Scroll to view the complete collection of our student blog posts. You’ll find posts on a range of topics, from school yearbook advice to the latest Carpe Diem opportunities. Enjoy! You’ll find all of our latest blog posts here.

Carpe Diem Initiative: What’s It All About?

The Carpe Diem Initiative – Our Story

We launched the Carpe Diem initiative because we saw an opportunity.

An opportunity to inspire teens across the UK with a site unlike any other.

Young minds are constantly learning, discovering and developing. Here at Boomerang Education, we understand the importance of ensuring a student’s time at school is as fulfilling as possible. This means encouraging teens to make the most of their time both in and out of the classroom.

Our Carpe Diem initiative focuses on helping pupils to develop truly beneficial skills for use in school and in later life.

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What is Carpe Diem?

Think of Carpe Diem as the friendly, super-talented child of Boomerang Ed.

The Carpe Diem web page highlights a broad range of nation-wide opportunities, challenges and competitions. We encourage students of all ages to set new goals, stretch themselves and begin to shape their own futures.  We’ve brought together all of these opportunities on our website, which is regularly updated, making it as comprehensive a directory as possible.

We want to get as many young people involved as possible. There’s something for everyone, whatever their passion or interest!

Not only can young people make a start on the building blocks of an impressive CV with skills that will stay with them for life, but they might even discover a new talent.

Want to find out more about Carpe Diem? Just get in touch with a member of the Boomerang team 🙂

carpe-diem-initiative-friends

New Periodic Table Elements – School Planner Update

Four new Periodic Table elements to be included: 

Content research for the Boomerang 2017-18 school planners is now well underway! This will result in the inclusion of 4 new Periodic Table elements.

IUPAC (International Union of Pure & Applied Chemistry) has announced the names of the new periodic table elements 113, 115, 117 and 118. These elements do feature in our 2016-17 school planners, however we were only able to list them under their temporary names (Ununtrium, Ununpentium, Ununseptium and Ununoctium) last year.

The new names:

  • Nihonium – Element 113 – Nh
  • Moscovium – Element 115 – Mc
  • Tennessine – Element 117 – Ts
  • Oganesson – Element 118 – Og
new-periodic-table-elements-rsc

Royal Society of Chemistry’s Periodic Table – www.rsc.org/periodic-table

Why have these names been chosen?

The names for the new Periodic Table elements have been chosen in keeping with the tradition of naming newly-discovered elements after a place, geographical region or scientist.

Three of the elements have been named after the locations of scientists’ institutions: Tennessine (Tennessee), Nihonium (deriving from the Japanese word ‘Nihon’ meaning ‘Japan’) and Moscovium (Moscow).

The fourth element, Oganesson, has been named after Yuri Oganessian, a nuclear physics professor at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research. The four new elements, synthetically created in labs, complete the seventh row of the Periodic Table.

What next?

We will update the Periodic Table that currently features in the Back Pages section of Boomerang School Planners, to include the new names. This ensures that students (and teachers) can refer to our Periodic Table as a useful and accurate learning support tool, both in class and for help with homework.

We’re always striving to include the most up-to-date, relevant information in our homework diaries – if you want to inform us of any educational updates, please get in touch!

Biology Challenge: Carpe Diem Competition of the Month!

What is Biology Challenge?

  • Our competition of the month is Biology Challenge, which is a competition open to 13-15 year olds. It is the junior version of the British Biology Olympiad.
  • The Challenge aims to encourage student interest in biology before the time comes to make post-GCSE subject choices.
  • It is an online competition, taking place in schools.
  • Students will need to complete at least one of two 25 minute papers, which will be set on topics covered in most general biology courses.
  • As well as knowing your course material, you will also be rewarded for demonstrating an increased knowledge of the subject through:
    • Wider reading
    • Watching natural history programmes
    • Taking notice of news media for items of biological interest
    • General awareness of our natural animal and plant life

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Prizes!

