Starting senior school – two perspectives

Holly and Charlotte in the Year 7 Rounders Team

Following our recent student blog from James and Jay about their first year at senior school, Holly and Charlotte share their experience after finishing year 7. Whilst Holly hailed from a local primary school, Charlotte came up to senior school from our prep school. Here’s what they had to say:

Holly’s experience moving to AKS from a local primary school

At first, I was nervous about starting AKS as it was a new school to me and I only knew a couple of people. I didn’t need to be worried as all the teachers and staff were really friendly and they made me feel settled and welcome. My first year has been very enjoyable and I have made lots of new friends.

In the first few weeks I began to feel more and more used to the way school life worked. My planner really helped me as I could see which lessons I had next and I could log my homework. I have enjoyed the new subjects, especially History and Art which you learn in more depth than primary school. There is a system where year 7s partner up with year 9s from the same house. This is called mentoring, the year 9s share their experiences from being in year 7. I found it really useful to hear from someone who has already been where you are now.

There are lots of different clubs you are encouraged to try. I especially like the sports clubs, including hockey, netball, handball, girls’ football and rounders. They run at lunch times and after school. I also joined cookery club and made some tasty dishes. Speaking of food, the school meals at AKS are amazing, there is so much choice and delicious options to try!

The best thing about the sport at AKS has to be all the fixtures I have played. On Saturday mornings I have played hockey matches and I have gradually improved as I had not played much hockey before. My favourite part of getting into the hockey team was the Jean Torrance Tournament, where teams from all over the country came and played in a tournament held at AKS. It was a great experience. Also, the year 7 and 8 hockey tour was really good fun and we played against some strong opponents and developed our team skills. Taking part in sport and other clubs helps you make friends from the other forms in the year group and also older children in the school.

Mid way through the year, two German girls aged 13 and 14 came to AKS as part of an exchange. They told me about their lifestyle and school in Germany and I still keep in touch with them. Just recently, I went on the year 7 Geography residential trip, where we stayed at a youth hostel in Ingleton. We went caving, on the waterfall walk, we did a town survey and a river study. I had a great time. My favourite activity was caving because I got to challenge myself by doing things that I have never done before such as going through different squeezes where I had to crawl through different size gaps and some were extremely small.

Overall, I feel my first year at AKS has been a success, I have had to work hard but I have had a fantastic time, I am looking forward to year 8 and to see what lies ahead for me.

Charlotte’s experience of moving to senior school from AKS Preparatory School

My name is Charlotte and I have just finished year 7 at AKS. Before that I went to AKS Prep School which I really liked. Even though I had lots of taster days, and all my friends were continuing at the school, I still felt a little nervous about starting. But I can honestly say, I have loved every minute of it and I have enjoyed being more independent.

The best thing for me has been making new friends with the children that have joined the school and having a nice form class. All of us get on well and we have a lot of fun together. I especially have enjoyed attending all the sports clubs and the opportunities you get in the senior school have been great. In year 7 I learned a new sport, handball which I enjoyed but unfortunately, I broke my wrist whilst playing!!

One of the nice things has been to help all the new girls who have not played hockey before to learn how to play and teach them some skills. I have loved representing the school in different sports and this has helped all the girls become great friends – going on the hockey tour was the highlight of my year.

Even if you don’t like sports, there are lots of other clubs that you can join – I went to book to film club which has been lots of fun. You are given a book and then a few weeks later you watch the film at school or go to the cinema.

I am very excited about year 8 and the am happiest I have been at AKS!