Our summer topic is rivers and mountains and one of my favourite parts of the topic is our visit to a local scout camp for a river study.
Scout Camps are likely to be very busy at weekends but perhaps not during the week. This means that they are ideal for use by schools and it's worth getting in touch with a local scout camp if you'd like to arrange something similar.
We organise the day into three parts - water activities, dry activities and a barbecue.
I'll start in reverse order: the barbecue is a fantastic social event. Transport back to school is not arranged. Instead we ask parents to come to collect their child and to stay for a barbecue. Our school cooks kindly give up their time to prepare the food whilst the children play football and a dads vs children cricket game. Other parents bring chairs to have a sit down and chat. Although it is quite a way before the end of the year, it is almost like the first of our leavers' events as it is a great way for everyone to come together.
The dry activities are orienteering and team games, photography and a river walk (the children are given a list of river-related features to photograph) and a tree study (finding the age and height of a sample of trees).
The water activities are to measure the speed of flow (using a tape measure, stop watch and lots of dog biscuits!) and the depth of the river using rope and a metre stick.
All of the data collected is used in school to form photo collages, comparisons of speed on bends and on straights and graphs to show the depth of the river.