(BLOG) Summer School at St Bees : More than just paddling pools and ice lollies…

Students at summer school
Author: Ceara Hayden, Head of Marketing and Admissions

With the extra demands of a continually career-focused society, parents are feeling the demands of longer hours, and therefore less time off over holidays.  Ultimately this can only result in one thing.  Either grandparents/friends/neighbours have to take the kids… or it’s off to one of the many summer camps/schools/workshops that open to serve the need.  So how does one choose?  Do they become ju-jitsu experts?  Or basket-weaver masters?  Or kayak expeditioners?  Or – does it purely boil down to cost?

More often than not, it’ll be a combination of several factors: where their friends go, what’s the best value and what’s the nearest.  In fact – 9 times out of 10, this will be the case.  They’ll go, probably do some team building activities, make new friends, fall out with old friends (before ‘making up’ on the last day), eat lots of food, get lost on an excursion to the local town at the expense of the staff leader having a hissy fit, and then come home weary and tired.  But probably happy.  The summer will quickly whizz past, they’ll be back at school and forget all about their summer school weeks; having already forgotten everything they learned the previous year at school.  Or at least a vast amount of it.

St Bees offers a Summer school with a difference

That’s why St Bees offers so much more as a ‘STEAM Forest School’.  Yes – it sounds fancy, a bit quirky, and potentially even a bit ‘hippie-ish’.  But it is actually a revolutionary concept; merging two key teaching methodologies together.  STEAM – short for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics is not a new concept – but it is an undiscovered one.  Ever conscious that we need leaders of tomorrow skilled in these areas we are determined to make even the summertime a time to inspire the next generation.   The next Steve Jobs, the next director of MI6, the next F1-racing car engineer, the next high-powered business lawyer, the next Turner Prize winning artist, the next Alan Turing.  They all excelled in these areas – and not just in one area.  STEAM education fuses all of these concepts together, showing children how they work together in harmony.  On a STEAM focused summer school, activities aren’t just run to fill time – or to provide cheap childcare.  STEAM activities focus on exciting subjects in a fun, interactive and collaborative way.   STEAM summer schools make the most of your children’s time but in an inspiring and fun way.  Children learn to think outside the box, continue to stretch their “grey cells”, and therefore go back to school further inspired by their summer experience.  And they don’t just do this with their average peer group.  At St Bees, we mix the West with the East – with International groups from all over, coming together to work towards a common goal.

Forest Schools are more than just building dens

Combining STEAM with “the Forest” would appear an obvious combination… you’d think.  After stimulating their eager young minds in warm-up activities, a part of the day would be spent outside -being at one with nature, getting messy, eating dirt (not literally), but learning to interact with our incredible natural surroundings.  But in reality, Forest schools are so, so much more.  With a continued governmental drive to introduce awareness of our environment more freely within schools, a Forest school does just this.  A recent study by Loughborough University has highlighted the benefits of embracing this within the broader education offering.  At St Bees, we are in the ideal spot to connect with nature, on the fringe of the UNESCO World Heritage Lake District National Park – with a beautiful coastline and inviting sea.  Through building bug houses, identifying local floral and fauna and becoming much more environmentally aware, children are thus developing personal, social and emotional characteristics as well as hugely increasing their physical development and communication.

St Bees Summer School in a nutshell

At St Bees this summer, children have the opportunity to learn about the world we live in.  A world where, in a battle against our extreme levels of plastic, they can become environmentally aware.  They can understand, appreciate and gain a deeper insight into the mysteries of our planet.  Then, with their new-found STEAM knowledge, they can actually do something about it.  Yet at St Bees STEAM Forest School – they do this whilst having fun.  Yes, a summer school should be memorable, fun – but being educational, responsible and forward-thinking certainly doesn’t compromise that.  In fact, some might even say it enhances it.

If you’re interested in joining us here at our unique St Bees STEAM Forest School – please get in touch today.  Places are still available this summer!

Call or email: 01946 828000    emma.stott@stbeesschool.co.uk

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