Community Service

Community Service is something that at CDL we feel very passionate about and try to instil in all the students of the school. Within the school, they work on the REACH programme which promotes the students to address the areas of Health and Activity, Responsible Citizenship and Creativity. They must complete thirty hours per year during their school career.

Within the Boarding House, we accomplish many of these by providing activities and opportunities to take part in events and projects.

Today the students of Leman took it upon themselves to do some litter picking in the forest path running alongside the campus. This is a path used frequently by students and also the public of Versoix and it was therefore nice to show the responsibility we feel we have towards our local community and keeping it clean.

Lake Activities- Water Ski

One of the wonderful benefits of being so close to the lake is the option to do water activities. These have ranged from sailing, paddleboarding, kayaking, wakeboarding and banana boating. This weekend we had the option of Water Skiing. Two of the Leman students who were experienced wakeboarders, but had never water skied, took the opportunity to learn a new skill. Both got up and did very well, while also enjoying the beautiful lake.

Waiting for your Arrival!

Leman 1 is open and we can not wait for the school year to start.

We look forward to welcoming back our returning students and hearing their adventures from the summer. Additionally, we look forward to welcoming our new students who get to experience CDL for the first time.

This year the House will be staffed by Mr Rob, Mr Max and Mr Gordon.

Samedi du Partage

Samedi du Partage is an event organized twice a year in order to collect food donations for the Partage Charity.

The Partage is a food bank in Geneva that collects unsold food items from local supermarkets in Geneva and redistributes these to where they are needed. Over 13,000 people receive aid from the food bank each year. In addition, the food bank packages 5000 emergency food aid bags each week which are distributed globally.

This weekend on Saturday they had one of their food drives in which they mobilse the public of Geneva to donate food items. We had volunteers from CDL located at the local supermarkets in Versoix to help with this collection.


World Bike Relief Challenge

This Saturday we had two teams competing in a tremendous feat of endurance.

Arsenii from the Olympus Boarding House had a vision and brought it to reality. At the start of the year he joined the weekend Running Club organised by Mr Rob. After completing his first 5km run he set his goal on being able to complete a marathon by the end of the school year.

Arsenii challenged his House Parent Mr Tom who is a cycling enthusiast to a competition. Could Arsenii complete a marathon in a faster time than it took Mr Tom to ride around Lake Leman? This challenge grew over recent weeks to create two teams.

The runners were Mr Rob, Coach Pierre and Arsenii. The cyclists were Mr Tom, Coach Jamie and Coach Moores. They did this challenge in aid of the World Bike Relief Charity.

Leisure time on the Lake

This Weekend Mr Usher gave students the amazing opportunity to enjoy some time on the Lake. In the schools speed boat, they jetted to Geneva and back enjoying the warm water spray and views from the middle of the lake.

May Madness

Another beautiful weekend here on campus with plenty of opportunities for the students to enjoy the many activities on offer. With the sun shining it was the ideal time for them to get out and enjoy the wonderful scenery we have so close.

On-campus we had- badminton, table tennis, horseriding, cooking, tennis, biking, running club, golf, chess, body shaping, stretching, speed boating and our sports complex Olympus.

We also had the option of a visit to Nyon to explore the city and see the Castle.

Please do talk to your son to see which of these options he took part in.

Wellbeing- Pillar 5- Consequences

Leading on from our explanation of the Teenage Brain– The part of the brain called the prefrontal cortex is the last to fully develop and is responsible for critical thinking and behaviour control. From young, we learn there are consequences and learn how to make decisions. However, under the age of 13, children do not have abstract thinking skills. At that age, they are operational in their thinking. This means they understand only what is tangible and in their own environment- these are things they can see, smell, taste, hear touch etc. Conceptual thinking only starts in the teen years when they start to understand grey areas of decisions or theory. Understanding an action has consequences demands that the person understands all aspects of a decision before making that informed choice.

Therefore we as House Parents need to adjust our expectations to suit the age of development they are at. Consequences should never be given to punish a decision. We need to first help a student problem solve an alternative solution, instead of paying for their behaviour with a punishment.

