Before I started writing this post, I knew I wanted to talk along the subject of GCSEs partially because I like many sixteen year olds around the country am taking my GCSEs in just over a month! I for one am immensely nervous about it and I persume that I am not alone in this feeling.
Hopefully, upon reading this, you will feel slightly less stressed about it and have a clearer idea as to how you are going to deal with these important exams.
This is a must! You have to study! You simply cannot expect to go into the exam hall and expect to ace your exams you do not revise. Understandably, there is a lot to remember from your time at school so there is most likelihood is that you have forgotten or need to go over certain topics in order for them to become more clearer. The main way I revise is by making my own revision booklets and creating flash cards as I find these so easy to make and I take them practially anywhere with me. Currently, I am making one for every subject I am taking as this ensures that I cover all the content I need to know for each subject. Basically, I am writing easy notes from my books and revision guides in my own words so I understand them with the added illustrations and colour because colour enhances everything. Reading through a huge revision book is a challenging task as there is relevant information everywhere but you may not be able to read it all and therefore maybe vital information that you are skipping. Personally, I love creating my own revision material as everything I need to know for the exam is in one place and for revision all I need to do is read over the pages. Creating your own material does take time and a lot of commitment but the way I think about it is that it will be worth it in the long run!
Another way I revise is completeing past papers. I highly recommend this method because it means that you start getting used to the style of questions asked and normally these questions do reappear or are very similar. You also understand what the mark schemes are like and what the examiners want you to include.
Lastly, after school revision. My school offers revision sessions during lunch and after school which is really beneficial as you can go over the topics you didn’t quite learn or understand in lesson. Usually, there aren’t as many people in the revision sessions as some people prefer not to attend these revision sessions so the teacher can pay a bit more attention to you so your going to learn more. During the school holiday my school also offers revision sessions. If your school does offer this beneficial service it’s in your best interest to attend as they are really useful and refresh your memory during your break. However, if your school doesn’t offer study sessions during the holidays, there is always the option of having a group revison session round at your friends house with a group of your friends.
It’s important to find out all the dates of your exams before you do anything. Otherwise, you could be revising for a Biology exam that is towards the end of the exam period when actually you should be revising Geography as that is one of your first exams. To stop this from happening, I have written all my exams on my calendar along with the time and place it is being held in! I have also done this on my laptop and phone.
Breaks & Treats
Constantly revising for hours on end is not good for you as it will make you tired and very stressed. I suggest, every 30 minutes- 1 hour, take a 10 minute break. This could be watching a youtube video, going for a quick walk or on social media. Doing this breaks up studying really well and it makes you feel better as your rewarding yourself for your hard work.
When studying, after a while I do get really hungry. Usually, I end up eating chocolate or biscuits (healthy I know) so I recommend pairing these less healthier foods with some healthier foods such as berries, apples and bananas. But, it is important to remember that we need chocolate because chocolate does believe it or not makes us feel more relaxed. I also like to have a large glass of water by me as it is important to stay hydrated. Another idea is making yourself a smoothie with lots of fresh fruit. These foods and drinks give you a boost and also increases productivity in the brain which will motivate you to work more!
The environment you are studying in is really important. If your trying to study in a noisy place with lots of distractions, its highly likely you’ll get a lot done. Instead, find a quiet place where you have enough space for all your studying essentails. Make sure the place you are studying such as a desk is organised. Theres nothing worse than studying at a cluttered desk because there is a risk of losing some important revision notes! I also suggest turning off any distractions such as your phone or television. If you are studying on a laptop, try not to go on any other sites or there are apps that you can set to block websites such as youtube for a certain amount of time.
Revise as much as you can and go into the exam hall feeling confident and try your best as no matter what result you get, you know you couldn’t do any better! The exams are stressful and the new grading system really doesn’t help but I really hope these tips helped you and let me know how your feeling about the exams and what your planning to do! Have a lovely day.