  • Pupils gaining a winning score in this competition of the month will be awarded with a Bronze, Silver or Gold certificate from the Royal Society of Biology.
  • Schools can conduct the Challenge in whichever way best suits their students. As well as being able to submit their pupils’ scores to the national competition, schools will be encouraged to award their own prizes as well as making use of the certificates provided for them.

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How to Enter:

  • Registration is now open (teachers only) and the final deadline is 27th February 2017 .
  • The challenge itself will take place online in schools between 6th and 24th March 2017.
  • Ask your biology teacher to register your school via the Royal Society of Biology website.
  • Registration costs £30 per school, which includes competition entry for all eligible students.
  • Contact us if you have any questions 🙂

 

Coming Up With The Perfect Yearbook Quote

Coming up with the perfect yearbook quote was never going to be easy, which is why we’ve decided to give you a few tips!

Humour

Funny yearbook quotes are always a great finishing touch to a yearbook page. You could draw on a funny story from your time at school or try to come up with a witty one-liner (don’t worry we have some examples at the end of this post).

Confidence

Your school yearbook will be something that you look back on in years to come, so you’ll want to make sure that it does actually reflect who you were at the time. Having the confidence to be yourself is key, so try making your yearbook quote memorable and reflective of you. Remember, your yearbook page is really for you, so you can be as ambitious, confident and original as you like – you are your harshest critic after all.

When all else fails

The perfect yearbook quote doesn’t necessarily need to be your own quote. There’s nothing wrong with taking inspiration from a favourite film character, musician or author that captures the feelings you want to convey.

Some of our favourites…

Here are some of our favourite yearbook quotes from over the years. Whether funny, witty, confident or downright strange, it’s your quote so you can be as creative as you like!

For more tips on yearbooks, drop us a message via our online chat 🙂

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5 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Boomerang School Planner

There are all sorts of ways teachers and pupils can use the Boomerang school planner. Here are our top 5 planner features that  you might not have known about:

Growth Mindset

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At the core of your school planner this year is the concept of ‘growth mindset’, designed to help students thrive both in and out of school.

In a nutshell, adopting a growth mindset means having a more positive and proactive approach to learning. In a school setting, this is the belief that all pupils are capable of growth and that learning is less about knowing all the right answers and more about a steady, well-rounded progression.

We highlight several inspirational growth-mindset figures from all walks of life, who tell their stories to help students embrace the growth mindset.

Learning how to gradually adopt this mindset is wonderful preparation for social development, future employment and getting the most out of life.

Carpe Diem

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Young minds are constantly learning, discovering and developing. We understand the importance of ensuring that a student’s time at school is as fulfilling as possible, which is why we launched our Carpe Diem initiative.

What is Carpe Diem?

Throughout the Boomerang school planner, a broad range of nation-wide opportunities, challenges and competitions is highlighted, spurring students to set new goals, stretch themselves and shape their own futures.  These opportunities have all been brought together on our website, which is regularly updated, making it as comprehensive a directory as possible.

Beyond the Classroom

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For older students, our 16 + school planner includes an up-to-date UCAS guide, pointing students to useful information on making university and college applications. Laid out in a stress-free, easy to follow format, pupils can follow a step-by-step process and need never miss important deadlines or key dates.

The academic support in a Boomerang school planner does not stop once pupils leave the classroom; students will find revision tips and exam techniques to encourage independent study, whilst also providing guidance when needed.

Artistic Banner Designs

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Unique in their bold and colourful page designs, the Boomerang Secondary Design school planners take inspiration from a different artistic theme each year. For 2016/17 we bring you a combination of ancient, traditional and tribal art styles from all over the world, culminating in vibrant explosions of colour for each month of the academic year.

Students keen to learn more about the culture behind each of our featured art designs can take a look at our ‘Diary Design Inspiration’ pages. We’ve included a brief overview of the origins and key features of each art style, from Aboriginal and Maya, to Inuit and Norse.

