Parents/carers are very complimentary of student support - Bridgwater & Taunton College

Our students are progressing really well this term. Following on from parent/carer progress meetings and reviewing student targets, new SMART targets have been set where required, to ensure students continue to be stretched and challenged.

It is very important for to us to meet with parents/carers to get an overview of our student’s progress. Individual conversations with parents/carers provides us with invaluable feedback.

The feedback we receive has evidenced that our students are very clear on their individual targets and that they are very motivated to learn. We received a number of requests from parents/carers to continue the development and progression of specific targets to enhance the students learning.

This month’s activity round up is as follows from our students:

Joe Underwood

This past month has been very good, I have enjoyed all of it, apart from some of the meaty assignments that have been taking up a large proportion of my evenings. Overall I feel I have chosen the right course for me, I love the practical side, where twice a week we can just go outside and undertake different farm tasks. This month we have done tail trimming, dung hauling, and drenching to mention a few. I am happy with the progress I am making, and so is my tutor more importantly. Wednesday was parent’s afternoon and my uncle and auntie met my tutor and reviewed my progress and targets.

Back home at the farm I work on, the cows are in and the final touches are being made to the cubicle sheds, new lights have been put in and I spent Sunday removing the old water trough plinth ready for the shiny replacement. This past week I have been undertaking my telehandler training on the JCB 536-60. It has been scary as it’s surprising how easy it is to make a mistake with 2.5 ton of concrete on the forks. At the end of the day, the training was brilliant and I am now confident although slightly nervous for my assessment next Monday. 

Ben Peters

This week my Level 3 Extended Diploma class and I were able to visit an Agri South West I-farm. This is a farm that is used to test, monitor and study species of crops, methods of growing them and the possible threats the South West may throw at them. During our course we have been studying crop production and soil science. This trip allowed us to see and hear some more about some of the techniques and information we have learnt about in these lessons. Hearing about their crop rotations, species of crops and the way they create their seedbeds, plant and then tend to their crops right the way through to harvest. Overall, it was a very enjoyable and valuable day, hopefully there will be more opportunities like this in the future.

Sol Perry

We are now three months into our course and I am still learning something new every day. The lecturers make the lessons engaging, in my practical lessons we have been taught how to use the John Deere Green star, which drives the tractor using a computer. We have also been practicing loader work, taking a pallet using the pallet forks moving it around and placing it on the ground. Furthermore, we have been learning about tractor maintenance, every 50 hours from greasing the tractor, to tyre pressure and oil levels.

My early morning duties have started which means we have to be at the farm at 4am! I was on young stock which consisted of feeding them to cleaning out their pens and bedding them up with fresh straw. At my work experience placement, I have been walking and washing the cattle and sheep ready for the winter fair. I have also been helping my dad finish restoring our County 7600-4, we are just adding the finishing touches ready for when I pass my test.

Charlotte Scott

Over the last month college has been buzzing as usual, with lots going on. With the livestock students taking out the rams from the ewes and the mechanisation students carrying out lots of field work, before then drilling the fields.

Lots of groups have also been participating in cheese making. This can be seen as being a slightly off timetable activity but is also very important. It allows us to look at the other options connected to agriculture and the ways we can diversify in milk production, whether it be cheese, ice-cream or other dairy products, we must have an understanding. 

All second-year students are now working really hard on their many assignments ensuring that their work is up to the target grades. As well as ensuring anyone who is applying for university have sorted out their UCAS applications.

Katie Vincent

I recently started a new job at a quail and duck farm, collecting eggs which fits very nicely around my college course. There are 800 birds in each shed and 13,000 birds in total. I pick up an average of 4,000 eggs, three times daily. I have also undertaken lots of other activities this month which included milking on our family farm and maize hauling which has given me a wider range of experience and skills. In College I have participated in calf weighing and injecting heifers for bvd and listeria, sheath cleaning on the College bull and I have also been fencing and dagging the College ewes.

Beth Toogood

This month I have been working on my main project in College which is called IVA. This project is completed over the course of the second year on a topic we enjoy and take a role in, I have chosen calf rearing systems. I enjoy working with young stock and I am keen to find out which would be the best system and what its end results would be. I hope to test a few different ones out and see which has the best outcome for the overall health of the calves.

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