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.

One-to-one Online Tutoring is growing in popularity – and it’s showing no signs of slowing down

One-to-one Online Tutoring is growing in popularity – and it’s showing no signs of slowing down

Growth mindset Private tutors What's new? Young people

In recent years, the demand for private tutoring has grown at a phenomenal rate. The many challenges facing the traditional education system have deemed a proactive approach from stakeholders outside the system. According to an article in The Guardian regarding an increase in the number of children receiving private tuition,  almost a quarter of students in the United Kingdom received some form of private tutoring in 2016. This is a sharp increase from the 2005 statistic of only nine percent. Mathematics and English rank as the most requested subjects for private tutoring followed by the Sciences. These facts prove without a doubt that private tutoring is here to stay and for good reason.  

The average teacher-to-pupil ratio in the public schooling sector is roughly 1:16. In the global context this seems reasonable, but when taking into consideration that each child is unique in their learning style, it becomes less desirable. Many parents are coming to the realisation that more is needed to supplement their child’s understanding of the concepts learnt in the classrooms. Possible reasons for this include:

Enrichment
Many parents recognize that their child is capable of achieving goals and understanding concepts far above the expected level of education that forms part of the school curriculum. Every parent wants their child to reach their full potential. Private tutoring is one way to equip young people to reach their full potential. It allows for learning to occur at the pace and preference of the student while taking into consideration the students individual strengths and weaknesses. For students who are particularly gifted, it is better to challenge their appetite for education through private tuition. This can aid the personal growth of a student and place them at an advantage for higher learning opportunities.

Preparation for exams
A recent study concluded that around 38% of students reported having received private tutoring for the GCSE exam, while around 18% of students reported that they have found it necessary to receive private tutoring for the grammar school entrance exams.  Schools are expected to teach content but the responsibility of exam preparation falls primarily on the shoulders of the student. Preparing for exams is a daunting task on its own. Students have to deal with stress, time pressure and expectations from parents and schools alike. It is also a time where a formidable understanding of the examinable content needs to be solidified. The necessity for private tutoring becomes apparent in terms of providing much-needed support to students. It allows students to ask questions, revise content and attempt examination questions with the assistance of a reliable tutor who has a firm grasp of the content and the manner in which it is examined. A private tutor can provide educational support such as exam technique or study tips and much needed reassurance during this usually stressful time.

Remedial
In most cases, students require more time to fully grapple with and understand a concept. A private tutoring session can give a student additional time to engage with the content in a meaningful way. Again, the pace, strengths and weaknesses of the student can be more appropriately catered for by a private tutor. A private tutor can be a useful resource for motivating and challenging a struggling student to accomplish goals in a personalised environment.

Everyone is different
Students are all individuals, especially when it comes to their learning methods. There is a range of learning techniques that are ignored by the traditional schooling system in order to make learning mainstream. This means that the majority of students are missing out on the opportunity to reach their full academic potential. Private tutoring places your child at the centre of the learning process. Your child becomes more than just a statistic for the School Board, but rather the recipient of a valuable education process that can propel them towards a successful future.  Private tutoring has the potential to improve a student’s performance for this particular reason.

Benefit for parents
Private tutoring can also be a great help to busy parents with demanding schedules. The responsibility of assisting your child with homework and preparation for assessments can be managed by the private tutor. This is an advantage for your child as a tutor is better qualified to provide a conducive and productive learning environment. It also relieves some of the demands placed on a parent’s timetable allowing for more family quality time.

Monitoring progress
The traditional schooling system provides limited progress reports that are often not detailed enough to adequately monitor a student’s educational and personal development. Private tutors can provide continuous analysis of the progress of a student. This allows parents to mitigate not just educational problems that might arise, but also behavioural and personal issues that a student may be facing.  This also places parents in the best position to participate in the growth of their child.

