Why Did I Chose Edge Hill?

Some of you may be aware that I moved over to Edge Hill University from Northern Ireland which is similar for a lot of people in my course and at Edge Hill in general.

 

So, why did I choose to move all the way over for my course in primary teaching when I could have stayed in the comfort of my own home where all my surroundings and people were comforting and familiar? We will take that as my first point;

For the longest time, I was very much a creature of habit. I took great comfort in knowing where I was and the fact that everything in my life stayed exactly the same was very satisfying. It wasn’t until I was completing my A-Levels, did I realise that I needed a change in my life that would push me to become more independent and, in fear of sounding corny, to ‘find myself.’ I think that moving away from home to somewhere completely new to me was the best thing for me and Edge Hill was the best place to start.

The second reason why I chose Edge Hill was because, not going to lie, the campus was beautiful. As you might have gathered, I need to be comfortable in my surroundings and so Edge Hill was the perfect spot for me in terms of environment and location. It was big, but not so big that it was overwhelming and it was located right next to a small town which was so important to me as I am not a city girl in the slightest. Image result for edge hill university

The final reason why I chose Edge Hill was because of the course it offered me. My original first choice was Bath Spa University but I realised that the course that was offered there may not be best suited for me. The Primary Teaching course at Edge Hill University allowed me to finish the course within 3 years and offered me so much opportunity to expand my practice in the profession which in the long run, would benefit me so much! And I am so glad that I did choose this course as it has provided me with so much knowledge and opportunities that I did not know that I needed.


There you go! That was 3 reasons why I chose to study at Edge Hill University rather than be in my lovely Ireland. The experience of moving has been crazy and filled with so many memories that I will never forget and I can say truthfully that I have no regrets about moving so far away!

“We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”

-Walt Disney-

Day Off? No Problem

Hey everyone! I thought I would dedicate a blog to the things that you can do in Ormskirk or on campus of Edge Hill University when you find yourself with a day off or in need of a break from assignment writing etc. 


Treat Yourself

Sometimes when I have a day off from University, I like to think of it as a ‘treat yourself’ kind of day. Whether you have been writing assignments, studying for an exam or just wanting a break from university life, why not take yourself into Ormskirk and treat yourself to something nice?Image result for treat yourself gif

Go out for lunch with friends

Food fixes everything, am I right? There are some really nice places to visit in town if you and your flatmates are tired of cooking for yourselves and are also really student friendly. Some of my favourite places would be;

  • Cobble
  • Love to Eat
  • Wetherspoons (classic)
  • The Bagel Deli

Student Union

You may be surprised to find yourself in the student union bar on a day off from university but, sometimes it is nice just to sit and have a few drinks with some friends, have a laugh and sometimes there is some entertainment on the television such as football. You don’t have to go too far as this is located right on campus!Related image

Have a flat movie day/board game day

You don’t even have to leave the flat on your day off from classes so this would be the best opportunity to gather any of your other friends from your course or in your flat and have a cosy movie day with lots of snacks or, have a board game night. Let me share some advice, if you chose to play monopoly…make yourself comfortable, you’re in for a long night.


Thank you for reading. I have to say, my favourite thing to do out of this list is to watch a movie with my flat mates as it is such a great way to bond and chill out after a hard couple of days work.

“Rest when you’re weary. Refresh and renew yourself, your body, your mind, your spirit. Then get back to work.”

-Ralph Marston-

Turning the Bad into Good – How to deal with being upset, sad or angry as a Student

Turning the bad into good.


Being a student is great. You get your freedom, you grow up and you meet interesting new people in a new and exciting place. With all of this going on you might be forgiven for thinking that there wont be a moment where you feel down, or something really gets on your nerves and makes you upset to the point where you really are unsure of what to do.  We’ve almost all been there, and today I want to talk about three ways that Edge Hill supports you, and how you can deal with these feelings.


Speak to someone

One of the best ways to overcome any problem is to share it. The reason that people say a problem shared is a problem halved is because there really is some truth behind it. Edge Hill offers counselling services on campus as well as teams of people ready to help with any specific issue such as learning, money, accommodation and your general well being.


