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To think you need your chemistry text book to revise chemistry.

(57 Posts)

According to ds3's school, I would seem to be. He has his Chemistry Standard grade exams tomorrow (these are the scottish equivalent of GCSEs) - and he and all his classmates were made to give their textbooks in, so they could be processed for next year's students.

Is it just me, or is that a bit odd? Surely you need your textbook in order to revise a subject properly? He still has his notes, and access to past papers, but what if there is something he needs to look up in his textbook?

Tee2072 Tue 30-Apr-13 14:08:01

I agree, that's odd. Were they meant to memorize them?!?!

Annunziata Tue 30-Apr-13 14:08:59

My DC's school does the same thing. So many of them weren't returned from past years and they can't afford to buy the same ones.

We just had to buy the textbooks.

AtiaoftheJulii Tue 30-Apr-13 14:13:59

My dd2's school don't let anyone take any textbooks home, ever. I think they're BU. Have bought her several books.

I am glad that there are other people who think this is odd - I was wondering if there was something about modern teaching methods that I had failed to comprehend.

So not only is the poor little sod having to revise chemistry on his 16th birthday, but without a textbook to help him.

DeWe Tue 30-Apr-13 14:21:35

I don't remember using text books to do much revision. Generally my exercise books were much more useful. They gave more what I needed to know, and, as I'd written it, it was generally better for refreshing my memory.

Annunziata Tue 30-Apr-13 14:24:32

It's awful, isn't it? They can have 8 exams and not one textbook is allowed to come home with him.

Good luck for tomorrow, mine is doing Chemistry too.

Thanks, Annunziata - I will pass that on. And equal good luck vibes for AnnunziataJr too.

redexpat Tue 30-Apr-13 14:31:18

That's odd and rubbish I know it's not really the point, but is there a scottish version of BBC bitesize?

And happy Birthday SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius' son!

FreyaSnow Tue 30-Apr-13 14:36:43

DD is also at a school which never allows text books home. For English ans Maths, they are not allowed to take their exercise books home either.

I had to buy her a complete set of text books.

MissAnnThropist Tue 30-Apr-13 14:54:30

Money, sadly. Text books are about 30 quid each.

In my last department, budget was about 2k
We taught about 400 kids per year.

That's 5 each. Not enough for a textbook each, considering they go out of date quickly, kids lose/damage them etc.

Complain to the government about lack of funding or skewed priorities...

FreyaSnow Tue 30-Apr-13 15:06:00

I don't think it is a case of blame the government. I have children at different schools; one has a text book for every subject and one has none. The school that provides text books has less funding per pupil than the one that doesn't. It is a matter of schools deciding what is the priority in their budget.

I do get that, MissAnn - but given that he was allowed to bring his textbooks home throughout the year, why couldn't they have waited a few extra days for the children to get the exam out of the way? The Maths department were happy to do so.

He has been using BBC Bitesize, redexpat, and I suppose that there is so much more information available to them online nowadays, that maybe they don't need the textbooks as much - but it still seems a bit odd to me.

Perhaps I should lend him my lucky exams quill pen, for luck! winkgrin[old gimmer emoticon]

Blissx Tue 30-Apr-13 15:31:24

Welcome to the world of poor funding in schools. I know of whole departments in my current school that can't afford text books. So they photocopy or produce notes and materials another way. Check that this isn't what has happened with your DC.
It isn't anything to do with "modern teaching methods". Most teachers I know are desperate for text books. The money just isn't there...

BTW, the Chemistry revision guide will be far better than the text book anyway. Most pupils can get an A* just be going through that as revision thoroughly to plug in any gaps in their knowledge.

Good luck with your DC's exam smile

The thing is, he did have a text book, so I am a bit baffled as to why he couldn't hang onto it until tomorrow - that is what is so odd.

Salmotrutta Tue 30-Apr-13 18:08:01

It's very odd if he had it all year - especially since *this is the last year of Standard Grade!!

They are no use to next years classes.

Salmotrutta Tue 30-Apr-13 18:10:03

That said though - if his teacher gave good notes then the text book is just for added detail.

Good notes are actually sufficient - as long as he hasn't missed any through absence.

Phineyj Tue 30-Apr-13 18:12:02

Sounds like the left hand doesn't know what the right is doing to me (e.g. it's probably an admin thing that the books all go back on a certain date and the person responsible isn't aware of the exam date...or doesn't care...). Complain politely and maybe it won't happen next year.

larlemucker Tue 30-Apr-13 18:17:24

I'm a secondary science teacher and we do not allow pupils to take text books home. They cost a lot if money and very rarely come back.
We do sell discounted revision guides and and pupils who are looked after/fostered/in care etc get them free.
As a department we now pay for an online textbook for pupils to access. Before this pupils used their work books, revision guides or bbc bitesize

Salmotrutta Tue 30-Apr-13 18:18:08

Mind you, if texts are needed for next year they have to be in for the new timetable.

Pupils are very bad at returning them on time.

And very few schools can afford to give out textbooks for individual use. They are usually just used in class.

I still don't know why they need to take back a text that is now obsolete though! grin

jamdonut Tue 30-Apr-13 18:27:52

They seem to rely on the revision guides that you buy for £3 or £4 at my dd's school. The only time we see a text book is for french.

jamdonut Tue 30-Apr-13 18:29:54

And they have an on-line thing (VLE) which they get relevant information etc from and do their homework on,sometimes.

FairPhyllis Tue 30-Apr-13 18:42:03

Why don't they let textbooks go home and then just bill for the ones that go missing? How can you do homework if you can't take a textbook home? Seems nuts.

In my school each textbook had an identifying number which was recorded at the start of the year so they knew exactly which ones went out and came back.

FreyaSnow Tue 30-Apr-13 18:47:04

Or make people pay a deposit when they start school that they only get back if they return their text books.

Salmotrutta Tue 30-Apr-13 18:55:07

You don't need a textbook to do homework. Most subjects will have recommended websites, summary notes, learning outcomes, work booklets that supplement pupils own notes and can be used to complete homework.

And, as stated above, most schools can't afford a textbook per child.

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