The Western English Language Schools consist of co-educational primary and secondary based learning which operates under the government in many different areas throughout Victoria. They are a school that takes on students who have recently migrated or found refuge within Australiaand aim to teach the children basic English skills, all the while focusing on many different modern-day ‘Westernised’ programs, so that the students can prepare themselves for entering mainstream schooling and achieving successful engagement within their wider communities.
Throughout many years, Cottage by the Sea has worked closely with the staff from Western English Language Schools in order to operate and run numerous camps for all the different WELS outposts within the Victorian region. This week we welcomed 20 students from the St. Albans and Laverton WELS with a fun-filled four day camp at the Cottage.
Not only did the children share some amazing stories about to their backgrounds and culture but they also had the opportunity to participate in a variety of activities that they had never done before, including something as simple as building sandcastles along the beach.
We were also very lucky to have our good friend, Wes, come down to the Cottage one morning too, who was able to snap some awesome footage of the children playing in the water with the use of his high-tech drone, whilst CBTS staff member Lachie captured the action on the Cottage Go-Pro.
When it came to finding little critters in the rock-pools, the children were natural marine biologists! Crabs, elephant snails, shrimp and baby eels all came out to say hello at the Barwon Heads Bluff, as well as a rare spotting of a large, local, orange-brown Maori octopus for the very first time.
In the evenings, the children ventured out along the Queenscliff ‘Lovers Walk’ trail to explore the famous old war-bunker and put their fishing skills to the test down at the Portarlington Pier. Although they had no luck catching anything, the kid’s egos never once faded and their enthusiasm throughout the week was incredible. All the Cottage staff agreed that these children were one of the most excited groups we’ve ever had, particularly when mentioning the word ‘swimming’ and unlike most kids, they couldn’t believe just how trendy and cool they all looked in their wetsuits!
We would like to thank both the staff and children who attended this camp from WELS for providing the Cottage staff with endless laughs and smiles all week-round, as well as keeping the place in high spirits at all times.