Personal growth
Private tutoring can boost young people’s marks which can, in turn, increase a student’s self-confidence. This can also create a lifelong love and appreciation for education, rather than a disdain for it. Personal responsibility is also heavily emphasized during the private tutoring experience. Through the help of a private tutor, a student is able to recognise the value of being dedicated to one’s work. The benefits of which are higher test scores. This can be the springboard for personal motivation and growth.

If you believe, like Benjamin Franklin did, that “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest”, then private tutoring is a worthwhile investment for any student. Private tuition is increasing in popularity, not because parents see value in tutoring, but rather that they see value in their child. It is in the interest of ensuring that their children extract the fullest potential from their educational journey that has seen a sharp incline in private tutoring nationwide.

GT Scholars is a non-profit organisation that believes that education goes beyond the classroom. If this article has inspired you to join the growing number of parents that are choosing private tutoring, then register your interest the GT Scholars programme. The programme offers tutoring in Mathematics and English and will give young people aged 11-16 the best opportunity for educational success.

 

7 Ways you or an online tutor can boost your child’s literacy, vocabulary and oracy at any age

7 Ways you or an online tutor can boost your child’s literacy, vocabulary and oracy at any age

Growth mindset Parents What's new?

Language and communication skills are considered to be the fundamental building blocks for how we, as social beings, convey our thoughts, feelings and ideas. For children, the very first exposure to language development starts at home by imitating the language used by parents and utilising this development to further attain additional language skills in primary and secondary schooling and onwards.

According to an Employer Skills Survey conducted by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills, 91 000 employers identified skills most lacking among employment applicants are either directly or indirectly related to oral communication. We can, therefore, state that language development is of crucial importance to a child’s later success in life. There are various methods that parents, teachers and tutors can implement that can potentially improve young people’s language skills and their overall confidence.

Encourage writing
Trying to motivate young people to write can sometimes be a challenging task.  Providing young people with frequent opportunities to write has proven to be an effective way to improve written language skills.  Encouraging young people to write in a journal or diary is a great idea. Younger children still developing basic writing skills can have writing incorporated into everyday tasks. This can include writing birthday cards, postcards during holidays or grocery lists, they are all great introductions to writing. Another fun way to encourage young people to write is to let them participate in local poetry or writing contests or volunteer their writing skills at local publications or non-profit organisations.

Variety is key
With the information age in full swing, it goes without saying that there is a great demand for our attention. Twenty four hour news cycles, social media platforms, electronic devices and all the click-bait entertainment value that comes along with it are all demanding of our attention. It is consequently paramount to incorporate variety into the methods we use to teach our children pivotal language skills to ensure optimal stimulation and entertainment while they are learning. Don’t be afraid to try something different. Instead of selecting their reading material, take children to the school or community library and encourage them to choose their own materials to take home. Families can start their own ‘book club’ by setting aside one evening per week to discuss various books or publications together as a family. Young people can also practice reading out loud as it can boost confidence in their language and oracy skills.  Try to make learning fun by hosting ‘game nights’ playing games such as Scrabble or Upwords.

Debate and engage
When defining good language skills, one would assume that this encompasses the entire spectrum of these skills in generic form from listening, speaking, reading to writing. Over the years, however, there has been the sense that speaking and listening skills have taken the backseat in comparison to reading and writing skills in the standard educational systems.  The very same survey conducted by UK Commission for Employment and Skills detailing the lack of applicants with good oral communication skills identified that these applicants did not have the ability to manage one’s own feelings and the feelings of others, persuade and influence others and to make speeches or presentations. We must then, certainly, invest dearly into the development of young people’s spoken communication skills. Don’t underestimate the power of the debate. When speaking to young people, avoid the yes-no questions and leave them open-ended to encourage fluency and grammar skills. Question their answers and debate the topic! Remember to take on the role of the talker as this is a crucial part of improving children’s speaking skills. Make sure you always provide good speech for children to listen to as they will use this as the basis for their development.

