Hands-on on Putney School exchange

cow shed

Over half term, twelve Bedalians in Block 4 travelled to the Putney School in Vermont. We soon realised that the school has an ethos that was similar or maybe even more hands-on and progressive than our own. This included the broad Outdoor Work programme in which all students took part. This most notably consisted of us getting up early in the morning and working in the cow barn before breakfast, as well as helping to clear the tables and washing up after each meal. While we were there we took part in lessons, which had smaller class sizes which meant that they were more intensive and gave us more contact time with the teachers. Classes finished at half past two and the majority of each afternoon was spent doing activities, which included Jazz, Ballet, and survival skills. The experience was undoubtedly beneficial to us as we begin to relay the ideas we have and clarify what it means for each of us to be Bedalian.

By Will Morrison, Michael Rice and Richie Sweet, Block 4

straw cow shed Rachel feeding calf

shed Oli feeding calf

feeding calves mucking out 2

Sunny Putney, Vermont


Bedales School is one of the UK’s top independent private co-education boarding schools. Bedales comprises three schools situated in Steep, near Petersfield, Hampshire: Dunannie (ages 3–8), Dunhurst (ages 8–13) and Bedales itself (ages 13–18). Established in 1893 Bedales School puts emphasis on the Arts, Sciences, voluntary service, pastoral care, and listening to students’ views. Bedales is acclaimed for its drama, theatre, art and music. The Headmaster is Keith Budge.

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Block 5 leads from the front

Last Wednesday I gave Jaw on the effects of deforestation in the rainforests of Borneo, which I have been interested in since doing a conservation project on Orang-utans when I was 11. Next July I will be going to Borneo with two current Bedalians and two OBs with Earthwatch to help PhD students conduct research to help rejuvenate destroyed areas of rainforest. As deforestation and the effects of the palm oil industry are issues that I feel students should know about, I did a student sponsored Jaw. This is a scheme that allows students to speak to the school on an issue and in return the school donates a sum of money to an organisation or charity. Doing Jaw was a great experience; it is incredible to have the opportunity to speak to so many people about something that you are passionate about and I was pleasantly surprised to have so many students come up to me to either congratulate me or show their support. I feel as though I have made a difference and I’m glad that other Bedalians also feel strongly about ecological issues.

By Ally Swain, Block 5

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Bedales School is one of the UK’s top independent private co-education boarding schools. Bedales comprises three schools situated in Steep, near Petersfield, Hampshire: Dunannie (ages 3–8), Dunhurst (ages 8–13) and Bedales itself (ages 13–18). Established in 1893 Bedales School puts emphasis on the Arts, Sciences, voluntary service, pastoral care, and listening to students’ views. Bedales is acclaimed for its drama, theatre, art and music. The Headmaster is Keith Budge.