Current Sixth Former, Phoebe Smith, gives her perspective on Sixth Form life.
After finishing my GCSEs, I was both excited and apprehensive at starting a new chapter of my education. I need not have worried. The Grange Sixth Form provides a relaxed, social and supportive atmosphere where you can further your academic studies in a smaller, more intimate environment.
This setting allows for a much closer relationship with teachers and encourages the provision of direct help and support. You can take a lead in your own studies and can use the quiet workrooms together with available computers to help you whilst at school. Although I anticipated a greater workload in Sixth Form, the supportive, understanding attitude from teachers and the free periods each week have allowed for plenty of free time whilst being able to keep on top of work.
From my experience, the Sixth Form Centre provides a happy environment with areas for quiet work, socialising with friends and entertainment through game consoles and music. Social groups expand and you can have fun and make new friends alongside studying.
It turns out that my excitement was justified, my apprehension wasn’t.
The Sixth Form Canteen offers a wide selection of food and refreshments such as paninis, wraps, sandwiches and jacket potatoes. You can order in advance which is useful to skip queuing for food and to involve yourself in more clubs during lunchtimes. We also have a mini kitchen, which allows us to prepare food and to make hot drinks.
Whilst in the Sixth Form, there are a plethora of clubs and societies, all of which offer leadership opportunities. Examples include leading workshops (such as peer support) and coordinating clubs for students in the Lower School. Through participation in these clubs and societies, I have found myself developing a range of skills, boosting my self-confidence and preparing for university and life after school.
A ‘Liberal Arts’ lesson is incorporated into the weekly curriculum in which you can broaden your knowledge through a choice of often intriguing topics in enjoyable, relaxed lessons. Despite it being an unfamiliar type of lesson, it has been excellent to push boundaries and comfort zones outside of typical A-level lessons.
Lessons this year have included: Art History, The Bigger Picture and Russian for Beginners. I have absolutely loved my Art History course; something that I would not ordinarily have undertaken; it has been interesting to analyse backstories, lighting and artists’ approaches.
I have found this year at The Grange to be the most enjoyable so far due to the social atmosphere of the Sixth Form Centre, the new challenges faced with support from teachers and the different lessons and activities. No matter what you are interested in, there’s something for everyone. It turns out that my excitement was justified, my apprehension wasn’t.