Youngsters get a taste of orient

Pupils from Walton-le-Dale Primary school joined counterparts from the high school on a trip to China
Pupils from Walton-le-Dale Primary school joined counterparts from the high school on a trip to China
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As school trips go, they don’t get much better than the latest undertaken by pupils at Walton-le-Dale Primary school.

While most 10 and 11 year olds were getting to grips with a few days at an outdoor pursuits centre, a group from the Severn Drive school were 5,000 miles away in China.

Pupils from Walton-le-Dale Primary and High Schools went on a joint trip to China

Pupils from Walton-le-Dale Primary and High Schools went on a joint trip to China

Headteacher Chris Shields said the school had been hosting pupils from a primary school in China over the past two summers and this year decided to “piggy back” a trip to Asia organised by counterparts at neighbouring Walton-le-Dale High School.

A group of 10 Year Sixes and three staff joined the year seven to 10s and their teachers as they flew to Beijing, before catching the sleeper train to the old capital of Xi’an.

Mr Shields said: “It was an amazing experience.

“The children were incredibly well behaved, from both schools, and we had all manner of children, including those with special needs.

“They gelled so well it made for a wonderful trip.

“They learned so much and saw so much, taking in the Great Wall of China, the Forbidden city, they experienced Chinese cuisine and learned some basic language skills.

“They experienced a Chinese market and while we were there it was the Festival of the Dead, which lasted for three days so they saw all the festivals etc.”

The head added: “For primary school children to be able to do something like this is incredible and the parents were over the moon that their children could experience it.

“There was a constant stream of photos every day so that they could see what the children were doing.

“We opened the trip to all parents and they could pay monthly over two years. It is certainly something we would like to repeat in two years.”

“The group is now planning a presentation of their visit to showcase to the school.”