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Head of Year 11 Blog

MR L JULIAN

I am very proud to be the Head of Year 11.

If you wish to contact me, please email hoyyear11@hessleacademy.com

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  • WEEK 16 - Friday 14 January 2022

    Published 14/01/22

    I would like to wish you all a very Happy New Year and welcome you back to the first Head of Year Blog of 2022; I hope you all had an enjoyable Christmas.

    As we approach the end of the first full week back at school, I am pleased to report that our Year 11 students have returned to school with a great deal of enthusiasm and eagerness to get on with their work. To that end, they have received information this week regarding their after school revision sessions that will be running every night of the week. These sessions are a fantastic opportunity for the students to gain further guidance and instruction from their teaching staff, covering key topics and exam practice in preparation for their up and coming exams. We have offered these revision sessions for a number of years now and their importance can not be underestimated. If you would like to know more about the sessions on offer please do not hesitate to contact me.

    Already, a number of students have begun to use our Learner Resource Centre, working on the school computers and revising together after school.  This is really great to see and they deserve all the recognition and praise they receive.

    Since returning to school we have already seen students sitting a number of exams. Including the Cambridge National Sports Exam, a GCSE Food practical Exam as well as the BTEC Childcare exam. This has certainly brought home the realisation that their time at high school is coming to a close. With this in mind, there is always a risk of talking about their impending GCSE exams too much and we often walk a fine line between ensuring students understand the importance of being ready and well prepared and placing excessive pressure on them. Communication is therefore crucial, between both parents/carers and child as well as home and school.

    As we inevitably move ever closer towards the end of year 11, I would like to remind you that as a Year Team, we are here to help and support you and your child through arguably the most important stages of their education to date and encourage you to contact the Year Team with any questions or concerns you may have.

    Finally, with the serious risk of sounding like a stuck record, I must once again mention ‘attendance’ and I urge you to discuss the importance of having ‘good’ attendance and how damaging missed school days can have on your child's knowledge. Now more so than ever your child needs to be in front of their teachers.

    Once again, Happy New Year.

    Regards.

    Mr Julian

    Head of Year 11

    Mrs Lacey

    Assistant Head of Year 11

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  • WEEK 14 - Friday 17 December 2021

    Published 17/12/21

    And, just like that, it was Christmas!

    I don't know about you, but for the first time that I can remember it just doesn't seem like Christmas….yet?! I still have what appears to be a never ending list of presents to source, as well as facing the dreaded wrapping of said presents, something that I have never been able to do well.

    Having said that, it is a hugely enjoyable time of year and both my wife and son join me in the love of this magical family focussed time.

    Unbelievably it was last December when Mrs Lacey and I were introducing ourselves to you and setting out our hopes and aspirations for the students in our Year Group. Now, a year on we are in touching distance of the final months of Year 11. 

    This week the students of Year 11 have taken part in their Careers Week, which gave the young people the opportunity to work on their CVs, speak to members of the local community and participate in activities and events designed to provide crucial information for their post sixteen option choices. Thanks must go to Miss Lawes who has done a wonderful job of providing such an engaging event in what can be best described as a difficult, ever changing environment. Miss Lawes was incredibly pleased at how well the students had engaged in the week and sent me a wonderful email with glowing feedback from our guests and visitors.

    Over their remaining months, the Year 11 team will continue to support and guide our students and it has been a pleasure to see so many showing such determination and commitment to their studies. They must now use this Christmas holiday to recuperate and spend quality time with family before returning to us in January fully rested and ready to attack their revision and exams.

    The last day of term sees the annual and much anticipated Staff v Y11 Students football match. Those students who put themselves forward to play in the match must first prove they deserve the opportunity and undertake a four week behaviour report. Attendance, behaviour and attitude towards learning are all considered and this group of year 11s have more than risen to the challenge. Never before have we seen so many training sessions, set plays and a desire to win, and maybe, just maybe this year we will see a team capable of beating (an aging and increasingly creaking) group of staff.

    I would like to wish you all a wonderful Christmas and New Year, have a great holiday and stay safe.

    Take care.

    Mr Julian

    Head of Year 11

    Mrs Lacey

    Assistant Head of Year 11

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  • WEEK 12 - Friday 3 December 2021

    Published 03/12/21

    With the Year 11s having now finished their two weeks of Mock Exams and the ‘catch ups’ completed, it is now a case of waiting, with the students undoubtedly having those nagging thoughts and emotions, “I hope I passed”, “What scores did I get?” and “What happens if I don't do well?”.

    However hard, both the exams and subsequent waiting period is, it is an essential part of preparing for their final exams. I am sure you will all remember your final school exams and the unbelievable feeling of relief once they are finished, quickly followed by the looming dread of results day. During the remaining weeks of this term I will be using this time to discuss ‘Choices’ and most importantly making the ‘Right Choices’.

    I was incredibly pleased at how well the Year 11 students approached these Mock Exams and their behaviour throughout was very pleasing. For the vast majority of the year, these exams were some of the first since Year 8!

