Stories From Our Coachees : Cisne (Year 12 at Stoke Newington School)

By Cisne Mclellan - Hayes

You could say that I became involved in CoachBright by accident - one of my teachers happened to be coordinating the programme in our sixth form, and there was a free space available. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to get involved but I decided to go to the launching session and find out more. There I met Robin and my future coach, Katie.

I was coached on AS Philosophy. My Philosophy teacher offered me the opportunity to take part in the programme after I’d mentioned that I’d been struggling with the subject. Katie had gone on to study it at King’s College London so I trusted her to point me in the right direction. I met with her every Monday at 9am. Being me, I struggled to get up each morning and arrive on time, but I’m glad I made the effort, as previously, I’d really struggled to revise. As I didn’t understand Philosophy, I didn’t have the motivation to spend extra time on the subject. My mind would wander and I’d be distracted by other things. As someone with a very short attention span, there’s always something which seems more interesting or important than revising. Instead, I find myself bingeing on books, box sets or chocolate. However, putting an extra hour a week into going over what I’d learnt in lesson time really boosted my confidence. I was surprised by the difference it made! I could now answer questions in class and felt less stressed about the final exam.

It helped massively to have someone support me go over the content so I didn’t forget it. It was also very helpful to be given one-to-one support, as I no longer felt it was impeding the progress of the rest of my class. Katie was really patient and gave me lots of good revision tips. Previously, I hadn’t really been entirely sure where to start in regards to revising. I’d tried making posters, flashcards and spider diagrams but I had no idea what worked. She was also able to answer a lot of the questions I had about university. I didn’t know what kind of course I wanted to take. With Katie, I looked at many different websites which compared universities and listed all the subjects I could study.

CoachBright continued helping me after I finished my sessions with Katie, offering me advice about applying to university and also giving me two weeks of work experience to improve my application. I started working at their office space a month or so after finishing my exams - researching schools, emailing coaches and designing information packs.

I would, of course recommend the programme to other students, not least of all because the programme concludes with a free Domino's pizza! I underestimated how much of a difference a session a week could make. Sometimes it can be helpful just to go over something in brief to be reminded. If the opportunity presents itself, definitely do it and make the most of it!!