The Ideal Place to Grow Children

The Ideal Place to Grow Children

Outdoor Pursuits at Clifton

Children are naturally curious and learn through interaction with the environment.

Clifton children are blessed with forests, dams, streams and wide open spaces in which to “grow,” both on and off campus. The 40 hectare school grounds offer a wonderful and secure in-house environment, a myriad picturesque locations for “outdoor classrooms” and we’re so fortunate that the Drakensberg is within an hour’s drive, providing camping groups with overnight cave experiences.

What is the Clifton Out and About Programme?

Task badges are earned by completing a set number of tasks. Earning three badges means a Clifton Bronze certificate is achieved; six a Clifton Silver and when all ten badges have been earned, a Clifton Gold Certificate is awarded. The badges include: First Aid, Camp Craft, Farming, Weather Watcher, Conservationist, Adventurer, Life Skills, Base Manager, Clifton Traditions and Orienteering. The Environmental Hut allows access to relevant reading material.

Is the Out and About Programme a part of the curriculum?

Grade 3s earn their Junior Out and About Certificates by completing activities during their holidays. Grade 4s outdoor theme is farming. Children have to prepare, plant and tend a vegetable patch for most of the year and sell their wares at their Farmer’s Market, in the fourth term.

Grade 5s visit the Crane Foundation and interact with endangered crane species, heightening their awareness of extinction and conservation of species. Grade 6s undertake an annual hike to Injisuthi as part of their grade outings. Tutor groups take turns hiking to sleep overnight in the caves. This is a self-sufficient outing and the children have to carry all their needs, teaching them perseverance and team work.

Grade 7s undertake an “outing of a lifetime” to Botswana, where they experience the African Bushveld first-hand. Night drives, star gazing, game watching and hiking within the Thuli Game Reserve make for life-changing experiences and help nurture a caring relationship with the environment.

How often do children have the opportunity to hike?

Guided Mountain Hikes are offered every term. In two groups, Juniors and Seniors undertake self-sufficient hikes into the Berg, over-nighting in caves and occasionally in tents. The age group and abilities of the children are taken into account when deciding on a route, making it a pleasurable experience and one that they would want to repeat.