How you can make a difference as an Events Team Volunteer and help us at our events, workshops and courses!

How you can make a difference as an Events Team Volunteer and help us at our events, workshops and courses!

Volunteer roles Volunteers

About GT Scholars
The GT Scholar’s programme is a social enterprise that consists of two programmes: The Academic Programme which offers online one-to-one tutoring and the Awards Programme that focuses on mentoring.

As part of both programmes, we also offer free access to our enrichment and skill building events that are hosted throughout London.  These events are designed for young people aged 11-18 years of age and include activities such as STEM activity days, study skill workshops and career days and trips to the city. We also run parent workshops and community engagement events to ensure that parents are aware of the academic and career opportunities available to their children.

What makes us different?
There are a range of charitable organisations and social enterprises offering programmes to improve the life chances of young people. However, The GT Scholars programme has the capacity to work with all state school pupils, not just those on Free School Meals. This means that pupil parents do not have to be on benefits and pupils do not need to be referred by their school in order to qualify for support.

What does volunteering at an event involve?
Volunteers who are interested in getting involved and supporting us at our events can help assist with various tasks and responsibilities.

  • You will need to arrive on time. If an event starts at 10:00am you will need to be there by 9:30am to meet the team and gain an overview of the event with the event coordinator.
  • You will help with setting up and clearing up at events.
  • You will assist to coordinate a smooth arrival and registration as well as departure for attendees and other guests. This can also include maintaining the register and managing any late attendees.
  • Assist with the coordination of lunch or refreshments for attendees.
  • Support workshop facilitators with managing groups of young people or parents.
  • Help with the distribution of stationary and workshop material.
  • Assist the event coordinator with ensuring the health and safety of attendees and overall risk management at events.
  • Give feedback to the event coordinators and programme managers at the end of each event.

When and where do our events take place?
Our events take place throughout various parts of London. Our events mostly take place on Saturdays from 10am to 4pm and we often have some events on weekday evenings, like our volunteer meetups, which takes place from 6pm to 9pm.

How much time do Event Team Volunteers commit to?
This is a flexible volunteering role. You will be volunteering as part of the Events Team and you’ll need to be available for approximately 6 events per year. All of our events take place on the weekend or weekday evenings and range from 2 to 8 hours in length.

To get started you’ll need to:
Be passionate and committed to tackling educational inequality

  • Be able to support at events as part of a diverse Events Team
  • Enjoy working with children and young people
  • Be able to remain calm under pressure
  • Be punctual and organised
  • Possess strong communication skills
  • Have excellent time management skills
  • Be able to work well as part of a team

Other important information for this role:
Please note that this is a volunteering role where you will be interacting with young people, therefore the following information must be noted:

  • Enhanced DBS check –  Before you can join the Events Team you will need to have a valid Enhanced DBS check that is dated within the last three years. If you do not have one we can process one for you. Please contact our office for further information on this.
  • Pictures – Please refrain from taking any pictures on the day, especially of the young people this forms part of our data and security policy. The volunteer photographer/videographer at the event will be responsible for capturing the day.
  • GDPR – To ensure we comply with the latest GDPR rules all data must be treated as confidential and must be returned to the events coordinator at the end of the event. Especially documents such as the attendance register.
  • Training – You will be provided with support and training for your role and will be briefed with any additional information on the day of the event.
  • Travel expenses -Any travel expenses within London will be reimbursed up to the amount of £12 for any session.

How to apply: Please attach your CV and a short cover letter through our contact form.

In the Know – Master studying for your exams!

In the Know – Master studying for your exams!

In The Know Parents What's new?

Exams may seem challenging or difficult, but if scholars adopt the right mindset and equip themselves with the right tools, strategies and techniques, they would be able to breeze through exams and achieve the grades that they want. Here are some resources that scholars can use to study for their exams.