    During the two weeks they certainly made a lot of the right choices. Attendance was higher, behaviour better, and attitude to learning heightened. The students certainly understood our expectations and more than rose to the challenge. Maintaining this intensity is now crucial, and that is where I once again ask that you use the Christmas Holiday to discuss the importance of making the right choices and ensuring that your child is prepared for their remaining months at Hessle High School.

    Making the right choices:

    1. Revision guides, cue cards, pens and notepads, etc are bought and ready to use
    2. A revision timetable is completed and ready to follow (Students have the opportunity to finish a revision timetable in Tutor if required)
    3. Conversations have been held with teachers - targeted revision ideas and areas of improvement discussed
    4. Intervention Sessions are being attended
    5. School attendance is high and revision sessions attended
    6. Have a target! What/where do you want to go after Year 11?

    Over the coming months I will continue to challenge my Year 11 students on their choices and the importance of ‘rising to the challenge’. Are they challenging themselves? Are their friends having a positive influence on them? and are they starting early enough?

    Communication is crucial and I ask that, if you have any concerns that you please contact me via: hoyyear11@hessleacademy.com or the school switchboard.

    Take care and stay safe.

    Mr Julian

    Head of Year 11

    Mrs Lacey

    Assistant Head of Year 11

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  • WEEK 10 - Friday 19 November

    Published 19/11/21

    Hello, and welcome to this week's Year 11 Blog.

    Over the past week within Tutor time the Year 11s have been looking at the importance of ‘kindness’ as well as continuing to have a weekly focus on all things relating to post sixteen option choices and future careers.

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  • WEEK 8 - Friday 5 November 2021

    Published 05/11/21

    The importance of kindness

    “If everyone did one random act of kindness each day, we might just change the world” BulliesOut, UK anti-bullying charity.

    Next week the focus of my Year 11 Assembly is ‘Kindness’ and reflecting on the importance of kindness, not only towards others but also on ourselves. Hopefully by the end of the assembly recognising that even the smallest amount of kindness can go a long way!

    Watching the daily news or reading the papers it is very easy to become downhearted and feel overwhelmed by the levels of negativity and unhappiness across the globe, and now more than ever it seems appropriate that we take every opportunity possible to make another person smile.

    A simple act of kindness can have such an effect.

    And the best bit...Being kind is for everyone! That feeling you get when you see the impact of kindness can improve your whole day and hopefully inspire others to ‘pay it forward’ and do the same for others.

    So, what are random acts of kindness?

    Listed below are a handful of examples of acts of kindness that could make a difference to someone:

    1. Pay someone a compliment
    2. Smile at someone
    3. Send a message to a friend you know is struggling
    4. Do something nice for someone you may not know very well (hold a door open, get in touch, ask how they are)
    5. Help someone with their work/revision
    6. Tell someone who you admire, why you admire them
    7. Thank someone

    Whilst being kind to others is important, so is remembering to be kind to yourself as well. With social media playing such a large part in our lives understanding what self-kindness means is imperative. Don't judge yourself harshly, don't hold yourself to impossibly high standards and stop comparing yourself to others for making a mistake, or not being good enough.

    Being kind is not just something we can do in the ‘real’ world, it also relates to our online behaviour too. Explaining the importance of thinking before they type and not involving themselves in potentially long lasting and hugely damaging online negativity.

    So, be kind, being kind really does matter.

    If you are concerned and would like to speak to me, please do not hesitate to contact me: hoyyear11@hessleacademy.com

    Take care and stay safe

    Mr Julian

    Head of Year 11

    Mrs Lacey

    Assistant Head of Year 11

    Read More
  • WEEK 6 - Friday 15 October 2021

    Published 18/10/21

    Developing Resilience...

    A wise man once said “Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence and perseverance”. It was actually my old Form Teacher, Mr Rowntree, and his words have stayed with me for 22 years (and counting).

    With the risk of placing too much importance on resilience, the need to develop these skills is probably more important now than ever before. It is worth saying that resilience, perseverance and coping skills can all be improved and developed with hard work. 

    The role of developing resilience relies heavily on providing our young people the right environment to learn. We not only have to provide the right amount of challenge but also the right amount of support. Too much challenge and no support results in stress, pressure and burnouts. Too much support and not enough challenge can lead to complacency.

    So, how can we develop resilience?:

    1. Keep your eye on the Prize (Maintain your perspective). Keeping a sense of perspective is crucial. Having the ability to keep an eye on the bigger picture as well as the mundane small details will help stay on track. Being able to focus on both during tough periods will help develop resilience
    2. Surround yourself with people who make you feel good, and further your development. Often when we isolate ourselves due to growing pressures, the more we brood over bad decisions which in turn increases our stress and frustration. Surrounding yourself with likeminded, kind hardworking people will impact on our wellbeing and effort levels
    3. Believe in yourself and your own abilities. Have hope! Being optimistic is crucial in developing resilience. When you believe in yourself you are more likely to push yourself and place yourself into challenging (and hugely rewarding) situations
    4. Be flexible. Learn to be adaptable, things will go wrong, being able to ‘flex’ with these changes is a key part of resilience. Bruce Lee noted “the stiffest tree is most easily cracked”
    5. There will be some stress...Don't totally avoid stressful situations. Finding the right balance is tricky but some stress is helpful, it means you care

    I would like to finish this week's Blog in the same way as the last:

    Right now the prospect of sitting their GCSE exams will undoubtedly be a concern to many students in Year 11 and I encourage you to have a conversation with your child, discuss the steps mentioned above and most importantly encourage them to discuss their concerns with their Year Leader, Tutors and Teaching Staff.

