The Duke of Edinburgh's Award

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A student’s account of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Bronze Award: 2018-19

The Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) was a real experience. I think what made it such an experience was getting through the hard times and alongside that, the good times. You realise that the struggle is somewhat necessary in the practice expedition because it made the qualifier so much easier and smoother overall, as it prepares you for all the possible challenges. Sometimes the only method of resolution was trial and error, which really wasn’t that bad at times even though it was additional walking.

The most challenging aspect was perseverance. You face so many situations and sometimes disappointment from false hope that you need to find something that will motivate you momentarily and long term.  One of the things that you learn from DofE is the value and importance of civilisation, family and friends and the role that they play in your life. You really cherish that when they are not there.

Another thing that I feel that I learnt was the value of teamwork. Our teachers were right about the emotional and mental challenge, as well as the physical. This was mainly because of all the ups and downs in situations, both literally and figuratively speaking! That challenge plays a vital and character-building part of the expedition.

The best thing about DofE for me was all the memories that we made with teachers and students alike. There were many crazy moments, which made them all the more memorable. I would certainly recommend DofE for anybody considering it. It is a wonderful experience and now seems like one of the best times to do it especially as you are with your friends.

A special thanks to all the teachers that were on the expeditions with us as you were so supportive and helpful and made it even more enjoyable. Huge congratulations to all the Year 10s that completed DofE in 2018-19.  Well Done!

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We are looking forward to starting our Bronze DofE programme again this year and are very excited to be introducing the Silver DofE programme for the first time to Year 12 students. It will prove a challenging yet fulfilling experience for all those who take part. Good luck to all during your completion of the award. The DofE team look forward to working with you!"

Miss Al-Rawi

Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Centre Co-ordinator

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The Duke of Edinburgh's Expedition Training Day 2019

On 26th January, sixty-five Year 10 DGGS Bronze DofE students were thrilled at the opportunity of coming into school on a Saturday. Armed with pots, pans, food rations and layers of warm clothing, our girls were ready for training day.

Our DofE staff, alongside Ben Bullen’s team, did a fantastic job in teaching and supporting the students with many new skills that they will be using for their practice and qualifying expeditions in May and June. The Expedition section of DofE requires participants to be self-sufficient. This means that alongside a two day 24km trek through the Garden of England (not the whole of it, of course!), whilst carrying a heavy load on their backs and an overnight camp to top it off, our students will need to be knowledgeable in some basic aspects of the great outdoors. This campcraft includes navigation, pitching a tent and cooking a meal on a trangia stove – all of which they had the opportunity to experience on Saturday.

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Needless to say, there were some impressive chefs among our students, whose patience was truly tested in the bitter cold outdoors.  Who would’ve thought that boiling a pot of cold water on a small kindling flame would take so long? Let’s just say that they will appreciate a kettle much more. That being said, the students learnt that there is nothing more satisfying than tucking into a hot meal after the physical demands of pitching a tent with a missing pole…

This experience gave our girls a realistic taster of what they can expect for their upcoming expedition weekends (except the missing pole!). One thing they will definitely develop more is patience.

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After tents and trangias, the girls were given sound advice on what to pack for an overnight camp, and the best types of clothing that would keep them warm on a cold night. I’m sure our parents and guardians will be happy to hear that they can find all this in their very own bedroom wardrobes! So there’s no need to break the bank!

Finally, we rounded off the day with some map reading skills, which will be put to the test on the expedition weekends. With a little more practice in school, the girls will be ready to navigate their way through our Great British cow fields to the comfort of their sleeping bags.

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Miss Al-Rawi     

Duke of Edinburgh Co-ordinator
 

 Please click here for more information regarding the Duke of Edinburgh Award