Books, books, books
When acquiring any new skill, practice does make perfect. Books and related reading materials are the backbone of teaching and improving young people’s literacy and overall vocabulary.  Providing constant access to books and reading material will ultimately help them spend their time on something constructive, better their language skills and ipso facto provide them with the necessary skills to succeed in a professional world as adults.  Parents and tutors with a love for reading can set an excellent example and can encourage young people to do the same.   Do a little bit of research to find out what most young people enjoy reading. It can make it easier to connect and engage with your child. Set aside some time at home or in class to discuss what kind of books young people read for pleasure, don’t limit the discussions to school textbooks or course texts solely. Don’t underestimate the paperback – it is not set in stone that electronic reading devices are the preferred reading method in today’s society. Always provide children access to paper books.

Be the role model
Parents, teachers and tutors serve as the first subjects of imitation for children. We provide them with their first exposure to language usage, social skills, ethics and cultural norms. We cannot expect our youth to automatically attain the required language and communication skills if we do not set the example for them to follow and learn from.  Let your child see that you love reading and when they see you reading frequently they will follow your example. Share what it means to be a passionate reader by discussing your all-time favourite books and characters with them. Discuss books and topics and when young people see their peers being open-minded towards other opinions and new point of views they will feel more encouraged to behave in the same manner.

Give incentives
It is always important to reward young people for their efforts. Even as adults we feel more valued in a professional environment when we know that our work is appreciated. Rewarding and encouraging your child’s development will instil motivation for them to continue learning. They can be rewarded for writing well. Something as simple as encouragement stickers or certificates can go a long way.  Another way to reward them is to type out their written work, they will truly enjoy seeing their writing in a professional document format. You can also reward reading by taking them to do special activities related to the book they’ve finished reading. This will make their efforts feel valued and encourage them to read more.

Invest in tuition programmes
Sometimes we do need a little extra help,  don’t stray from asking for it!  There are many ways to ensure young people receive effective language schooling. There are many possibilities out there to consider like tutoring, short courses and mentoring programmes. Investing in one of these platforms gives our young people the optimal teachings they need for overall literacy and oracy and ultimately put them on the right path to personal growth and success.

The GT Scholars Programme is a not-for-profit social enterprise that offers various programmes and workshops to provide young people between the ages of 11 to 16 with the necessary skills to set them on a successful career path, improve grades and enrich their mentoring experiences. Sign up here and look out for our enrichment days and skill-building workshops.

 

It is never too early to introduce your child to personal development and mentoring

It is never too early to introduce your child to personal development and mentoring

Growth mindset Parents What's new? Young people

It is never too early to introduce your child to personal development

Most psychologists will agree that temperament and environment influence the development of a person’s personality the most. It is also said that developing your mind is the most important goal, as everything you do in life is affected by your mind and how it operates. This being said it is crucial for a young person to understand the importance of personal development and achieving their potential.

The importance of personal development
Personal development is an important lifelong process and an exciting journey everyone must embark on and is associated with self-awareness. The importance of personal development must be communicated to children from a very early age on and be introduced to them as an active priority. The earlier personal development is set in motion, the better the chances are of a child achieving success in adulthood. Personal development is a good way for people to assess their skills and qualities, consider what their aims in life are and set goals in order to realise and maximise their full potential.  It is a very effective way to identify strengths and how to address and improve on weaknesses. It also covers activities that improve awareness and identity, develops talents and potential, builds human capital and facilitates employability. Furthermore, it can enhance a person’s quality of life and contribute to the realisation of dreams and aspirations.

Introducing your child to personal development
Throughout a child’s development, there are many different skills learned. Starting from as early as birth through to adulthood. The general age ranges are grouped from 0-3 years, 3-7 years, 7-12 years and 12-19 years. In general, a child’s development progresses from head to toe, from inner to outer, simple to complex and general to specific. A child’s development can be measured through social, emotional, intellectual, physical and language milestones.

