Wodonga Senior Secondary College Peer group take the next step in the snow
Falls Creek was pleased to host a group of students from Wodonga Senior Secondary College for the third season running as part of their Peer Support Group. In 2013 the group, made up of 25 students, some refugees from Bhutan, had their first snow experience on the Toboggan slope at Windy Corner. The next step for the group was a cross country and snowshoeing experience at Falls Creek in 2014.
This year the group of 26 students and 4 staff members headed to Falls Creek to try skiing for the first time. Falls Creek Ski Lifts offered free equipment rental and lessons for the entire group.
The WSSC English as a Second Language (EAL) Peer Support Program was started in 2014 by students Lauren Adams and Emily Woolford as they wanted to improve the integration of our school’s multicultural students with the wider Wodonga school community, as students were reluctant to break out of their small social groups. At first, Lauren and Emily taught a multicultural student group outdoor sports during our Impact Project time on Thursday afternoons (Impact Projects allow for students to design their own community service project that can develop leadership and social skills for inclusion in their own personal resume). They found the students really enjoyed the interaction, and became much more confident in communicating with others in the Albury/Wodonga community.
The EAL Peer Support Program grew with the assistance of Falls Creek Resort Management and YMCA Howmans Gap by providing opportunities for the students to grow in confidence with their English speaking skills from learning healthy outdoor winter sport activities in an inspiring environment, where the group was given the opportunity to learn tobogganing, snow shoeing and cross country skiing – activities that were viewed as beyond reach for them. As a result, students have reported back to say that some of their families have travelled together to go back for snow play at Falls Creek.