Gojimo
This popular revision app offers free content that covers GCSE, A level, IB, iGCSE, Common Entrance and more. You pick your subject and your exam board, then you take part in quizzes to test your knowledge. At the end of a quiz, you’re told how many you got right, how long you took and you can review your errors. You’re also given detailed explanations, so if you go wrong, you can work out why. The app will also track your progress over time so you can identify your best and worst topics for revision. Get the app here.

Ready, Set, Go: Acing Your Exams!
We are hosting a workshop on Saturday the 27th of January to help young people conquer exams by improving study, time management, and mindset techniques. They will also learn from experts and study skill professionals that will show them how to manage their time effectively, how to create a study plan and how to prioritise. The event is from 10am to 4pm at Goldsmiths University in New Cross. Please contact us if you have not booked a ticket yet and you would like your child to attend.

Maths Made Easy
This great website provides a host of exceptional free revision resources for KS1 all the way up to A Level in Maths, English and Science. It includes revision questions, past papers and mock exams, and their answer sheets. You can also search for resources by topic if you want to work on a specific area in a subject. Take a look for yourself here.

The GT Scholars Programme is an after-school programme that focuses on social mobility, growth mindset and helping young people to achieve their aspirations. The programme includes tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-16. Registration for the January programme is now open. You can register online by following this link.

Meet one of our volunteer English tutors – Roberta Wiafe

Meet one of our volunteer English tutors – Roberta Wiafe

Private tutors Volunteers Young people

Every now and then we interview one of our remarkable GT Scholars volunteers to find out who the person behind the volunteer is. Without our dedicated volunteers, our mission would not have been able to make the impact that it has.  We had a chat with one of our tutors about volunteering, who she is and her message to young people of today is. Here is what she had to say:

  1. How did you first get involved in volunteering with GT Scholars?
    I first learned of GT Scholars on the Team London website when I was looking for an opportunity to offer my time volunteering. Since I really enjoyed English as a subject at school and liked plays I thought that being a Volunteer Online Tutor would be the best fit for me. Upon visiting the GT Scholars website and reading more about their cause, I decided that I really wanted to be part of their mission.
  2. Why are you supporting GT Scholars as opposed to other groups working to improve social mobility?
    The reason why I like being part of the GT Scholars volunteer team is that I enjoy being able to work with a wide demographic range of students in terms of their abilities and backgrounds.
  3. What might surprise your friends/family other volunteers to know about you?
    I think most my friends and family would be surprised if they knew that I am a theatre critic in my spare time.
  4. How has volunteering changed you as a person and what have you learned from your time volunteering?
    I think during my time volunteering I have learned how to utilise different methods of explaining concepts to people. When approaching a new topic it’s often the case that I and my student have to go over subject matter a number of times to reinforce the ideas. To ensure that the ideas really stay with him and that he understands the concepts from a range of difficult angles, I have to really think about different ways of presenting the information. This has helped me to think more innovatively and to really listen to my student so that I can tailor my approach in a way that’s most helpful to him. And these are both skills that I can apply to my everyday life.
  5. Is there anyone in particular you could tell me about who has influenced your decision to start volunteering in general?
    When I was a student, about 16 years old,  I was involved with the Social Mobility Foundation. At the time they ran a program which made it possible for me to be matched with a mentor and I also received an opportunity to take up an internship at parliament.  Because I’ve had the privilege of support and guidance as a young person, I feel that I want to ‘’pay it forward’’ and give that same opportunity back to someone else.

Roberta is truly inspiring and serves for interesting conversation. When asked what her message to young people of today is, she said: ‘’ Work hard and do your best. If you do those things you will get where you want to be. Take time to celebrate, when you achieve something, celebrate your success. Lastly always be proud of yourself and enjoy the journey.’’ That is definitely words of wisdom to live by! Roberta holds an MSc in International Public Policy from the University College London and a BA Hons degree in History and Politics from the University of Sussex.

GT Scholars is a social enterprise that provides tutoring, mentoring and enrichment to young people from a range of backgrounds. To find out more about our volunteering opportunities, please get in touch with us.

In the Know – Teamwork is the name of the game!

In the Know – Teamwork is the name of the game!

