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Updates from the Partnership Development Office about forthcoming outreach opportunities
Partner and KMPF Schools Bulletin
10 September 2020

Updates

Dear <<First Name>>,

Welcome back after what we hope has been a restful summer break. Please find below our first bulletin of this new academic year. This edition includes details of our outreach programmes for the coming year, including activities to support students with the transition back into education after a period of time away, such as the self-guided 'Sixth Form Foundations - Skills for Success' and our KMPF collaboration project 'Transitions - Mind the Gap' for years 9 and 10 embarking on, or continuing, their GCSE studies following time away from the classroom. Also included are details of our online outreach programmes, such as Year 9's University Life, a chance to 'follow students on their journeys through the start of university life' and our new 'Year 12 Research Skills' programme, plus exciting news about Lego League 20/21.

We understand that this will be a challenging year for our schools and their students and would like to reassure you that should you have any questions, concerns or specific requirements, our team can be contacted via outreach@kent.ac.uk and will be happy to help.


Best wishes,
Natasha, Jamie, Nicola, Francesca, Roxanne and Beth

Events and Activities

First Lego League 2020/21


We are pleased to announce that the University of Kent will be hosting the First Lego League (FLL) competition for the Kent and Medway region on Wednesday 21 April 2021 at our Canterbury campus. This event is delivered by the Partnership Development Office and the University's School of Computing. FLL is for young people aged 9 to 16 years, working in teams of up to ten students with a supporting adult coach. Registration for the tournament is now open on the FLL website and will cost £150 + VAT per team. Registration fees are paid to IET and not received by the University of Kent. IET have previously offered subsidies to schools on a case by case basis dependant on certain criteria (e.g. have a high percentage of students receiving free schools meals). If you are unfamiliar with First Lego League, you can find out more on the IET website by following the link. If you require any further information, please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk. 

GCSE Maths Support


This GCSE support is aimed at higher ability students who are interested in taking Mathematics A Level. The support will take place in a virtual capacity, likely via Zoom. To find out more information, please contact Gemma Hunt (g.m.hunt@kent.ac.uk). 

GCSE Science Support


This GCSE support focuses on revision for paper 1 topics for students who are taking the Combined Science: Trilogy. The support will take place in a virtual capacity, likely via Zoom. To find out more information, please contact Gemma Hunt (g.m.hunt@kent.ac.uk). 

Bright Ideas

This event is part of a national Medical Schools Council programme, funded by Health Education England. It is suitable for Year 12 students who are interested in applying for medicine. The programme helps students to explore the roles of a doctor whilst developing key skills in academic research, communication and reflection through a research project. Students are mentored by current undergraduate medical students and the programme culminates in a summer school here at the University of Kent. Applications are opening soon - Eligibility criteria applies. To find out more information, please contact Gemma Hunt (g.m.hunt@kent.ac.uk). 

Inside Sport Science

This activity has been postponed until after Christmas, when it is likely to take place in a virtual form. Suitable for students from Year 10 upwards who are interested in finding out more about Sport Science and in receiving support from postgraduate ambassadors to carry out their own mini research project. To find out more information, please contact Gemma Hunt (g.m.hunt@kent.ac.uk). 

Year 13 Virtual Visit Day

Wednesday 7 October 2020

Following the success of the Year 12 virtual visit days we ran during the last academic year, we will be offering this visit for those students who have not attended previously. The visit will take place on Zoom from 16:30-19:00, and is open to all Partner/KMPF/KaMCOP schools and colleges. The day will consist of the following activities: TED-style talk about the benefits of Higher Education, subject taster session, virtual campus tour and Q+A with university staff and ambassadors. Students will need to book on to this event individually via an online register. Please note, if students already took part in the Year 12 visit days, they will not need to attend this event as the information will be the same. If you have students who would be interested in taking part in this event, please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk.

Year 7/8 Da Vinci Challenges

The Da Vinci Challenges are the University of Kent’s virtual outreach provision for year 7 and 8 students. They are a set of three connected, interdisciplinary challenges designed to deepen students’ understanding of science and art, and the way that different subject areas interact. Moving through observation and biological drawing, design and engineering, and marketing - the three challenges ask students to look at the world around them through different subject lenses and to step into the shoes of a university researcher to create something new and exciting. By participating in The Da Vinci Challenges, students will build their creative and critical thinking skills, communications skills, confidence and, if applicable, teamwork skills. They will be introduced to The University of Kent as a partner, and to the diversity of higher education through our student ambassadors. The challenges have a competitive structure and winning entries can be published on our blog and social media. This activity is suitable for all prior attainment ranges. If you are interested in booking this event, please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk. 

