THE RESIDENT, recently looked in on the activities of the joint Speakwell Language School and the summer school at St Julian’s school in Carcavelos.
The calmness of the youngsters was surprising as they boarded the coach that would take them to the Sintra Hills for a day of rock climbing and rappelling.
On arrival, little did they realize that in order to begin the day’s activities, they must trudge up the hill towards the Moorish castle. There were some raised eyebrows once they saw the hilly, rocky descent that awaited them, but on arrival it was amazing how quickly and calmly they were reaching out for safety gear and helmets.
The first student was attached to the ropes, and was climbing within seconds – there was hardly a tremble in her young legs. The Resident reporter, Bob Hughes left the climbing to clamber up the rocks to the site of the rappelling, just in time to see the completion of the safety instructions. Then, without any hesitation, one of the female students was up and moving forward to take her place on the edge of the rock face, to rappel downwards some 50 metres or so. It stood out a mile that the girls were more confident than the boys – and less hesitant.
The trip was aimed at confidence building and the development of leadership skills.