It’s been an odd sort of a year and for Year 12 students an already stressful time has been made somewhat worse.
It would be easy to give into self-pity but that wouldn’t be very helpful, would it? Better to focus on the positives, if anything, time out of school should have been an opportunity for Year 12s to get more revision done and without sporting or other commitments a further opportunity for extra studying should have been realised.
That’s the kind of positive thinking that that should be encouraged and it’s a very good habit to get into when you're faced with something as daunting as the final year examinations or indeed the challenges that university and life in general will tend to throw at you.
Jesse Gardiner, the Head Performance Coach and Managing Director of HSC CoWorks which has supported thousands of Year 11 and 12 students to perform at their best in the HSC since 1996, emphasises a positive mindset.
The company provides a scaffold for creating a positive outlook which has seen a majority of the students they work with achieve results in line with their potential, Gardiner stresses that the company is not a marks factory.
“Every HSC year has its challenges, this year they have been larger than previously, but the HSC is still on and we need to move forward. We’ve been working with our students to choose the path that has the most obstacles and challenges, it's a matter of rolling up your sleeves and getting the job done.
“In this environment, students have had to be more resourceful and on top of their studies, there is a solution to be found. We’ve always pushed our students towards being independent learners and this situation has forced them into that zone.
“Teenagers are susceptible to having that mindset of ‘it’s too hard, I can’t do it’, it’s part of growing up, but if your mindset is not right it’s going to be very difficult to achieve your goals,” says Gardiner.
HSC CoWorks has put together key behaviours which they hope students adopt, a blue print that can be referred to when problems are encountered. There’s six in all but the first two involve visualisation and the importance of staying organised.
Number one is ‘Engage your vision’, to be successful you have to set a goal, what people fail to do is engage with that goal regularly.
“You have to envision what is on the top of mount HSC which will help you to do the work which you naturally don't want to do.”
“Students are encouraged to plan and stay organised. We want to make sure that every time you sit down to study, you’re actually getting something out of it so you can still do those things you still want to do as a 17- or 18-year-old, don’t wait for the last moment, get ready now,” he says.
HSC CoWorks has been focusing on supporting students’ emotional wellbeing by launching a ‘virtual campfire’ that fosters a sense of community and gives the students a space to check in and connect.
“Since schools have started to return we’re offering a combination of virtual and face to face delivery of the key behaviours, they’re ingrained in everything we do, when the kids are online working I send them messages like ‘keep climbing this mountain’, ‘every task you complete you’re getting closer to the top’, little pieces of encouragement and motivation,” Gardiner says.
HSC CoWorks recently appeared as a guest on the second season of Business Australia’s podcast, ‘The Company You Keep’, which hears how Australian businesses have adapted to COVID-19 and what knowledge they can share. Business Australia is a member organisation which helps businesses by providing advice, support, products and services. Born out of a mission to help businesses across Australia, the organisation offers tools and support with being a better employer, improving operating margins and to grow, as and when the time is right. For more information visit businessaustralia.com.