Activities & Clubs
At Wellesley, we believe that learning does not just take place in the classroom; we want all of our children to benefit from a wider range of opportunities. To accomplish this, we offer a first rate activities programme and all of our children get the opportunity to sign up to our extensive list of clubs. Options include extra sports like tennis, archery, fencing, football academy training, pony club and golf. For those children who might be more creative we have excellent art, jewellery making, LAMDA, dance and carpentry clubs. Perhaps your child enjoys technology? Then they would be fascinated by our amateur radio/STEM activity or even our music technology (DJing) tuition.
We have over twenty clubs to choose from and we work hard to try to keep what is available evolving and varied. Each term, your child will get the chance to try something new. No child is the same and we have tailored our activities provision with this in mind.
Wellesley House has recently introduced SCUBA diving lessons to its activities program. The sessions, run by Kent Scuba, are held in our swimming pool and they have been extremely well received by the children. The course, named the Shrimp Course, is a beginner’s session and allows the children to get to grips with the basic skills required for scuba diving. The course is also the first step along the road to a PADI qualification.
For more information on Scuba diving please visit the Kent Scuba website: www.kentscuba.com
The Scrapbooking activity is a fun hour when pupils enjoy putting their memories on paper. Whether they have ever made a scrapbook or not, all are welcome to join our group. We have some materials to share and we are happy to help anyone get started. Pupils enjoy sharing their creative endeavours, their time, and their friendship. 'Scrapping' sessions usually happen on Tuesday and Friday afternoons during activity time. Come join the fun.
Wellesley House is very proud to have been encouraging children in their needlework skills for many years. There is a prize presented each year to the child who has made the greatest effort and progress in their needlework. There have been a wide range of final products; cushions, bags, Christmas decorations, rag dolls and key rings are just some of the lovely things made.
Jewellery club is a new arrival to the school. It offers its members the opportunity to design and make jewellery for themselves, their friends and their family. They can thread beads, or knot embroidery threads to make necklaces, bracelets, earrings, anklets and friendship bands. It is a relaxing, creative and fun experience and each week children can take away their creations to wear or to give as gifts.
Open to all, the 30 minute coaching sessions are on a 1:1 basis, although younger players may be coached in pairs. The coaches are qualified Level 3 or Level 2, and aim to give a thorough grounding of basic techniques to the less experienced cricketer whilst the better players may be stretched towards possible sports’ scholarships or county trials through our strong links with Kent Youth cricket. The bowling machine is available for more advanced technical work.
In sports fitness children partake in varying activities including dance, aerobics, and circuits all of which we do to music. We also are going to look at learning the Haka which was originally a war dance and is also now traditionally performed by the New Zealand rugby team before a match.
Modelling is a voluntary activity in which the pupils are encouraged to research, design and make models which are of particular interest to them.
Dinosaurs, model aircraft and boats, trains, clocks, dolls houses and kites are amongst the items created recently in the modelling activity sessions. Where appropriate these are working models. The children learn about design processes, resistive materials, conservation of materials, safe working practices and gain confidence in the use of hand tools and machines. An experienced member of staff oversees the children and nurtures them along the route from drawing to finished object.
Training currently takes place on Monday evenings between 6.30 pm and 7.15 pm. The club is open to all abilities, ages, and both boys and girls.
The Wellesley House Judo Club is run by Mr Samuel Kearns and is a registered club with the British Judo Association (www.britishjudo.org.uk).
Children who take carpentry have an excellent carpentry workshop in which to develop their skills. Overseen by an experienced craftsman, the children make various items from boot racks to clocks.
Photography is a recent addition to the Wellesley activity programme.
Students have the opportunity to be creative using DSLR and compact digital cameras. Photography skills such as shutter speeds, aperture and framing are explored.
Each week photographers are given a theme. These are sometimes local places of interest, objects or colours. After taking the pictures, time is spent reviewing and editing them on a computer. Each week the best photographs are uploaded and displayed in the albums you can see below.
