My journey to Edge Hill and some tips for yours! ✈️👩🏽‍🎓📜

The Proclaimers may be willing to walk 500 miles, but what about 4,056 miles? Granted I didn’t walk from Saudi Arabia, but with it being my home for so long, moving across the world was pretty daunting.

Hi, I’m Amy! 😊 I moved to Ormskirk all the way from Saudi Arabia, it’s been my home for almost 13 years so it’s quite a big change, in routine, culture but most importantly, weather. ☔️

Moving away from home can be scary, even if you only live down the road. I’ve moved around a lot in my life so I’m kind of used to it. However, this was the biggest move so far for me, as I was moving away not only from home but from my family.

It feels like yesterday I was panicking about my personal statement and UCAS application and now I’m 8 weeks into the course and loving it. I miss home every now and again but I love what I’m doing and that makes it worth it. It’s hard in the first couple of weeks having to adjust to the new life and routine but once you get settled in and you meet lots of great new people you’ll start to see why people love uni life so much. It is very unique and something you have to experience. 🍻

Here are some little tips to keep in mind:

1.  Stay calm. 💆🏽 Your personal statement and application are, of course, important but trust in yourself and you will be fine. Try and get to an Applicant Visit Day or Open day and if your desired course requires an interview, make sure your prep for it! The interview process I went through was challenging and I was the most nervous I’ve ever been but stay calm. The staff at Edge Hill are so supportive, you will be fine.

2. Be organised. 🗂 The to-do list is never ending and there’s so much paperwork coming from all over, it can get on top of you if you let it. Grab a file and make sure you keep all the paperwork together. Make sure you meet deadlines for conditions and student finance and any pre-summer work you may be set. It’s good to get a head start on your organisation so you don’t feel too overwhelmed before you even get here!

3. Save and budget. 💰 Try and get in the hang of budgeting before you come to uni. You may save up a nice bit of money during the summer but it goes, fast. There is luckily a lot of work around Ormskirk, as there are so many little cafes and restaurants. Getting a job will be a big help but remember to budget. You may feel like a celebrity when your loan goes in but if by the second week you’re eating noodles three times a day, you need to look after your pennies! Before you move, maybe start to budget so you can get the hang of it!

Well, that is it for the first post of the year.
I’m excited to share my experiences with you all.
Please feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions,
we’re here to help!  💕

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A Year Until Uni

So you’re in your final year… are you feeling sad, anxious or relieved? I remember feeling all three things! Here are a few tips to make the most of your final year of college / sixth form.

  1. What’s your goal?

Make sure you know what you’re aiming for by talking to your teachers, friends and family. Are you applying for jobs, university or a course? Whatever you decide to do, make sure you use this year to gain experience and do the best you can in your coursework and exams.

  1. Get involved

As it is your last year of school, try to get involved with different things that are going on. I know it may vary in different colleges / sixth forms, but if there are year book and prom committees you could volunteer! (It’s fun AND will look good on your CV). Instead, maybe you would be good at mentoring younger pupils in a subject of your choice.

  1. You do you

However, extra-curricular stuff can be a challenge sometimes whislt trying to balance it with your work and revision. So do not panic! You will have plenty of opportunities at university such as joining a sports team or different societies.

  1. Research and visit your university

Throughout my last year I was constantly researching Edge Hill and the things they have to offer. This really motivated me when revising for exams because I knew that was my end goal. Visiting Edge Hill will give you the chance to explore the beautiful campus and modern accommodation. If you think it looks good on the pictures, prepare to be blown away! You can book an open day here – I highly recommend it!

I hope you have a great week! Speak soon,

Anna 🙂

Student Deals

Hey guys! Being a student has its perks and student discount is definitely one of them. Here are a few wallet essentials…

NUS card

My NUS card is something I could not live without. Examples of discounts are 12% off your railcard, 25% off in Pizza Express and 10% off in Topshop.  Recently, Liverpool One had a full day of the biggest student sales with 30% discounts. Your NUS card will also give you cheaper entry for Wednesday night socials at the SU.

