Newsletter 2.6.2012

RE on the Aftrykscenen

Dear reader!
Pentecost stories about the great carnival in Aalborg and fantastic summer weather went around the school and even though the weather got cooler, the camaraderie and the feeling that now there are soon only 4 weeks left of efterskole life was strengthened. In addition to many and long hours of preparation for the oral exams, we have at the end of the week focused on the personal conversation in the contact group and between student and contact teacher. These weeks the contact teachers write the personal student statement, and in the contact groups they write on the Blue Book. The pictures for this year's commemorative photo were taken last week and can already be found in the picture gallery on the website. A lot has happened - also visually from the first pictures taken in August!

Diving on the stone reef at Ertebølle

Professional the week has seen several positive reports from external examiners who have sent unsolicited positive feedback on the written tests. This brings joy to both students and, not least, subject teachers! The arrangements for the oral exams are almost all completed and although it was hard for some to get an overview and summarise a paper, this form of exam helps to focus and target the preparations. Unlike the primary school reading holiday, we find that pupils have strong shared academic experiences by taking each other through their preparations and reflecting on their knowledge when they are together during the preparation days.

In the coming week oral exams begin, and both students and teachers have a big task to orient themselves regarding deadlines, rooms and possible changes. Those students who we know in advance will not find this easy will be given guidance in both reading and planning for the tests. Pedagogically, they will also find that they do not have quite as free a framework, but this is a condition we impose to ensure that the goal is achieved. Each day there will be an assembly for everyone at 8am in the banquet hall and during the day there will be teachers at Basecamp in the Village Hall, from where all activity and preparation emanates. If students do not have tests, they can choose to study for the test ( min 2-4 hours daily) and then there are a number of activities that students have signed up for prior to each test week. These may include sailing, diving, music, REcords, art and cultural tours. On Monday a student has taken the initiative to invite an expert in SUB board surfing, the school has 3 boards and the guest teacher is also bringing equipment so there will be an opportunity to try this new and exciting form of surfing.

Subboards v. Rønbjerg.

Pedagogical the probationary period is a really nice time, where after-school life has optimal conditions in between the seriousness of the exams. The vast majority of students are fully tuned for this time and look forward to it as much as they fear missing out. For some pupils, it is also a frustrating time because the fixed framework and pedagogical structures are looser and it can be difficult to manage the increased freedom. It is therefore necessary to agree on some terms for the increased freedom. This means, for example, that we have asked pupils to stay at school for all timetabled lessons and activities, and only go to the supermarket, for example, during breaks and free time. We also insist on having enough time to sleep at night and to be able to read the syllabus again for the exam, and we make extra night-time spots. The message that no time off can be given for home reading, festivals etc. has gone down well and there can be a lot of teenage pressure leading up to Distortion festival and Beach Party etc.

This weekend there are many students at the school, a group is on a parachute course, some are going sailing with their buddies and newly acquired certificates, and others are just loading up for the test week with fun and reading.

Best regards and have a great weekend! - and let's get the summer weather back 🙂

Olav Storm