We are coming up fro a stressful time in the School Year. Exam Time.
Here’s a survival guide for you on top tips on revision, where to go for revision help and how to look after yourself.
How to Revise
There are lots of different studies into how to study and revise. With lots of different techniques. The major trick is – find a way that works for you. However the research all agrees that simply reading over your notes is not effective. You gain nothing from it apart from looking like you are revising. You need to do something with the information.
This guide here is really good at giving you different ideas as are a few examples below. Basically the simple method is practising past papers. Don’t spend money on a fancy book either. They are all here https://www.sqa.org.uk/pastpapers/findpastpaper.htm
Work through a past paper without notes. Mark it. Go back through the questions you didn’t get full marks on and reattempt them with the marking instructions/ your notes. Write out the answer you should have written. Go back and try that same past paper in a few weeks. Compare your results!
SQA Study Plan
The first place to start is planning. Have a study plan. Put time in it for ‘fun’ activities too. But get the balance right.
SAM’s Study Tip No.2 – Not sure where to start?! A study plan is a good place to start. It can help you prioritise your work. Check out SQA’s ‘My Study Plan’ app. pic.twitter.com/8C58YanNjd
— Sam SQA (@mysqa_sam) March 12, 2019
There are so many techniques for revision. This here is a great guide to help.
— P ᴱᵀᴱ Sᴬᴺᴰᴱᴿˢᴼᴺ (@LessonToolbox) March 13, 2018
How to Revise – BBC MindSet
The BBC Bitesize guides are good for summaries of notes. Alongside this there are also guides on all things revision and support. These are a good wee selection of videos.
📢 Imagine being round your friends house on a Friday night, bored and without your study materials. Get Popplet lite downloaded to your phone. An app you can download and create interactive mind maps complete with wording, links, videos and images. On the go studying 💨 pic.twitter.com/jrA18X8tm1
— Mr Finlay (@MrFinlayBusEd) March 13, 2018
If flashcards are more your thing, but the effort of making them is getting you down. Try out Quizlet. It helps you make Flashcards in minutes to print out and revise.
There are so many more different methods and apps, the massive key is finding one that works for you!
LearningRMPS.com is a completely free to use site. And is used by thousands of people each month. It was originally set up to help my own students without the need for a password or log in. It has grown and as such the domain itself costs over £100 a year to keep the site running. This comes from my own money. I have no sponsorship or income from ads. If you feel you benefit from the site please donate what you think it is worth to you.
How to Look after Yourself
Exam Season can get you down and if you don’t look after yourself, it can make you unwell.
Here’s some Top Tips
It is the last thing you want to do, I know! But it really helps, it’s mindfulness. You are focusing on the exercise, you are sweating out the bad vibes. Whether it’s 30 mins of a run, a walk or 5 a side with your pals. Please take time to do something.
2. Eat Properly
Another thing you want to do when your stressed is eat your body weight in Pringles/ creme eggs or the like. It’s great to treat yourself but also give your body good food. Try and eat breakfast each day, before your exams! And try not fuel yourself on caffeine!
3 – Make SMART revision goals
They will keep you focused. Often you may try and sit down to revise but you end up doing nothing but feeling overwhelmed by all the stuff you have to do. I use smart targets all the the time when undertaking tasks and it really does help.
Be Specific – what exactly are you going to revise (4 Noble Truths, deterrance)
Measured – How will you complete your revision (finish a past paper, complete a mind map)
Achievable – is it something you can do in one sitting or does it need chunked?
Realistic– Do you have all the resources, can you do this in the time you have. Don’t stress out. If not change the goal.
Time Limit – is it writing a 10 marker essay in 20 minutes or a whole section in 1hr?
4 – Write a To Do List
I write to do lists all the time. Some are for that lesson, day, week. I chunk everything up into simple tasks. It makes everything more manageable. It could be
- answer 20 marker from 2017 RMPS paper
- put washing away
- complete non calculator paper
- text John back
5- Talk to People
If you feel like it’s all getting too much talk to someone. It might be your pals, family, guidance teacher or teacher. Do not suffer in silence. There’s always a solution, teachers are happy to talk things through, listen to your rants and help wherever possible.
6 Take a Break
Don’t feel guilty if you need a break. Factor in some down time to relax. Also if you do feel like you need to relax but also want to revise… there are so many docs on YouTube and Netflix that are basically revision for your exams.
7 Use the Support
Use your support network whether it’s your teachers for exam tips, revision guides or for feedback. The internet for videos, BBC Bitesize or de-stressing or your friends and family for listening to you, being your fitness buddy or being there for you
8 Use meditation apps
I felt a little strange at first when I first used a meditation app. I felt really awkward but after the first few times it really did help clear my head. And if your learning about Buddhism it’s basically revision. Headspace is a really good app to try.
Where can I get extra help?
If you need extra help speak to your teachers. They may point you in the direction of more subject specific help. Or take some time to go through things with you. Do not leave it until the last minute though. If something is bugging you speak up.
Speak to guidance, just because you are on study leave does not mean the school is not supporting you. The school is there for you.
Other places to get advice or support, I suggest Twitter is going to be full of top tips leading up to the exams. The SQA posts daily helpful tips to help you. Talk to people in your class you are all in this together and you can do it!
I will post exam specific guides in the coming days!