Challenge: South Wilts Grammar were looking for a week of high quality experiences for year 10 students in place of their week of work experience. Some of this could be provided in school but it was felt very strongly that the activities needed to take the students out of school and put them in an unfamiliar environment and give them the chance to work in unfamiliar groups on new and challenging tasks. Surviving GCSE years at school does rely on many of those softer skills, such as team working and good communication and these remain vital on into the workplace, so they wanted to have these tackled explicitly in the sessions of activities.
Solution: Waves designed a bespoke one day package of experiential leadership and team building activities which would allow the learners to develop the softer skills of communication, collaboration, challenging assumptions, breaking down barriers, coping with uncertainty and to build new teams. The process allowed the learners to undertake 5 separate tasks. 4 tasks were led and/or designed by Waves. The tasks of Raising the Baa, Webmaster, Assumption Puzzles and the Learning Walk allowed all individuals to fully engage. Each activity is designed to bring out natural behaviours which allow for greater personal reflection, and the ‘effective 2 min coach’. The students worked in randomly generated groups all day on a variety of tasks led by Waves facilitators who took every opportunity to draw out the key lessons for the students in each activity.
‘We are very grateful to Waves for organising such a successful day for us. Not only did the students enjoy the activities, Raising the Baa in particular, but the facilitators skilfully guided the feedback and evaluations to focus on the key skills that were being developed in the activity. It was a unique opportunity to put teamwork into practice and to see in a very visual sense the importance of good communication. Students will remember herding the sheep for a long time, but equally they have seen the real life application of the things we talk about so much in the classroom.’
Carolyn Stammers, Deputy Headteacher, South Wilts Grammar School for Girls