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Senior Subject Choices

Tuesday, Jun. 20th 2017 3:51 PM

This time of the year can often be problematic and very confusing for Year 10 students, as they make major decisions about subject choices for the Higher School Certificate. Their life choices beyond school, are often dependant on the subject choices made at this critical time.

Often times there is a cacophony of well-meaning voices, advocating a particular range of subjects that they feel would suit the student. Teachers, parents, curriculum advisors, grandparents and friends, can add to the often dischordant chorus of well-intentioned information. Information they feel can assist the student make the ‘right’ choice for life post-school.

Many of these opinions are valid. Some, however, have very little to do with the skills, talents and personality of the student and everything to do with projecting the ancient patterning we all possess.

As we are all aware, many of the careers and jobs these students will undertake have yet to be created!

So, how on earth can a 16 year old get it ‘right’? How can they reverse-engineer a career path that satisfies tertiary requirements and maintains their sanity? Many students can become stress-bound slaves to subjects and content that is not only meaningless and soon forgotten but can be anathema to them entering the adult world of tertiary and other trainings.

Left-brain rationalising will usually create only more of the same. That is, constant rationalising of subjects, choices and courses, that are often far removed from the students intrinsic skills, talents and individual personalities.

Of course, many subject choices are dictated by tertiary institutions themselves. Many tertiary courses dictate a certain level of performance in specific courses and so they should. Future medical students require a load that is predominantly Science-based. Engineering courses, the same.

One strategy we have successfully implemented for many years, is the ‘one-for-me’ subject choice. Simply, this requires the student to honestly evaluate their own individual personality, interests and passions, then choose ONE subject that matches this very personal criteria. This can often provide a much needed respite from the academic rigour of many other subjects. Working with the student’s inherent interests can greatly assist them to balance their often crowded timetable, frequently presenting them with a course that ‘lights them up with ease’. A course where preparation is peppered with genuine enthusiasm. A course where results often reflect their passion. A match where subject, teacher, skills and content often provide an oasis of ease. A regularly timetabled time where they immerse themselves in content that is deeply meaningful and often requires significantly less preparation and ‘swatting’ time. A course that can often become a vital catalyst for success in other subject choices, as it not only reduces stress levels but the frequently positive results and feedback, can positively influence performance in other courses.

Something worth adding to the mix this term, as these major decisions are made.


Posted by Sean | in Education