Widehorizons have 5 Outdoor and Environmental Education Centres. Ty'n y Berth in Wales, Townsend Centre in Swanage, Horton Kirby and Margaret Mcmillan House in Kent, and ECS in Eltham, London.
Here at Margaret McMillan House we are dedicated to working with the whole child in a dynamic way. We use the Outdoors and Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning to boost self-esteem and to develop the young person's ability to work as part of a successful team.
Elements of the National Curriculum are combined with low-risk outdoor activities to promote learning in an exciting, fun way. We offer week-long residentials, part-week stays and curriculum and team-building days.
Margaret McMillan house also offers Continuing Professional Development to teachers and non-teaching staff, helping to develop a strong, focussed school team.
The woodland and meadow areas at the centre provides a wonderful natural resource for pupils to be creative in the outdoors.
At various times the centre has been used by various groups as a rehearsal venue in the lead up to performance.There are both indoor and outdoor rehearsal spaces available.
Throughout their school career, all pupils should have access to a broad range of quality learning experiences. Every individual must be given opportunities to acquire the knowledge, skills and understanding to lead confident, healthy independent lives and to become informed, active and responsible citizens ‘ DfEE Curriculum 2000
The challenge for the Centre has been to develop meaningful learning activities, which are fun and advance key skills. The Centre’s philosophy ‘that every individual can walk with a step of genius’ is the guiding principle in developing this area of the curriculum.
Pupils have the chance to use these key skills in the team building activities. In addition pupils are encouraged to improve performance by awarding scores on how well they applied these skills during the activities. The running totals are compared against personal targets set by individuals. At the end of the activity sessions, teams have an opportunity to talk about their success and are awarded certificates of achievement.
Technology Pupils individually plan their designs, then join with others to work towards completing their projects. Using a range of tools and materials, pupils are encouraged to test out their ideas and to share their conclusions.
‘What is a shelter?’ Using computers pupils begin to plan and design their own shelters and use this information to make three-dimensional models. As a progression, pupils are set a team challenge to build large-scale shelters using a variety of natural materials.