Four junior Air Cadets from 1220 (March) Squadron recently completed a training course to learn basic map-reading skills. Having completed the course successfully they have been awarded the Bronze National Navigation Award.
1220 cadets examining the map
The twelve-hour course begins with learning how to obtain grid references and recognising map symbols before moving on to use these skills to plan a route. Once out of the classroom they practised using a map and relating features on the map to the ground around them.
The training culminates with a final test of their new skills. Using an area unfamiliar to the cadets, the cadets took turn the lead the group to a location. The other team members then had to work out where they were, before then taking their turn.
March squadron runs the Bronze National Navigation Award Scheme alongside the First Class Cadet classification training. Flt Lt Kirsty Burnham said, “It is a good foundation for the cadets to build on as they will use their navigation skills a lot in their cadet career, particularly if they take part in the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme”
The newest Air Cadets of 1220 (March) Squadron have started their navigation training and recently took part in their first practical training session to work towards gaining a Bronze Award of the National Navigation Award Scheme (NNAS).
The first part of the training took the form of classroom sessions learning about map reading. This included how to take care of maps as well as learning various map symbols and how to use grid references. Once these were mastered the final classroom session was to plan a short route and complete a route card.Having planned the route it was then time to put on their boots and put the theory into practise. The route took them on a circuit around the outskirts of March. Whilst walking they practised orientating their maps and were shown how to use a compass to set their maps.
Cadet Kathryn Cobb said “in the classroom it was making sense but when we stepped outside and put it into practise I was really confused. After a bit of practise I was eventually able to get it and I’m feeling a bit more confident now, I think I need to work on it before my assessment though.”