Social and emotional development forms part of how your child manages emotions, how they learn to express themselves and manage positive and negative experiences and relationships. You can help your child by giving praise for achievement, allow them to socialise with other children and adults. Another great way to improve your child’s social and emotional development is by  providing opportunities for them to learn how to share by letting them take turns playing with a certain toy or game, let them learn to share in decision making, make time to listen to their thoughts, opinions and concerns and most importantly providing them with opportunities to take responsibility. As a parent or carer showing warmth and affection and also giving your child the chance to express how they feel can make them feel safe, secure and valued and this will improve their self-confidence. When a new situation arises it is always a great idea to give them the necessary time and space to adjust to the change.

Intellectual Development focuses on learning and attention span. This points to how we understand and process information, our reasoning skills, our memory and logical thinking. Language development and cognitive development are the two main areas of intellectual development. Language development allows us to process our thoughts and understand the thoughts of others and cognitive development is all about using our minds and structuring our thinking to understand what is happening around us. It is important to take time to talk about what your child sees, hears and experience as this can assist in his intellectual development. Motivate your child to be inquisitive about understanding how machinery and computers work. Ask and answer questions and entertain your child’s ideas and suggestions. If you do not know the answer to certain questions, spend time researching topics together. Dare your child to be innovative.

Language development in your child can be addressed by discussing books, pictures, objects and sounds. You can even ask your child to recall something from the past or ask them about how their day was and how they solved problems they were faced with . Young people who have decided to go to university or college, as well as those learning a new trade, will continuously improve their language skills thus improving their chances of employment. Always remember that it is your responsibility as a parent, carer or teacher to nurture and encourage the different skills necessary, especially in the early development years of a child. Thereafter young people, with the support and guidance from parents or carers, are responsible to uphold their desire for further development and success.

Physical development starts from infancy and continues well into a child’s late adolescent years. Physical development focuses on both gross and fine motor skills, which involves gaining control over the body. Coordination and muscle movement plays a big role. Physical development reaches its peak during our childhood years making this an extremely critical time for neurological brain development as well as coordination. As physical development continues children gain self-confidence which in turn has a positive effect on social as well as emotional development. There is no doubt that physical development is vital to lead a healthy life. Encourage your child to be active and motivate them to join a sports team or go on hiking trails as a family.  Young people can learn important skills and values like honesty, teamwork, respect, discipline and fair play. By joining a team or participating in competitions young people can learn how to approach and deal with competition. How to process victory as well as failure.

At GT Scholars we understand the skills required and provide impact courses, enrichment days and skill-building workshops to assist in your child’s personal development. Our programme gives young people the strategies and skills they need to achieve their aspirations. Young people enrolled in our programme will benefit from improved grades, increased confidence, motivation and raised aspirations. Visit our website for more information on the GT Scholars Programme. You can also sign up to our newsletter and be kept up to date on our enrichment days and skill building workshops.

 

Ways you or a tutor can help your child excel without being pushy

Ways you or a tutor can help your child excel without being pushy

Improving attainment Mentoring What's new? Young people

As parents, carers and teachers, we all know and understand that children have different mindsets, learning abilities and motivation levels which we need to consider and support when it comes to education. It is very important that we do this without demanding too much of them. Nowadays it is thought that 5 good GCSE’s are required to give your child access to a good university, and providing your child an edge is considered by many as the answer.

Most parents will admit that they have been pushy at some point or another. Some might confess that despite their best efforts they’ve seen no change in their child’s behaviour or attitude towards a certain matter.  Being pushy generally leads to negative attitudes, rebellion and puts the child under enormous pressure and lowers self-esteem. Demanding extra hours of study when a child is tired or pushing for extra study time over weekends are both examples of being over demanding. Another example is insisting that homework is done on a Friday afternoon, especially after your child had a long and challenging week at school.  A rested brain will be able to take in more information, whereas an over-tired brain will not be able to take in any more information due to information overload.

