Year 11 Day of Reflection

The Year 11 Day of Reflection took place, as has become usual, after the students' mock exam week; this was to provide something of an oasis of calm and a more relaxed environment in a hectic week of return.

The day explored the theme of vocation and progress through life. The day began with a mad and active warm up game, before, following a video reflection, we mapped different components of our lives and considered which parts of our lives, or which relationships, are particularly enriching at present. We thought about which aspects of our lives we want to develop.

In groups students tried to match the 'before and after' stories of well known people and discussed the ways in which life is sometimes predictable but also, for some people, far from predictable. We noted that, for some individuals, a chance comment from a friend or a chance encounter had led them towards what became their life's fulfillment. This led us to realise that we all have a part to play in each other's ability to find their vocation.

The second part of the day moved to consider how important it is to listen to the views of other people as we make up our minds about important issues. To this end, time was spent in small groups listening to other people's views on a variety of issues. The staff then acted as a 'Question Time' panel to answer questions and enter into discussion on a whole range of questions. These ranged from questions about personal faith to embarrassing moments in the classroom.

Time was spent looking at extracts of a film about the life of Sir Nicholas Winton and the impact he had in organising the Kindertransport, and the influence his actions continue to have worldwide through the Nicholas Winton Foundation - the good ripples of our lives can continue to spread out like those from a pebble in a pond. 

In the afternoon, through a series of short case studies, we reflected on how the actions and lives of individuals can have a huge impact on their immediate and more far reaching environment by carrying out seemingly small acts with love and integrity. To participate in this practically, and to contribute Year 11's 120 acts of charity in our 120th anniversary year, the students wrote 120 cards carrying Christmas greetings which will be sent to refugees at the Jesuit Refugee Centre in London, patients at the East Anglia Children's Hospices, children at the Mary Ward Children's Home in Kwekwe, Zimbabwe, and the Holy Family Orphanage in Bethlehem, and people being supported by homeless shelters and projects this Christmas.