In The Know Parents What's new?

Young people need to learn how to work in teams as it is almost certain that they will work alongside others, whether it’s for a school project, a group assignment in university, or in their future career. Teamwork also teaches young people vital interpersonal and social skills. Other than sport, here are three other opportunities in which young people can build their teamwork skills.

The Army Cadet Force
The ACF welcomes boys and girls aged 12 and over to their programme where they encourage young people to learn more, do more and try more. Some of the benefits include getting to take part in loads of exciting and challenging activities such as fieldcraft, adventurous training, first aid, music, sports, and plenty of teamwork. Cadets will also learn a wide range of transferable skills through the Army Proficiency programme. Find out more about this programme and the closest ACF group to you here.

St John Ambulance Cadets
Young people aged 10–17 can join one of the St John Ambulance Cadet units, which operate throughout England. These are a great way for young people to take part in volunteer work and learn valuable life skills such as teamwork. The full and interactive programme includes learning first aid skills, volunteering within your community by providing first aid cover at public events, and having the opportunity to compete in international competitions. If you are interested, you can find out more here.

Royal Air Force Air Cadets
The RAF Air Cadets is community-based and open to anyone aged between 12 (Year 8) and 17. Membership is exciting, rewarding and above all fun, with activities such as flying, gliding, target shooting, adventure training, sports, camps, drill, academic studies and meeting lots of like-minded people who will become your team-mates and friends. You’ll also have the opportunity to be selected for the International Air Cadet Exchange programme, or develop your potential on the Air Cadet Leadership Course. Find out more here.

The GT Scholars Programme is an after-school programme that focuses on social mobility, growth mindset and helping young people to achieve their aspirations. The programme includes tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-16. Registration for the January programme is now open. You can register online by following this link.

7 ways you can make your school a better place

7 ways you can make your school a better place

What's new? Young people

We spend a great part of our lives in school and we all have our views on what would make our school a better place. There are many ways ranging from knowledgeable and highly motivated teachers who understand their subjects to state of the art equipment in laboratories. But, it is no doubt that making a school environment a better place for learners is a shared responsibility between different players such as teachers, parents and learners.

Actively striving to improve shortcomings within your school environment will create a pleasant atmosphere that stems from happier students which will, in turn, increase the productivity in students alike and eventually have a positive influence on grades.

Be inspired by these 7 steps that will help you to play your part in creating a positive and friendly environment for everyone in your school.

  1. Say NO to bullying: Bullying has become a very serious matter amongst schools around the world. The effect on a person who has fallen victim to bullying can be severe ranging from anger issues, depression, stress and suicidal tendencies. When you are a witness to another student being bullied, you must speak up and make your teacher aware of the situation.  It is not an easy thing to do as you might feel that you will be next in line to receive punishment, but always remember that you can report such a situation anonymously and your teacher will respect your wishes to remain unknown.  
  2. Be positive and friendly towards others: Students can often create a negative atmosphere through complaining about lunch meals being bad, a subject that is too difficult or a certain teacher making life difficult for them. This thought pattern can easily influence the views of students around the person complaining and dampen their spirits. Try to lift morale by offering solutions to complaints of fellow students or try to install a sense of humour on the subject to lighten the matter up. Laughter instantly lifts a bad situation and creates a light atmosphere. Nobody can learn when they are stuck in a negative mindset.
  3. Be your brother’s keeper:  If you notice a fellow student who may be struggling one way or the other, for instance, struggling in a social environment or in a particular subject, approach them and offer your help and support. If every student in the school took on this mindset it will spread a sense of belonging among your peers. If you are unable to reach out to them despite your best efforts and there is still no change in their behaviour, try to speak to one of the teachers and alert them to this in case there is more to the situation.
  4. Take care of the school property:  We all benefit from a clean and presentable school environment and would like to feel proud of their school.  Be an example to your fellow students and always respect and take care of your school facilities. Report any vandalism and try to organise school events where the whole school participates in picking up litter or removing graffiti. This is a great way to make everyone think twice before taking part in vandalising activities or littering of the school grounds. Everybody should be contributing towards a clean school environment.
  5. Participate in school activities: Volunteer to take part in various school activities such as drama, sports and any other activity. It helps to keep the team spirit alive in your school. As you volunteer for such activities, encourage other students to join as well spreading the idea of volunteerism. When you do this, not only will you be assisting other students, you will be helping teachers to perform their duties more effectively.
  6. Recognize that no one is beneath you: Not only must you show respect to your peers and teachers, you must also acknowledge and respect the other workers in the schools such as the groundsmen, cleaners and tea ladies, as everyone connected to the school work together to make education possible. Always offer a lending hand and never brush off an opportunity to learn, or think that certain school activities are only meant for less privileged students. Your hunger to learn will be contagious.
  7. Run for student government:  If you can win a position as a student representative you can really make a difference. It will allow you to create strategies and plans to improve different aspects of the school. You can engage in fundraising activities to improve school facilities or start new clubs to promote a positive environment in the school. This is your chance to make an impact. Being part of a student government also looks good on a university or college application.

