Friday, 27 June 2014

JUNIOR BUSINESS GAME @ ST DUNSTAN'S PRIMARY SCHOOL

55 Year 6 Pupils from St Dunstan's Primary School formed 10 teams and  took part in a SATRO Junior Business Game on 24th June.  These groups consisted of mixed ability and friendship groups to emulate the real working world.

Judging from the pupil's feedback, they had a superb day which definitely opened their eyes to the world of business.  And, how important teamwork and communication are in an effective organisation.

The pupils thoroughly enjoyed the workshop and learnt about the hard work and skills involved in the business world, with one commenting,

 " I learnt that in life, jobs can be a bit stressful and there are lots of decisions to be made."

another said,

"I learnt how to write a cheque and how to deal with something when I am given a deadline."

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Careers Speed Dating at The Ashcombe School

120 students, from a range of different year groups at The Ashcombe School got to meet a huge variety of business professionals on Monday 23rd June during a frantic 1 ½ hours of Careers Speed Dating. We had web designers, lawyers, a psychologist, an accountant, a wing commander, a police officer, an attorney, a copy writer, to name just a few, all of whom were passionate & enthusiastic about their chosen careers.

The students were put into small groups and had 5 minutes to quiz their business volunteer, who was only allowed to answer yes or no thereby requiring the students to try & guess their profession. A further 5 minutes of frantic questioning followed to ascertain exactly what they did for a living and how they had got where they were. A whistle sounded and another willing volunteer from a different profession presented themselves for questioning.



It was fast, frenetic and enormous fun. What was clear from the feedback was that it had really changed the students perception of what the future holds for them & makes it seem less daunting.

A teacher commented,

"The students have been unanimously positive about the careers event this morning.  They were struck by the enthusiasm of the volunteers and the passion in which they spoke about their jobs.  They also noted how the majority of jobs were ones they had never considered before as a potential career.  I cannot praise the team highly enough for organising this event and I will definitely be staging a similar event in the future."

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

PUPILS AT THE CHANDLER FACE A CHALLENGE

180 pupils at The Chandler Primary School enjoyed a novel way of applying their mathematical skills on Friday 20th June.  In a Fun Maths workshop they were challenged to complete as many puzzles as possible within a time limit.  Working with a partner or in groups of three, the children tested their knowledge of addition, subtraction, sequencing, shape recognition, logical and lateral thinking.  They also learnt the importance of carefully reading instructions and understanding a task before tackling the problem. The pupils thoroughly enjoyed themselves and learnt more about the importance of maths, with one commenting, 

"I thought it was going to be the usual boring maths, but it was really fun. I didn't know maths was as good as this."


Another said, "We got so many puzzles done, and I liked that it was challenging."

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

COLLABORATION & TEAMWORK AT CRANLEIGH PREP

90 year six students (ten & eleven year olds) from Coombe Hill Junior School had a hugely enjoyable day  running their own companies. The students took part in a ‘SATRO Business Game’ - a business simulation game, organised by SATRO, a not for profit charity who offer opportunities to enhance relationships between schools and businesses, on 17th June. 

SATRO's business volunteers alongside class teachers were at hand to offer advice and encouragement to the young entrepreneurs. As the students’ fledgling companies emerged, they produced prototypes and competed for stationery orders from the discerning buyers.  Bank accounts were opened and accountants wrestled with the intricacies of cash flow, whilst sales managers were intent on winning orders and marketing managers were busy promoting their companies.  The Game threw the students some real challenges along the way - as the businesses settled down to regular trading, they were faced with paper shortages and one off, time limited opportunities!  The students gained some valuable hands on learning with some companies forging ahead, taking a clear lead.

Later in the day, in a quest to win the best presentation award, the students prepared a short performance, outlining what they had learnt throughout the day. Competition is always tough and the judges faced a challenging job selecting the winner. 