History

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We know that a well-rounded student is engaged in all aspects of the world around them and that a fulfilling learning environment is about more than passing exams. This is why, in addition to curriculum-based information, we also draw attention to content that is not directly on the syllabus.

This year our Secondary Design school planner honours 2016/17 by transporting students back to important historical events by exploring key anniversary dates. From iconic British figures to life-changing technological advances, the creative layout of this double page history spread certainly sparks student interest.

Do you have a favourite school planner feature? Tweet us and let us know!

10 Random Acts of Christmas Kindness: Ideas for the Classroom

With Christmas just around the corner, have a go at ticking off our top ten Random Acts of Christmas Kindness ideas with your class. It’s a great way to add some festive fun to the classroom at the end of term and of course, the underlying message is incredibly positive.

Random Act of Kindness: A selfless act performed by a person to either help or cheer up a stranger, for no reason other than to make people happier.

Ask students to write down these 10 Random Acts of Christmas Kindness in their school planners and encourage them to try to tick as many off as they can by Christmas Day!

Boomerang Top 10 Random Acts of Christmas Kindness:

  1. Give three people a genuine compliment either in person or via social media.
  2. Help someone with a chore or other job.
  3. Give up your place in a queue to somebody.
  4. Write someone a real letter and send it.
  5. Pick up litter.
  6. When you hear people around you gossiping about someone, be the person to say something nice.
  7. Give someone a hug.
  8. Try to include everyone in a group conversation.
  9. Offer someone your your seat on a bus or train.
  10. If you hear that negative voice in your head, remember that you deserve kindness too!

We want to hear from you!

Do you have any other classroom-inspired Random Acts of Kindness to add to our list? Drop us a tweet and let us know 🙂

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2017 Wicked Young Writer Awards Now Open: Competition of the Month!

What are the Wicked Young Writer Awards?

  • The Wicked Young Writer Awards are sponsored by the award-winning musical Wicked in association with the National Literacy Trust.
  • Her Royal Highness, The Duchess of Cornwall is Patron of the Awards, set up to recognise excellence in writing & creativity and to help develop literacy in young people.
  • Acclaimed author & illustrator of the How to Train Your Dragon books, Cressida Cowell, will return as Head Judge for the awards. Michael Morpurgo is also honorary judge of the awards.
  • Watch this video on the 2016 Awards to see how the Awards can benefit pupils.
  • NB: The For Good Award for Non-Fiction, is also open for 15-25 year olds to write essays/articles that recognise the positive impact that people can have on each other, their communities & the world we live in.
  • To find out more about the competition, check out our Carpe Diem entry, which contains all the details.

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Prizes!

  • All winners will receive 4 tickets to see the London production of Wicked at the Apollo Victoria Theatre and the opportunity to meet cast members after the show along with an exclusive backstage tour.
  • Younger categories (5-7, 8-11 and 11-14) also win £50 worth of books/eBooks tokens to spend, as well as £100 worth of books for the winners’ school library donated by Hachette Children’s Books and a bespoke Wicked workshop for their school!
  • Older categories (15-17, 18-25 and For Good Award for Non-Fiction) also win £50 worth of books/eBooks tokens to spend and an exclusive writing experience with one of the Awards’ literacy partners.

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How to Enter:

School Yearbooks Update – We’ve Had a Makeover!

Here at Boomerang Education, we’re constantly striving to improve our products and services – that includes our website too. So we’ve recently updated our yearbooks page to make it bolder, simpler and easier on the eye.

New features include:


1.Clear Pricing

We don’t hide our prices – you can order a school yearbook for as little as £10.65 per book.

For more information on pricing options, just contact a member of the yearbook team and we’ll be happy to chat through your yearbook options with you.


2. Social Media

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Our brand new Instagram and Twitter accounts target predominantly students but also teachers.

Do make sure you check our social media accounts as this is where we’ll be sharing competition info and approaching Carpe Diem opportunities, as well as behind the scenes photos.