In conclusion, please remember that improving a school environment often means improving the atmosphere between students, teachers and school administrators.  Change does not happen overnight but if you actively engage in some of these tips listed above, and also convince fellow students to take on the mindset, situations can be improved. Remember, you are a part of the team and you need to play your part.   

 

GT Scholars strives in providing mentoring, tutoring and enrichment to children from diverse backgrounds. Feel free to contact us to share your views or to register to our programmes. Our tutors and mentors are professional and well informed in their respective study fields, and can provide the perfect assistance to your academic needs.  We offer private tuition in Maths, Science and English as well as a Mentorship programme. Register your interest here or give us a call on 020 881 68066.

In the Know – Become a filmmaker this October!

In the Know – Become a filmmaker this October!

In The Know Parents What's new?

This October sees the annual BFI Film Festival, undoubtedly UK’s biggest celebrations of international cinema. Among the many festival events that are happening, we want to tell you about great opportunities for your child if they want to learn more about and get involved in the field of film-making and cinema.

Bell House Movie Workshop
This October half-term, the Bell House centre in Dulwich is hosting an exciting Halloween movie-making course. The course includes learning how to create fun and unique production designs, learn some special and technical effects, as well as practise directing, acting and camera skills. The course runs from Monday the 23rd of October to Wednesday the 25th. They are providing 4 free places to pupils on Free School Meals! If you are interested in enrolling your child, contact us as soon as possible so you don’t miss out.

BFI Film Academy
If you are between the ages of 16 and 19 and you are passionate about film and a career in the film industry, then the BFI Film Academy is for you! Hosted in London by the Mouth That Roars Studio, the programme is free for successful applicants. In the academy, you will explore your own creativity and passions in a supportive and dynamic environment, while also gaining valuable experience working alongside industry professionals who are respected practitioners in their field. Deadline for applications is the 17th of November, and you can find out more and how to apply here.

Into Film Clubs
Into Film Clubs are a fun and valuable way to engage young people with and through film. The club provides opportunities to watch and discuss films, to understand how films are made, and to learn how to make your own film. The club also has a significant and positive impact on young people’s learning, in particular with regard to literacy, communication and social skills. The clubs are free for all state-funded schools or non-profits and are easy to set up or join. There is also an Into Film Festival coming up in November from the 8th to the 24th and bookings have already opened. Find out more here.

The GT Scholars programme is committed to the development of practical skills such as film-making. Look out for more details on our upcoming workshops on our website and social media pages. You can also contact us or give us a call on 02088168066 to find out more. If you want to stay up to date on events and opportunities for your child, sign up to our weekly newsletter. 

An Interview With Our Founder, Temi Kamson

Our Impact Our story Private tuition What's new?

If you ever wondered about the story behind GT Scholars and how it was founded, then watch this interview with our founder, Temi Kamson.

