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George, Make it!

When George was selected to take part in Make it!, his teachers described him as a ‘middle attainer’. Neither under or over-achieving, George was rarely in trouble at school, but was not often recognised for his work either. Due to the large size of his school, George rarely spoke to students in his year group and teachers were unsure of his name.

For George, being a part of Make it! was his way of becoming more involved in his school community. In his one-to-one sessions he set goals to become more involved during lessons. He began raising his hand in class. He sought out support to achieve his goals, informing his teachers and parents ensuring he stayed on track. George was grateful for the positive phone calls his parents now received from school as it resulted in an increased level of freedom at home, to match his increasing level of responsibility.

George’s biggest challenge came halfway through the year when it came time to go on the residential trip to Lambourne End, Essex. Initially uncertain about being away from home, he discussed his worries with his mum, who called Make it! staff with the questions George had about the trip. With the encouragement of his family, George eventually decided to go on the residential, where he took part in activities such as caving, working with animals, and cookery. His decision to come on the trip not only allowed him to build confidence by pushing his comfort zone, but also provided his teachers with an opportunity to see his personality outside of the classroom. Seeing George face his fears and make new friends allowed his teachers to see him as confident, resilient and brave.

Back at school, George found that his goals were paying off – he had become more well-known around school and he was feeling more confident in lessons, even his worst lesson, Spanish. As the teachers’ confidence in his abilities grew, so grew his confidence in himself. At the end of the project George volunteered as a leader on a transition day for year 6 students joining the school in September. During a Q&A session about their new school, George was able to tell them that even though their new school was very large, it was part of a community with lots of opportunities to get involved.

George’s mum said that being a part of Make it gave George an opportunity to become recognized in school for his existing strengths. Her assessment rings true:

The last time we asked teachers to describe George, the words used were ambitious, thoughtful and a natural leader."
George's mum

*The names of all individuals have been changed to protect their identities.