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For the second year running we have invited students to ‘takeover the college’ by becoming key members of staff for the day.  Not only is it a great way for students to build skills and confidence.  It also benefits the departments in which they are based to gather some direct leaner feedback on what they do.


One of the positions up for grabs was the Teaching and Learning Manager who is responsible for observing lessons and helping our teaching staff develop.  Harry Sylvester, a Public Services student  took over this role for the day, and here, in his own words is how it went.



Student Takeover Day – Harry Sylvester




On this day, I had the really good opportunity of becoming the Teaching and Learning Manager which meant I was ‘taking over’ Matt Finch’s job.



This day started off with me meeting with Matt and being introduced to the Teaching and Learning Team. I arrived bright and early and packed my bag with lots of special items such as; books, pens and pencils. I also decided to bring a clipboard with me so I could write down all the information that I would need for the entire day. I did some initial preparation for the day, such as creating my own tables for the data I would need to collect, but the exciting thing was, I was given my own desk!


After all the preparation was done I was allowed to go the classrooms with the company of one of team. This was very exciting as it gave me an insight into what English and Maths lessons are like. After this I was released to go into some lessons by myself which was very exciting indeed. These lessons ranged from learning about past exam papers and going all the way to students writing their own stories.


I was invited to come sit with the team in the Shrubbery Restaurant and enjoy a cup of tea with a scone. We then returned to the office to type up the data which I had collected so far.


After, I had typed up the data I went round to observe a few more lessons. I really enjoyed this as it gave me a real sense of what a member of the Teaching and Learning team does. I learnt many skills during this time such as good communication and learning tips so that I could become more effective as the day went on. After that I took my lunch break.


In the afternoon I started to do some research on how I could best present the data I had been collecting using various charts and tables. At about 14:40 I went to some more class rooms and observed some English and Maths classes to see what they were doing there. I managed to get a lot of data from this, which meant that I could start the preparation for my presentation which would be held at 5:00pm.


The presentation included me presenting all my data to the Teaching and Learning team, Stuart King (Head of Department for English and Maths) and Kez Hawkins (Students’ Union President). The feedback from this was very good and they were all very pleased with what I had collected. I felt that during this my confidence was boosted massively as it made me feel more at ease to talk to people. I ended up finishing the day at around 5:30pm.


I really enjoyed the day, it taught me what the Teaching and Learning Team do on a daily basis. It also boosted my confidence quite a lot because it means that I can now communicate better, both in and out of college. I felt quite happy around the college as I felt that I was in charge of something for the whole day.


So, for all I did today, I would like to thank the Teaching and Learning Team for having me there, all the classes I went to and everyone I met, THANK YOU


Harry Sylvester.


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