Write it down

Having a pen and paper in hand is a great way to put those thoughts somewhere not inside your head. If you and write about it you have a better chance of thinking it through and finding a solution to your problem. But never keep it just to yourself. It can build up and cause yourself some serious problems.


Put it in context

The last, and hardest of my tips, is to put whatever is going on in your life into context. It is important to take everything into consideration where you are feeling down. Reminding yourself that its not the end of the world and putting it into the context of the rest of your life can remind you that its not all bad, and things will always get better.


That’s all for this blog but if you want more tips for dealing with stress at University check out my other blog here.

Dealing with Stress at University – Stress is like the flu, everyone usually gets it

And if you want more free and great advice email think@edgehill.ac.uk or leave a comment below and I will get back to you. If you want to suggest something to write about or want to be interviewed leave a comment below also and I will get back to you personally!

Advice for starting University in September 👩🏽‍🎓

I had now officially finished my first year and it’s so strange to me that I’m technically no longer a first-year student. I was reflecting on everything that has happened over the past year and I’d like to offer some advice if you are starting out this September…

Be prepared, but don’t burn yourself out:
I came to University as a 22-year-old, so the course and everything I was doing was something I was and am desperately passionate about. This meant that the run-up to Septemeber I was doing all  I could to make sure I had everything ready and even the freshers week I was in the library trying to get ahead. As conscientious as this was, you will burn out quickly. Pace yourself.

Get involved:
The wonderful thing about moving to university is that you basically get a fresh slate. All those things you said you’d do at the start of the year you can start again now! I started doing Yoga again and went to the gym and I got involved with a network of students looking to tackle sustainability in schools. There are so many amazing opportunities here at Edge Hill and I really urge you to get involved as much as you can at the start of the year. Your timetable may get busy and you may not be able to do everything you want but at least you can find what fits right with you.

Don’t bring too much:

I made this mistake. I brought so much with me to Uni, but it was unavoidable for me, if I had a choice I would have left half of it at home. It’s nice to bring some things from home to keep things cosy but too much just makes the room feel small and you may start to feel a little cramped. Also, in term of the communal area: get onto Facebook groups. They were so helpful before starting University. Our flat were communicating through Facebook Messenger before we started and we all talked about what we were going to bring. Nobody needs 8 bottles of Fairy Liquid in the first week, do they!

Lastly…
When people said to me: ‘You will have the time of your life and meet friends for life’ I always rolled my eyes but now, I can’t agree more. I definitely have met people that I’ll have for life and that first year, as fast as it was, will be once I cherish forever. My point here is to enjoy yourself as much as you can. Some days may be more stressful than others but those days just make you appreciate the good even more.

I hope, if you’re coming to Edge Hill in Septemeber, that you are as excited as I was because trust me, it is everything I imagined and more! Hope to see you soon!

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Staying through the summer – Living in Ormskirk year round

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Ormskirk is a busy place with people coming and going for Edge Hill University during term time. Outside of that it can seem peaceful without the hussle and bussle of students. So living here for a prolonged holiday, through the summer, can be abit daunting. You might find yourself without friends that you had made in University itself. But for many foreign students, even though the world is constantly becoming smaller with low cost airlines, living here year round is a fact of life. So here are my three tips for living in Ormskirk through the summer months.


Get Ahead by finding some work that fits your degree. Plenty of firms will have summer internships for you to get ahead and pack into your CV. Apart from that the cash is great. Could save enough for a holiday, or even a car because you will have plenty of time to get your hours in.


Discover Ormskirk and find yourself all the amazing places that you would be otherwise too busy with study or class to visit. There are loads of these, Ruff Woods to the Water Tower!  Or check out the local shops, there are plenty of places you might not have visited before.


Find the fun at all of the local events going on. Comedy night at Mylo, Quiz night at Styles or just a quiet pint in the Horseshoe you will always find some vibrant night life in the town during summer. The weekend markets will give you something to do in the morning also.


Thats all for this weeks blog, but if you want to check out more to do in Ormskirk you can visit the Google Travel guide here.

If you want more free and great advice email think@edgehill.ac.uk or leave a comment below and I will get back to you. If you want to suggest something to write about or want to be interviewed leave a comment below also and I will get back to you personally!

Open Day at Edge Hill University!

