Our Sixth Form Enrichment programme incorporates a wide range of activities but the work of many Sixth Formers in local primary schools has been going fantastically well and the experience has been hugely fun and incredibly rewarding.

Tash Hammond (Y12) has been working at Christchurch Primary School and has thoroughly enjoyed the experience:

“For me, it’s always been about finding a career I want, but after teaching at Gartshore Riding School I soon realised that teaching could be a possible route. I could have chosen to do enrichment within school, doing Maths boosters with some of the younger students, and I do believe it’s important to focus on the many different paths in one place, but in my case teaching mentally and physically disabled children riding, and then being given the opportunity to support teaching at a mainstream primary school, felt like I would be able to give a lot to the students and learn a lot myself. I would recommend doing this even if you don’t want to go into teaching as I am learning lots of new skills: communication, self-confidence, patience, creativity, remaining calm in difficult situations and presentation skills. These are things that will help me with any career and it’s actually a really enjoyable and worthwhile enrichment to do.”

Elsewhere, Grace Kirk (Y12) has been at Chadsmead Primary, and is considering a career in teaching:

“I decided to work experience at Chadsmead as I wanted to see what it’s like to be a primary school teacher.  I am considering this as a career so thought it would be a good way to see the kind of qualities you need, and to see if it would be a good fit for me.  I help in Y6 with maths and reading which makes me feel good because I’m actually helping people get better, work towards their SATS and I feel like a good role model. It has helped improve my self-confidence as well.”

Similarly, Louis Peart was initially looking at career pathways and is into the second year of his placement at Willows Primary:

“I have been going to Willows to help as a teaching assistant since I started in Y12. I began the work placement because I wanted to become a primary school teacher, but I have since changed my career choice and aim to go to university to do English. I know that the skills I have developed, like communication with people on different levels within the workplace, being imaginative, and being a good leader will stay with me forever and help me in whatever career I choose. I love spending time within a primary school and feel like I really make a difference. I have worked in lots of classes but really enjoy working with Reception teaching phonics as it’s really fun but has also helped me nurture my creative side. I’ve also really enjoyed helping teachers and seeing different ways in which different levels and abilities are taught.

Overall, there are twelve Sixth Formers out on placement in Scotch Orchard, Hayes Meadow, The Croft School, Christchurch, Willows and St Stephen’s.

Carrie Cain, Assistant Headteacher, said: “We are so grateful that the primary schools have offered these placements and the encouragement and support their staff offer is inspirational to our students. Of course, they give to the schools, but they also take out a lot too, and as they move forward in their professional life the lessons from these placements will truly hold them in good stead. Of course our Sixth Form is about excellent grades, but it is also about wider life skills, fun, energy and commitment.”