In this section
In this section
We believe that every young person should experience the world beyond the classroom as an essential part of learning and personal development. Outdoor Education helps young people to become more motivated and independent. It develops practical life skills and lasting physical and mental well-being.
The school is one of the foremost providers of Outdoor Education in the UK and pride ourselves on our excellent reputation. Mrs Jones is our full-time Head of Outdoor Education, coordinating, organising and leading the students on their expeditions.
Take a look at our amazing Outdoor Education Calendar.
Opportunities for All
In Year 7, we run our own Adventure Challenge Award and offer a Bushcraft Residential in the May Half Term. We also have an Outdoor Adventure and Orienteering Club that is very popular with the students.
In Year 9, students participate in a 3 day long Sandstone Trail Expedition through Cheshire, before offering the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme from Year 10 onwards.
As well as organising all the activities, challenges, trips and expeditions, we manage all aspects of the Bronze, Silver and Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards, which include volunteering, physical and skills sections plus a residential section at Gold level.
Students may also undertake John Muir Awards: these involve discovering wild places, exploring them, taking part in conservation activities and sharing experiences. In addition to the outdoor pursuits opportunities, there are bushcraft, survival, navigation and first aid courses available.
Recent overseas eco-challenges have seen students travelling to far-flung destinations, such as Borneo, Peru and South Africa, where they take part in ‘once in a lifetime’ community projects, trekking and wildlife experiences.
The National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme at King Henry’s
NICAS Climbing and NICAS Bouldering are UK-wide schemes designed to promote climbing development and accredit individual achievement on artificial climbing structures. They’re a starting point for people wishing to take up climbing and mountaineering, from novice to experienced, starting from age 7.
What are the awards?
King Henrys is an approved centre to deliver levels one and two of this award scheme.
NICAS is a “climbing” award which involves climbing with ropes and harnesses. This is usually done with two people, one climbing, and one holding the rope and lowering the climber (the belayer). Belaying techniques are a key part of NICAS.
Structure of NICAS Climbing
NICAS Climbing has five progressive levels of award for complete novices to expert climbers. The scheme is split into two parts and takes a minimum of 80 hours to complete Levels 1 to 4 and an additional year to complete Level 5. Part one contains Levels 1 to 3 and part two contains Levels 4 and 5.
You receive a logbook for Levels 1-3. Later you will be offered a booklet for Levels 4 & 5. A binder is available separately to keep the booklets and additional papers pristine. You will be awarded with a certificate as you pass each level.
The aims of the scheme are as follows;
- to develop climbing movement skills and improve levels of ability.
- to learn climbing rope-work and how to use equipment appropriately.
- to develop risk assessment and risk management skills in the sport
- to work as a team, communicate with, and trust a climbing partner.
- to provide a structure for development, motivation, and improved performance
- to develop an understanding of the sport, its history and future challenges
- to provide a record of personal achievement
- to point the way to further disciplines and challenges in climbing beyond the scheme.
The Five NICAS Levels are:
1. New Climber
An entry level aimed at novices that recognises their ability to climb safely under supervision.
2. Foundation Climber
Aimed at promoting good practice in climbing and bouldering unsupervised on an artificial wall.
3. Technical Climber
A more advanced top-roping and bouldering award that focusses on developing technique and movement skills. This is aimed at ensuring a candidate possesses the knowledge and skill to climb and belay safely at any climbing facility (whether or not under supervision or with back-up) and operate in a responsible manner. Achievement at this level is broadly equivalent to a pass at GCSE.
4. Lead Climber
Concentrating on the skills required to lead climb proficiently. Aimed at developing a self-motivated climber who has a wide range of skills and has reached a high level of competence, with a desire to progress by identifying and setting goals.
5. Advanced Climber
The top-level award that focuses on improving performance, a deeper understanding of climbing systems and the wider world of climbing, as well as experience of local and national competitions
For more information about Outdoor Ed you can also contact Mrs Jones on JCJ@bkhs.org.uk
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