Grade 10 Outing - SAMREC and the DONKIN MEMORIAL

BY Megan van der Merwe and Valentina Longaria

On 17th February, the Grade 10 learners (all 90 plus of us) experienced an adventurous, educational and fun filled day when they attended the Grade 10 History, Life Science and English outing. Dressed for physical education the girls waited in high spirits to learn and fully enjoy the experience they were about to have.

At 8:00 the girls found themselves departing for SAMREC SA Marine Rehabilitation Reserve in Port Elizabeth. After a singing filled bus ride they arrived and were welcomed with warm, open hearts at SAMREC.  There the girls sat down to listen to a lesson on the history of ships and shipwrecks and learnt a great deal of nautical terms and expressions, but the entire lesson was just a build up to the main attraction… penguins! At SAMREC we learned about famous ship wrecks that occurred on Port Elizabeth’s coast line, the importance of keeping our beaches clean and harm free for our fish and penguins and how the SAMREC organisation rehabilitates sick or injured penguins. ‘’I never knew so much about ships and ship wrecks, it’s so interesting.’’ – Natalie Petzer.  We even got a close up view of the penguins and learned their names! ‘’I loved the part where we got to have a personal encounter with the penguins.’’ – Mateenah Langford  “Archie is my favourite because he is SAMREC’s first baby penguin that has been born in captivity.’’ – Robyn Japtha. ‘’The penguins made my heart melt!’’ – Yolisa Sompku

Once outside and seated the girls observed and photographed the penguins as they swam and walked around their enclosure, saying goodbye to the penguins was quite sad as during the few minutes spent with them the girls learnt much about them and their personalities.

Soon it was time for the girls to leave the main building and start a relaxing, peaceful walk on the beach. While on their walk the girls helped pick up any litter they found, observed a Ghost Crab, collected beach glass and shells and took a multitude of photographs of the amazing view. Claudia Slambee, “The walk was amazing and being with my friends made it even better!”

At the end of the beach walk the girls climbed back into the buses for a quick ride to the Donkin Reserve. On the way to the Donkin Reserve Mrs Myburg and her girls got into a bit of a pickle as they strayed slightly off path, but Riebeek girls are always ready for a challenge. They put their map reading skills to excellent use and soon they met the rest of the grade at the Donkin Reserve.

Once at the Donkin Reserve the girls sat down for a short, insightful lesson on the history behind the Donkin monument. The tragic love story behind the building of the monument truly struck home with some of the girls and they became extremely fascinated, wanting to know more. Megan Sampson, “The monument was extremely touching.”  As the girls spent longer observing their surroundings and taking in the beautiful artwork all around them, their eyes were widened to the world of history. Shannon Blignaught, “It was beautiful and educational and showed us visual, artistic history.”  At the Donkin Reserve we observed both historical and artistic statues and sculptures. We enjoyed ourselves so much at the Donkin Reserve. We had a lovely picnic where we sat with our friends. “I think my favourite part of the day was the eating!” – Ameerah Mohammed. We took pictures until we could no longer smile anymore, tried every pose in the book and ran out of “good angles” The Grade 10 learners only had positive and happy remarks about our adventure.



When told to leave the girls tiredly entered the buses for the last time and said goodbye to their little adventure to return home to Uitenhage.

Many thanks go to Mrs Woods for giving the young ladies the opportunity to go and experience history and life science in a whole new way. Thanks also go to Mrs Gerber, Mrs Myburg, Mrs Gunter, Mrs Hickson and Mr Weidemann for driving the buses and keeping the girls safe and sound throughout the entire day.

 February 22, 2016
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