School children have ice breaker session with explorers

A pair of polar explorers will be ‘breaking the ice’ with a group of schoolchildren on a live learning journey to the Finnish wilderness in temperatures as low as minus 15 degrees centigrade.

Antony Jinman, Plymouth University’s explorer in residence, and Paul Hart, adventure travel writer for the Telegraph, have teamed up with the Plymouth Association of Primary Heads (PAPH) to take ten pupils from schools in Plymouth on an eight day adventure later this month.

Antony, who runs Education Through Expeditions (ETE), will lead the expedition where the children will experience life in a Sami community, sleep in log cabins and travel on huskie sleds.

As the third British person to have skied 730 miles solo to the Geographic South Pole via Hercules Inlet, and over 500 miles across the Arctic Ocean to the Geographic North Pole, Antony, said: 

“Some of the places I visit you would only read about in books so my aim through ETE is to share my experiences with others.  It really is the chance of a lifetime and I hope to enrich the children’s knowledge and understanding beyond the books and beyond the internet.”

Through ETE, Antony enables research and inspires young people, communicating back to hundreds of schools and University students. The schools participating in this project can follow the expedition on the ETE Live Learning webpage and get involved in online discussions and activities.

Paul Hart, a former Royal Navy Officer, provides leadership development and coaching through his company ‘Hart & Mind Ltd’. He has also led expeditions all over the world in some of the most demanding environments and has the unenviable distinction of being the only person to have been avalanched from below. 

Together, Paul and Antony have been preparing the children ahead of their journey.  Paul said: 

“We believe in sharing our expertise from expeditions and business to help mentor young people to achieve their own aspirations. This project to Finland is an extension of that.” 

The pupils – from Riverside, Mount Wise, Holy Cross, Prince Rock, Stoke Damerel, Weston Mill, Thornbury and Manadon Vale schools – will also get the chance to experience reindeer husbandry, see the environment around them, try ice fishing, snow shoeing and hope to see the Northern lights.

The expedition starts on 15 March returning on 22 March. 

A further 11 students selected from these schools will be acting as dedicated reporters feeding back the stories from the expedition team to their respective schools.  They will hold a press conference with a live link-up with the team in Finland at Plymouth University on 20 March. For more information, please contact the ETE office.