I hope you all had a great half term break, got lots of lovely fresh air and sunshine and for those of you like everyone here at the office who have been back this week, have had a great first week back at school. This is such a great term with Christmas and all the fun that goes with it going on in school so make sure you really enjoy it along with the schools and students!
So, what’s been going on this week?
I am very excited about this half term, partly because it’s Christmas at the other end of it (and I LOVE CHRISTMAS! Only 52 sleeps until Santa comes!) but also because we have so much going on at Yipiyap. It’s when we really start getting our teeth into another year of recruitment and our recruitment packs for 2019/2020 are being printed as I type!! We also have our Mock Interview sessions next Saturday, the regional refresher induction courses on Thursday 20th December (save the date as these are mandatory!) followed by the Yipiyap Christmas Meals. It’s going to be a good one!
I know the second paragraph of my little piece is probably white noise to you all now as you have seen it each week so far but just to say that we are still actively recruiting in all regions for tutors to join this year’s team so if you do know a friend, or even a friend of a friend who might be interested in joining us, please let me know. You will get a £ £50 finder’s fee if you recommend them and they come on board and work successfully for us!
One of the most touching things about working in Yipiyap for a number of years is the way that former tutors often take the time and effort to keep in touch. We had a lovely visit from Mehr, one of our tutors from the 2013/14 cohort (which started out with just 7 tutors!) to the office this afternoon.
As well as completing a Chemistry degree and being the first Yipiyap tutor to my knowledge to get married, Mehr has kept in regular touch over the last 5 years and is keen to do anything she can to help and support the business while she considers the next step in her career. As she said “I feel I developed so much in this role, far more, even, than through University and I’d just love to stay connected to the business and keep giving back to my community.”
Even though its still early in the year I hope you’re all starting to feel a sense of this connection and when you leave you’ll all be welcome back for tea and a catch up anytime …up to 2023 and beyond!
Norwich, Peterborough and Derby
It’s been a relatively quiet week for me with all the Derby schools on half term – quite a novely not having the DANCOP registers popping through every afternoon en masse! However, it has been useful to catch up on inputing all the registers from the week before when I was off! (Over 1000 student sessions are now registered on there!)
I’d like to extend a very warm welcome to Balraj who did his first three days at UTCN this week – sounds like you made a great impression, Balraj, and it was good to hear you getting stuck in with a discussion about the Mona Lisa on day 2!
And we have 2 new tutors joining our team next week – Hafsa and Robyne, we’ll look forward to you starting on Wednesday in Derby!
Thank goodness for Halloween because it meant a midweek treat in the office... cupcakes! It's been another busy one this week with things happening all over the region. Firstly, a visit to St Antony's to see Elle in action (more on this on the WOH). We also welcomed Ed on board (finally!!) after he went travelling for the first half term. I also had the pleasure of getting in touch with all of the Yipiyap alumni to see where they've ended up after the Yipiyap leg of their journey. And last but definitely not least, we welcomed Nifemi on board!
Denbighshire and Cheshire
News from my team is a little quieter this week with the majority of my tutors on their half term break. For Emma and Emma, hope you’ve had a great first week back! I can’t talk about what’s been going on this week without mentioning emails - the second (and hopefully final) time we’ve had to update our email system and I’m extremely glad that the bulk of it is over, barring some teething issues with the new setup. I’ve also been checking in with some Southport schools for support - fingers crossed for a new placement showing up here in the next couple of weeks! Finally a heads up for some more school visits coming up again soon, with a couple booked in at Beamont and Dinas Bran.
Flintshire and Wrexham
Been a quiet week school-wise as Wrexham and Flintshire have been on their half term break this week. However I’m looking forward to spending the best part of 2 days in Ysgol Bryn Alyn next week, doing some planning work with both Teres and Rebecca. It will be great to get them working more closely with specific pupils where I know they will have a real impact.
London, Yorkshire and The Humber
Hope everyone's been enjoying their Half Terms this week and last - some London tutors even lucky enough to have two weeks off! Don't get used to it!!
Really enjoyed bowling with the London team, too. I think we can all admit to being outclassed by Krish but impressive performances all round (even if we all had to use the Ramp Of Shame from time to time.) Looking forward to everyone getting back in the swing of things from next week and putting in a massive shift ahead of Christmas break. Wanted to give special mentions to Millie, Cameron and Sally, too, who have all had a bit of a topsy turvy few weeks with placements. Hopefully we can all get settled in to a new routine soon, but all three of your attitudes have been admirable!