Year 9 University Life

This virtual one hour workshop is designed to answer the 'Who? What? Where? When? How?' questions about university. Participants are encouraged to reflect on possible reasons for going to university, what they could study at university, where they might live, and how studying at university differs from being at school. They will hear from Ambassadors about their experiences, and get to follow students on their journeys through the start of university life. The session will be offered for access online from September onwards. If you are interested in booking this event, please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk.

Year 10 University Experience

Please get in touch if you are interested in the self-guided year 10 university experience. Students will have the opportunity to go on video tours of the campus, guided by current university students, as well as sample mini-lectures from University of Kent postgraduate students. They are thinking about life after COVID-19 and we'd like to challenge your students to do the same, and will be publishing the best responses on our Outreach blog. What do they think the world will be like after lockdown? What do they hope will change? Please email outreach@kent.ac.uk to express interest or book this experience.

Virtual Debating Club 

We will be running a six week introduction to debating course for year 9 and 10 students, and year 12 and 13 students from September onwards. This short course, delivered by Student Ambassadors (current University students) and staff, will provide you with the opportunity to develop essential skills such as critical thinking, communication and creativity though fun and engaging debating activities. You will be practising your debating skills by learning how to construct strong arguments, and applying them in structured debates. You don't have to be a confident speaker, or have very strong opinions; the only thing you need is to be willing to learn and participate! The sessions will run through the Zoom platform. This can be run for individual schools who have a minimum of 10 students interested, or multi-school if schools have a smaller group of students who want to take part. Please email outreach@kent.ac.uk to express interest.

Year 9/10 Mind the Gap 

This online session will give students the opportunity to asses their progress and identify skills gaps following a period of time away from the classroom. Participating students will be encouraged to investigate the challenges, opportunities and personal attributes necessary to motivate self-directed study and will be introduced to a range of strategies to support the development of independent study skills. If you are interested in booking this, please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk.

Exam Success Package (KaMCOP)

The Exam Success Package is a three-part self-guided programme aimed at students in Year 11 who are working towards their GCSE examinations. The online programme will be available in the new academic year and contains three interactive modules, covering: Revision Skills, Exam Technique, and Coping with Exams. Each module is broken down into smaller units of activity, with each unit lasting approximately 15 minutes. This is suitable for students to work through at their own pace or in a classroom setting under supervision of teaching staff. If you are interested in booking this, please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk.

Sixth Form Foundations: Skills for Success

This self-guided activity is aimed at students entering year 12 and focuses on helping them to develop the skills and knowledge needed to meet the challenges of sixth form learning. Taught over six sessions, this programme covers aspects such as motivation, organisation, time management, reflection and independent learning. Our intention is to help students understand their own goals and aspirations, and how their sixth form studies can help them to achieve them. If you are interested in booking this, please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk.

EPQ Support (KaMCOP)

The University of Kent has a long history of supporting local students with their EPQ projects, drawing on our expertise as a research university and our experience of training new researchers. Now a team of Kent PhD students with a wealth of experience supporting EPQ students have put together an online resource to share their knowledge and help to develop the research skills crucial to an EPQ. The materials are designed to support and enrich the activities led by teaching staff in school, and can be used in a variety of ways. Presented in six sections, to follow the six major aspects of an EPQ project, we will cover the following areas: creating a research question, conducting a literature review, developing a methodology, collecting data, and evaluating your project. This support can include a visit to one of our University Libraries once wider circumstances allow. If you are interested in booking this event, please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk. 

Year 12 Research Skills

This programme of research skills support is aimed at year 12 students. The provision will provide bitesize videos and tasks, accessible online, covering key areas such as referencing, constructing an argument, how to use academic sources, how to create a research tool and how to access an academic library. We feel this would work best with subject specific cohorts (e.g. History students preparing for their coursework). The content has been designed in order to support students who are beginning to conduct research for coursework and projects. If you are interested in booking this or have a specific cohort in mind, please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk. 

'Where Next' Sixth Form Talks

Our online 'Where Next' programme is now available to schools. The programme, aimed at year 12 students, consists of four sections: 'what do I want to do with my future', 'what do I want to do at university', 'how do I apply to university' and 'how do I afford university'. There will also be the opportunity for teachers and students to take part in an online question and answer session with University staff and ambassadors. Please contact outreach@kent.ac.uk if you are interested in booking these talks.

To find out more about the University’s outreach provision, please call 01227 824149 or contact us using one of the methods below.
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