Temi has a Masters in Civil Engineering from the University of Nottingham and a PGCE in Mathematics Education from the University of Cambridge. Having worked in state and independent schools, she set up the GT Scholars Programme with the goal of helping ambitious young people achieve their full potential, regardless of their socio-economic background. In this video, she also talks about her personal experience with the education system, why scholars enrol in our programme, what scholars will gain from the programme, and what makes our scholars successful.

If you prefer you can read the full interview below:

Why did you start GT Scholars?

I started GT Scholars based on my own personal experience of growing up in South London. I grew up in a single parent home, grew up in council housing and went through the state school system. I remember one of my teachers from primary school, Miss Bickersteth, telling me ‘’Temi, you can be anything you want to be.’’ That statement was so powerful that it stayed with me for the rest of my life, it is still with me today. There were so many times that I wanted to give up but I was really fortunate enough, especially towards the end of my school years to have right opportunities come along at the right time, and that really helped me. It really supported me in those final years when I was thinking about university but not thinking I was good enough. I was really lucky, I went off to university, I studied engineering but later on, I decided to retrain and become a teacher in the hopes that I could give back and make a difference in someone else’s life.

It was while I was teaching, working with young people, that I really wanted to inspire them and raise their aspirations. What I realised while I was teaching was quite profound. Many of the young people that I worked with were already really ambitious. They wanted to do well; they wanted to get good grades at the end of school. But many of them they just didn’t feel confident, they didn’t feel that they had the ability within them. These beliefs were so deeply ingrained that many of them thought that even if they did their very best; the best they would ever be able to achieve was a C-grade. Some of them felt that they did not have the right background and that certain opportunities were only available for the privileged few. After some time, I realised that young people needed more than just good teachers. They needed people to support them in terms of seeing the opportunities available to them and supporting them to make the most of these opportunities.

Why do young people join GT Scholars?

So at the moment in England, only about 1 in 3 young people from low-income homes, are able to leave school with 5 GCSE’s or above and this is, of course, actually quite disheartening.  There are many young people who would love to achieve better grades by the end of school, access top universities get into competitive careers but often what happens is that they genuinely have no idea how to do this. The saddest part is that many of them are so full of self-doubt that they don’t even believe that they are capable of achieving this.

What do young people gain from GT Scholars?

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. We run after-school courses, workshops and programmes for young people, particularly young people from low-income homes. Our goal is to give them the support they need so they can achieve their academic and career potential. Scholars on our programme receive academic support through tutoring. They also receive coaching or mentoring from undergraduates, graduates and professionals from top universities and leading organisations. Our scholars also get to take part in enrichment activities such as visits to the city, visits to universities and the aim of that is to help them understand the opportunities that are available to them. We also run skill building days, again, with the aim to help them and support them so they know how to make the most of these opportunities.

What makes your scholars successful?

Over the past few years, we’ve had support from organisations such as Charities Aid Foundation, School For Social Entrepreneurs and The Young Foundation. Our scholars that have been on the program have been able to move an average of 2 grade points in a year and we’ve even had some of our scholars move from a predicted D grade to achieving A-grade within a year of being on the programme. We are really proud of that.  What makes GT Scholars successful is the genuine belief that our tutors and mentors have in our scholars. They invest their time and energy supporting our scholars and building positive relationships with them. This, in turn, helps our scholars believe in themselves and that helps them realise their strengths and ultimately helps them improve their grades and career prospects. I know I wouldn’t be here today if not for the role models that supported me and believed in me when I was growing up. So if there is anything I have learned over the past through years it is that anyone can make a difference. An hour a week may seem so small, but those few hours could have such a positive influence on a young person’s life.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise that provides tutoring, mentoring and enrichment that is designed to help young people aged 11-16 achieve their academic and career aspirations. Contact us if you would like to know more about the GT Scholars Programme and how you can join.

In the know: Prizes, opportunities and awards for budding writers

In the know: Prizes, opportunities and awards for budding writers

Growth mindset In The Know What's new? Young people

It’s World English Language day on the 23rd of April. In recognition of the day, we’ve put together some opportunities for young people who are interested in writing or pursuing a career in languages.

