In a few months you will be doing your GCSEs, well done me for stating the obvious. I'm sure that you have heard a million tips on how to revise effectively for your exams but please let me add the extra one as someone who went through the whole process just last year. Below are my five tips to approaching your GCSE exams:
1. START REVISING
Just start. Not next week, not even tomorrow, RIGHT NOW (after you finish reading this of course) REVISE!!! The trap that a lot of us fall into is both procrastination and convincing ourselves that we need a clear cut plan before we start doing anything. Planning is good; but don't spend more time making a revision plan than actually revising.
2. MAKE A REVISION PLAN
Revision plans are quite fun to make; that is until you realise how much you have to do, but fear not my young friends there is hope. Revision plans are there as a guideline and they should be realistic. Make sure you have some sort of list of all the topics that are going to be in your exam for each subject; then work your way through, ticking them off as you go. Focus on the topics that you find hardest first and do a few hours of revision every day (2 to 3 hours) then do a lot more revision at the weekend. Oh and take breaks. Snack breaks, walking breaks, sitting down and feeling proud of how hard you're working breaks, just make sure you treat yourself and don't burn yourself out.
3. DO PAST PAPERS
This is a point all on its own because I avoided past papers like the plague. I did not like sitting down and timing myself and feeling all pressured when I got things wrong, but after a while I realised that past papers are extremely useful. A lot of the time, especially in science papers, questions are repeated so it is likely a similar question will be asked in your real paper. You also get the hang of exam technique and realise the sort of things that the examiner wants you to write. If you haven't already, spend this week printing off tons of past papers, or ask an older friend if they have any spare and start working on them.
4. DON’T BE SCARED OF EXAMS
GCSE prep is very much a psychological thing as well as a school requirement. You are going to hear many people say 'I'm going to fail anyway' and you might be saying that as well. Now is the time to STOP! The 'I'm going to fail’ mentality is enough to throw you off track, so stop thinking and saying it and stay away from anyone or anything that reinforces that negative way of thinking. When preparing for exams it is so important that you do all you can to channel happy vibes because sometimes it gets hard. Everyone gets stressed during this period, which is normal, some people's stress, however, is just not what you need so stay away from any negativity.
Right now you are worrying because the teachers are saying that you may not finish the syllabus in time, you have tons of homework to do and you are worried that there is not enough time for you to revise. Take a deep breath and relax. Everything falls into place. It feels stressful now but don't let things get to you. It's all about putting in effort. What you put in is what you will get out.
Hopefully these tips have helped you feel more at ease about your exams. For more advice feel free to drop any questions in the comment section below.
Have a lovely week