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Revising

Discussion in 'Personal' started by pwtin, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. pwtin

    pwtin New commenter

    My son is in yr 10 and is revising for his GCSE's .His revision style is this , make notes from revision guides , and when completed all notes he is going to start revising these. I think he should be reading and revising notes as he goes along.He admits he does not really know how to revise. Can anyone advise please , also he is only revising 1hr a day , and did no revising over the hols.Help !
     
  2. pwtin

    pwtin New commenter

    My son is in yr 10 and is revising for his GCSE's .His revision style is this , make notes from revision guides , and when completed all notes he is going to start revising these. I think he should be reading and revising notes as he goes along.He admits he does not really know how to revise. Can anyone advise please , also he is only revising 1hr a day , and did no revising over the hols.Help !
     
  3. foxtail3

    foxtail3 Star commenter

    Aren't there any revision lessons/strategies at his school?
     
  4. pwtin

    pwtin New commenter

    Obviously not, you would assume there would be .
     
  5. Different things work for different people and subjects. I don't think what he is doing sounds so bad, to be honest.
     
  6. He also needs to learn what works for him. His way of doing things might be the best way, Ialways found writing notes and revising from them helpful for me but others prefered going through textbooks etc
     
  7. My son is also in year 10. The problem we have is that he is trying to learn stuff by rote, in some cases, with little understanding. His particular problem lies with science. He has learned the examples in the revision guide, but when those examples don't come up on the paper he is stumped.
    At the moment we are in the process of re-teaching chunks of the science curriculum in the hope that he'll be able to apply his understanding to different scenarios.
    I always find ploughing through past papers useful, it helps you identify any gaps in knowledge and also helps him practise exam technique.
    Good luck - it's stressful, isn't it.
     
  8. Joi

    Joi New commenter

    When my son was revising for his GCSEs he downloaded the specification from the exam board and he worked his way through, ticking off what he knew. This him gave a good framework to use. He would then revise from the textbooks and those revision guides (I can't remember what they are called!) Any notes he had made during the 2 years of study were useless as most were lost or illegible. I seem to remember the specifications were the most useful for science subjects. I hated revision time, I think I found it more stressful than he did!
     
  9. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    Everyone revises differently. I used to make notes on everything then gradually condense the notes with each reading until it was rendered down to a few key points, but that doesn't work for everyone. Going through past papers with my own children was useful, especially for Maths.

    When I was re-taking an 'A' Level outside school I was brutally honest with myself and kept a log of how much revision I was doing each day, and in the early days it was pathetic - maybe an hour at the most. I had no excuse - I'd left my job a few months before my re-take so I had plenty of time to get it done. Gradually it built up - I've often said to students that revising is like training for a marathon, in that nobody runs 26 miles on their first training run.

    Another thing I've done with students is provide them with a grid that maps out the whole week in hourly blocks from (say) 8am in the morning to 11pm at night. They fill in any blocks where they are unavoidably detained (ie school, sleep, clubs, part time jobs etc), then they block in a reasonable amount of time in which they want to spend relaxing, watching a favourite TV program or doing their own thing. What surprised most of them was how much time was left - more than enough for revision. It was a bit of an eye-opener for them.
     
  10. pwtin

    pwtin New commenter

    Thanks for all your helpful replies.I have two boys , one in yr 10 and one in yr 11 so both doing exams .It does not help that there father walked out six months ago , so I am anxious this does not affect their results. My eldest got all A and A* in his exams last year so I am also anxious he maintains those grades in the second half of his GCSE'S.It is just a worry.
     
  11. smoothnewt

    smoothnewt Lead commenter

    It sounds as though he is partly working along the right lines: knowledge is the key, so making sure he is learning the factual information is an essential basis. The next, and crucial step, is applying the knowledge, so working through past papers is a must. I remember guiding my eldest towards her science GCSE about six or seven years ago: I ensured she found out which specification it was, and then accessed a whole load of past papers and mark schemes online. She was then able to work through them and mark them herself, which contributed significantly to her later success in the modules.
     