If you’re like me and you like to know what you’re getting yourself into, then I highly advise registering for an Open Day at the universities you’re applying to. They can be very important when coming to decide what university is right for you and where you see yourself studying.

In today’s blog, I will be talking about how you can find the information you need about Open Days, planning ahead and where I think you should visit when you come to an Edge Hill Open Day!

Hope you enjoy!


Information is Key!

Finding out as much as you can about your university can be essential, especially if you need to plan out your day. You can find useful information about the Open Day on the university website as well as looking on their social media platforms where most universities are quite active.

These platforms will give you the information needed before coming to an Open Day such as when it is, what times and where you should visit. What I liked most about the Edge Hill University Instagram is that it often records places on campus so that you can have an idea of what you’re coming to see. They also keep me updated as to what is happening on campus, such as events during Open Day.

Plan Ahead!

I am the kind of person who likes to know what they are doing and when they are doing it. It makes life a whole lot smoother, trust me. Open Days can be rather overwhelming and exciting because of all the opportunities around you and the buzz in the atmosphere as you explore your new environment, and this is why planning ahead on your Open Day should be a major consideration. For example;

  • Arrive as early as you can – this will allow you to see as much as you can and get the best experience of the day.
  • Make a plan of what you really want to see first to avoid disappointment. However, our helpful guides will make sure that doesn’t happen.
  • If you are travelling as a group, it may be better to split up into a smaller group so you can cover more ground. I found that this was helpful as it meant that if there were two people who wanted to visit a certain spot on the campus and the other two wanted to visit somewhere else, we didn’t waste time walking around somewhere that was not related to the course.
  • Organise a tour guide as soon as you register. This will ensure that you are again, not wandering around aimlessly when you could be attending important information sessions or events. However, it is quite easy to lose track on our scenic campus…
  • Campus map! This is very self-explanatory but collecting one of these at the Open Day saved me from a lot of arguments about who turned the wrong direction. Trust me on this…use a map.

Additionally, if you are like me and have had to fly in to attend an Open Day, make sure that you arrive early enough at the beginning of the Open Day to avail of the events and have enough time to catch your flight if you are leaving the same day. This was what I was most concerned about when attending university Open Days across the water, not being able to have the time to see everything. However, in my experience, if you let the leaders or an organiser know your situation, they will try to ensure that you are able to visit all the places on campus that you want to.

Places to See!

  • Catalyst – I may be biased because I attend Edge Hill University and spend a great deal of time here, but I highly recommend visiting our shiny new catalyst building. Its modern feel makes studying and essay writing a much more relaxed experience with snacks and drinks available at the café, which will be open for Open Day!
  • Sports Centre – this is one of my favourite places on campus. It’s amazing facilities and classes makes exercise fun and inclusive. While you are there, why not take a walk around the track and field?
  • Accommodation blocks – I am really glad that I came to the Open Day, especially to have a closer look at the accommodation. It is not only important to see where you will be studying but to also see and feel where you could potentially be living. Select rooms at the accommodation blocks will be open for visitors to have a look around which is really vital when considering applying for the accommodation on campus.
  • The Hub – the name says it all. The Hub at Edge Hill University is the centre of the campus where you will see a lot of events and buzz about. We have our local convenient shop, eatery, Starbucks and places to meet up with friends. Also, it is a great base place on Open Day if you ever get separated from your family or friends.

My Experience of an Open Day!

When I first arrived at my Open Day at Edge Hill University, I was really surprised as to how many people were there to help you. As soon as I walked on to the campus, there was someone directing me to where I should go. This definitely calmed my nerves and helped me to focus more on what I wanted to see on campus and not about what would happen if I got lost…

I also made sure to attend as many talks as I could during Open Day, particularly if it was about my course that I had applied to do. This allowed me to have a much more in-depth understanding of what my course entailed. Hearing from other students on the course really helped my decision as I was able to listen to their own personal experiences of being on the course. Make sure you ask any questions or queries you have about the course!

I would also recommend that if you are travelling like me, bring an extra bag. You would be surprised how many information booklets you will collect that you didn’t even know you needed. You may even find that you pick up some other freebies along the way.

Extra Information You Will Need!