Unidays app

Another way to receive store discounts is by downloading the Unidays app on your phone. Below are some current offers available and there are many more on their website, so get downloading!

Student ID card

On your first day of university you were given your student ID card with your picture and student number. I have made the mistake of forgetting to take it to the SU far too often! You’ll also need this to access and manage your library account when reserving books and taking them out of the library.

Railcard

Railcards are brilliant for saving money. If you plan on getting the train to university or to visit family and friends, railcards give you discounts of 33%. The 16-25 railcard is £30 per year, or £70 for a 3-year card. Even though the initial cost is a bit pricey, it is worthwhile in the long-run. My railcard has been useful for me to visit my brother down in London… looking back now, I wish I got the 3-year railcard considering the money I have saved!

Thank you for reading… enjoy the rest of your weekend! Anna 🙂

Studying on Campus

A Day of Lectures

Happy Saturday people! As my Primary Education course involves a lot of modules (core subjects, foundation subjects, academic professional development, minor specialism and major specialism), my timetable can be jam-packed! Timetables can change each year, or can change throughout the year. For example, Fridays consist of my minor specialism subject from 9 – 12. However, after a few weeks this will change to a reflective practitioner module from 9 – 11. When you are given your timetable, make sure you understand how to read it – this will avoid any future confusion! Email your personal tutor if you are a bit puzzled…most likely tutors will clear things up in the lecture.

Lunch

As I am in third year, it is not as easy for me to go back to my house in Ormskirk for lunch and return for the next lecture or seminar. Preparing lunch the night before solves this problem (and is also cost-effective!).

Equipment

If you show your student ID to the Edge Hill bus driver, it is a 5-minute drive into town where you can buy all the necessary things you need. Poundland, B&M and Aldi are ideal for finding essentials such as files, stationery and buckets (if you do primary education you will soon understand why you need a bucket!).

The Library

Whilst you are studying on campus, make the most of the new library. Even before the catalyst building was up, Edge Hill’s choice of books has always been outstanding. The electronic book scanning system makes it easy to use, and the working space and computers are brilliant for printing, working or researching.

I hope these few tips are helpful to you! Anna 🙂

What to do with your Summer

Hey all! I hope you’re well! I’ve been enjoying my Summer and getting used to the lie-ins I’ll miss once I have lessons again haha!

Speaking of Summer, Summer can be a really awesome way to get things done that you can’t when you’re focused on your work, be that when you’re going into University or already a University student. There are a few different things that you could do to fully achieve your Summer potential which I thought I’d share with you so that you can make the most of this last month and the next Summer!

  • Get organised: sort your things out! Be that tidying your room or study space, sorting your previous study notes into folders etc, or getting yourself into a rhythm in terms of a sleeping pattern or particular lifestyle habits, Summer is the perfect time to get organised.
  • Check your next year out: it’s always good to have a heads up on what you’ll be studying or what you might be touching on in your next academic year. For example, you’ll find that you get a list of readings and books that you could look at before the year if you wish which are always good to look into. You don’t have to read them all page to page before you arrive, but maybe trying a bit of one or two might be good!
  • Expand your experiences: do things you can’t do whilst you’re studying and do things you’ve never done! I remember last year I helped out with the Ormskirk Gingerbread Festival and taught children how to do circus tricks which I’d never really done before!
  • Spend time with your loved ones: it can be easy to lock yourself away and forget to socialise during Summer, but it’s the perfect time to go for that meal with your old mates, or have a movie marathon with the family.
  • Get some experience in your career path: it’s not all work no play, but maybe getting some work experience or something will help down the line! I’ve been using my Summer to get a few more jobs as a TV extra which will make my performing CV look excellent!
  • And of course- have fun!

So those are just a few things that I find important to try cover during Summer. It really is a time for opportunity!

Getting to Know Your Flatmates!

Hey all! I hope you are well!

A couple of days ago I made a post about how you can get to know your flatmates before you get to Edge Hill (click here), but I also wanted to make a post about what you can do to ease yourself in and get to know them once you arrive too with a couple of tricks!