Monday, 23 June 2014

SATRO SHOW THE FUN SIDE OF SCIENCE

On Tuesday 17th June 2014, yet another faithful band of SATRO's Volunteers headed towards the Holy Family Primary School in Weybridge. The whole school, consisting of over 120 pupils took part in a Discovery Science Workshop Day. Each year group took part in different activities including Control Monitoring, Data Logging, The Gravity Egg Drop Challenge and Floating and Sinking. The pupils thoroughly enjoyed themselves and learnt lots of new concepts.

This workshop was very kindly part funded by Cllr Mary Angell.

Friday, 20 June 2014

YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS EXCEL

Seventy Year 6 Pupils from both St John's and King Athelstan Primary Schools in Kingston formed 11 teams and  took part in a SATRO Junior Business Game on 18th June.  These groups consisted of mixed ability and friendship groups to emulate the real working world.

Judging from the pupil's feedback, they had a superb day which definitely opened their eyes to the world of business.  And, how important teamwork and communication are in an effective organisation.

This event was very kindly part funded by The Kingston Rotary Club. 

Thursday, 19 June 2014

SATRO SUMMER SCIENCE FESTIVAL 2014

Today our blogger is out at SATRO's Summer Science Festival 2014, taking place just down the road from the office at Surrey Sports Park in Guildford. The Festival, which has been taking place for 17 years, is a unique celebration of the breadth of science, engineering and innovation going on regionally. This year, the Festival has very kindly been sponsored by CBSbulter and is supported by The Skills Show, European Social Fund and the National Careers Service. Follow us on Twitter or Facebook where our Social Media Coordinator is updating the sites with real time posts and photographs of the Festival!

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

PROBLEM SOLVED!

Yesterday, students at the City of London Freemen’s School in Ashtead were set three different challenges to complete over one day.  Aiming to encourage young people to consider STEM careers in the future, SATRO provided a maths activity, a problem-solving challenge to build a coin sorter and a bridge-building exercise for 92 Year 9 students, all designed to test their range of knowledge. 


Each activity lasted about 2 hours and gave the students an opportunity to practice and develop skills in communication, team-working and problem-solving.  All the teams were kept engaged on the various tasks and commented that they had benefited from the experience.

Monday, 16 June 2014

COUNTDOWN TO SATRO'S SUMMER SCIENCE FESTIVAL 2014

Today, we are only 3 days away from our annual event that is the Summer Science Festival 2014. This is a free event, designed to provide students with an unrivalled independent overview of all the amazing opportunities in our region in science, engineering, technology & maths (STEM) related careers. The Festival, which has been taking place for 17 years, is a unique celebration of the breadth of science, engineering and innovation going on regionally. 

Students will visit the Future Working World Area in which around 40 different companies, institutes, universities and other STEM employers have hands-on exhibits which are manned by working scientists and engineers - a great opportunity to ask them what they do all day, when skills they need and what the career opportunities are. 

Students, teachers & careers advisers are all welcome to attend. If you wish to register, please contact Julia Rose (julia@satro.org.uk)

Join us as we countdown to this year's Summer Science Festival on Facebook & Twitter.
 

Friday, 13 June 2014

PUPILS WERE REMARKABLE AT THE RIVERVIEW BUSINESS GAME

On the 11th June 2014, 24 budding entrepreneurs at Riverview Primary School were put through their paces during a hugely exciting day running a stationery company.
As the pupils' fledgling companies emerged, they produced prototypes and competed for stationery orders from the panel of buyers.  Bank accounts were opened and accountants wrestled with the difficulties of cash flow, whilst sales managers were intent on winning orders and marketing managers were busy promoting their businesses.  The Game threw the students some real challenges along the way, including paper shortages and one off, time limited, opportunities to make more money for their companies!
Later in the day, in a bid to win the best presentation award, the students prepared short presentations, outlining what they had learnt.  Competition is always tough and the judges had a challenging job selecting the winner.
One pupil commented about the day,

 "I learnt that being in a business isn't all about buying and selling, there is more to it than that. I also learnt that being sales manager is hard because you have to try to sell your product for the best price." 

