Last week, we hosted our Sixth Form offer holders in virtual taster sessions for all the subjects we teach at Ada. This gave our offer holders their first experience of lessons at Ada, as well as giving them the opportunity to start meeting their future classmates. We had great attendance and support from our current year 12s who welcomed the offer holders and answered their questions.
The week started with Maths on Monday. Students joined three sessions to talk about the problem-solving work they had been doing over the past week, and to find out more about the three different maths options at Ada. First, we discussed how to critically analyse statements in our Maths Studies taster, then those interested in Maths A-level looked together at coordinating geometry problems. Finally in our Further Maths session, a small group of students tackled a challenging new type of sequence using repeated fractions. In all three sessions, we were impressed by students’ thinking, and we’re really looking forward to getting started with our new cohort of maths students in September.
On Tuesday, future A-Level Business students joined a session about leadership styles. Before the session, they had all gone through the PowerPoint and completed a quiz to test their current knowledge. We then went over the four different leadership styles they will need to know for Business Studies, examples of each style, and factors that will influence the style of a leader. Now it was time for them to have a go: students watched clips from four different movies, and then had the chance to write down on a Jamboard the leadership style they observed and their reasoning. Lastly, they took the quiz again so they could test if they had improved their knowledge.
On Wednesday prospective students for the Creative Pathway showcased their design skills and actively engaged with feedback from our current year 12s. The session gave the students a hands-on experience of what lessons are like and the enthusiasm from all the students was great to see and they are all clearly excited to start in September.
On Thursday it was the turn of the subject at the heart of all the study programmes at Ada: Computer Science. We all met at 09.30 for an introduction from Head of CS, Mark Campbell, who explained the BTEC curriculum and introduced the visual programming task using p5.js. We produced a YouTube playlist for the learners to work through independently for the rest of the morning, while Ada staff were on hand to answer any questions. Students also collaborated using a virtual noticeboard on which they could ask any question for us to answer later.
We reconvened at 3pm before quickly breaking into smaller groups led by a teacher and assisted by our (soon to be) year 13. The students displayed the results of their visual programming tasks which were excellent - even the year 13s couldn’t believe the quality. A selection of the dynamic drawings produced over the course of the day are presented here.
The week ended with the Psychology Taster session entitled “Your amazing memory” with reference to Computer Science, Maths, Black Lives Matter, and Psychology of course! We looked at how memory is flawed and not always what we think it is. Childhood memories are often those that are dramatic events and we should question the accuracy of all memories. However we conducted some quick experiments to test how good our memories are. When asked to simply recall it is difficult, but if we are given the correct prompt (or clue) our memory is reliable and it is amazing that we store information without even trying in some cases. Looking forward to seeing the new students in September. Friendships are already being made between our current year 12 and our new intakes!
All-in-all it was a fantastic week and both staff and students are even more excited to open our doors to the new Year 12s in September!