Infinity Program

Life Skills, Personal and Career Development

Peterhouse Outdoor Education Programme

The purpose of the D Block Basecamp experience is to give the pupils a fun and challenging experience in the great outdoors. Basecamp will develop self-awareness with a particular focus on social awareness, building new relationships, communication and working in teams.

Basecamp takes place in and around Calderwood Park and lasts for three days with two nights under canvas. Activities include basic canoeing, target shooting, abseiling, basic bush craft, basic First Aid and some initiative tests, including for example, raft building.

Basecamp includes intensive introduction to the necessary bush craft skills for our outdoor programme. Fire making, shelter building, navigation, packing rucksacks, equipment selection and nutrition are all covered in a half day introduction session by professional instructors.

Pupils from PHB and PHG participate in the D Block Basecamp in single sex groups.

Basecamp is run by PH staff assisted by staff from Outward Bound, Zimbabwe (OBZ) and costs in the region of 35USD.

The purpose of the C Block Outback is to build on the experiences of the D Block Basecamp, with a strong focus on teamwork, grit and building self-confidence.

Outback is essentially a three day, 45km “journey type” expedition from Gosho Park to Kushinga Pikaleli dam and then on to Zambesi Holidays before returning to Gosho Park. Pupils will spend three nights under canvas. Activities include canoeing, target shooting, water rescue, water related First Aid, abseiling together with several initiative tests. More advanced bush craft skills are developed (fire making, shelter building, navigation, packing rucksacks, equipment selection and nutrition).

Pupils from PHB and PHG participate in the C Block Outback in single sex groups.

Outback is run by PH staff assisted by staff from OBZ and costs in the region of 45USD.

The purpose of the B Block Chimanimani trip is to build on the experiences of the D Block Basecamp and C Block Outback in the rugged and more physical challenging environment of the Chimanimani Mountains. This location affords each pupil the opportunity to grow as they are physically and mentally tested thereby enhancing the important characteristics of grit, determination and perseverance.

The B Block Chimanimani trip is centred at the OBZ base, not too far from the town of Chimanimani itself. Activities include high cliff abseiling (the Sphinx), high ropes course, bush craft together with some well-structured leadership/initiative tests (Tessa’s Traverse etc.) together with a three day expedition with three nights under canvas which includes summiting Pezza and Quezza (highest peak in Mozambique) mountains and camping at Southern Lakes.

Some PHB pupils may opt for a seven-day expedition in Chimanimani and rather than being based at the OBZ camp they enjoy the challenge of seven days and six nights (under canvas) in one of Zimbabwe’s most remote regions.

Pupils from PHB and PHG participate in the B Block Chimanimani trip in single sex groups.

The B Block Chimanimani trip is run by OBZ staff assisted by staff from Peterhouse.

The purpose of the A Block trip to Far and Wide is to build on the experiences of the D Block Basecamp, C Block Outback and B Block Chimanimani trips in the rugged and challenging environment of the Eastern Highlands. The trip has a particular emphasis on developing relationships and working with the opposite sex.

The A Block trip to Far and Wide takes place immediately after pupils have completed their IGCSE exams towards the end of the Michaelmas term. Lasting for a week, it is based at the Far and Wide Centre; it is an integrated programme for pupils from both PHB and PHG.

Activities include a confidence/high ropes course, well-structured leadership and initiative tests and discussions, a solo night out and three days (with three nights under canvas) on the Turaco Trail.

Some pupils opt for a six-day expedition on the Turaco Trail rather than being based at the Far and Wide camp; they enjoy the challenge of six nights under canvas on one of Zimbabwe’s most spectacular expedition routes.

The A Block Far and Wide trip is run by Far and Wide staff assisted by staff from PH.

The Duke of Edinburgh's International Award

Around the same time Peterhouse Boys was founded (1955), The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award was founded by Prince Philip and Kurt Hahn, with John Hunt as The Award’s first Director (1956). The Founders’ vision was to see boys discover their interests and passions instead of simply preparing them for tests. Hunt’s life’s work aimed towards the development of a school devoted to character development through physical education and outdoor adventure by being respectful enough to give boys the responsibility and opportunity to manage their own personal leadership through self-discovery.

