On Tuesday 10th September, staff and children from Victoria Park Academy embarked on our third annual ‘Big Adventure’.

On arrival to school that morning staff, children and parents were greeted by a very ‘sleek’ looking Mini car parked just outside the main entrance courtesy of Sytner Mini, Oldbury. The glossy navy blue paintwork shone in the morning sun as the VPA logo was clear for all to see!

There was a real ‘buzz’ in the air as people were stopping to admire the car which has been on loan to us by Sytner while we have been working in collaboration with the motor car company on various school projects.

To celebrate our ‘Big Adventure’ staff and children travelled by vintage red buses around Smethwick and Birmingham areas, stopping off at various venues culminating with lunch and afternoon activities in Cannon Hill Park. The 6 red buses had travelled from all over the country to take us to our various destinations, the children were excited to hear about the history behind the vintage buses – the fact that they had no seat belts, that there was a conductor on board, the layout of the bus being so different to the buses of today and the drivers cab having no modern technology!
Teachers and children had linked their ‘stop-offs’ to their Autumn term Creative projects. Reception children visited Birmingham Nature Centre as part of their topic and also looked at transport and types of houses on their journey. Year 1 focused on people belonging to different groups looking at various places of worship; they passed the Guru Nanak Gurdwara on Smethwick High Street, St Matthews Church Smethwick, Birmingham Oratory on Hagley Road and finally stopped at the Birmingham Central Mosque in Highgate where they had a tour, talk and refreshments. As part of their ‘Sparks Will Fly’ topic Year 2 visited Smethwick fire station where they had a tour and a talk. Year 3 visited Bournville Village where the children followed the village trail and explored the historical buildings. Year 4 took a trip to Moseley Bog and explored Sarehole Mill where the famous author JRR Tolkien lived near to, for four years. Year 5 linked their Tudor project to a visit to the Oak House West Bromwich. They had a tour around the old house and looked at the characteristics of the building and the surrounding grounds. Finally, Year 6 linked their visits to their World War 2 project. They began their journey in Smethwick stopping off at various locations where the war hero William Savage lived, went to school and where he worked. Their journey then took them to Broad Street in Birmingham where they looked at another war memorial and had an impromptu visit to the brand new Library of Birmingham.

Everyone then made their way to Cannon Hill Park where they stopped for lunch and later took part in various fun activities. It was a Grand Day Out and everyone had a GREAT time!

We are all looking forward to next years’ ‘Big Adventure’.