To book your place for an open day here, at Edge Hill University, follow this link to complete your online booking form and you will be ready to go! – https://www.edgehill.ac.uk/study/visit-us/open-days/

If you want to find out any further information like, where to find Edge Hill, visit our website! – https://www.edgehill.ac.uk/location/


I hope that you enjoyed this post and found it helps you for your future Open Day. Make sure to book your place and don’t hesitate to ask any questions!

“Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.”

 -Malcolm x-

One Down, Two To Go!

Hey everyone! As you may all know, I am studying BA (HONS) Primary education with QTS here, at Edge Hill University and  I am fast approaching my final 2 weeks of the course, I thought that it would be nice to go through what I thought about certain aspects of the course.

You can read my previous blog that I did in in February, telling you all about the course – https://blogs.edgehill.ac.uk/insideedge/2019/02/10/what-is-the-primary-education-course-all-about/. However, as I said, this blog will be more about what I personally think about my course, to give a deeper insight.

Hope you enjoy!


Assignments…

Okay, lets get this one out of the way first. Throughout the whole of my first year, I had 8 written assignments, ranging from abut 750 words to 2,500 words. This may seem like a lot but in the Primary Education course, there are currently no examinations at the end of the year which, I think is a blessing in disguise.

Personally, I prefer to work on things in my own time and so, working on assignments periodically works better for me as I can have the time to properly plan them out and not stress about time limits. However, what I will say is that assignments can be stressful because of the deadlines and often the word counts are hard to abide by. I have luckily never had an issue with deadlines and this is because I start my assignments at least 3 weeks before they are due which is my BIGGEST advice. This means, I start reading around the subject and plan out what kind of structure I want my essay to follow.

 

Lectures

Not to sound like a geek but, I really do enjoy my lectures. I feel that in this course, because the content can be quite hard to follow, the lecturers try their best to make the lectures more engaging and easy to listen to. For example, we had a lecture on Maths Mastery and, I am not going to lie to you, Maths is not my favourite thing in the world however, I really really enjoyed the lecture because it was fun, it was engaging and it didn’t involve reading reams and reams of notes and calculating numbers! 

You could say this made history as it was the first maths lesson, in my life, that I smiled in.Image result for maths

Seminars

How are they different from lectures? Well, it does not include the entire course sitting in the one lecture hall. You are split into groups of at least 25-30 and have the same timetable. For example, my class have Computing, Science, Maths, English, Foundation and APD together and so this means we all have the same teacher and have our own small group chat online where we can ask each other questions and ask for advice. Image result for university lecture

In a way, I prefer seminars to lectures because they are a smaller group of people and you can connect and communicate better with teachers and with each other rather than feeling nervous about asking a question in front of 300+ people in a lecture hall.

However, that being said, I do enjoy the APD lectures we have on a Friday morning because, they are like a small introduction to what we will be learning about in the follow up APD seminar that afternoon.

My goals going into 2nd year…

I have had such a good experience with my first year on the Primary Education course with QTS and I hope that I can bring this into my following two years. I have been thinking about what goals I want to set myself for my second year so that I can get the best out of my course;

  • be more confident and answer questions in class – this will really help with speaking in front of people and communicating.
  • identify the areas I need to work on in professional practice
  • keep on top of my assignments and continue to meet deadlines in good time
  • enjoy my time!

So, that was just a small run-down of what I personally think of some of the main aspects of my course. Of course, a huge aspect of the course is the professional practice but I know that will require a more in depth post at some point. In the mean time, take a look at my post about my first professional practice! https://blogs.edgehill.ac.uk/insideedge/2019/03/17/my-experience-of-my-first-professional-practice/

I really hope that you enjoyed this post and found it useful, thank you for reading, Lauren x

“In learning you will teach, and in teaching you will learn.”

– Phil Collins 

 

Packing for the first year of University 🏫💼

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Hello!

Summer is approaching at an insane rate, and the fact that I am nearly no longer a first year is dawning on me. It honestly feels like I’ve been here for a couple of months – time really does fly when you’re having fun. I remember googling and search on Youtube for what I need to pack and what the rooms are like.

My tip? Don’t do this:

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Honestly, the car was so full, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was nearly touching the ground. I packed too much, and it’s understandable but really, it’s not necessary. I’ve started to move my stuff, a suitcase at a time, back home already just to make moving out easier than it was moving in – and I’m on the bottom floor!

