A Night on the Tiles

There has never been such a rush to the hotel after an activity as there was today. The children all knew that there was a mere hour to shower, freshen up, get their glad rags on and strut into town. Three days into this magnificent residential and the children are learning that when 25 children are trying to shower at once that the water pressure ...
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Braving the rides

Because of the earlier issues, we arrived at Bagatelle in time for an early lunch (which is where we read most of the parents' comments) and by 12:00, we were ready to roll. Children split into two large groups; those that wanted to try every ride but particularly the extreme ones and the others who were a little more hesitant but who were open to ...
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Money-back guarantee

Despite the speed at which we had to eat and get ready, we were down at the beach in perfect time to start our typically French sport of Sand Sailing. Unfortunately, the wind didn't turn up and the company decided to refund us rather than risk disappointing us. Fortunately, the beach was ours alone and so we adapted. To our right were some huge san...
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Unusual Wake-up Call

​ Rather than have a cockerell's wake-up call, so this morning one unfortunate soul was woken up to the sound of something more like an Elephant seal. Let's set the scene - 15 minutes earlier the "Buddy System" worked as hoped when a teacher was woken at just after 5:00am because a roommate was feeling a little unwell. (Nothing like last year and n...
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Thank you...here's a sneak preview

The children have just gone to bed which now allows us to sit and write today's blog about their activities. While we do this (which usually takes a couple of hours) just a quick thank you for all the comments that came through today. They have all been read out, some individually and others publicly depending on when they were seen and the content...
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We see you reading...

Having posted these just now, we see that there have already been 20+ hits - thank you. However, there have only been two comments so far (from the same user). We really do like to have some feedback about the children...the children have loved in the past to hear from their parents and we do read these out to them. 
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Seals

​A new addition to the schedule this year was the opportunity to see the seals which haul up onto the beach just a short walk further down the beach. There was excitement in the air as we rounded the headland, heightened by staff confidently exclaiming that they could see them in the distance - later it turned out that these were simply the large r...
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A round-a-bout?

Whilst on the jaunt down to find the elusive seals, and prior to the ice-cream feast, the group's pace began to slow as a familiar sight was spotted. Murmurs grew to whispers which grew to chattering which grew to requests of more fun to be had. A quick show of hands dictated that a slight pause was needed whilst 46 eager children and 3 adults (we'...
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Beach games

We spent a wonderful, if delayed afternoon on Berck beach, starting with out first packed lunch provided by the hotel. For such a minimal outlay, the huge baguettes filled with ham and cornichon (which were gleefully accepted by a few members of staff), French cakes, Mars Bars, a packet of ready salted crisps, cans of Coke, bottles of water and the...
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Moving

After the enjoyment and manic nature of the market, it made a wonderful change to visit Etaple War cemetery. The mood of the children was perfect from the moment we left the coach until we left two hours later, they were true St. Michael's children. It gives me enormous pride to be able to say this about your children but they were remarkable. Sett...
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Bling

Armed with a full €15 each and a bright yellow emergency card, we ventured into the throng that was Etaples Market. Drawing on past experience, a couple of group leaders managed to lead their children past the first stalls selling the usual hats, glasses and other novelty items and bravely made it to a special little patisserie which stocks wonderf...
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Beautifully turned out

​ One of the highlights of the first morning has always been waiting to see the 'bed hair' that greets us. Sadly, this morning all of the children arrived fresh-faced and coiffed. The simple arrangement of grabbing breakfast proved no match for this Y6 group - they virtually all understood the linear approach and only when one or two forgot an item...
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Petting zoo

On the way to our first meal, some staff had gone ahead to prepare the room for our birthday boys and felt the need to send a warning text to the rest of the staff. Not only was there dog mess on the pathway (fairly standard) but just off to the right were a couple of camels…yes really. A bactrian and a dromedary...how exciting! Brace yourselves, t...
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Rules are meant to be broken

​ In a break from tradition, the helpful French man who runs Rando Rail, had decided to instigate a new regime for this first activity. Although some time had been spent on the way there arranging teams based on weight to power ratios, calf measurements and the like, when we arrived, this was all blown to pieces. This was all much to the amusement ...
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Lack of caffeine

Despite the Monday morning traffic, we made good time and reached Dover in time to catch an earlier ferry. Fantastic news I hear you cry. Well, it would have been but for the fact that this meant that the normal stop for coffee had to be forsaken. Not. A. Good. Start. Though the children were oblivious to this having by this stage consumed a ton of...
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Geography lessons needed

​Early credit must be given to those wonderful children who seem not to have been out of Braintree very much for whom the sheer notion of a coach trip was almost worth the fee. Barely an hour into the journey, before the traffic snarled up a little, a few of these were heard to recount their knowledge of our near-neighbours, identifying any tall, p...
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Nearly time

​Sunday afternoon at nearly 3:00pm and the staff are in various states of readiness for the trip tomorrow...some are completely chilled though haven't packed yet, some are deciding on whether then can get away with a 'weekend bag' or something larger and some still have yet to make contact with the group. We are sure the children are all ready and ...
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