  12. One of the best ways of revising that I know is to get past papers and the mark schemes from the exam websites. The student should then do a question/paper etc under timed conditions and then MARK THE QUESTION HIMSELF using the mark scheme. In this way he will readily see what he does and doesn't know. Make revision cards, mindmaps etc for the bits he doesn't know. Use the revision guides to refresh his memory. (DON'T USE THE TEXT BOOKS TO REVISE - only the revision guides. Huge mind-maps are good - put them on the walls all over the house. Put questions (with answers) on post-it notes and stick them everywhere for Mum to shout out questions when she is preparing a meal - she'll know if the student is right or not as the answer is also on the post it note. Any difficult pieces of information to remember - make it into a song, make up a mnemonic using the first letter of the key words. ALSO - most important make sure he knows the command words for the exams - exactly what do they mean.
     
  13. I agree with pretty much what has already been said- revision techniques differ depending on the subject and the person. But looking at past papers, answering them and marking them is useful. As is knowing the trigger words and really looking at what the question is asking.
    As a humanities teacher I would also recommend either doing summaries or mind maps of a humanities type subject. However, when doing this it is important that the person tries to take ownership of the work by dividing it up into sections that have headings, sub headings and bullet points etc (you can also use different colours and pictures to help you remember). That really helps understanding. Pull out key words and learn to spell them. You can also try to write a paragraph about the subject with all of these words in it or create a cross stick (I think that is what it is called) or a crossword or wordsearh.
    Sometimes you can walk around the house and associate things that you are learning about with different objects in the house. You can then recall that object when you are having difficulty remembering something. Or create a journey where you visit these things on your travels. playing my grandma went to market with things like periodic tables helps too. We have also put things to song and acted things as well to help recall. Some take time but others don't.
    Hope some of this helps.
     
  14. I always recommend that my students do summaries and then put the key points onto mind maps, using colour coding. They then use these to revise and answer exam questions.
     
  15. pwtin

    pwtin New commenter

    Thanks all for taking time to reply . Is it too late to send off for past papers or can I download ?, and is there even enough time for all of this?.In yr 11 they have study leave , but in yr 10 it has to be done after school and on top of homework.
     
  16. Can he talk to his teachers to make sure the study guides are relevant? How do his course work notes assist him? Also, what about creating a brainstorm for each topic with key words around - a mindmap using different colours for different points. I know that using a range of colours worked for my son.[​IMG] Good Luck!!
     
  17. Just go on the exam board websites and you should find them free (maybe not the markschemes though - they are sneaky and charge for those in some cases)
    Just be sure you know the board and specification your son(?) is doing so you get the absolute right ones some boards offer A or B spec in subjects and the exams are very different. If he has any past papers from school those will have the details on the front. Just a heads up though - lots of us use these in the last few weeks of Y11 so he may find he is either doing work already completed or shortly sees the papers in class. Not too desperate though as there are always things to improve!

    good luck
     
  18. pwtin

    pwtin New commenter

    Thanks to everyone for their advice, he is still busy writing notes, not sure if he is remembering any of it .Have uped his revising time to 1 hr 20 mins at moment and increasing the time a little every night.Son in yr 11 seems to have a laid back approach , although he must know what he is doing as he gained grade As in the first half of his GCSEs last year.Still dont feel he is focussed enough this time round, although he has started going to GCSE revision classes after school for an hour.
     
  19. pwtin

    pwtin New commenter

    Thanks to all for your offers of advice.He is still making lots of notes , concerned about what he is really taking in.Increasing revision time gradually every night , up to 1 hr 20 mins now.Other son seems very laid back , although he managed grade As in the first half of his GCSEs , just dont think he seems very focused this time round .He has been attending revision classes after school this week , but its difficult to work out exactly how much he is doing in his room as he keeps saying he is getting round to it !
     
  20. pwtin

    pwtin New commenter

    Oops , could not get first post to send, rewrote and then discovered both posted on site .Sorry .
     

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