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As my time drew near yesterday afternoon to tog up and take the Year 2 Boys’ Adventurers out into the woods for another energetic session of playing capture games, finding as much mud as possible and generally spending 40 minutes relishing the freedom of the outdoors, I gave in to the elements and decided staying inside would be a much better option (admittedly, this was purely and selfishly for the benefit of my aging bones!) Having made this decision, the pressure was then on as I was faced with the task of quickly devising an activity that would appeal to them and make up for missing their weekly mud fest. A flash of inspiration hit me as from somewhere in the depths of my mind I plucked ‘paper aeroplanes’ and after a quick Google search to find some instructions for creating those with superior flight and speed, the ‘Paper Aeroplane Masterclass’ was all set.

The boys arrived with their usual bustle of energy, keen to know what was in store for them and I happily breathed a sigh of relief when the cheer erupted following the big reveal for the session. This quickly led to lots of talk about their previous experiences with some even claiming there were champion paper aeroplane craftspeople within their families. A couple were a little unsure as they did not have as much experience, but tentatively got stuck in, which made me smile as it proved testament to how secure they felt both within their peer group and teaching staff to take the risk. All eyes glued to the IWB (interactive white board) we followed step-by-step instructions for the traditional paper aeroplane. Most accomplished this independently but began to notice the accuracy required if you were to make the best model possible. These planes were tried and tested for performance and most were pleased with their achievements. Next came ‘The Dart’ – just the name itself emitted an excited intake of breath from the boys as images of supersonic jets burst into their minds. Again, eyes glued to the IWB for instructions, the boys diligently created their planes, although this time there was a distinct improvement on accuracy of folding to ensure the pointiest ‘nose’ and super sharp creases. The energy could be felt in the room as the determination to succeed and challenge themselves mounted. They were certainly not disappointed as the test flights were in another league compared to the previous traditional version.

Despite the session coming to an end, no-one was prepared to call it a day. Discussions took place as to whether the weight of the paper might affect performance, with some concluding card would make the plane too heavy to fly whilst another observed a light feather does not travel far when you throw it, but a heavy rock does. Others wanted to perfect their skills in their folding accuracy – was this the key to performance? Clearly the masterclass has lots more mileage in it yet and so I look forward to next Monday’s episode!

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