  • Don’t isolate yourself: seems simple, but if you can be a little shy sometimes, like me, then you might want to just hide in your room all of Freshers’ Week, But don’t! It makes it much easier to get to know your flat mates if you’re around to say hi before you all get stuck in to lessons. I took advantage of the common room that was in my Back Halls building and sat in there when I could.
  • Take advantage of Freshers’ Week: the events that are put on by the University and local businesses in Ormskirk on Freshers’ Week are meant to get you to socialise and settle in, so take advantage of them! Whether that’s going to the Freshers’ Fair and bonding over what free stuff you got (honestly, if you like free stuff like me, the Freshers’ Fair is a gold mine!) or going to the annual toga party and dancing around in a costume together, there’s so much to do with your new flatmates!
  • Go grab some food or drinks together: everyone loves going to ‘Spoons (Wetherspoons, for those who don’t know of that abbreviation, you’d be surprised how many people don’t!), so why not have your first flat ‘Spoons and get to know each other. There’s nothing quite like bonding over food or a pint of Dark Fruits (or something non-alcoholic if you don’t drink).
  • Play some silly games: there’s nothing funnier and more capable of breaking the ice with new people than Twister! I found it really made some nights go so well when meeting new people! Also, the University gave each Halls building the Edge Hill Monopoly during my first Christmas at the Uni, so there’s always board games like that too!

So those are just a few different things that I found useful when getting to know the people who I was living with for first year. It’s just nice to have some little ideas and tricks to help things along! I hope this post has helped and will help some of you reading this, but if anyone has any other ideas, I’d love to read them in the comments below!

Driving to Edge Hill University – 400 miles in 8 hours [Part 3]

LK to ORMS


We’re coming to the end of the 4 part blog series on driving from Ireland to England and its been fun sharing my experience with you over the last 4 weeks. I think before I sum up everything that happened in the few days of driving between here and there I should give you 3 more practical tips for driving itself. Just like last week they pretty much apply to any long drive that you undertake.


Related image1. Check your car

Long trips can be hard on a cars engine. Make sure you take spare fluids with you. Water, oil, windscreen fluid etc. When you stop off take a few moments to pop the bonnet and take a look. If you don’t know how to check, read your cars handbook.


Image result for traffic report2. Listen to the Traffic Reports

Traffic reports on the radio will give you a good idea on what is up ahead. You can use this knowledge to pick times to stop and have a break while letting the traffic clear ahead. Make sure you also have a look at roadworks and road closures on your route. Google Maps is good for this.


3. Use a good sat navImage result for sat nav

It might be your phone or a classic Sat Nav. Make sure you have something that is going to give you good, reliable and constant directions to where you need to go. I use my phone paired with Android Auto. It works well.


You can read PART 2 of this blog here:

Driving to Edge Hill University – 400 miles in 8 hours [Part 2]


That its everything for part three of this blog. I’ll post more on my trip with in depth photos and advice tonight in the last part of my blog. And please leave any questions you have for me below. You will get a personal response, fast.

And if you want more free and great information on any topic 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!

A-Level Results Day

Receiving your A-level results can be a stressful day for anybody. I remember that day for me a couple of years ago and nerves were flying everywhere! It might work differently for different courses or colleges, however I will share my experiences and try to give any advice that might help! If you have any questions/worries, feel free to comment below and I will do my best to answer!

1. Check UCAS before going into your college/sixth form.

I have always liked to have a good lie-in… so when people were waking up in the early hours of the morning I decided just to wake up a little bit later! Unless I happened to wake up earlier, I didn’t feel the need to rush to sixth form immediately to collect the results, as this would make me even more nervous. But obviously, this is a personal thing and going to collect your results as soon as you can may be the best thing for you! The main point however, is to check your UCAS account first. This is where you can see if you have gotten into your first choice university. This will put less pressure on you (hopefully) when you come to opening your results!

2. Think about where you want to open your results.

Do you mind if you find out your grades in the middle of rush and panic? Or do you prefer to find a quieter space with a family member? Maybe consider opening them once you have gotten back to the car! Whatever you do… stay calm and focus on yourself.

