Skills to Thrive

If you think Academy9 is all about engineering and construction, think again! While engineering and construction are exciting careers on major infrastructure projects, such as the A9 Dualling Programme, we recognise that young people have a range of different interests and will need a range of different skills to flourish in the future.

Overview of Gateway

The Gateway event is a great example of engaging pupils in various activities to develop core skills, aligned to the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence (CfE). The event sees Primary 5 pupils from the associated primary come to Pitlochry High School to take part in six activities and to experience their local secondary school environment. Secondary 3 volunteers take on the role of mentors and lead the younger pupils in the challenges. The challenges bring the P5s and S3s together as they compete at the Gateway event.

Gateway Event in Pitlochry, 13-14 March

Senior Mentor Training 

Volunteer S3 pupils from the host secondary school, attend a 2-hour training session with the Academy9 Team to become Senior Mentors at the upcoming Gateway event. During the training, the S3 pupils learn about the rationale behind Academy9 and experience first-hand the challenges P5 pupils take part in.  This training aims to have the S3 pupils firmly embedded as part of the delivery team, alongside Academy9 professionals to facilitate the event. Taking on the role of an event Senior Mentor provides S3 pupils with an opportunity to demonstrate their communication, organisation, leadership and team skills that can be documented and used as evidence for their future. 

Gateway Event 

The event enables upper primary pupils to learn more about the dualling of the A9 and introduces some of the professionals who work on the project. The P5 pupils from local associate primaries are split into mixed teams covering school, gender and ability. Pupils complete a morning or afternoon session of team challenges connected to transport and safety facilitated by the S3 Senior Mentors and the Academy9 Team. In addition to learning about the A9 Dualling, the Gateway can be viewed as a transition event for the primary schools, as the pupils get to see their local secondary school and meet their future year group as they work together in teams to tackle new challenges.  

Alignment to Curriculum for Excellence

The activities cover curriculum areas such as Health and Wellbeing, Social Studies, Sciences and Mathematics. More importantly, the challenges aim to enable young people to become confident individuals and successful learners. The focus of these sessions is to facilitate a positive mindset, communication and teamwork. These skills will be useful to pupils in all aspects in their lives, whether academic, personal or professional.

Gateway ChallengeTopic Area
MindsetPositive mindset and resilience
Our EnvironmentEcology and the environment
Load the LorrySpatial visualisation, logistics, teamwork, problem solving
Safety FirstHealth and safety, physical exercise
Traffic SensesCommunication, safety, giving and following instructions
Team TravelHealth and safety, physical exercise

The challenges focus on a range of hard and soft skills that directly support the four contexts that are fundamental to the CfE.

Graphic showing how Gateway activities support the four contexts, that are part of the Curriculum for Excellence.

Top left: 
1st context: Opportunities for personal achievement
Gateway activities encourage positive behaviours, including respect and safety. All pupils can take part and achievements are celebrated. 

Bottom left:
2nd context: Ethos and life of the school as a community
Gateway activities includes opportunities to contribute as role models, offer support to others and play an active part in putting the values of the school into practice.

Top right: 
3rd context: Interdisciplinary learning 
Gateway activities focus on the whole person – knowledge, skills and wellbeing. Resilience, teamwork and communication are at the forefront.

Bottom right:
4th context: Curriculum areas and subjects
Gateway activities revolve around curriculum areas, such as Health and Wellbeing, Social Studies, Sciences and Mathematics.

In the middle of the graphic it says: The Curriculum is 'the totality of all that is planned for children and young people throughout their education'

Pupil feedback

While all Academy9 events are educational, they are designed to be equally as engaging and fun. Don’t just take our word for it, below are some pupil testimonials from the event:

If you would like to hear more about Academy9 professionals and the work they do, please contact us.

Share this Post