Ultimately we know students will at times make the wrong decisions. However, we need them to understand these decisions, not just in relation to breaking a rule, but rather the harm they can cause to themselves, others, relationships, the community, their reputation etc.

We would much rather they take Active Responsibility for their actions.

Passive responsibility is when you do not break any rules for the fear of being held accountable by teachers or house parents, and consequently being punished.

Active responsibility is when you follow the rules because you understand that boundaries are a form of self-care and rules are there to protect you and to ensure a safe and healthy school (and house) environment for all of us!

The question for any parents is how do you get a teen to that stage. Can they learn this through education or through experiencing only the negative consequences of their actions?

Victory in Volleyball

During the week we started up our volleyball tournament again. Now that restrictions are starting to allow team sports the Leman House put the best together and competed against Olympus.

And we WON!

Basketball Tournament

On Wednesday night we started our Basketball Tournament after many months of not being able to do so. It is another small step towards a positive future of normality and being able to do our team sports again.

Leman played against Olympus and was victorious on the court winning 38-32 and onto the next round.

Wellbeing- Pillar 5- Pruning and Myelin

After our Boarding Assembly last week and sharing the Pillar with the students, this week we start on debunking myths and understanding the process of the brain.

We watched a quick video explaining the key aspects of;

  • Adolescent Brain Myths
  • Pruning
  • Myelin
  • Use it or Lose it Pinciple
  • Neuroplasticity
  • Integrated Brain
  • Pathway to Wellbeing

The students watched attentively as I gave them each a different question at the beginning that they had to answer at the end 🙂


Spring Garden

As are now in the middle of Spring it is the prime time to get our Leman Terrace ready to be enjoyed. We have a whole host of outdoor furniture which the boys can relax on and get their vitamin D. For the boys who are a little more active and keen on their fitness we have the Pull Up Bar, Dip Bar and Boxing Bag. We also have our table tennis set up and ready.

In addition, we have now started planting out our flower and vegetable garden. We have some seeds planted which are starting to come through and got a little head start with some grown plants too. We are hoping for a nice offering of tomatoes, peppers, radishes, courgettes and strawberries.

Treasure Hunt

This weekend we had a quest, to see which team could be the best.

They unlocked the riddle to a place, then answered questions as part of the race.

The campus of full of energy and smiles, with Champ des Bois victorious in the trials!

Weekend Activities

This past weekend there was again another great offering of activities.

We had tennis, badminton, biking, woodcrafting, running club, chess club, horse riding, cooking, photography, golf, bodyshaping, laser tag and a day trip to Morges!

Please do talk to your son about what they took advantage of.

Wellbeing- Pillar 5- Safe and Responsible Choices

We are now entering our 5th Pillar- Making Safe and Responsible Choices.

This topic traverses every aspect of life and indeed touches nicely on all other Pillars too. As we grow and mature we learn through exposure, experimentation and making sense of our surroundings. Adolescence is an important time for this happening and this is what we will be focusing on this Pillar.

The ESSENCE of teen brain and the science behind the decision-making process.

The objectives are to:

  • Debunk some of the most misleading and disempowering myths around adolescence
  • Explore how changes in brain structure during adolescence are just part of natural, innate, and healthy development which simply prepares teens for grown-up life
  • Being aware of this process and honouring this unique and fascinating moment in our life, can help teens and adults (caregivers) alike to support each other
  • Explore how the awareness of upsides and downsides of the different cardinal features of adolescence can help our kids to develop a fully integrated mind, and reduce and contain the risks of harm and serious injuries. At the same time, this awareness can help educators (and parents) to bring a more empathic and compassionate approach when interacting with, looking after, and guiding adolescents during these tumultuous years.

Happy Spring- Welcome Back

Welcome Back to Leman 1

It is nice to have the house full again and to hear everyone’s stories about their adventures during the holiday.