Tennis is a very popular activity at Wellesley House and is played all year round on the school's four courts. Our aims in teaching tennis at Wellesley House are that all children will:
- be exposed to the personal responsibility involved in playing for a team, as well as developing the commitment to personal and team goals
- develop their self-esteem and confidence, regardless of ability
- learn to be gracious in victory and honourable in defeat.
In the winter, tennis coaching by two coaches takes place twice a week. In the Summer term, five coaches take group and individual coaching five days a week. Parents can opt for either group or individual coaching. All coaching is done by highly qualified and experienced staff.
Boys and girls compete in matches against local schools in leagues currently sponsored by Nestlé. The school has an excellent record in these competitions. Friendly fixtures are also played against other schools. Some children enter the IAPS competition in the summer holidays. There are also internal Knock Out competitions.
Chess is offered as an activity on Friday afternoons and is available to all children in the school. Beginners are taught the basics and there is plenty of opportunity for progression for more experienced players through the UK Chess Challenge, which takes place in the Lent term, and the IAPS Championship during the Easter holidays.
There are two cookery clubs a week, one for juniors and one for seniors. Each week, club members will make a different recipe, from sweet delights such as fairy cakes and scones, to tasty savouries such as bread or pasta. Children will learn useful kitchen skills and food hygiene basics but most importantly they will have the pleasure of eating the fruits of their labour and sharing them with friends.
Fencing is one of the few sports to have been included in each of the modern Olympic Games. The speed of a sprinter, the balance of a gymnast, the accuracy of a marksman and the calculating tactical fighter are often suggested as skills which, combined, would make a good fencer. The founder of the modern Olympic movement Baron Pierre de Coubertin was himself a fencer. As no one specific skill is a guarantee of success, the sport naturally appeals to a wide character and athletic base. The level of co-ordination and general sports skills required beyond the very basic level is such that training is arguably beneficial for any other sports in which your child may participate.
Fencing at Wellesley offers children the opportunity to experience the sport in a relaxed atmosphere, providing the ideal environment to build a foundation of skills and gain a wide base of knowledge, with general sports skills being the foundation on which fencing is built. All pupils are eligible for fencing lessons which take place twice a week and individual coaching is also available upon request. A professional fencing coach, who is currently coach to Great Britain's number one and two Ladies Epee fencers, as well as several men's International fencers at U17 and U21 level, visits the school to provide children with a sound basis in the sport which may perhaps be carried on at senior school.
Golf has been a popular activity at Wellesley for many years. Each week the professional from Royal St. George’s visits the school to give lessons. Boys and girls are taught in half hourly group sessions. The school has its own putting green. Regular golf matches and tournaments are played against other schools in Kent. The highlight of the year is the Royal St. George’s Invitation when parents play with their son or daughter over the hallowed links. Many Old Welleslians go on to become members of Royal St. George’s and play in public schools competitions such as the Halford Hewitt.
The school has a superb 25 metre, 0.22 rifle range. Both boys and girls are able to shoot on a regular basis and the school boasts an excellent record of competing in national competitions; each term we enter the St. Patrick's Shield competition, and then in the Summer, in addition, we hold the very enjoyable Fathers versus 1st VIII competition. The range was recently modernised and has individual closed circuit television monitors at each firing point, so the children can easily view their own target.
In the Summer term, numbers are limited to just the 1st VIII shooting, but in the Lent and Michaelmas terms, some 30 children are able to shoot on a regular basis.
During the Summer term, those children who are not needed for cricket or rounders have the opportunity to go sailing. Having the advantage of being near the sea, we are able to get to Whitstable Sailing club within 30 minutes. We sail most Wednesday afternoons and at the end of the term we hold the Bussell Trophy competition.
Whitstable Yacht Club provide excellent instruction as well as fine facilities, and we are extremely fortunate to be able to offer this sport to children who might not otherwise get the opportunity to learn to sail.
You can connect to the webcam at the sailing club, and you will be able to see the sea conditions as well as the sailing.