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Toronto Catholic District School Board

A Bonding Expe​rience: Grade 10 Retreats

By: Sandra K., Stude​nt Reporter


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​Mr. Muia and Grade 12 Religion Leadership Students 

October 27, 2017 marked one of the days that Loretto Abbey’s grade ten students, along with a few members of the grade twelve leadership classes, embarked on a journey to St. Bonaventure Parish Centre for the annual grade ten retreat.  


Students began the day with a church service, and after, they were split into breakout groups. Members of the grade twelve Leadership classes led these breakout groups, which included a number of icebreaker activities to help grade ten students feel at ease.


After the icebreakers, students regrouped for a game. Everyone had a balloon tied around their leg, and the object of the game was to pop as many balloons as possible without having your own balloon popped. After they had finished, the leaders elaborated on the game’s purpose. With the balloons symbolic of one’s self-esteem, the message of the game was simple: you should never try to “pop” the self-esteem of others, just as you should never let anyone pop your own.


Next, grade tens watched a video that was prepared by the senior mentors. This video provided a more in-depth discussion about body image and self-esteem, and helped students further understand the importance of a positive body image.


As emphasized by Nayla Brooks, a grade ten student, “The retreat was a fun experience that gave a different perspective on the topics discussed.”  


This feeling of community also extended to the grade twelve students leading the trip. They had the chance to lead the grade tens, and while they built upon their leadership skills, they also got the chance to bond with the younger students.


“It was a great opportunity to help plan and lead the grade ten retreats,” said Ariel Corsano, a grade twelve Leadership student.  “Focusing on topics such as self-esteem and mental health is important because these are issues that are so prevalent in our lives as high school students. Presenting topics in a fun and engaging way through activities and videos encouraged participation and the group’s enthusiasm made the retreat a success!”


The grade ten retreat is a tradition at the Abbey that helps to strengthen the bonds among its students. It not only promotes community among the grade tens, but also strengthens the bond between the grade tens and the grade twelves that was started last year. The trip may only have lasted for a couple of days, but the memories, friendships, and positive emotions that accompanied them will last a lifetime!​


 
 
 
 
 
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