It is lovely we are now in spring and feel the weather changing which is energising everyone. We are looking forward to being able to start our Lake Programme and take advantage of the lovely activities there.

Wellbeing Pillar 4- Who are your followers?

Instagram, SnapChat, Facebook, TikTok – these are the most common social media platforms used in Leman 1. The platforms encourage users to share content and be rewarded with likes, hearts and comments. We all have an internal want to be liked and this is fed by the satisfaction of seeing your post or picture commented favourably on, or liked by all your friends.

As users gain this gratification there also then becomes a competitive element with friends, as to who gains the most interactions on their post. Somehow those who do better on these platforms become influencers and therefore role models for others. And in turn, people aspire to also having a following and growing their friends and followers.

This means that users who do not set their account to private, end up accumulating followers who they do not know. Amassing 100’s of followers to their account and now feeling the pressure to continue posting to feed this audience. Showing off their life in a favourable way to again gain the interaction from their followers.

So what is the problem with this?

Students can become vulnerable if they find themselves in this dilemma. They open up their lives to strangers. This then exposes them to the possibility of harassment, loss of privacy, stalking, bullying, identify theft, unwanted contact and predators. With anonymity online it becomes very difficult to know who is behind a username or profile. We, therefore, need to make sure our students are educated on how to deal with these vulnerabilities.

We teach our kids from a young age not to talk to strangers in the real world. But now a portion of their “real-world” is online.

Weekend Fun, without the pun

This is the penultimate weekend before Spring Break. Positivity is high as people look forward to their holidays, the weather is changing and the days are brighter!

We again had an action-packed weekend with a lot of sign-ups from Leman 1. If you do not hear your son talking about their weekend activities then please do encourage them to take advantage of everything on offer.

This weekend we had Tennis, Badminton, Table Tennis, Fitness, Cooking, Horseriding, Biking, STEAM club, Running club, Photography, Chess club, Body Shaping, Stretching and not forgetting that opportunities to enjoy the nature around us.

International Forest Day

Today March 21st is International Forest Day.

We have many wonderful forest parks and trails within the close vicinity of the school. We try to encourage the students over the weekend to get out and refresh themselves in nature. Sometimes in our busy lives we do not take the time to appreciate the beauty that surrounds us. Through the Wellbeing Programme, getting outside and enjoying nature has touched every Pillar.

Pillar 1- Healthy Body and MindGet out and get active!

Pillar 2- Promoting Diversity and Protecting against BullyingRespect is a mutual thing in all relationships, including ours with the environment and nature.

Pillar 3- Building Positive RelationshipsLearning to build resilience and ways to relax- such as walks

Pillar 4- Online SafetyFinding ways to detach from our devices and enjoy some outdoor time.

Versoix Forest


Wellbeing Pillar 4- What Goes Online Stays Online.

As part of Pillar 4, we are looking at the topic of Whats Goes Online Stays Online.

The internet is now part of our everyday lives, whether this is in School, Work or our Social Time. We have instant access to knowledge, entertainment, communication and being connected with others. Most of our students use a form of Social Media in their daily use of the internet. The major ones being SnapChat, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, VK, WhatsApp, WeChat, YouTube etc.

This is a great way for remaining in contact with our loved ones and friends no matter where they are in the world. We can also document our travels, adventures and life with pictures and follow others. With the ease of access, it allows us to be connected to those we find inspirational or enjoy the entertainment of.

However, when we post a picture, or make a comment, or write a blog- we need to be conscious that when it goes online, it stays online. 

A picture that we think is funny, may not appear that way to everyone. Indeed, once it is online and people can see it, then we are no longer in control of it as they can download, share it, pass it on, or post it elsewhere. We therefore, need to be conscious of whether we would feel comfortable with other people seeing that picture- parents, teachers, university, employers….

Even something we send in private to a friend – once it is in their possession we are no longer in control with what happens to it.

This becomes even more worrying when we share things publically or with hundreds of followers, subscribers or ‘friends’ who we don’t know.

Next week we will be focusing on Who are your followers?