Lessons at d’Overbroeck’s are teacher-led but student-centred and our small classes lend themselves to interactive and energetic lessons where everyone plays a part. Our maximum class size is usually 10. You will be engaged throughout – able to ask questions and encouraged to contribute.
The best teaching starts by showing you how to think (never what to think), and leaves you ready for the next stage in your career able to think for yourself. That ‘aha’ moment of revelation, when you really understand something, perhaps even perceive something we haven’t, is one of the greatest joys in teaching.
You learn best when you are inspired, and we want nothing more than to pass on a passion for our subjects. In the Sixth Form at d’Overbroeck’s, we create an environment that makes this possible.
Small classes also mean that we can teach to the individual. We have time and space to stretch you when you are ready to fly and to help you where you need support. Teaching of exam skills is a core part of our lessons (for instance, deconstructing a formula or a good paragraph sentence by sentence); equally, we encourage vigorous debate and energetic exchange of ideas.
Learning to learn independently
Our approach to teaching has twin aims. We are intently focused on preparing you for the task at hand: achieving your full potential at A level. At the same time, we want to ensure that you acquire the academic skills, organisation and self-awareness needed to become an independent learner who is well prepared for the next stage in your life.
This means that you need to learn to research, to select and evaluate information, to think for yourself and have the confidence to construct a well-informed and well-reasoned argument. You need to develop self-awareness, so that you know how you learn most effectively and learn to use this to maximum effect. You also need the ability to manage your time effectively, to juggle priorities and get things done on time.
We work hard to help you develop these skills and qualities by the time you leave us. We know we have done our job well when you achieve your potential, not just at A level, but also at university and in your working career.
Andrew Colclough is Head of Teaching and Learning (Sixth Form)
He says, “My role involves helping to maintain and build upon the excellent standards of teaching and learning that exist in the Sixth Form. In part, this can be achieved through the sharing of ideas between our teachers ensuring we constantly reflect upon and develop our approaches. I am particularly interested in how teaching and learning works in each of our departments; this involves meeting with heads of departments and teachers and regularly observing lessons. It also involves an awareness of latest developments in educational theory and learning from best practice both within the school and outside”.