Outdoor Learning at Tile House Mansion


Following on from the Forest School provision at the Junior School, the challenges and marvels of the natural world continues at Tile House Mansion. Pupils continue to develop team work, perseverance and communication skills. Building dens, challenging the low ropes, growing vegetables, using tools safely, and orienteering; an extensive array of activities offered over the changing seasons.   All of which is supported with the purpose built log cabin classroom.

Whilst encouraging progress through various skill sets, pupils are able to develop a sense of appreciation for the outdoors in preparation for the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme. Starting with an introduction to erecting tents in Year 8, through to volunteering, physical activities and expeditions. These activities culminate with the  DofE Award,  Bronze, Silver and Gold.

The Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme


The Award equips young people for life and work

“The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award has helped countless young people on their sometimes difficult path to adulthood.” HRH The Duke of Edinburgh

For the past seven decades, the Dof ECharity (Reg. no. 1072490) has inspired and transformed the lives of millions of young people from all walks of life. From volunteering to physical activities, life skills to expeditions, achieving a DofE Award is a passport to a brighter future, valued by employers and universities.

 At Akeley Wood we are very proud to be a registered Duke of Edinburgh Centre.

The Award is comprised of three levels and four sections. Participants complete all four sections at each level in order to achieve their Award. At Gold level, participants also complete a Residential Project.


Bronze level                                                                                                  


Silver level

Gold level



There are three levels of programme you can do which, when successfully completed, lead to a Bronze, Silver or Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. The main differences between them are the minimum length of time they take to complete, how challenging they are and the minimum age you can start.

There are three Award levels:

  • Bronze – for those aged 14+ years
  • Silver – for those aged 15+ years
  • Gold – for those aged 16+ years


If you are in Year 9 but are only 13 years old, you may be able to start a Bronze DofE programme if most of your friends are already 14 – please check with your DofE Leader.

Activities for each DofE section take a minimum of one hour a week over a set period of time, so they can be fitted in around academic study, hobbies and social lives. Development and regular progress must be shown and all activities must be completed by the participant’s 25th birthday.

Bronze timescales:

  • Volunteering section: 3 months
  • Physical section: 3 months
  • Skills section: 3 months
  • Expedition section: 2 days/1 night
  • You also have to do 3 more months in one of the Volunteering, Physical or Skills sections.

Silver timescales:

  • Volunteering section: 6 months
  • Physical and Skills sections: One section for 6 months and the other section for 3 months
  • Expedition section: 3 days/2 nights
  • If you didn’t do Bronze, you must undertake a further 6 months in either the Volunteering or the longer of the Physical or Skills sections.

Gold timescales:

  • Volunteering section: 12 months
  • Physical and Skills sections: One section for 12 months and the other section for 6 months
  • Expedition section: 4 days/3 nights
  • Residential section: Undertake a shared activity in a residential setting away from home for 5 days and 4 nights.
  • If you didn’t do Silver, you must undertake a further 6 months in either the Volunteering or the longer of the Physical or Skills sections.

Choose from a range of volunteering, physical, skills and expedition activities that will set you up for life.

Perhaps you want to help out at a local youth club or improve your swimming? Learn how to bake or go hiking? Work out what excites you and makes a difference to you and the people around you.

For each Section of your programme, you need to take part in your chosen activity for a set period of time (this is different for Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards).

It’s up to you what you do for each one, so you can choose something that you’re really into or keen to have a go at. It’s all about setting yourself a challenge and feeling great when you achieve it.


Programme BriefView/Download
Residential - GoldView/Download
Complete ProgrammeView/Download
Expedition Kit List and Table of Events 2017/18View/Download