Parenting does not come with a textbook, especially considering no two children are ever the same. Parents must often rely on trial and error to establish which methods are the most effective when it comes to communicating effectively with their children.  

We have a few ideas that you might want to consider if you would like to give your child a bit of extra motivation to excel in whatever they take on.

 

Knowing your child’s intelligence:
Dr Howard Gardner, a professor of education at Harvard University, developed a theory called ‘Multiple Intelligence”.  His theory suggests that there are 9 different types of intelligence that accounts for a broader range of human potential.  Perhaps knowing your child’s type of intelligence will help you distinguish from which angle to approach your child. According to his theory, the intelligence categories are:

  • Verbal-linguistic intelligence – someone who has good verbal skills
  • Logical-mathematical intelligence – someone who can think abstractly and conceptually
  • Spatial-visual intelligence – someone who can think in images and visualise accurately
  • Bodily-kinesthetic intelligence  – someone who can control their body movements
  • Musical intelligence – someone who can compose and produce rhythm, pitch and timber
  • Interpersonal intelligence – someone who detects and responds appropriately to the moods of others
  • Intrapersonal – someone who is self-aware and who is connected with their inner feelings
  • Naturalist intelligence – someone who is able to recognize objects in nature and categorize them
  • Existential intelligence – someone who takes on deep questions about the existence of mankind.

Become more involved
In order to excel, a support system is needed.  The first person in line is you as a parent. Set aside a time each day or week and talk to your child about what tests or exams are coming up and if there are any subjects they feel they will need to pay extra attention to. Support homework and exams by drawing up tests or asking questions.  Try to be more involved with projects and functions. Provide the items necessary to get the homework done.  Your role is to provide support and guidance. Teach, coach, mentor! Stay away from telling them what to do.  Instead,  allow your child to show and explain what needs to be done, with you acknowledging and or making suggestions for improvement.

The importance of reading
Reading is the key to lifelong learning. A love for reading should be introduced to your child from a young age. Reading can be a fun activity. Do research on books that match your child’s interest and suggest them to your child. Another great method is to also read the book and make it a topic of conversation and express your opinions on characters and happenings in the book. Allow your child to suggest a  couple of books as well. This way you also set a good example and showing your child that reading can be fun. Reading will definitely improve their general knowledge and can also inspire them or spark a new idea.

Your attitude towards education.
Children are influenced by the opinions of that of their parents. Therefore, if you have a positive attitude towards education, your child is most likely to adopt that mindset too. If you regard a good education as important so will your child. Showing a positive interest can spark enthusiasm and lead them to the very important understanding that learning can be enjoyable and rewarding and in the end, well worth the efforts. Motivate them by giving them tips on how you used to study and how well it worked for you. Always have a ‘can do’ attitude when discussing subjects and exam related topics with your child.

Create a balance
It is very important to create and encourage a balance of active learning such as sports, music visits museums and socialises with friends as well as quiet learning such as reading and homework. Your child should not feel as if they have no time to socialise and have fun. They need to be able to distinguish between when it is time to relax and when the time has come to work.  Exam time can be a very challenging and stressful time for your child. Make sure your child is coping with the pressure. Sit down with your child and plan the preparation time for the exam together. This way you can ensure your child has a study guideline and that he won’t feel alone and pressurised and had ample time to prepare for exams.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit organisation that aims to improve social mobility and help young people between the ages of 11-16 reach their dreams and aspirations.Sign up to our newsletter to stay up to date with our workshops, enrichment activities and our after-school tutoring programs and find out how GT Scholars can help your child excel in their school work and prepare for the GCSE exams.

Could your mindset be preventing your child from learning?

Could your mindset be preventing your child from learning?

What's new?

Parents have a direct impact on their child’s mindset, and the same can be said of a carer or teacher, even they can potentially influence a child’s mindset. Children observe their parents’ actions and language and use that to set the bar on what is expected of them. You can manifest a growth mindset in your child by being aware of your daily interactions. Always be aware of how you praise them. Talk to them about how the brain works and how it learns. It is also important to teach them how to deal with failure and transforming mistakes into learning opportunities.