And a teacher said,

 "The sad was so well organised - the resources were ready and Jules delivered it fantastically. The volunteers supported the children really well."


GUILDFORD COLLEGE'S AMPHIBIOUS VEHICLE MAKES A BIG SPLASH WITH SIEMENS JUDGES

Today was the culmination of 5 months’ work by Key Stage 5 teams in the Siemens Next Big Thing Challenge. After tense deliberation Guildford College were chosen as winners with their  amphibious rescue vehicle. The judges were impressed by the team’s research and how, as business studies students, they sought the advice of fellow students on technical matters.  Pictured here with the Mayor or Surrey Heath, Bob Paton and the lead judge, Peter Harrison, Managing Director of Siemens Healthcare.



Thursday, 12 June 2014

MAKING MATHS FUN

Pupils at Ongar Place Primary School enjoyed a novel way of applying their mathematical skills on 4th June.  In a Fun Maths workshop they were challenged to complete as many puzzles as possible within a time limit.  Working with a partner, the children tested their knowledge of addition, subtraction, sequencing, shape recognition, logical and lateral thinking.  They also learnt the importance of carefully reading instructions and understanding a task before tackling the problem.  The teachers were impressed with the workshop as one commented, “Excellent, quick, practical, engaging, solvable puzzles. To keep 80 children 'on task' for 1 hour is wonderful."
 ” and that it improved the children’s confidence and perseverance. 
The children commented that this activity made them view maths in a more positive way:


"Maths can be fun, even if you find maths hard and it isn't your favourite subject. I personally don't really like maths but this has changed my way of thinking."

"It made me realise what I'm good at and what I'm not very good at in maths so now I know what to improve on next time."

"It was awesome; it makes me feel like I can do any sum in the world."

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

BUDDING ENTREPRENEURS @ KINGS OAK PRIMARY

Last Tuesday, 50 budding entrepreneurs at Kings Oak Primary School in New Malden were put through their paces during a hugely exciting day running a stationery company.
As the pupils' fledgling companies emerged, they produced prototypes and competed for stationery orders from the panel of buyers.  Bank accounts were opened and accountants wrestled with the difficulties of cash flow, whilst sales managers were intent on winning orders and marketing managers were busy promoting their businesses.  The Game threw the pupils some real challenges along the way, including paper shortages and one off, time limited, opportunities to make more money for their companies!
Later in the day, in a bid to win the best presentation award, the pupils prepared short presentations, outlining what they had learnt.  Competition is always tough and the judges had a challenging job selecting the winner.


Tuesday, 10 June 2014

KINGS OAK PRIMARY GO GLOBAL

60 Year 5 & 6 pupils from Kings Oak Primary School had a harsh lesson on 4th June, quickly realising that global trading is deeply unfair!

The children were broken down into 12 groups of three different countries representing rich/emerging & poor countries of the world and tried to generate wealth for their ‘countries’ by making paper shapes which had a currency they could then bank. The poor countries had lots of raw materials (paper) but no technology and the rich countries had all the technology but limited raw materials. The rich countries quickly began manufacturing but were unwilling to trade their technology for the raw materials they needed thereby ensuring the poor countries remained poor. 
The workshop evoked some wonderful thinking and comments from the pupils...

"I learnt that in different part of the world, things will work differently. We are lucky enough to be one of the greater countries. Also, that some poorer parts of the world have helped us become greater."

and,

"I've learnt that nothing in the world is equal. I have also learnt that everyone needs to make a difference."

A debrief following the game highlighted the plight of the cocoa farmers in Ghana and the fact that out of a £1 bar of chocolate, the farmers only receive 7p, with the rest going to the two Governments in tax, the manufacturers, and the retailers which the children thought was deeply unfair. 

A powerful and thought provoking game for all concerned. 