3. Life goes on.

If you do not receive what you expected or what you would have liked, that is OKAY. How can we celebrate achievements if we never get drawbacks right? Wherever your university or career path leads you, you will realise the importance of focusing on your next steps rather than dwelling on the past. Be resilient and be proud of your grades without comparing yourself to others.

I hope these few tips will make you feel more at ease. Don’t let anything or anyone dishearten you – you are brilliant! Most of all… GOOD LUCK!

Anna 🙂

Memorable Moments 2

Hello! I hope you are all enjoying this lovely weather! Continuing with my ‘memorable moments’ from my recent professional practice, I am going to be talking about a science lesson I taught to the year 4 pupils.

After Edge Hill introduced this idea in a Science seminar, I knew I wanted to try it with the children. It is a very messy activity… which just adds to the fun, right?!

The activity was based on the human digestive system as their current topic is animals and humans. The children had also learnt about instructions in literacy so this was a perfect chance for a cross-curricular task! Below are the instructions I put together to hand out to the groups of 3…

You are creating your own human digestive system. Every day materials such as the tights that you brought in, will represent a part of the body – so you need to use your imagination!  You will follow the journey of the banana through the body, starting with the mouth.

You will need to do the following:

  1. Use scissors (the teeth) to cut the banana up in the cup (the mouth).
  2. Add a few drops of water (saliva). This will create a ball of food (the bolus).
  3. Push the bolus with a finger through the funnel (the oesophagus), and into the plastic bag (the stomach).
  4. Pour more water into the bag (this represents the stomach acid).
  5. Seal the bag (seal the opening to the stomach). Try not to trap air… if there is a lot of air in the stomach it creates a burp!
  6. Squeeze the bag to make the mixture smooth. Food usually stays in the stomach for 6 hours!
  7. Make a small hole in the bottom of the plastic bag with the scissors.
  8. Pour the contents into the tights (large intestines). You may need two people to ensure the mixture does not spill. Cut a hole at the bottom of the tights.
  9. Use your hands to wrap around the tights and squeeze the mixture to move it down.
  10. Make sure to place the larger plastic container (the toilet) underneath the hole (the anus).

If you are still on teaching practice or plan to start soon, I highly recommend this practical activity if you have the chance! The children were so engaged and absolutely loved it. Afterwards, they were able to talk through the digestive system and apply their knowledge by relating scientific terms to the everyday materials which they used.

Have a lovely weekend!!!

Anna 🙂

Travelling Tips

Hey all, hope you’ve had a great week and you’re looking forward to the summer you’ve got ahead of you!

As this Uni year has drawn to a close, travelling is the main thing on my mind. I live in West Yorkshire, so by train it’s about 3 hours away from Ormskirk.

Before I came to Edge Hill, I didn’t really travel much, especially not by train. I think I’d been on 2 trains in my life, so travel was one of those things that brought me a lot of nerves when I thought about it. However, after a few trips there and back, I started to get a lot less nervous!

There are a few things that I’ve noticed help when it comes to preparing for travelling, so I thought I’d share these with you:

  • Make a list: listing what you need to take with you before you pack makes life a heck of a lot easier. I’ve found that when I’m packing without a list I tend to forget things, whereas when I have my list I can just grab those things to pack and then pack anything like books and that that I want rather than need for travelling.
  • Keep your tickets in the same place: this one seems obvious, but there’s been times that I haven’t done this and let’s just say there’s nothing worse than coming up to a train station ruffling through your wallet finding the correct train ticket. I guess it comes as a second point of this that you should bin old tickets, cause it can get confusing!
  • Give yourself time: if you’re getting multiple trains like I do, make sure you give yourself enough time between the trains. Even if you’re just changing platforms, it’s much easier and nicer to wait than rush across a train station.
  • Off-Peak: if you’ve got a big suitcase, it’s much easier to go for off-peak times, and avoid lunch and the times when people will be travelling to and from 9-5 jobs. You’ll get a hang of when these times are the more you travel, but it’s a good thing to keep an eye on to begin with.

So those are just a few things that I’ve found help ease my nerves. I hope these tips help anyone who is reading this!