Welcome to Mendip's Parent and Guardian Portal. If your child is due to come and visit Mendip Activity Centre for a School Residential, this page is for you.
School residentials are often the most exciting part of a school year. They offer young people invaluable, life-changing opportunities in safe, exciting environments, often learning new skills and stepping outside of comfort zones. We think that all young people should have the opportunity to explore, be challenged and to grow.
Mendip Activity Centre have been working with schools for forty years. From caterers to instructors to customer service team, our team are the best in the industry. In our experience, we know that this can be an apprehensive time for adults and children alike. It might be the longest time your child has gone away from home and they may be anxious about certain elements. We hope that this portal proves useful and we look forward to welcoming your child to Mendip soon.
THE BENEFITS OF OUTDOOR EDUCATION
Getting outdoors and active is crucial for young people. Outdoor learning provides opportunities and experiences that cannot be achieved in any other educational context.
“Learning outside the classroom contributed significantly to raising standards and improving pupils’ personal, social and emotional development” (Ofsted)
Outdoor education allows young people to;
Expand comfort zones and build resilience: Outdoor adventure allows young people to expand their comfort zone, build resilience, and grow confidence.
Look after their wellbeing and mental health: We care deeply about the wellbeing of all young people who come to visit us and promote a positive attitude towards mental health.
Develop environmental awareness: Spending time outdoors allows for a better understanding, knowledge and connection with nature.
Create stronger relationships: Students build and develop better relationships and communities with their peers and their teachers.
Engage with learning outside the classroom: Learning outside the classroom can assist in curriculum-focused activities, independent learning, team working, creativity and important life skills.
CLEAN & COSY ACCOMMODATION
Your children will have exclusive use of their accommodation during their stay. We provide everything except bedding- you'll need to provide a sleeping bag and pillow.
Your child will either be staying in our indoor accommodation in bunk-bed style bedding, or in one of our canvas tented villages, Basecamp.
PEACE OF MIND WITH MENDIP
We've been delivering life changing outdoor education residentials since 1987. We are the largest and most reputable outdoor activity provider in the South West.
We are proud to be accredited with the Adventure Activities Industry Advisory Committee (AAIAC), Learning Outside the Classroom (LOTC), the Institute for Outdoor Learning (IOL) and the Duke of Edinburgh Award (DofE).
All our instructors are fully qualified with specific outdoor adventure qualifications, first aid and safeguarding. All our team undertake regular training and we care deeply about the wellbeing of our team and all our clients.
We care passionately about the environment and green issues and are doing everything we can to make a difference through our actions and education.
We'll plan an action-packed week where outdoor learning, development and growth are key.
All of our programmes are developed in conjunction with schools to create an fully-packed timetable with our most popular activities.
Every programme varies slightly but is likely to feature a range of activities from Rock Sports, Water Sports, Land Sports and Target Sports.
All our activities are safe and fun, first and foremost. Where possible, we'll add an education twist and allow students to grow and develop.
Outdoor adventure allows students to step out of their comfort zones, try adrenaline-fuelled activities and build personal confidence.
Team building initiative exercises will focus on team and leadership development. Target sports, orienteering and bushcraft are great for concentration, developing new skills and gaining environmental awareness.
Our menus are locally sourced and packed with all the energy needed for the adventure ahead. Everything is prepared on site in our fully-equipped commercial catering kitchen to ensure your students have well balanced and freshly cooked food all week.
We are able to cater for all dietary needs and requirements. When you sign up to the trip, the school will ask you to let us know any specific dietary requirements or allergies that your child might have.
Sleeping bag & pillow
Wash kit including toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo etc
Towel for showers
Lots of underwear & socks
Old trousers- two pairs (jeans are not appropriate)
Long-sleeve tops (plenty)
Warm jumpers/fleeces (layers are best)
Waterproof top and waterproof trousers
Woolly hat & gloves
Wellies or walking boots
Closed toe shoes (two pairs, one to get wet)
Old towel for activities
Reusable water bottle (1 litre)
Sun protection (suncream, hat, sunglasses)
Book to read
Pencil and paper
Large plastic bags are great for putting in dirty/wet clothes
Bring a large bag with most of your clothes in and please bring a small rucksack/backpack to take your waterproofs, packed lunch etc between activity sites.
Please do not bring: any jewellery, electronic items, expensive items, your favourite clothing or shoes. Mendip cannot take responsibility for the loss, theft or damage of any personal property. We would always recommend leaving jewellery and valuables at home.
What are ticks?
Ticks can be found in rural areas, long grass, woodland, open country, public parks and gardens. We've created a handy guide so you know how to reduce the risk of getting tick bites, how to remove them and what to what out for, here.
I have a specific request about my child's programme & accommodation.
You'll need to contact the organiser at the school, who we will liaise with to ensure we deliver the best possible residential for your children.
What should my child bring?
A copy of our kit list is here.
My child is nervous about coming on residential.
It is completely normal to be nervous about coming on residential. Please be reassured that, alongside your school, we are experts in supporting children during their stay with us.
Everything we do is completely safe and our whole team are here to ensure your child has the best possible experience. If your child is particularly nervous, please let your school know before the trip who will then liaise with us.
How do I let you know my child is coming?
The school will send you a form to fill out. This form will also capture any specific dietary requirements or allergies that anyone in the group may have.
What is the daily routine?
The daily routine varies slightly from school to school. It is likely to follow a similar structure to the below:
Who will allocate the children to their sleeping accommodation?
The school will be responsible for allocating the children to their sleeping accommodation.
What happens if my child doesn't want to take part in an activity?
Our instructors are experts at ensuring everyone is involved. They will help all students to challenge themselves to their own personal abilities but never forcing them to do something they don't want to do. Many of our activities require an element of team work, so even if they are not actively doing the whole activity, they are still completely involved.
How can I help my child prepare for their residential?
We reccomend researching the sorts of activities that your child might be taking part in with your child - climbing, kayaking, archery, bushcraft, frisbee golf has been proven to help prepare children for their events.
Reassure your child that it is okay to be nervous and completely normal!
My child really enjoyed the activities! How do they continue them?
Mendip Activity Centre: outdoor activities, snowsports, frisbee golf, tobogganing. Visit website
Mendip Basecamp becomes a family adventure campsite every summer. Visit website.
Rock Climbing. Indoor climbing and bouldering walls can be found everywhere. Visit British Mountaineering Council website.
Kayaking, Canoeing, Paddle Boarding. There are loads of kayaking and canoe clubs. Visit British Canoeing website.
Archery. Visit Archery GB website.
Orienteering. Orienteering clubs are fun, competitive and active. Visit British Orienteering website.
Caving. Visit British Caving website.
My child can't swim. Can they still take part in watersports activities?
Yes! We use buoyancy aids on all our watersports activities which means that children do not need to be able to swim.