Beyond The Curriculum

“Your time at Berkhamsted isn’t whatever you might think of it now – it’s what you’re going to make of it”

Joe Beadle, Berkhamsted Head Boy 2018 – 19

scroll down

Berkhamsted Sixth offers pupils an education which provides them with the core academic skills and qualifications they will need to meet their future aspirations, together with the opportunity to gain the crucial life skills and experiences that will form a platform for their future success and happiness.

We develop our students into well-rounded people. We teach our pupils to do their best in exams, yet we also encourage them to develop a broad range of interests outside of their core academic subjects, with our co-curricular activities.

We believe our pupils’ development comes through the struggle to achieve good results, whether in the classroom, on the sports pitch or on the stage.

Our teachers take great pride in their pupils, teaching with passion and commitment. We encourage our pupils to stretch themselves, motivating and inspiring them to challenge their own expectations, so they can grow into the best possible versions of themselves as adults.

We do not shield our pupils from difficulties, rather we believe they develop by taking on challenges that are sometimes too great, learning to fail as well as to succeed.

A Berkhamsted education prepares young people exceptionally well for their exams, yet the skills and experience they gain during their time with us also ensures they leave us as well-rounded, resilient and ambitious young adults who have a sense of purpose and the desire and motivation to succeed in the next stage of their lives.

Co-curricular Sixth Form subjects at Berkhamsted

Art and Design

A popular and highly respected subject area, art and design is well-supported at Berkhamsted.

Our areas of speciality at A Level include:

  • Painting
  • Printmaking
  • Photography
  • Ceramics
  • Sculpture
  • History of Art

We aim to develop highly skilled, adventurous pupils who have a broad and well-rounded approach to all aspects of their art study.

We maintain a 100% pass rate at all levels. Every year, pupils from our Sixth Form go on to study Art at University or Art College.

Outdoor Education

Outdoor Education is key to our curriculum at Berkhamsted Sixth, with activities designed to challenge, motivate and engage our students.

Sixth Form students take part in a variety of outdoor activities including:

  • Climbing Club
  • Expedition Club
  • High Ropes Course
  • Bushcraft
  • Scuba Diving

Each activity is delivered by our Outdoor Education department, supported on expeditions by other members of staff from within the Berkhamsted family of schools.

Pupils at Berkhamsted Sixth are able to join the Combined Cadet Force (CCF) as part of our Outdoor Education programme, which fosters their leadership and teamwork skills through taking part in challenging and adventurous activities.

Instruction, equipment and accommodation is provided by all three Armed Forces, with annual camps and visits, plus the opportunity to take a course in leadership and survival.

The opportunities for adventure and leadership within the CCF provide each cadet with valuable skills and strategies they can use in their future.

Sixth Form students at Berkhamsted also have the opportunity to complete the Duke of Edinburgh Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards, with volunteering, residential, expedition and physical skills and challenges designed to motivate our pupils, developing their sense of ambition and adventure and building their resilience.

Inter-House team-building events also form part of our comprehensive Outdoor Education programme at Berkhamsted, with students competing with pupils from other Houses.

Performing Arts

Integral to life at Berkhamsted Sixth, every one of our students has the opportunity to be involved in Performing Arts, whether as a participant or as a member of an audience at our many music and drama productions that take place throughout the school year.

Participating in Performing Arts enables our pupils to develop their confidence, whilst taking part in a production is key to building their skills as part of a team.

We have the perfect venue for every type of performance, from our 500-seat Centenary Theatre, Deans’ Hall and the historic Old Hall, to our smaller studio theatres and school chapels.

Our annual Sixth Form House Music Competition is a highlight of the calendar as our Sixth students perform in the quest for House honours.

Drama

Our Drama department is equipped with excellent facilities, with both large and small-scale productions held every year enabling our pupils to develop into adventurous, confident young adults.

Our 500-seat professional style theatre sits alongside our intimate studio theatre for smaller plays and examination work. Our venues have their own lighting and sound equipment, with productions enhanced by our wardrobe, props and scenery store.

