4th – 8th March 2019: Preparing for exams

Mar 9, 2019 |

The SQA exams start in around 20 school days so this blog is for those families who are preparing for the exams.

The first thing I will emphasise is to know what you are sitting and when it takes place.  Over the next week teachers will be confirming with pupils which level they are being presented at and we will be asking pupils to sign off on a ‘curriculum check’ to ensure that nobody is missed off a list or presented at the wrong level.  Once you are clear about the level and courses then the SQA exam timetable will let you know when the exams take place – see link below.

The second thing I will emphasise are good habits.   Good work and study habits should have been in place since starting school and in particular in the senior phase.  They are about; being in class every one of the remaining 20 days, being present in class and active in class activity, turning up for additional study/revision sessions and seeking out your teacher or classmates to clarify any parts you are unsure of.

The third thing relates to deliberate practice (see video below).  Pupils and parents often think success is about working harder when for many it is about working smarter and with clearer purpose.  Passing exams is less about how much you have crammed into your head for the day of the exam and more about the technique you bring to answering exam questions.  In the final preparations we need to perfect the technique and to do that we need to be precise in what we are trying to achieve.  In the time between now and the exams there is time to really develop technique – but it needs to start now.  Leave it too late and deliberate practice will not help you.

Knowing what you are sitting, applying good habits and deliberate practice should reduce the prospect of you prevaricating (putting things off) or getting distracted.

If you want further support for study or to access revision resources I would direct you to a small number of places (there are lots but these may be a distraction and a reason to prevaricate – the key is to get on with the work itself)

Links to most of what you will need can be found at: https://education.gov.scot/nationalqualifications/exam-preparation/Exam%20preparation

The SQA exam timetable and support materials are at: https://www.sqa.org.uk/sqa/41319.html

A lot of pupils have found BBC Bitesize helpful at: https://www.bbc.com/bitesize but do check you use the Scottish parts.

Scholar is a really good resource for specific courses and pupils studying these courses should have a log in: https://scholar.hw.ac.uk/index.html

Finally there is the video on deliberate practice it sets out around 8 things that will improve your practice.




Posted in: Parent Council, Parents, Weekly blog

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