Monday, 9 June 2014

PUPILS BUILD INNOVATION @ THE RALEIGH SCHOOL

Another band of SATRO's volunteers headed off to The Raleigh School in West Horsley where we held a Mega-Structures Challenge on 4th June in which their Year 5 & 6 pupils were tested on their engineering skills. An impressive group of 120 pupils took part in The Bridge Building Challenge. The day involved using design and build techniques, combined with team-work, to create a bridge structure entirely of rolled paper held together with nuts and bolts. They then tested the strength of the structure by hanging weights from the bridge. The pupils thoroughly enjoyed themselves, with many now aspiring to become architects or engineers. 

One pupil commented, "I now see how important engineering is and it would be a great future job for me."

another said, "I appreciate engineering a lot more as I now realise how much engineering there is in the world." 

Friday, 6 June 2014

JESSICA RICHARDSON - VOLUNTEER

Jessica is a regular supporter of SATRO and volunteers across the board at our events.  Jessica found SATRO a few years ago on a volunteer website as she was looking to get involved in helping local teenagers at the point of them moving on from school and initially signed up as a mentor. 
Of this she says “the mentoring program put in place by SATRO is perfect for encouraging independence and focus at a demanding time in their life, and hopefully provides a positive adult influence that is not connected with their school or home.
 I have been continually impressed with SATRO’s program of mentoring and the support they offer to the mentors. Recently I have also become involved in mentoring younger children and have found this interaction just as rewarding as it is clear that our involvement  makes a difference to their confidence and outlook as they prepare to progress to senior school.
 Overall mentoring is a direct way to get involved in the development of a young person and the rewards can be easily seen as they mature and are excited about the next phase of their life and as they overcome any problems or issues they have”. Jessica is currently mentoring 3 mentors at 2 different schools!

Jessica has said that she continues to volunteer with SATRO “as I can see first hand results from the mentoring and the students show me how much they enjoy meeting up and if I can help in a small way then it is an added bonus. I also feel I learn a lot from the students as I try to understand the pressures they are under, particularly with the development of technology”.

In addition to the mentoring Jessica regularly volunteers at our primary science events, business games and even helping out in the office – in fact she has volunteered over 110 hours of her time.
Of this Jessica comments “I have enjoyed the workshops at the different schools, as the hands on science can bring learning to life and the business days link school to the working world.  The best bit however is seeing the less responsive child gradually become engaged in the activities and ultimately leave having had a very positive day. I always hear comments on the business days from the students expressing a small understanding of the pressures of real work but also how they enjoyed the thrill of selling a product they have made. I not only enjoy the interaction with children at these events and love seeing the excitement they show during the day but I also enjoy meeting all the other interesting volunteers.’


By way of background Jessica says “I worked as a General Practice Chartered Surveyor in commercial property which included office, retail and industrial for over 10 years. The areas of work were management, development and sales. My career took me not only all over the UK but I also worked for a couple of years in Melbourne, Australia which was fascinating. More recently I have been on a career break but have kept busy with children, our dog and being fully involved in a number of school committee and village events. I am now a development committee member for a local football club and have an interest in residential property investments”.

Thursday, 5 June 2014

VICKY & ANDREW PATERSON - VOLUNTEERS

Today we are featuring two volunteers together as they are husband and wife. Vicky Paterson has been videoing our events to help promote SATRO for a while now and having seen the passion and enthusiasm SATRO has for what we do introduced her husband Andrew to us. This is their story…


Vicky is a videographer and experienced marketing professional using video to help businesses communicate with their customers and utilise the power of online video. Videolynks create high quality, cost effective promotional video for use on business websites, YouTube channels and other social media.

I initially got involved with SATRO through a networking event and volunteered to make several short videos to help SATRO engage people in the fantastic work they do and try to gain support and interest. It is a treat to film the young people and volunteers and capture their enthusiasm and excitement at the numerous inspiring events they run. The more I discover about SATRO the more I want to support them and now I also volunteer at the Career Speed Dating events.”

ANDREW...

