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Holly Creevy writes about the recent fieldtrip in preparation for their Geography NEA (coursework):

On the 1st July we arrived in sixth form, packed and ready to go for our 3 day Geography adventure to North Wales – we had a one hour lesson by Mr Smith where we were shown the physical geography fieldwork techniques that we would need for later on in the day – and then the journey began, first stop Talacre Dunes. At this location we used the physical geography techniques that we had learnt that morning, such as, analysing vegetation type and density, measuring the gradient of the beach using systematic sampling, checking pH levels of the soil and also testing wind direction, speed & temperature using an anemometer, all of which were examples of techniques that could be used within a non-examined assessment based on sand dunes. After we had finished the work, we had time to get an ice cream or some food and then it was all aboard for a short coach ride up to YHA Pen Y Pass, our home for the next 2 nights. Time was flying and after checking in and partially unpacking it was dinner time. Most people were on spaghetti and meatballs, surprisingly nice food considering what we were expecting from the Geography trips in the past! After dinner it was lesson time although no one was complaining as we had a beautiful view of the surrounding mountains of Snowdonia National Park and a wonderful sunset! That said, the lesson was very productive as we learnt different data presentation techniques such as Spearman’s rank. After the lesson finished it was chill time and most of us sat outside to admire the beautiful sunset. 10.30pm was lights out and bedtime, ready for our second day in Llandudno.

Day 2, it was an early get up and downstairs for our full English breakfast, sustenance for our day ahead, before having another mini lesson explaining the different techniques we would be using out in the field at Llandudno. Just over an hour’s coach ride later, due to road closures and diversions, we arrived at our destination, after a short pit stop due to grace’s very weak bladder, on another sunny day and here we analysed beach profiles and pebble sizes at 5 different sites using both random and systematic sampling, the data which would be used for statistical tests later on in the day. It was a very enjoyable walk and close to the end we recreated the annual group photo to capture the memories which highlighted the fact that we were lucky to have such glorious weather compared to the previous Year 12’s who were in North Wales during the Beast from the East storm. After all the work we were able to spend our time either walking around Llandudno, sunbathing, buying food or for Libby, getting her ice cream stolen by a seagull! On our way back down to the coach, we completed a land use map which would be applicable for any people who wanted to complete their non-examined assessment based on a human topic. After a very busy day in Llandudno, we had a scenic drive back up to the youth hostel followed by another lovely meal for dinner. Of course it was lesson time again to write up our findings from the day’s fieldwork and through using more statistical tests we learnt new data presentation techniques such as Chi square led by Mr Douglas that would be really applicable and useful for our coursework. After the lesson it was time to watch another beautiful sunset or for some watch the women’s world cup football, but just like last year it definitely didn’t come home! Before we knew it, it was bed time ready for our final day in North Wales.

Day 3 was a very early start as Mr Smith offered to take us up part of a Snowdon trail at 7 o clock, after the brisk walk in the morning air we were all very ready for breakfast, another full English and before we knew it we were all packed onto the coach again on the way to our final destination the small town of Llanberis. Whilst we were here we tried out some human Geography techniques such as mood mapping of each location of the town and environmental quality assessments, whereby we assessed factors such as transport, entertainment and residential levels to be presented using bipolar charts with a ranging scale from -5 to 5. After the work had been completed we ate lunch next to a picturesque lake surrounded by a vast variety of mountains a great way to end the trip before heading back to school. The trip was amazing, as are all the geography trips but on behalf of all 30 of us students we are thankful to Mr Douglas and Mr Smith for accompanying us on the trip and passing on their expert knowledge that will help us so much with our NEA, Mr Hardman for arranging all the travel and accommodation details and of course Mrs Martin, a regular volunteer parent who helps with many geography trips. We all appreciate the support and guidance of the entire geography department including Mrs Smith and Mr Banks. Thank you for another brilliant trip with many memories… Now for year 13!