The Pitch: BBC News

This is an ongoing opportunity for young students to pitch an idea for a story or report that may be aired on TV or Radio. The story can be in the form of an audio diary, discussion, animation, video report or short film. Students need to be aged between 11-16 years to participate and will need permission from their parent or guardian. Read more about this project here.

 

The Owell Youth Prize 2017

In 2014 the University College London introduced a new category for the Owell Prize which is aimed at young students between the ages of 14 and 18. The theme for this year’s prize is “Identity” and the article can be in any format ie short story, journalistic report, essay or play script. The prize in each category is worth £3000 and the deadline for submissions is 1 May 2017. Read more about the competition here.

 

The Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award

This competition is for young poets aged between 11-17 to help them start their career in poetry. Winners are given the opportunity to learn about the industry through internships, showcasing events and editorial stints. The deadline for entering this competition is Monday 31 July, 2017. To learn more about this opportunity, please read here.

 

Applications to join the GT Scholars programme are now closed. If your child is aged 11-16 and you’re interested in joining the tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme, we’ll be accepting applications again in May to join us in September. If you’re interested, you can register your interest here or give us a call on 02088168066

Busting 4 Common Concerns About Private Tuition

Busting 4 Common Concerns About Private Tuition

Growth mindset Narrowing the gap Parents Private tuition Private tutors Social mobility What's new? Young people

Parents are becoming increasingly concerned widespread cuts to our education system, so it’s no surprise that reports are showing that more children than ever are using private tutors.

Headteachers have warned that this boom in private tuition isn’t just causing the market to spiral out of control, but could negatively children. But at GT Scholars we wondered how relevant their concerns are:

  1.     Private Tuition is Extending the Gap Between Rich and Poor Children

Previously a private tutor was considered something that purely for affluent middle-class families, but the recent explosion in after-school tuition is actual down to families with a more modest income.

Growing fears that gifted and talented children are not being challenged at school mean that parents on low incomes and ethnic minority families are making significant sacrifices so that their children have access to private tuition.

If anything the use of private tutors could give underprivileged children a better chance to gain equal footing. There have now been calls for means-tested assistance for tuition as this could prove beneficial to everyone involved.

  1.    Private Tuition Can Actually Harm Children’s Confidence

Many headteachers have come out against private tuition by insisting that extra studying, particularly using a home tutor, can actually put a dent in a child’s confidence as well as put increased pressure on them.

But it would seem that students, particularly those with a growth mindset, actually find that time spent with a private tutor has actually increased their confidence – with many going on to achieve higher grades than they were predicted.

  1.    Tutoring Cost Are Starting to Spiral Out of Control

Many headteachers are claiming that because home tuition is an unregulated industry the prices will skyrocket as demand the service increases.

It’s true that prices at more high-end tutoring services such as Holland Park Tuition have risen to as much as £58 an hour, but most private tutors are more affordable.

The Good School Guide advises that the average cost of a private tutor per hour was £40, with some private tutors starting their prices at just £15 per hour.

  1.   State Schools Are Perfectly Able to Offer Extra Tuition

Some headteachers are concerned that some private tutors could be taking advantage of parents that are concerned for their children’s education.

They’re particularly worried that less-affluent families are spending money they don’t have, when most schools have access to a “pupil premium” that can be used to help fund extra one-to-one tuition for deprived pupils.

However, parents have found it difficult to arrange this extra tuition and many headteachers have admitted that schools cannot always give children the individually tailored help that they need. Overall it would seem that while headteachers’ fears aren’t entirely unfounded, worries that the private-tuition industry has spiralled out of control may be premature.

The GT Scholars programme works with young people from a range of backgrounds helping them gain excellent grades at school, get into top universities and enter competitive careers.

We charge means-tested fees to ensure that young people from lower income homes can access our programmes. To find out more about how we support young people through our courses, workshops and programmes, visit www.gtscholars.org.