GCSE Exam Preparation is something parents dread nearly as much as pupils. As a parent, you’ve been building up to this day since your children started school. As a pupil, the last two years have been leading up to your GCSEs so you thought you knew what was coming.
The trouble is up until now you’ve never really experienced ‘pressure’. These exams, however, are pretty much make or break. The results of your GCSEs determine whether you’ll be accepted into Year 12 to do the A Levels you want to study.
The more conscientious you are as a pupil, the more you’re likely to stress too. Have you left your GCSE Exam Preparation too late? Should you have started reviewing earlier? Have you got enough time left to do everything you need to do?
Here are a few revision tips and suggestions which may help you.
10 GCSE Exam Preparation Tips
1. Pace Yourself and Plan Ahead
This one is so important. Make a Revision Timetable. As soon as you know your dates, work back from the dates and plan when you will revise each subject. Varying subjects over the days and weeks is better than simply studying one subject solidly for let’s say a week. The more time you allocate yourself for revision, the less pressure you’ll be under.
You really will revise much more effectively if you pace yourself. Don’t just lock yourself in your room for four hours of non-stop revision. Organise your study into micro sessions of around half an hour each. Break off regularly for drinks, snacks and a bit of ‘away time’.
Organise your study into micro sessions of around half an hour each.
2. Prioritise Harder Subjects
Plan your revision timetable so you give the most amount of time to the subjects you find the most difficult.
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3. Avoid Distractions
We all know how the Internet draws you in. You click on one page, spot something interesting and then click again. Before you know it, an hour has passed and you don’t know where it’s gone. What a waste of an hour! So to keep focused, you really must lock away your phone and tablet. Putting them on silent isn’t enough. Ideally give them to your Mum or Dad.
4. Practice Lots
One of the best things you can do, is go through lots of GCSE past papers. This will help to familiarise you with the question style and format and help you get used to doing the exam within the allocated time period.
5. Make Mind Maps and Flash Cards
Making mind maps can really improve your memory. Connecting ideas through word association help you memorise things. The act of simply writing notes down in any format helps you to revise. Flash Cards are brilliant as mini revision notes which you can go back to again and again to make things sink in.( Note though that you don’t need to spend hours and hours making your cards and mind-maps look like works of art. This is just wasting time.)
Connecting ideas through word association help you memorise things.
6. Buy Post-Its and Use Them
Write useful bits of information from your revision on Post-Its. Then stick them on the fridge, in the bathroom, on the mirror, by your bed …. anywhere!
7. Don’t Procrastinate.
Don’t put it off in other words! Don’t postpone revision. Do it when you say you’re going to do it. Don’t sit on your bed and daydream! Just do it!
8. Paper, and Pens
Get all the stuff you’ll need for revision and exams in one go and put them all together. Make sure you have pens, pencils, highlighter pens, notebooks for rough notes and practice tests and different ones for revision notes. Also ensure you have all the instruments you need for Maths (Protractor, calculator, compass etc.).. Add to the mix, a bottle of water!
If you need help, then ask for it. Don’t just leave it. Write down the question or problem and ask a teacher in school the next day or call a friend when your revision session ends. You could even hire a GCSE tutor to help in your specific subject.
10. Take Time Off
Don’t revise 7 days a week for months on end. Yes, you want to pass your exams but you simply won’t be working at your best if you don’t take breaks to relax. Ever heard the expression, ‘All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy’? Tell yourself you’re going to revise for 3 hours and then watch a film. Or revise on Saturday morning and go to the cinema with your friends in the afternoon.
So there you are, just a few tips and hacks to help you prepare for your GCSEs. Good luck and happy studying!