Wall of Happy
This week Anne starts us off with his special mentions
I’m starting this week with a great big thank you to Tia, who must certainly be up for the most chilled out tutor EVER award. Nothing ever seems to phase you, Tia, and you’ve done a wonderful job of welcoming Balraj and helping him settle into the UTC this week.
Also, we can all breathe a sigh of relief as Carla has finally got her staff badge at Neatherd…hurray!!
Next to Alan
Though he isn’t in school this week, I’m putting forward Elliot for today’s wall of happy. Having seen the posters around school for the newspaper club going on, I’m glad you’re getting involved in this extra activity to help the students. Obviously it’s a relevant area for you and that puts you in a unique position to offer advice to the students from the perspective of journalism. Really hope it takes off and that you enjoy being involved in it once you’re back into things next week!
Now over to Joss
Wall of happy has to be a shout out to Krishan who had his birthday over the break. He spent it a long way from the Maths department at ATS living it up in Paris! Congrats!
Now to Richard
All about the half term break for me! My wife has jetted off to do some work with teachers in Qingdao, China which has meant that I’ve had the genuine pleasure of a week with my 10 year old daughter. We’ve had a long weekend in Cambridge visiting old friends, university colleges and museums, spent some time in North Wales and had a chance to do some fabulous cooking, in particular our favourite slow cooked Vietnamese dish, Pho.
And, finally to Jess
Firstly I want to say a huge well done to Elle for settling so well at St Antony's. She is working with the SEN department all week and has clearly made an impact on the staff and students. Also, it was Elle's birthday on Wednesday so best wishes from all of us at Yipiyap! I also wanted to mention Maryam this week as she has zoomed through plenty of Maths and English topics with the student she is supporting. I asked for an overview of what she had done over the past two weeks and I was amazed! It sounded like she was listing what she'd done over two months, not two weeks! Brilliant work, Maryam. Finally, thank you Ed for being so enthusiastic about starting your placement at Broadoak. I've had such amazing feedback already and I can't wait to visit soon!
Mock Interviews - Saturday 10th November
We now have 12 attendeeds at the mock interview sessions and are looking forward to putting you all through your paces. You will by now have your emails with all the details you need to know in anticipation of the event but please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any queries.
A type of resource to tell you about this week which is a jigsaw/puzzle maker called Tarsia.
These are nice activities which get students working in a bit more of a hands-on fashion. There are loads freely available or you can download the Tarsia software maker free of charge to create your own (http://www.mmlsoft.com/index.php/products/tarsia). You input questions and responses to a table and the puzzle is then generated for you along with a solution – there are loads of variations of puzzle type (jigsaw, domino, follow me cards) as well as shape which you can play around with.
Here is an English example for matching correct grammatical terms to an example – you start with the cards which need cutting out (first two images) and then students work to form a jigsaw (third image).
Here is a similar completed example for Maths about solving equations. Loads of these are available for Maths on TES resources and many other sites.
Adilah’s Top 10 Tunes
It seems ages since Adilah sent this playlist to me before half term but it is definitely worth the wait. Some amazing songs here so I hope you all enjoy listening! Thanks Adilah for sharing.
Martin Lewis: 10 Things Your Kids Need to Know
I am not sure what you were all up to on Tuesday 23 October but I was in front of our TV watching a documentary. This was very unusual as normally I don’t get round to watching TV until at least 10pm in the evening but this was compulsive watching.
It was a documentary by Martin Lewis about 10 key things children/ young adults need to know to go successfully forward both professionally and financially and face the challenges of today’s world.
Basically, for anyone who does not know who Martin Lewis is, he is the founder of MoneySavingExpert.Com which is the UK’s biggest consumer site and offers advice on all money matters.
Martin’s view is that “We live in one of the world’s most competitive consumer economies, yet many of our children/ young adults aren’t prepared for it, and the playing field isn’t level. There’s a big divide between people who are in the know, and everyone else”.
The documentary was fascinating and even for someone long in the tooth like me was completely inspirational and gave really valuable advice.
So, if you have an hour free this weekend, I would really urge you to go onto your ITV players and search for ‘Martin Lewis: 10 Things Your Kids Need to Know’ which ran on mainstream TV on 23rd October and watch and learn.
Have a great week ahead all and ‘happy bonfire night’!