Sewell House

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House Captains for 2019/20
To be confirmed

Anna_SewellAnna Sewell was born in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England into a devoutly Quaker family. Her father was Isaac Sewell (1793-1879), and her mother, Mary Wright Sewell (1798 - 1884) was a successful author of children's books.

She had one sibling, younger brother  (1822–1906) who worked as a construction engineer in Europe, building railways in Spain and elsewhere, before settling back in Norfolk and working as a banker. Anna Sewell was largely educated at home, a regime heavily influenced by her mother's religious and educational convictions. When Anna was twelve years old, the family moved to Stoke Newington, where Sewell attended school for the first time and gained instruction in areas new to her such as mathematics and foreign languages.
 
Two years later, however, she slipped while walking home from school and severely injured both of her ankles. Her father took a job in Brighton in 1836, partly in the hope that the climate there would help to cure her. Despite this, and most likely because of mistreatment of her injury, Sewell was lame for the rest of her life and was unable to stand without a crutch or to walk for any length of time. For greater mobility, she frequently used horse-drawn carriages, which contributed to her love of horses and concern for the humane treatment of animals.
 
Sewell's only published work was Black Beauty, written during 1871 to 1877, after she had moved to Old Catton, a village outside the city of Norwich in Norfolk. During this time her health was declining. She was often so weak that she couldn't get out of bed and writing was a challenge. She dictated the text to her mother and from 1876 began to write on slips of paper which her mother then transcribed.
 
Now considered a children's classic, she originally wrote it for those who worked with horses. She said 'Its special aim being to induce kindness, sympathy, and an understanding treatment of horses.' 
 

Black Beauty is one of the best-selling books of all time. While outwardly teaching animal welfare, it also contains allegorical lessons about how to treat people with kindness, sympathy and respect.


 

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A massive thank you to all our parents and carers for your feedback on how remote learning is going!

As we all learn more about how we can work together while apart, we will continue to refine what we do and get better at it. We will continue to contact you about how your child is doing and keep you informed of how best they can be helped. Stay safe.

There’s nothing ‘remote’ about learning at SHS!

Everything about the Covid crisis has been about distance. We must be physically apart, we might find ourselves emotionally apart and we have been compelled to be educationally apart.

Recent press headlines and discussions have focused on the difficulties of engaging students without in-person contact. Some press reports have used ‘statistics’ gathered in dubious ways to talk about the percentages of students who are actually working remotely. Indeed, a recent study by UCL has suggested that 20% of students have done ‘little or no school work’ since lockdown.

Whatever the alleged ‘national picture’ of student engagement in distanced learning, the crucial question that has emerged is: how do we engage learners when we are not together physically? It’s a complicated question and, as with most issues, there isn’t one solution, one style, or one computer program for increasing learner engagement and motivation. But the answer, as with many things educational, seems to be what many of us call ‘common sense’!

Research seems to say that ‘online’ teachers need to combine multiple strategies to reach learners and, unsurprisingly, they must be behavioural, cognitive and emotional. In short, teachers must set a variety of work. They must reply and feedback early and often; building relationships. There must be regular, simple parental feedback so that the carer knows what work is actually being submitted. There must be a caring ear and a personal call for students and parents.

Here, at Sheringham High and Sixth, we set work which can be done independently and in REAL households with all their individual restrictions such as connectivity issues and multiple use computers. We mark and feed back quickly. We track students fortnightly. Student managers and tutors ring home personally!

So, let me share our actual statistics since the closure on March 23rd at Sheringham High given that 20% of students nationally seem not to have been engaged by their staff. On average, each of our students has completed 73% of the work set on time. Only 0.4% of students has completed no work since lockdown. Over one third of all our Year 7,8,9 and 10 students has submitted over 90% of their work on time. A quarter has done ALL work set! Since March 23rd, our students have watched 7033 podcasts on our GCSE Pod portal; usage doubling since last year. Between March and June, 3079 individual pieces of work have been set by our staff for Years 7-10 and 435 for Year 12. Over half of our sixth form students has completed 100% of the work set.

If we believe what we are told about national statistics and the etymology of the word ‘remote’(to ‘push away’) what we have at Sheringham High and Sixth is an engaged, embraced learning community which is working well and bucking the national trend! Well done to students, parents, carers and staff!

Stay safe!
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