I heard about SATRO through my wife who had got in touch with SATRO via networking to help with video and my kids were involved in workshops at their school. Both were really impressed with the ambition and the ability to bring STEM to life and I wanted to help SATRO reach a wider and relevant audience and communicate what they had to offer.”

Andrew then got involved by offering to use his creative skills to re-brand SATRO’s identity: “by looking at their identity I wanted to visually and verbally convey the energy and excitement of all those involved.  We have really enjoyed giving SATRO a fresh new look and some ideas that will spark more involvement. We really believe in SATRO's vision in offering a wider view on what is possible for a career after school. As designers and creatives we are always looking for the latest and fresh ideas and we are glad to help in the search to inspire the next generation of engineers and creative thinkers” 

Andrew is currently Creative Director at Embrace (www.thisisembrace.com) and has enjoyed working with clients such as: The Arts Club, BBC Wales, British Airways, FIFA, GSK, ITV, JPMorgan, Microsoft (Ireland), NatWest, National Trust, NestlĂ©, O2, Panasonic, RBS, Royal Mail, Sainsbury’s, The O2, UBS, UEFA, Unilever. 

With over 19 years of working with brands, Andrew has been involved in their creation, revitalisation, and their protection along the way.

Having worked for leading design agencies such as Coley Porter Bell and Lambie-Nairn, and well known brands, Andrew has worked with various internal and external teams across disciplines ranging from identity, campaigns, print, on-screen and online. As a result Andrew has helped brands to evolve and thrive in local and international markets. 

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

IT'S NATIONAL VOCATIONAL QUALIFICATION DAY!

Today is VQ day, a national celebration of vocational qualifications for students, teachers and employers. Today we recognise the talented and skilled people in the UK who work and study in this field... a bit like the amazingly skilled students that our mobile classroom tutors visit on a weekly basis. SATRO's 'construction bus' has been visiting schools and youth organisations for over 5 years, introducing practical building skills to young people. Based in Surrey, it's fleet of tutors and vehicles is the largest in the country and teaches over 350 learners every year. Year 11's around Surrey are currently in the process of having their portfolio's marked - once this is completed, they are able to claim their Vocational Qualification. Good luck!!

CHARLOTTE TRENCHARD - VOLUNTEER

Charlotte is currently an Annuity Co-ordinator at Just Retirement and has worked in the retail and financial services industry for 8 years.  Was previously training to be a teacher at university but had to drop out due to family illness so never fully completed ambition. Charlotte started mentoring in October 2013 as part of Just Retirement’s sponsoring of a mentoring scheme and feels that this scheme has allowed her to continue working alongside students and helping them progress.

Charlotte says that she “wanted to get involved in the mentor scheme as I have done work like it before and have always found it a very rewarding experience, so when I saw that JR would sponsor such a scheme I put my name forward straight away. To see a mentee grow and improve their confidence, gain knowledge of what steps to take next and sometimes even improve their grades is very fulfilling. The support you receive from SATRO and the school is fantastic, and they are always willing to suggest topics to discuss or opportunities in the nearby area to offer to your mentee.

My mentee was very shy and had low self-esteem when I first met with her, and knew she wanted to be an accountant but didn’t think she could afford university or know which alternative route to take. Through speaking to another mentor who had knowledge in the area, I was able to find an achievable entry level course that would fund her all the way through university, which she is now aiming for with new found confidence.

Its great the company support the scheme, as its rewarding for both the student and the mentor, who I have found can both learn things from each other.”


Liz Edwardes, SATRO’s Mentoring manager has said of Charlotte: “Hearing the feedback from Charlotte really demonstrated how being part of the scheme has benefitted the mentee and also helped use the skills of others from the Company to find out more about career options for her.  It was so rewarding to hear how the mentee has grown throughout the year and the school were delighted with the outcome.”

