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Learning to Learn: Expert Project

Year 9 were challenged as part of their Key Stage 3 Learn to Learn course to become an expert on any topic in just a year, and showcased their research and results in presentations to fellow students last Thursday.

An Expert Project encourages pupils to be curious and take the initiative to investigate a topic that fascinates them. Girls are motivated to choose an engaging topic, explore it in depth from the perspective of 3 of 6 domains - Science and Technology, The Arts, Media and Culture, The Natural and Human World, Past Present and Future, and Developing a Skill - and share their findings and expertise with everyone. It is undoubtedly a fun, interactive way to get pupils excited about learning, in addition to preparing them for the Extended Project Qualification that they have the opportunity to complete in Years 10 and 12.

The whole year group gathered in the Main Hall to show off their hard work to peers and teachers. Topics had a vast subject range from science, history and art, displayed with the help of state-of-the-art Chromebooks and handmade posters.

Marianne completed her project titled ‘How Art Impacts Daily Life” by incorporating history, psychology and her own artwork to express how important fine art is to society. Her presentation cycled through some of the oldest pieces of art as cave paintings, a study finding that retirees who made art had higher levels of brain activity, and a look at famous artist Vincent Van Gogh. She commented, “Art is something I really enjoy, and it’s how I relax and express myself. I think anyone can do art - skill or talent doesn’t matter, it’s just fun.”

Other projects included Jasmine’s ‘History of Indian Clothes’ complete with an example of a real Indian dress, and Alex’s science project answering the question ‘How do we feel motion?’ Alex said, “I think the thing I learned most from doing my project was how to improve my presentation skills - speaking clearly, being confident and explaining everything well.”

Mrs Devaux, Head of French, highly recommends the Expert Project. “In all walks of life people develop successful careers through becoming experts in a chosen field. Whether that be academia, business or the arts, expertise is valued and a key to success. Learning at a deeper level is an important and rewarding experience, and why we are giving pupils the opportunity to study and master a topic they choose.”

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