Mental and emotional development
A study investigated the influence a parent’s emotional investment had on a child’s emotional susceptivity and competence. The results concluded that the parent’s emotional involvement does affect the emotional competence and regulation of a child. Much has been said of the relationship between a child and their parent, but a child’s learning capacity does not solely rest with their parents. Teachers, guardians, role models, and even coaches may play a huge role in a child’s learning potential and their ability to fulfil it.

Failure mindset
One of the basic mindsets that may pass on and influence children, is their view of failure, or “failure mindset”. Mindset scholar Carol Dweck and Kyla Haimovitz did a study on ‘’failure mindset and found that a parent who viewed failure as debilitating, was concerned about their child’s abilities. Therefore they focused on whether or not they were successful instead of helping them to learn from their failure. As a parent, your belief about failure can also predict your child’s mindset regarding intelligence. A parent’s perspective on failure has huge implications on how they perceive failures. Difficulties that their children may face and these behavioural differences may affect their children’s view on intelligence and ability. Encouraging parents to adopt a failure is enhancing perceptive, could make a big difference to their children, allowing them to develop a growth mindset about intelligence.

Become more invested
There’s no doubt that one of the most prevalent learning tools available to a child or young person is their parents, guardian or teacher. Without knowing they pass multiple actions and reactions, emotions and mindsets. To ensure that the right attributes and mindsets are passed on to our child we can make an active decision to be more invested. Make time to truly invest emotionally in your child and their development. One effective way to do this is to join a group that share the same focus, as it can remove some of the isolation that may come with the journey of being a parent. It can also help to keep you more involved in your child’s life. Sharing experiences and solutions may also offer a new perspective on the development of a child.

Be an example
Children normally look at their parents and use them as an example on how to act and react to situations, especially on an emotional level. An emotion that can easily be passed on to your child is a positive attitude. This does certainly not mean ignoring the negative, but rather choosing to focus on the possibility of a positive outcome. Someone who is a positive thinker acknowledges a situation and approaches it productively. Positive thinking stems from a neutral situation such as starting a new job, a new school, meeting a new teacher or making new friends, in which the positive thinker chooses to focus on the positive aspect of the situation and aims to make more of it. The best way to foster positive thinking onto your child is to be a role model. The more optimistic a parent is, the better a child can understand the principle and implement it into their own life. Be expressive about it. When in a neutral situation such as the changing to a new school, engage with your child, ask what there is to look forward to? If they reflect a negative attitude, help them re-align it, with aid and advice. Reassure them that the worry they feel is only going to worsen things and that they should rather be open-minded and embrace the change and see it as an adventure with new opportunities and a chance to make new friends. By taking on this approach you will aid them in forming a positive attitude from the situation.

Acknowledge negative situations
Having a positive attitude does not make you oblivious to the negative. Acknowledge the downside but emphasize how dwelling on the negative points will not help the situation. If your child has a broken arm you must show empathy and acknowledge the pain with reassuring statements like “I know your arm is in pain and it’s making you feel upset” but always remember to also offer an alternative to negative attitude as well. You can suggest that you can draw some awesome pictures on his cast and get his friends to do the same. The earlier you teach your child the principle of positive thinking, the more equipped they can become in applying it when they are faced with a negative situation and they are on their own.
Remember that although parents do play a vital part in the development of a child, they are not the single variable that may dictate a child’s learning potential. The environment, peers and teachers contribute almost just as much. The building blocks, however, does start at home and parents can definitely provide a solid foundation that can form the basis of a child’s mindset.

Programs such as the GT scholars programme offers an enriched environment, promoting growth and learning, with high impact courses, workshops and programmes are designed to give young people aged 11-16 the strategies and skills they need to achieve their aspirations. If you would like to keep up to date with the latest enrichment activities and workshops in and around London, sign up to our newsletter.