    If you are concerned and would like to speak to me, please do not hesitate to contact me: hoyyear11@hessleacademy.com

    Take care and stay safe.

    Mr Julian

    Head of Year 11

    Mrs Lacey

    Assistant Head of Year 11

    Read More
  • WEEK 4 - Friday 1 October 2021

    Published 01/10/21

    The importance of being able to prioritise.

    As we move ever closer towards the exams students will often mention that they are overwhelmed by the volume of work and added workload. More often than not this is caused and compounded by the fact that students struggle to prioritise their tasks.

    Being able to prioritise is an underrated skill, and one which is often overlooked.

    Having a plan of attack for their increasing workload can often break the cycle of missed homework, poor revision and the stress of falling behind.

    The good news is (and one which I will repeatedly mention to students) taking control of your tasks can be improved as simply as looking at how they approach their work.

    Steps to success - How to prioritise:

    1. Write down all of their tasks (big, small and immediate). Listing all tasks as individual items helps make your workload feel less overwhelming. Knowing what is actually on your plate is crucial.
    2. Determine which tasks are truly important and what can wait. Not all tasks are equally important! Unfortunately, we have a habit of gravitating towards the less urgent and easiest options. Having a daily/weekly ‘must-do’ list can help remain focussed and on task
    3. Have a schedule. Knowing what is happening and more importantly when it is happening is key! Having a weekly schedule highlighting their revision sessions (at school and home), mock exams, as well as free time allows the students to anticipate potentially busy weeks and get a head start on priority tasks
    4. Tackle their most challenging tasks first. When revising it is often easy to focus on the subjects we find easiest. RAG Rating (Red, Amber, Green), subjects and topics will allow students to concentrate on potentially problematic areas of study
    5. Give yourself plenty of time to focus on each individual task. Time management is crucial, so too is having a suitable ‘learning space’. This can be as simple as having your revision guides, prompt cards, exercise books ready early. Having a space away from distractions is important, stick to your schedule and be prepared to switch off mobile phones and electronic devices during this time

    Right now the prospect of sitting their GCSE exams will undoubtedly be a concern to many students in Year 11 and I encourage you to have a conversation with your child, discuss the steps mentioned above and most importantly encourage them to discuss their concerns with their Year Leader, Tutors and Teaching Staff.

    If you are concerned and would like to speak to me, please do not hesitate to contact me:

    hoyyear11@hessleacademy.com

    Take care and stay safe.

    Mr Julian

    Head of Year 11

    Mrs Lacey

    Assistant Head of Year 11

    Read More
  • WEEK 2 - Friday 17 September 2021

    Published 20/09/21

    I would like to welcome you all back to the first official Year 11 Blog after what I hope has been a restful and enjoyable Summer Holiday.

    It seems like only yesterday that we were welcoming the young people into Year 7 and now we are preparing for their final months.

    Since returning to school Mrs Lacey and I have been incredibly pleased at how well the students of Y11 have started back. Seeing so many students participating in the first revision sessions of the term has been wonderful to see, and long may that continue.

    There is always a risk of talking about their impending exams too much and we often walk a fine line between ensuring students understand the importance of being ready and well prepared and placing excessive pressure on them. As we move ever closer towards the end of year exams I would like to remind you that as a Year Team, we are here to help and support you and your child through arguably the most important stages of their education to date.

    This week I delivered my first Year Group Assembly centered on ‘Resilience’. A skill often talked about but a lot harder to develop! Life is hard and we are often faced with difficult decisions and choices but it is often these deciding moments that make us who we are. I want every young person in my year group to embrace their final year and these tough moments and take their first steps into the ‘Real World’. 

    Throughout the Tutor Programme the Year 11’s will continue to look at careers information advice and guidance and next week (Thursday 23) the Year group will be involved in the fantastic Prison Me Know Way sessions.

    Finally, I look forward to seeing the parents of my Year Group next Wednesday at the Y11 Parents Information Evening.

    If you do have any questions or queries please do not hesitate to contact me: hoyyear11@hessleacademy.com

    Take care and stay safe.

    Mr Julian

    Head of Year 11

    Mrs Lacey

    Assistant Head of Year 11

    Read More
  • Head of Year 11 Blogs 2020/2021

    Published 17/09/21

    To view Year 11 Blogs from 2020/2021 please click here

    Read More