Joeys at Home – With Sam, Ben and Sam

Year 9 boarders from Tamworth Sam Sleeman, Ben Chick and Sam Anderson, share with us an insight as to how they handled continuing to learn from home.

Name: Sam Anderson
Favourite subject: PDHPE
Favourite sport: Cricket
Favourite meal at school: Nachos

Name: Ben Chick
Favourite subject: Maths & Geography
Favourite sport: Rugby & Cricket
Favourite meal at school: Chicken Schnitzel

Name: Sam Sleeman
Favourite subject: PE
Favourite sport: Footy
Favourite meal at school: Meatball Sub

What do you miss most about being at Joeys?

SA: The whole atmosphere around the school, specifically the boarding environment. I think they do a great job of bringing all the boys together not only through all the sport and co-curricular, but also through the fact that everything is done as a group.

BC: Definitely being around mates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (boarding) helps rule out loneliness and makes school enjoyable. I also miss sport after school and on weekends as this is a fun time to develop skills like teamwork and trust, whilst having fun participating in whatever sport it may be. 

SS: I miss the daily routine at school, while also being busy with all of my classes. I also miss getting involved in sport and seeing my mates.

In hindsight, what did you take for granted before the lockdown?

SA: Face to face learning, having teachers there to help when you’re having trouble with a question is a big thing that I think is very important in terms of learning.

BC: Face to face learning, the excellent academic and sporting facilities that I don’t have access to now at home. Things like the library, gym and having teachers around.  

SS: I didn’t realise how I would miss the classroom and the direction of the teacher. As well as mucking around with my mates at breaks and during sport training.

What have you learned about yourself through off site learning?

SA: Not only that it is very important to learn to stay on task, but doing this on your own proved to be very difficult at times. I think having someone to help you and helping others makes a big difference.

BC: I enjoy everyone’s company in the classroom whilst doing work. I also have recognised that when alone, I can complete work faster with minimal distractions. In saying that, I do miss the teacher’s explanations in class. 

SS:  The importance of staying on task and completing the set work. 

How have you maintained focus and motivation whilst learning offsite?

SA: Learning offsite wasn’t the biggest problem for me. Being at home and just getting the work done was enough to keep me motivated. I knew if I did all the work, I wouldn’t have to catch up on things and it would just make it a whole lot easier in the end.

BC: I have stayed in a routine as much as possible and exercised just like sports training after school. I also took time to work on the assessment tasks which were due during this period. 

SS: I was focussing on when we would be allowed to come back to school, knowing this wasn’t forever. Staying focused was made easier with the direction of the teachers and the tasks we were asked to complete each lesson. 

Favourite meal you’ve had at home?

SA: Mum cooked a great green chicken curry one of the first nights I got back home. We had it with rice and naan bread and it was just to die for.

BC: BBQ – sausages, steak, fried rice, potato bake and kebabs. 

SS: Stir Fry.

What have you enjoyed most about being a boarder?

SA: The whole atmosphere between the boys. It can also include doing everything as a group, such as study and even just going down to the back ovals and playing touch footy before bed.

BC: Having the access and opportunities to teachers, mates and facilities at all times. Basically being in amongst it. 

SS:  The many opportunities and experiences, new mates, playing sport, activities provided by the Boarding Staff.

What has been your favourite part of continuing to learn from home?

SA: I think having the flexibility to do the work in your time and to just get it done so you can have the afternoon without any school work on your mind. Or if you don’t get something completed, you can work on it for extra periods of time.

BC: Spending valuable time with family and being able to socialise with them has been great. Having the opportunity to meet daily with fellow Year 9 Joeys Boys from Tamworth to hang out and study together (social distancing of course). Activities like playing table tennis, riding bikes and going for a run have made learning from home easier as well. 

SS:  The flexibility of not following a set timetable. With all of the classwork available on iLearn, I could complete the work in my own time. 

What personality traits will you better utilise when you return to Joeys?

SA: To have the determination and drive to complete tasks on time and by yourself. This can reflect on independence and problem solving, even in the real world and how to find solutions to practical barriers.

BC: Mateship and hard work. I believe these are good traits which demonstrate how Joeys Boys should aim to act during time at school and boarding. 

SS:  The importance to be self-driven to complete the goals, and also being able to stay on task.

What part of the normal day are you missing the most?

SA: Just being able to go and play sports with your mates and have fun in between meals and study. Having this time to just go and clear your brain from all the classwork and homework.

BC: Study at night and classes during the day. Mostly because I get to interact with students and teachers and learn new things alongside my good mates. 

SS: The day to day routine and especially all the sport that the school provides

What does being a Joeys boy mean to you?

SA: I think having that connection with everyone in the community. Joeys is such a tight-knit community and everyone just gets along together. I think it’s just the culture and pride of the whole place.

BC: Being a Joeys Boy to me means lots of things, as there are a long list of qualities used to describe the way we act. Doing your best, offering help for others, hard work, to never give up, respect, determination and courage are just a few of these traits that I have learnt at my time at school which contribute to this. Overall, just being a good bloke.

SS: To be given the opportunity of belonging to a close-knit community and experiencing all aspects of the school’s life in many areas such as on the field, in the classroom, boarding, supporting mates 

What does the importance of the city/country connection at the college mean to you?

SA: Having the connection between many different people gives major importance as you meet new boys from very different backgrounds each day, just widening your understanding and knowledge of different places.

BC: To be able to mingle with boys from the city helps me to realise the different perspectives in which people come from and how we can learn several things just by having a conversation with one another.

SS:  Opportunity to meet different people from different backgrounds and locations.