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.

Young People and Entrepreneurship

Young People and Entrepreneurship

Parents Social mobility What's new? Young people

The importance of entrepreneurship in the economy cannot be stressed enough. It also goes hand in hand with innovation, which will be non-existent if not for entrepreneurship.  The benefit of having a generation that stands for the alleviation of bigotry, oppression and inequality, comes with the responsibility of being more accommodating and progressive as a society. This means that as a society we should be mentoring young people and informing them of all the available study and career options, so they can make an informed decision. Living in a world driven by technology, young people can access information on demand and reach a huge audience if they had the need to. Entrepreneurship is a viable career option for young people to consider.

Entrepreneurship Boosts the Local Economy
Economic development is powered by entrepreneurship.  A weak economy can be improved by encouraging entrepreneurship. It is also a great aid to lower the unemployment rate and allows income to be circulated within communities, in turn, empowering those communities. It has a positive effect on the development of communities and changes the social structure of a community. A stronger economy will enable more people to become homeowners, improve the quality education young people receive. The overall quality of living standards will also improve. Furthermore, entrepreneurship can provide services and products that were not accessible in the past, creating wealth for the community as well as themselves.

Teaching entrepreneurial skills to young people
Entrepreneurship as a subject is the perfect balance between problem solving, creative thinking and business studies. The world is in need of graduates who are open-minded in approaching problems and who can come up with innovative solutions. Most importantly they must be able to take charge when it comes to putting their ideas into action.   Most schools focus on traditional career choices when informing children of the various options. Entrepreneurship should in fact also be seen as a popular career choice, just like being a doctor, lawyer, teachers and architects.   

Nurturing entrepreneurial traits
Great problem-solving skills is one trait that no entrepreneur can go without. Teaching young people entrepreneurship will develop their problem-solving skills. They learn to identify problems, discussing it and then try to come up with solutions. They learn to consider whether their solution will be viable by weighing up the pros and cons of the situation, but most importantly it teaches young people to make decisions and be proactive about them. You can develop your child’s problem-solving skills by creating mock examples of typical client vs supplier problems and discussing possible solutions and consequences.

Determination 
Another must have entrepreneurial trait is determination.  This is one of the key factors that make an entrepreneur successful.  More often than not, entrepreneurs are faced with a lot of setbacks.  Success comes from not giving up hope when setback after setback is experienced. Young people will learn that hard work will eventually pay off and it will also teach them not to take the easy way out when they find something difficult, but rather persevere and put in extra effort to be successful. A great way to help your child be more determined is to set challenging but reachable goals and act as a mentor that encourages them to reach their goals.

Managerial skills are important
Allow your child to become involved in organising fun days and events within the community.  This will create an opportunity to work alongside group leaders, be present at team meetings and gain valuable managerial skills. By becoming involved in such an event, young people can also learn how to manage responsibility and possibly delegate. Most importantly assisting at events will give young people perspective on their strengths and also their weaknesses helping them to identify the areas they can improve on. It will also introduce the idea of making an income by the means of sales.

Money Smart
Being smart about your finances is another important entrepreneurial trait that can be taught to young people. It would be ideal if every learner can learn how to manage money. Learning basic accounting and bookkeeping skills is beneficial for learners because it can be beneficial to them not only in their future entrepreneurial endeavours but they can also manage their own personal finances better. Apart from accounting in school, young people can be motivated to save part of their allowance.  Assist your child in creating a budget that makes provision for saving. A challenge to double his savings can also be introduced, for example, buying stock and selling it at a profit.

The importance of good language use
Many entrepreneurs have mastered the art of good language use. How a potential sale is approached and handled can either make or break the deal. The way we address a certain problem or deal with a difficult customer can influence your business reputation in a positive or negative way. It is not only important to be aware of what we say to people but also how we say it. Teaching young people to communicate with people who are different in age and cultural backgrounds will help learners be more effective in their communities and may contribute to career and business success in the future. This skill is also important for assertiveness and being an effective leader. 