Here’s what you need to bring on move in day:

Pillows, a duvet and bedding to go with it
Toilet roll, even if it’s just one roll for the night
Toiletries – Body wash, hand soap, tooth brush and paste
Phones, laptops, chargers – all the tech stuff
A notebook, pens and pencils – things for lectures and seminars
All your clothes that you will need, don’t forget pyjamas and socks!
Shoes, comfy ones and going out ones
Washing basket, coat hangers, an airer, towels
Plates/bowls, cutlery and mugs, pots and pans if not provided
Bring all your university paperwork, any summer work that has been tasked and your passport
Food!

I would say that these are the absolute essentials that you will need to bring for move in day. Of course you may want to bring other things like pictures and blankets and other nice decorative things to make it feel cosy.

Side note: post-it notes may be a good idea:

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First week can be daunting if you’re not a party-goer or drinker of alcohol. I don’t mind a nice drink with friends but I’m not a big club person. However, it’s nice to get out and about in that first week and meet people who are like you. I found a nice group of people who preferred the low-key thing too. Just get out there, your people are out there too!

Good luck, and I hope to see you at Edge Hill in September! ☺️

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Getting more than you asked for… 😱

Hello! 

I thought I’d share with you a little adventure I/we went on today, and why this made me feel very grateful for being at Edge Hill University.

As part of the Primary Education with QTS course, you choose a major specialism e.g. English, Maths, Science or Modern Foreign Languages, then a minor e.g. any of the foundation subjects (EAL and SENd are also an option!).

I chose History as my minor specialism and today we all ventured down to Liverpool to undertake a very historical and informative trip.

We all really enjoyed today and it’s a nice break from all the academia.

While I walking around today I couldn’t help but think how amazing this course, and university, really is. To get the opportunity to learn about such amazing history, on a teaching course for one, but also all the other extra bits Edge Hill do to make this place stand out from the rest.

You can learn a language! 📖

There is a Language Centre on campus that provide various different opportunities for you to study a language. This can be with your course or as a module if you are based in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, or, like me you can attend evening classes. These are open to students, staff and public, but as a registered EHU student, you pay £0! An amazing opportunity to take advantage of while you’re here.

The Student Opportunity Fund! 💰

“You can apply for up to £2,000 to support a career-enhancing project, initiative or opportunity that will enrich your student experience and enable you to stand out in a competitive environment.”

I have recently joined a networking group (#SDGNetwork) that is paid for by the SOF and it allows a group of us to better understand the importance of sustainability, how we can live more sustainable but also how to teach this to pupils in primary schools. It is an amazing experience to be a part of and I can’t believe it is covered for us under this opportunity.

I will write about this network in the future, and if you are coming to Edge Hill as a student in September 2019, you will no doubt meet some of us in a lecture or seminar! Thanks for reading!

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Yoga! 🧘🏽‍♀️🕉

Hello! 

In my last post where I talked about the gym here at Edge Hill University, I mentioned yoga.  The sports centre provide a number of amazing classes and activities but Yoga 🧘🏽‍♀️ is by far my favourite.

They run Yoga on Tuesday at 8.20pm, Wednesday at 2pm and 6.30pm and Sunday at 9.30am. It lasts for an hour and the ones I go to are more of a relaxing, light yoga – it definitely brings some heat to your face and body but it’s nice, controlled stretches rather than painful poses! I can’t recommend it enough.

Yoga is included in the residential membership, which if you apply in the first four weeks you pay £80 for the rest of the year (see more here). It is quite popular so it’s best to book in advance to avoid disappointment. You can do this two ways, either by going into the sports centre and speaking to the reception, or the much easier way is to book it online! You can book any class or activity online and it will show you how many places are left – if there are no places available you will be put on a waiting list and be emailed when/if someone cancels.

This is what my current account looks like. The activity on the 17/3 is at an arrear status as I booked the class but failed to go, and I also forgot to cancel so I was charged the price of the class because of this. You have to scan your membership wristband to get into the gym or the studio so if you don’t turn up, it will register on your account so it’s important to cancel if you can’t make it, as I’m sure you understand. ✌🏽

Thanks for reading! Please feel free to comment with any questions!

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