Life After Sixth Form
We know that many of you have plans for what you would like to do after sixth form in terms of university courses, apprenticeships and entering the world of work. We also know that many of you had plans for the interim months that involved travel, working and new experiences, that may now not happen in the way you had wanted.
We would like to make some suggestions of ways that you could make the most of your time in the coming months. Often at interview, you are asked about a time that you had to make the most of a difficult situation, and this would be a perfect opportunity to discuss this period of time; explaining how you enriched your academic knowledge, learned life skills or gave back to the community.
Whilst we will put new ideas in The Bulletin, we will also update this section as and when we get new suggestions. If you find something you have enjoyed, let us know!
There are a great number of resources that have been made available, often free of charge, for you to do some distance learning.
Additionally, there are ways that you can hone your skills to really set you up for success at university.
Have a read through the suggestions below, many of which have come from staff at The Kimberley School.
Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs)
There is a wide range of courses available for free, often looking at a more specific part of a subject, allowing you to work at your own pace and study something you are truly interested in. Alternatively, you could pick something you struggled with at A-Level, to enhance your learning and improve your understanding.
A wide range of courses are available direct from Harvard University (though some are on the MOOC list above too). Take a look at https://online-learning.harvard.edu/catalog/free and see if anything takes your fancy.
The Open University
Again, a huge variety of courses available for free, with a clear indication of how many hours the course should take you to complete. Perhaps choose a couple of different courses to widen your general knowledge and understanding. You’ve got nothing to lose! https://www.open.edu/openlearn/free-courses/full-catalogue
Learn to take notes – at university you will attend lectures and seminars and you may not always be able to take notes electronically. It will be impossible to write down every single thing that is said, so having a quick way to get down the key information is important.
Take a read through this article and see whether you could try some of the methods they suggest: https://collegeinfogeek.com/shorthand-lecture-notes/
Podcasts and documentaries
The world of podcasts is absolutely massive and there is a podcast for everything. Your subject teachers might be able to recommend subject-specific podcasts, but take a look through Apple Podcasts/Spotify/any other podcast app to see if anything takes your fancy.
Equally, there are a lot of documentaries available online, through BBC iPlayer, Netflix, Prime, Curiosity Stream or many other streaming platforms. Watch a documentary about something you know nothing about. Perhaps use this opportunity to practice your note taking skills!
Life skills and general knowledge
Now is a great time for you to learn how to cook meals, taking into consideration ingredients and budgeting. This will help prepare you for living independently, whether at university or later in life.
You could start by looking at some of the following sites, though Pinterest will be full of ideas too.
Or check out this list of how to cook from your store-cupboard, along with cooking skills to help pass the time:
Check out the resources here https://barclayslifeskills.com/ for a range of skills to help you in a future workplace
Mend clothes and replace buttons https://www.ifixit.com/News/32472/five-ways-to-fix-patch-and-mend-your-favorite-clothes
Mindfulness and meditation – Headspace are offering additional free resources on their app throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, to help people to cope with the changing world. Try out some of the resources, they may give you skills to help with future life stresses https://www.headspace.com/
Perhaps choose a new genre next time you go to put a playlist on.
Have you ever listened to music from an opera? Classical music? Jazz?
Spotify make some wonderful playlists from different genres, so maybe try listening to something new.
Sometimes it is good to settle down and watch a film, maybe consider watching something from a different genre, or a classic film.
Here’s a list from the film review site Rotten Tomatoes https://editorial.rottentomatoes.com/guide/200-essential-movies-to-watch-now/
Books: reading and listening
Read a book, whether fiction or non-fiction. Reading expands your vocabulary, helps you to empathise with others and widens your cultural understanding. Watch this space for reading recommendations from school staff.
Audible have also made hundreds of books free to listen to, so try something new here https://stories.audible.com/discovery
Learn a language
Have a go at learning a language, particularly if your travel or holiday plans are affected by the lockdown.
Duolingo is a great free app for learning a huge range of languages. Or YouTube has a lot of videos to learn enough to get by in a conversation.
You could improve this further by watching foreign language films on Netflix, or listen to audiobooks in a different language.
Museums and galleries
Lots of museums and galleries have virtual tours online
Imperial War Museum https://www.iwm.org.uk/collections
Work and the Community
There will be work available in key roles; supermarkets are employing temporary workers to help replenish stock so it is worth checking with your local supermarket for vacancies once your studying has finished.
You may have seen in the news that there will be work available in the agriculture industry, as migrant workers will not be able to come from Europe as usual, due to travel restrictions. Jobs will become available as we enter the summer months so you could check out British Summer Fruits here https://www.britishsummerfruits.co.uk/jobs
If you are over 18 you could sign up to the NHS GoodSAM app to be a volunteer responder https://www.goodsamapp.org/NHS to help your local community and vulnerable people to stay safe and well.
Please discuss your intentions with your parents or carers though, before applying for any of these opportunities.