I often work in schools with Careers Advisers observing them in action for their careers qualifications. Some of them choose a Unit on delivering group work sessions to clients.
From my experience, careers staff work really hard on the preparation and planning for this module. Group work delivery is usually outside their “comfort zone”. They’re keen to develop a programme that meets all learning styles, keeps students engaged and – most important – is fun. Often Advisers will invite employers to get involved in an attempt to keep things “real”.
So, why is it that – particularly when I’m sat in a room with Year 11 students – I want to crawl into a corner and die?! I’ve worked with children and young people for nearly 25 years and it’s very rare I “knock” youngsters, however, it can be NO coincidence that I often observe absolutely appalling and disrespectful behaviour from young people.
Put it this way, I went to a school in Wolverhampton that didn’t have the best of best reputations, however, I don’t remember ANY of my classmates behaving so badly, particularly if someone from the “outside world” had taken the trouble to visit and present.
I wouldn’t still be working in this amazing sector if I couldn’t relate to young people and share my experiences with the staff who support them. However, if my collective experience of late is anything to go by then – blimey!
The teachers present in these sessions - who are ultimately responsible for monitoring behaviour - do their utmost and are usually no “push over”. The attitude of some young people I see is bordering on arrogant with a complete lack of interest, i.e. “This means nothing to me!”
Can you fathom out what’s going on here? I’m not sure I can!
Is it a society thing? Behavioural? Education not prepping young people for “the real world”? Lack of importance given to careers? Learning about careers needs to be delivered in more innovative ways?
What are your experiences of training groups of young people?
Adrian has worked in the Careers and Information, Advice and Guidance sector for over 20 years. He specialises in supporting clients not in education, employment or training to overcome their barriers and realise their aspirations. As an experienced practitioner, manager and trainer for the Connexions service, Ade took his passion for...