Peterhouse believes in and champions Hahn’s philosophy, and thus became the pioneering school in Zimbabwe licenced to deliver The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award.

Through Service, Skill, Sport and Expeditions, The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award fosters the following Ten Expeditionary Learning Principles in young people:

Learning happens best with emotion, challenge and the requisite support. People discover their abilities, values, passions, and responsibilities in situations that offer adventure and the unexpected. Young people undertake tasks that require perseverance, fitness, craftsmanship, imagination, self-discipline, and significant achievement.

Expeditionary Learning schools foster curiosity about the world by creating learning situations that provide something important to think about, time to experiment, and time to make sense of what is observed.

Learning is both a personal process of discovery and a social activity. Everyone learns both individually and as part of a group. Every aspect of an Expeditionary Learning school encourages children to become increasingly responsible for directing their own personal and collective learning.

Learning is fostered best in communities where young people’s ideas are respected and where there is mutual trust. Learning groups are small in Expeditionary Learning schools, with a caring tutor looking after the progress of, and acting as an advocate for each child. Older students mentor younger ones, and students feel physically and emotionally safe.

All young people need to be successful if they are to build the confidence and capacity to take risks and meet increasingly difficult challenges. But it is also important for them to learn from their failures, to persevere when things are hard, and to learn to turn disabilities into opportunities

Individual development and group development are integrated so that the value of friendship, trust, and group action is clear. Young people are encouraged to compete not against each other but with their own personal best and with rigorous standards of excellence.

Both diversity and inclusion increase the richness of ideas, creative power, problem-solving ability, and respect for others. In Expeditionary Learning schools, young peopls investigate and value their different histories and talents, as well as those of other communities’ cultures.

A direct and respectful relationship with the natural world refreshes the human spirit and teaches cycles of cause and effect. Young people learn to become stewards of the earth and of future generations.

Young people need time alone to explore their own thoughts, make their own connections, and create their own ideas. They also need time to exchange their reflections with others.

We are crew, not passengers. Young people are strengthened by acts of consequential service to others, and one of an Expeditionary Learning school’s primary functions is to prepare them with the attitudes and skills to learn from and be of service to others.

(Source: Wikipedia)

What better way to formalize the breadth of education offered at Peterhouse, than through the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award.

The Duke of Edinburgh International Award affords young people the opportunity to (outside the classroom) have fun, make friends, improve their self-esteem and build confidence. They gain essential skills and attributes for work and life such as resilience, problem-solving, collaboration through team-work, communication and drive. The Award also significantly enhances their CVs when applying for universities and careers.

As a non-formal and non-competitive educational framework, the Award plays a vital role in increasing employability by fostering creativity and innovation. The Award is transforming individuals, communities and societies around the world.

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Tutorial System


All full time members of staff (with the exception of the Deputy Head, Director of Studies, and the Chaplain) are required to be an Academic Tutor.

Whilst it is acknowledged that Housemasters/Housemistresses have overall responsibility for the welfare of the pupils in their houses Tutors (both Academic and House Tutors) have a very important part to play in looking after both the academic progress and pastoral welfare of each of their tutees. This implies building up a productive relationship with the pupil concerned together with his family.

The tutorial system

The tutorial system is based upon vertical groups of pupils within individual boarding houses as follows:

  1. 6th form tutor groups (5th and 6th form pupils) – groups of 8 (i.e. 4 per year group)
  2. Middle school tutor groups (A, B and C Block pupils) – groups of 9 (i.e. 3 per year group)
  3. Lower school tutor groups (D Block pupils) – groups of 10

Tutorial meetings are held formally on a fortnightly basis; guidance for tutors is provided by the Senior Tutor (Upper School), the Senior Tutor (Middle School) and the Senior Tutor (Lower School), who is the Housemaster of Tinokura. At the top end of the school there will inevitably be a great deal of emphasis on academic performance and university entrance whereas at the bottom end of the school tutorials are more likely to focus on the basic expectations of pupils.

Tutors should also keep in touch with tutees informally and take an overall and active interest in their tutees academic performance, their extra-curricular activities, hobbies and interests, their family background and any disciplinary issues which may occur.


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