It is vital for all children to be able to experience the world in which they live through practical, visual and hands-on learning. School trips and visits which extend a child’s learning experience beyond the walls of the classroom are invaluable to ensure that they are exposed to a full and enriching educational experience.

Deaf children’s learning especially, must be supported and augmented with real-life experiences that allow them to develop their spoken language, experience a deeper subject knowledge and increase their self-confidence.

Trips and visits if they are carefully planned, correctly supervised and well supported allow the deaf child to explore new surroundings, helps them to get close to animals, objects, environments and nature in a safe and secure setting.

Learning outside the classroom can bring the curriculum to life for the child allowing them to achieve a fuller sensory enriched understanding of all aspects of a subject. Perhaps most importantly for a deaf child, trips and visits provide additional visual clues to support the information they are being given verbally.

Visiting speakers and themed in-school workshops also allow children to experience and share ideas with others to learn about the world around them.

Residential visits are particularly beneficial for older children as they enable the child to grow and mature in several developmental areas. Living with their peers in a residential environment helps build skills for later life, it can help to support challenging behaviour by placing the child in an environment that is different and more stimulating than their usual setting, children learn to live, work and eat together, they learn teamwork, patience, understanding and tolerance whilst consolidating life skills and growing friendships.

Cardfields is Islington’s residential and environmental centre situated in the Essex countryside 40 miles outside London. For many years a week-long visit to Cardfields has been the highlight of the year for Year 5 students. The children are provided with opportunities for learning which promote discover, investigation as well as an experience of the great outdoors.