Main House (Years 6 & 7)
Year 6 is a time of transition and balance. As the oldest of our Juniors, life in the Sixes reflects a very Cothill ethos of work hard, play hard. As expectations rise, the boys learn to become more independent and to lead by example - whether it’s in the classroom, on the games pitch, or up in dorms. Equally, adventure and having fun drives much of what we do. Through both on and off site activities, the boys learn to be kind and tolerant to each other, all while making lifelong friendships.
Weekends are a particularly great time to be at Cothill. Alongside the usual offered activities of climbing, BMX, swimming, DT and woodwork, regular trips are organised by Houseparents. These can range from laser tag, visits to the zoo, trampolining and the cinema. There is always something new to do and try!
As the Sixes Houseparent, it is my role to ensure that this balance is kept. With the help of my Assistant Houseparent, Christopher Page, we support the boys as they navigate this important year. Whether it’s being a sympathetic ear after a tough day, a party planner for evenings and weekends, or someone to simply chat to after a busy day - the Houseparents make the boys their priority.
The boys are organised into dorms of five to eight, and are very quickly settled into a smooth routine. After evening activities, the boys return to their own games room, where films, snooker, and conversation are all on offer. They also take responsibility for organising their laundry and tidying their dorms, before settling down for quiet reading and a (well deserved) good night’s sleep!
In the Sevens, the boys' penultimate year, we play as hard as we work. The aim is to build up their levels of independence, wider social skills and to amalgamate their various passions and skills to ensure well-rounded, happy and highly motivated individual young men.
We do this with a 'person-centred planning' approach where we look holistically at each pupil as a unique individual, and actively look for ways to build their confidence, develop their passions into personal projects, and ensure that each boy has a solid set of tools and techniques with which to flourish in their final year at Cothill and beyond.
Within this year, the boys will take on responsibility around school. It may be helping staff lock up the school at the end of the day, preparing fresh fruit and tasty treats for the boys' suppers, or helping in the Kitchen Garden.
The defining moments of this year are seeing a boy discover a new genre of music on a radio that he hand-built in DT, hearing boys scream with excitement as they scale new heights on 15-metre climbing walls, or watching them taste a tomato, strawberry or chilli they have grown from scratch.
As staff, we are always looking to find that time and headspace for each boy to find that new recipe, conquer new heights, or develop as a bright, enthusiastic, and passionate individuals.