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

PETER BULLOCK - VOLUNTEER

Peter has just retired after a 50 year career in civil engineering construction as a Project Manager involved with bridges, harbours, roads, water supply and many other parts of infrastructure both in the UK and overseas. 
Peter joined SATRO in 1998 as a natural succession to the Engineering Council and was pleased to have the backing and support of his employers to take time off for this activity.  Over the last 3 years Peter has volunteered at 27 events giving over 150 hours of his time; the major part of this involvement has been based around the Primary Science programme but he has also participated in Careers events, Mentoring, Fun Maths and Mega-structures. He is a regular volunteer at our Problem Solving challenges and our annual SATRO Science Festival.

About why he got involved with SATRO Peter says “I volunteered with SATRO because I agreed so much with their focus on primary science and that they  provide such professional support to volunteers together with a real understanding of the educational needs that the schools find most difficult to deliver in the STEM subjects.”  Peter continues to volunteer time and time again because “I can see that the UK has such a critical requirement for qualified engineers of all disciplines and SATRO has an important role in bringing engineering to the forefront when students start making career choices.  It has been a challenge to find ways of engaging and communicating with pupils from age 5-18, but has proved immensely satisfying to see the effects of even simple experiments and perhaps opening a window to the world of science and engineering around them”.

Monday, 2 June 2014

FORCIBLE SCIENCE AT HURST GREEN

Today, a programme of exciting science workshops were held at Hurst Green Infant School in Oxted. 60  children took part in this event, in which they learnt about different aspects of science and technology - and how it works in the world around them.  A SATRO team of engineering experts were on hand to guide the pupils through the interactive workshops.  The Pulleys activity provided an opportunity for the Year 1 pupils to be  introduced Forces with a demonstration of how a pulley rig can lift a heavy object. Using the theme of 'Incy Wincy spider' the children made winding mechanisms to pull their spider up a Pringles tube drainpipe. Meanwhile, Year 2 explored movement through push and pull forces and how these work in everyday life, but particularly related to different playground equipment.  The children made roundabouts, swings and slides to illustrate how forces make objects move. 

This event was very kindly funded by Cllr Nick Skellett. 

JUDE EDWARDES - VOLUNTEER

Jude retired in 2011 from PricewaterhouseCoopers, the global business advisory firm.  Having spent most of his working life surrounded by lawyers, accountants, bankers and other such galacticos, he wanted to get back into the real world.  Luckily he found SATRO!  Jude spends 2 – 3 days a month volunteering in our mentoring programme, facilitating at business, science and maths games and helping out at our Science Festival and TeenTech event.   In fact since Jude started at SATRO he has volunteered at 43 separate events contributing a staggering total of 300 hours.

 Jude says “I wanted the opportunity to contribute to the community and what better way is there than helping kids achieve their full potential.  I am grateful to SATRO for the platform to enable me to do this.  They organise everything and all I have to do is turn up and do my thing.  As a firm believer that “Knowledge is King” I get a tremendous buzz from interacting with a child who is willing to listen and eager to learn.  More importantly, SATRO events offer us the opportunity to help those kids who perhaps lack the necessary encouragement elsewhere in their lives”.

VOLUNTEER WEEK 1-7 JUNE 2014

Volunteers’ Week is a nationwide annual campaign which takes place in the first week of June and celebrates the fantastic contribution millions of volunteers make across the UK.  Every year, over 200 million people in the UK volunteer, donating more than 100 million hours to their communities every week.

SATRO would also like to take this opportunity to thank all our volunteers for their invaluable contribution to make what we do possible – quite simply we could not do it without you.  In 2013 we used 633 volunteers who delivered nearly 6,000 hours of work, which is absolutely outstanding.  These volunteers come from a huge variety of backgrounds and each brings a new set of skills from their experience in business to inspire and enthuse children by sharing their enthusiasm for the working world, with particular emphasis on enterprise and STEM subjects.


In order to show the diversity of our volunteers we would like to highlight a volunteer each day this week.  We have chosen these particular volunteers as each one brings something completely different to SATRO……………………..