To be an entrepreneur one must also be a leader.  You can motivate and inspire your child to become a good leader by being a role model.  There are also various fun team activities that young people can participate in. This will also teach them the value of teamwork and give them the opportunity to rise as a leader and deal with possible conflict that might arise.

The GT Scholars Programme is a not-for-profit social enterprise that tackles educational inequality and improves social mobility by helping young people aged 11-16 gain access to the most selective universities and the most competitive careers. Our tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme is designed to give young people the support, skills and strategies they need to achieve their ambitions. Sign up to our newsletter to stay up to date with events and oppertunities specially focused on young people.

 

Life is not fair and other messages parents and private tutors need to start telling their kids

Life is not fair and other messages parents and private tutors need to start telling their kids

What's new?

As parents we love our kids and we want to protect them from some of the harsh realities of this life and the disappointment that goes along with it. But, an overprotective parenting style can have some negative effects in the long run and may leave our children unprepared for the real world.

According to Julie Lythcott-Haims, author of How to Raise an Adult: Break Free of the overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success, parents have the very best of intentions, but when they over help, they deprive their children of the chance to learn the important things in life. Here are a few basic fundamental principles to teach our children that life is not always all that fair.

Hard work pays off:  Teaching children the importance of determination and hard work is essential. Especially in this era where we are continually exposed to convenient and easy ways of doing things, such as information that is easily accessible on the internet or microwave-ready meals.  Parents must make more of an effort to ensure that they can still raise independent beings who are able to go out in the world and fend for themselves. You can do this by praising their effort more than their achievement or put them in difficult but achievable situations. Children need to understand that when an effort is being made to achieve a goal, great benefits can be reaped. Furthermore, teaching children self-perseverance is extremely important for their social and emotional development.

Teach them to take responsibility for their own actions:  As a parent, you often have to administer penalties to your child even though they may feel equally daunting to you. Through this they will learn an important life lesson – there are consequences to every action. You can demonstrate this by connecting the action and consequence using real-life examples. For example, because you did not go to bed early last night you am tired today and can’t focus, or because you spent your money carelessly you can no longer afford the new laptop you had your eye on. Forcing responsibility onto children has never been proven to be effective, so children need to be taught life skills and responsibility will naturally follow. If children do not have responsibilities they might feel entitled and start adopting the-world-owes-me-something mindset.

Learn the importance of education: Children need to know the importance of obtaining education and how a good education can be their ticket to their desired life aspirations. They need to grasp that good grades are necessary for college acceptance and that their grades are a reflection of who they are to the admissions board. They need to understand that not working hard in school will result in poor grades which will then, in turn, result in only being qualified for low paying jobs.

Failure is part of life: Teach children that life is full of challenges, and that some of these challenges often result in failure. It is important that your child learns how to deal with failure and process the emotions that come with it. Failure can also be a part of learning as it teaches perseverance and appreciation for achievements. Remember parents set the example so be careful how you act in front of your child when you deal with failure, whether you scream at the sky or laugh, this will be the example your child sees.

Independence is invaluable: It is always a great idea to encourage independence. An easy way to do this is by giving children guided choices and respecting their choices, such as letting them decide on a family activity on a Sunday. You can also involve your children in making plans or coming up with solutions, such as working out a quicker route to school or setting up a chore roster. Learning simple life skills, for example, doing the laundry, working with money, or planning grocery shopping will be a great skill to have in the long run. Children must be able to look after themselves mentally and physically.

The list above is not all of the tips that you as the parent may consider to prepare your child for the realities of life out there, but they most definitely will be helpful in the initial steps of preparation.

Get started by looking into GT Scholars programmes that support your child in reaching their full potential. The GT Scholars programme helps young people aged 11-16 to achieve excellent grades and reach their future goals. Contact us to find out more.

 

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.