What a busy half term! It has been great having a full school with our students looking smart in their school uniform, really showing that we have respect for ourselves and how we present ourselves to the local community. Already this half-term, Year 11 have been busy making plans for their next learning steps, working through their preferred revision techniques with the Fix-Up Team, visiting a careers fair at Ely Cathedral and we welcomed parents and students, on Wednesday this week, to hear from local colleges and sixth-form providers. Thank you to Mrs Smith for organising these two events: they have given our Year 11 a great deal to think about!
Thinking about our Year 11 students and the fact that they are in their final year, prompted me to think about our INSPIRED values, and at that point I realised that our first value of “Independent Learning” is perhaps the most difficult to achieve.
Independent Learning doesn’t mean working on your own sat down for hours with a book reading and trying to digest information. Independent Learning is about fully utilising the tools that are available to you at your Academy, whether these be the teachers, the support staff, the library or attending extra-curricular activities that enhance you academically, pastorally or culturally.
Independent Learning means if you are struggling in class, you are brave enough to admit that you are struggling. You may seek to find the answer in your book, you may ask a friend or you might have to ask the teacher; this is you independently taking control of your learning, and working towards your best self.
After this learning in the classroom, you are then given the opportunity to use this newly acquired knowledge with your homework, but again, if you are stuck, seek help from friends, family and your teachers. Everyone wants to help you achieve and be the best you can be and homework demonstrates that bravery in class to achieve the learning outcomes your teachers want.
For those in Year 11, independent learning will be one of the hardest skills to acquire as you work towards your GCSEs. You will have to be brave enough to ask for help, and be brave enough to look at what work you need to do to organise your time more effectively. In class, you need to become experts in taking notes, gathering relevant information, working on revision techniques and how you work with others to achieve your best results. For students in other year groups, learning these skills now will help aid your learning and help reduce the pressures as you move up and through the school.