about shelter, water and the dangers of the different environments, the children unanimously opted for the desert! Mrs Walton, Year 2 Pocklington Prep teacher said: “Joshua had so many adventures to talk about; it was exciting for the children to learn about his experiences and maybe inspire a new generation of explorers!

After learning about survival, the children considered how they would survive in different real-life scenarios and worked together to plan solutions.  They had the opportunity to try water purification tablets, which the children said made water taste like swimming pool water, and they ate a fully cooked, but cold, English Breakfast from a survival food pouch, which none of them were too keen on!

After a morning of preparation, Year 2 were ready for their expedition to the far reaches of the school grounds to meet staff from Forest Quest who would accompany them on their adventure.

children sat in a survival shelter they made

Working in teams, the children were given various tasks to complete, the first being to think about where and how to make a shelter.  Mrs Walton reported: “We learnt how to tie knots, use a mallet as well as choose a suitable spot to build a shelter.  The children worked together well, giving each other jobs and the outcome was some fairly sturdy shelters!

The children’s resilience and perseverance were tested as they began making and lighting a fire to cook their tea. They used a flint and steel to light pieces of cotton wool and then began building fires, learning how to add smaller branches around the edges of the main pyramid shape. Whilst the fires got going, the adventurers played a game that made them think about what equipment might be needed in a survival kit and were introduced to Morse code, making long and short sounds to build words to communicate to others in their teams.

With the fires glowing, the children cooked a tasty meal of pasta and chicken in tomato sauce, sharing the jobs between them.  Mrs Walton said: “The children thoroughly enjoyed their teas and showed great teamwork skills right through to the end, including the washing up!

children toasting marshmallows over a camp fire on Pocklington School field

After an exhausting, challenging and exciting adventure, the children were rewarded with marshmallows roasted over the fire and smores. They thanked the Forest Quest team before making their way back to school, where the children brushed their teeth and got ready for bed and collection by their parents!

Mrs Walton concluded: “This was a really enjoyable adventure; I’m so proud of the children.  The Forest Quest staff commented how wonderfully the children worked together to help each other and persevered when activities were challenging – true Pocklingtonians!

Please click here to view the Pocklington Prep Survival Day Flickr album.

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