Our Twitter account in particular is a great way to get in touch with a member of the yearbook team, just drop us a Tweet or send us a direct message 🙂

(Teachers: we do also have a separate, teacher-focused Twitter account).


3. Online Chat

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On each page on our website you’ll be able to click a small ‘chat with us’ box in the bottom right hand corner. If it’s outside of working hours, you can still send a message and we’ll get back to you at the start of the next day.

So if you don’t feel like picking up the phone and email seems too long-winded, just open up a chat with us.


4. Simple Process Boxes

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A simple process needs a simple layout, which is why you’ll now be greeted by 6 pop-art-inspired boxes when you visit our school yearbooks page.

Click on each box to expand and you’ll find a wealth of information, from recruiting a yearbook team, to yearbook cover options.


5. Sample & Inspiration Pack 

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Once you’re on our yearbooks page, simply click on the rectangular Sample & Inspiration Pack image.

From here, you can flick through useful information on Boomerang yearbooks and hopefully get some inspiration too.

So, now that you know all about our new yearbook page, why not open up a chat window with a member of the team?

Boomerang Team.

School Yearbook Tips (Pt.3): Yearbook Awards For Teachers

It’s not just the students that receive awards in our school yearbooks – why not include yearbook awards for teachers too? Teachers can make such an impact on school life so it seems only fitting that they feature in your leavers yearbook!

Teacher awards are also a great way to start getting people engaged in the yearbook process. Once you’ve come up with your list of awards, you can encourage other students to vote for who they think should win each award. This will ensure that everyone has their say and feels a part of the finished yearbook.

You can choose to include all sorts of teacher awards – we’ve sorted our suggestions into the positive and the…not so positive below:

PS: Check out part 1 and 2 of this yearbook tips series for some ideas on student yearbook awards.

 


Positive Yearbook Awards for Teachers…yearbook-awards-for-teachers

  • Funniest
  • Favourite
  • Best newcomer
  • Best dressed
  • Biggest gossip
  • Most laid-back
  • Most legendary
  • Most missed
  • Most energetic

Not So Positive Yearbook Awards for Teachers…yearbook-awards-for-teachers-2

  • Scariest
  • Push-over
  • Least likely to acknowledge you outside of school
  • Worst fashion sense
  • Most annoying homework assignments
  • Least missed
  • Least energetic

So can you come up with any other suggestions for yearbook awards for teachers? Let us know and we’ll add it in to this blog post!

The Boomerang Team.

School Yearbook Tips: Ideas for Your Yearbook Awards Page (Pt 2)

Looking for ideas for a yearbook awards page? Yearbooks awards pages are a great way to get everyone talking about your leavers yearbook.

They’re also a way of showing off the wide range of talented students in your year group. You can choose awards for almost anything: funny, serious or a bit of both.

Check out part 1 of this yearbook tips series for the ‘best…worst’ awards and carry on reading for some ‘most likely to…least likely to’ awards!

 


Most likely to…
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  • Appear on Jeremy Kyle
  • Become a famous artist
  • Become a footballer
  • Become a comedian
  • Become Prime Minister
  • Get ID’d at 30
  • Invent the next Snapchat
  • yearbook-awards-page-idMake millions
  • Set a new Guinness World Record
  • Star in the West End
  • Visit Mars
  • Win an Olympic gold medal
  • Win an Oscar
  • Win the X Factor
  • Write the next Harry Potter

yearbook-awards-page-graduatesLeast likely to…

  • Attend a school reunion
  • Ever be able to grow facial hair
  • Graduate university
  • Get a job
  • Get in trouble for anything
  • Get married
  • yearbook-awards-page-parentsPass their driving test
  • Move out of their parents’ home
  • Remember any of our names in five years’ time
  • Stay in their hometown
  • Win a school prize

Stay tuned – next week we’ll be bringing you our favourite teacher awards ideas!

Boomerang Team