A busy few days

What I love about my business is the sheer variety. Here’s a snapshot of the last few days.

SEE PROJECT

I was invited to run a workshop for the SEE Project for delegates from Ireland, Czechoslovakia, Holland and Turkey. I spoke about how I deliver Careers Advice and got them to do a short design, build and present STEM activity.

Lovely people and I was most impressed with the delegate from Turkey who bravely stood up in front of everyone to do his presentation in English. He did a great job. Much better than I could have done in Turkish.

ANTI-BULLYING DAY

Chase Terrace Technology College invited me to run a Bullying Awareness Day for Year 7 pupils. We discussed bullying issues in school and online then got them to write and deliver a presentation on bullying-prevention techniques.

An excellent day supported by Carole Hands (Helping Hands), Darren Christie (DWP) and Jacqui Pountney MBE.

CAREERS ADVICE 

As well as one-to-one interviews, I have also brought speakers into schools to give advice as industry professionals. Pictured is Hope Nightingale from Birmingham City University talking about careers in Arts, Media and Fashion to year 11 pupils at Aldridge School.

 

I am blessed to have found something I enjoy that also has the benefit of developing our young people.

 

 

Aldridge School Interact Team

I love developing partnerships and this is my latest one.

Aldridge School Sixth Form have created an Interact Club in partnership with the Rotary Club of Walsall. It’s an initiative to provide enrichment experiences for young people by supporting various Rotary Club activities.

The first Aldridge School Interact activity is to support the annual Santa Sleigh Fundraising event all around the Walsall area.

Pictured are the Interact Team in their fundraising outfits.

If you’re around Walsall in the next few days please give generously as all money raised will go towards Rotary Club nominated charities.

Community Engagement with AF Blakemore & Son Ltd

A great example of partnership work is the relationship I have developed with the AF Blakemore & Son Community Engagement Team.

They have supported many school activities over the years and are very proactive in supplying staff.

The video shows exactly what I mean by an inspirational company giving time and energy to develop the skills and outlook of our young people

Rugeley Sixth Form Enrichment Programme

I love joining different organisations together to create mutually-beneficial projects. The latest one is an Enrichment Programme for Year 12 students at Rugeley Sixth Form Academy. Through my contact with Paul Mobberley (Year 5 teacher) I approached Mr Minott, the inspirational Head of Chase View Primary School, to discuss the possibility of students supporting the school on arrange of projects. We came up with a Sports, Art and Reading Support Programme that six students are currently involved with.

They attend the school on a weekly basis during their free time to support where required.

Alex Nix-James was a former pupil at the primary school and it was great to take him back as a sixth-former to help current pupils. He was given the task to brighten up a metal container on site and below you can see the before and after pictures. Alex now has this project on his CV and the pupils at the school got to see an artist at work. Oh, and Mr Minott has got his container jazzed up.

Chase View Art 1Chase View Art 2

Year 8 Design Challenge at Aldridge School

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Teams then had two hours to devise the event, design a new steel band and choose a charity to support. We also got some finance into the brief by getting them to send ticket prices to generate funds.

All the teams came up with great ideas that they presented on stage to the judging panel of Rick Cosco (Steel Band Leader) Trevor Braidley (Birmingham Council Finance Manager) and Jacqui Pountney MBE (Walsall Equestrian Society).

Aldridge School managed to beat tough competition to win the trophy.

This Challenge will now become and annual event as it is a fantastic opportunity for pupils to develop their Teamwork, Communication, Creativity and Presentation Skills.

Royal Television Society Challenge Day with City TV

We had a brilliant day with Jayne Green and Des Tong at the RTS Challenge at Aldridge School. The pupils learned about careers in the Media industry, developed their transferable skills and created and presented a pitch for a TV programme.

Des Tong judges the pitches and chose the winners to go forward to the regional final. The winners there will have their programme idea actually made for broadcast on City TV.

City TV is being launched in September and will be found on Channel 8 of Freeview. Tune in!

Des is also bass player for Sad Cafe, a huge band from the Eighties who still perform to old and new fans. He also gave us a solo rendition of a Nile Rodgers bass line (from Chic). Google them if you’re too young to get the reference!

The pupils were superb and came up with a range of worthy ideas. I’m looking forward to the next one at St Francis of Assisi School on 30th April.

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Aldridge School Skills Development Challenge

What a great day with Aldridge School Year 10 pupils today. They did a range of skills development activities which included writing a CV, a Letter of Application and inventing and presenting a new business.

There was a lot of facing fears as well as creativity and presenting skills on show.

Business supporters attending the event as facilitators and judges were: Jacqui Pountney MBE, Richard Scott and Sue Bedward of Space2focus. They interacted with the pupils, helped develop their ideas and had the tough job of choosing the eventual winners.

Rachael and Jo from InComm Training came in to give talk on Apprenticeships and how to apply as well as discussing employability skills.

I’ll be using the experience of working with Year 10 when I start their Careers interviews in a couple of weeks’ time.

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Richard Scott, Jacqui Pountney MBE and Sue bedward of Space2focus on the judging panel

Richard Scott, Jacqui Pountney MBE and Sue Bedward of Space2focus on the judging panel

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Abu Bakr Girl’s School Maths Challenge

A fantastic day at Abu Bakr Girl’s School in Walsall. We ran a Maths Challenge aimed at letting the pupils understand the importance of Maths in terms of school grades and future careers. One challenge involved them making a range of Maths shapes in 3d and then jazzing them up with a themes to present to the judging panel.

With only one hour to complete the activity from scratch, the girls used their teamwork and creativity skills to produce a range of brilliant ideas as shown below.

The Business Supporters and I enjoyed every minute of working with a group of talented and intelligent young people.

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Cheslyn Hay High School Year 9s regenerate the area

I had an excellent day with Cheslyn Hay High School Year 9s. The school is very big on giving pupils the opportunity to develop their business and social skills.

The pupils did an Intelligence Quiz and a mini-challenge to create an art installation to demonstrate the future of Cheslyn Hay. We then gave them a budget of £100k to develop any part of town into a Social Enterprise Business.

All pupils came up with great ideas and then presented them to a judging panel made up of local business representatives:  Peter Cadman, Julie Lee and Tracey Wellings.There was a lot of ‘facing your fears’ as the pupils stood out front with a microphone in their hands and we ended up with fourteen superb presentations.

Young people developing the skills they’ll need for future success.

I’ll be back to see them again next year in Year 10!

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Year 9 Modern Foreign Languages Day – Shire Oak Academy

It was great to have the opportunity to deliver a Modern Foreign Languages day to Year 9 pupils at Shire Oak Academy.

With my Business Supporters, Helen Gelsthorpe-Smith (Henn and Westwood), PSCO Bernie Craze (West Midlands Police), Glenys Price (Gap Language Services), Jacqui Pountney MBE (Walsall Equestrian Society) and Sam Samuels (HSBC Bank) I delivered a three hour session that gave information on the value of learning a language to future careers and asked the pupils to create and make presentations using as many languages as they could.

The pupils worked hard and producing amazing ideas. It was a great day and I hope many of the pupils choose a language as a GSCE option.

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