A Day Trip to London

After the first three days of classes and getting accustomed to our new life at Oxford, the pace shifted for our Global students. On Saturday, students finally had a morning to sleep in before they started their first weekend of excursions. An early afternoon visit to the Ashmolean Museum was followed by a punting adventure down the Cherwell River.

Any plans to out punt one another were soon thwarted by students and teachers trying desperately to steer their punts up the river and away from Oxford alumnae whose expertise at this feat was both impressive and humbling. Our dear Jack took the punt “on the swim” and navigated some of our ladies towards the bridge while Tori made headway steering the punt most efficiently from the bow.

student punting down the Cherwell River

At one point, Ms. Quinn was required to disembark her punt up the riverbank where she was left trapped in the Botanical Gardens. Her only means of escape from the locked grounds was scaling a fence. That evening, following our punting adventure, we dined most happily at St. Hilda’s.

Our group left early Sunday morning for our first excursion to London. A guided tour took us from the Sir Winston Churchill statue, past Buckingham Palace and on to other famous London sites.

students in front of Buckingham Palace in London

When we arrived at the British Museum, Mr. Cronkite’s classical civilizations class was asked to visit the controversial Parthenon Marbles and prepare for a great class debate. Should the marbles remain in London or be returned to Athens? Other students were tasked with locating six key artifacts ranging from the Rosetta Stone to the Easter Island Statue. Our photography teacher, Nic Catania, accepted student selfies as evidence of task completed.

Group photo of students outside the British Museum

And the day was not complete without a visit to Covent Gardens, a pub stop by many for fish and chips and some London style busking.

students at the Covent Gardens

A trip to Stratford-Upon-Avon on Monday afternoon brought us to Shakespeare’s birthplace where our very animated tour guide shared little known facts about the Bard and his quirky family members. Were you aware, for example, that Shakespeare’s son-in-law was a doctor who discovered, apparently, an effective remedy for the common sore throat? Feel free to ask your children, who I’m sure, will be more than happy to fill you in on the components of that formula.

students in Stratford-Upon-Avon, Birthplace of Shakespeare

Excursions provide an opportunity to enrich our students’ cultural experience while travelling and to make curriculum connections where possible. On the route to and from Stratford-Upon-Avon, Ms. Nguyen sat beside her math students and provided them with one-on-one tutoring. Not a moment is missed to take advantage of the learning. It’s everywhere.

student doing math with teacher on bus

Tuesday, we had a day off from excursions as the remainder of the week promises to be busy with more travel. On Wednesday afternoon, a group of students explored Oxford on bicycles. Later in the evening, everyone enjoyed island cuisine at Turtle Bay, an eclectic Caribbean restaurant in Oxford.

University students are slowly beginning to pour into the city here from all corners of the world. By the time they all arrive in Oxford, we will be well on our way to Barcelona.

More to follow in future posts, bye for now!