Our A Level Theatre Studies results reflect our students’ dedication to combining their performing talent with analytical written work.

A number of Berkhamsted students take extra Drama and public speaking lessons leading to LAMDA and English Speaking Board (ESB) examinations. These accredited examinations and the higher grades count toward points on our Sixth Form students’ UCAS applications.

In previous years, close to 400 LAMDA examinations were taken by pupils from Years 3 to 13, with a 100% pass rate and many distinctions awarded.

Music

At Berkhamsted we have a strong musical tradition, with a flourishing choir and orchestra who perform at services, concerts, community recitals and as part of large-scale drama productions throughout the school year.

We believe that music truly benefits our pupils, helping them to grow in confidence. Currently around 50% of Berkhamsted pupils play a musical instrument. Tuition for singing and a wide variety of instruments is provided by our own staff as well as visiting specialist tutors.

Our ‘Big Band’ is extremely popular, whilst each spring our most talented musicians are given the opportunity to compete for the title of Young Berkhamsted Musician of the Year, which is decided by an external adjudicator.

Sport

Sport is an intrinsic part of student life at Berkhamsted. We believe playing and participating in sporting and team events builds our pupils’ confidence and character, enabling them to develop into motivated and resilient young adults.

We believe our students should strive for results as strongly on the sports field as they do in the classroom. We offer a broad range of sports, both curricular and extra-curricular. Our students also participate in numerous inter-house sporting events and competitions.

Our team and individual sports have comprehensive weekend and midweek fixture lists, with many pupils representing the school each week.

Our students are encouraged to participate in a broad range of sports and physical activity within a competitive and supportive environment. They are encouraged to work hard to reach their full potential, improve their performance and strive for excellence.

We encourage our students to develop a lifelong participation in sport and physical activity through their time with us at Berkhamsted.

Our team and individual sports have comprehensive weekend and midweek fixture lists, with many pupils representing the school each week.

More details on our Sports fixtures and results can be found below:

sport.berkhamsted.com

 

Trips and Outings

Their time at Berkhamsted Sixth will be two of the most important years of our students’ lives. Every pupil will undergo a great deal of change and development as an individual, gaining an increasing sense of purpose as they consider the next step beyond school.

We will nurture and guide our pupils  through this time, equipping them with the confidence, self-discipline and skills to succeed in the future. We encourage our students to be ambitious and to challenge their own expectations of what they feel they can achieve.

At Berkhamsted Sixth, we develop remarkable people. This aim is at the forefront of the experiences and opportunities that we provide for our students.

Our carefully planned trips and outings are designed to at support our students’ academic studies and open their eyes to the wonders of art, heritage, culture and the natural world. These trips and outings also enrich pupils’ UCAS applications, university interviews and CVs.

Trips and outings undertaken at Berkhamsted Sixth include:

  • A visit to the Medical Research Centre at Harwell for Year 13 Biology students who are interested in pursuing a career in medicine or scientific researchA London Photography Trip for Year 12 artists or photographers
  • Theatre trips and visits such as the Stratford-upon-Avon trip in the Trinity Term
  • Nuffield Research Placements in a four to six week research placement in a university, research institute or company useful to professional scientists, engineers, technologists or mathematicians
  • Trips to the British Museum for all A-Level students of Latin and Classical Civilisation

Berkhamsted Sixth residential trips are designed to be fun and exciting, cultivating students’ sense of resilience as they experience travelling away from home before university.

Residential trips include:

  • The Art and DT trip biannual Venice Trip for Years 11-13
  • A trip to Greece for students widening their knowledge of the ancient world and bring it to life
  • Summer Residential Trips to The Edinburgh Festival every two years, where Sixth students have a chance to perform at the festival
  • Field trips to Nettlecombe FSC in Somerset
  • Future plans for a trip to Sri Lanka involving the students in a local community project

Every trip offers a valuable learning experience both academically and socially, providing opportunities that equip our students with skills and experience that will enrich them as young adults entering the next stage of their lives.