GCSE Choices 2013 (exams 2015) support thread

(207 Posts)
DizzyHoneyBee Mon 11-Feb-13 15:27:08

Here we go....options choices this month, exams in summer 2015. We're choosing options at the moment but I've not come across a support thread.

Does your DC know what they want to do already or are they needing a lot of help deciding?
Where have you gone for information?

We get a booklet this week apparently and then have a meeting at school to discuss listen to a sales pitch by the teachers discuss the options that are best and then we have about 2 weeks to make a decision.

spudmasher Sat 16-Feb-13 22:08:26

YippeeTeenager..........that makes me feel better!!!! I'm going to google that tomorrow. It does make sense to get some decent grades rather than lots of mediocre ones. But my Dd will still need to really focus as the 3 days will need to suffice. I really hope she can get all she needs during her academic days.

YippeeTeenager Sat 16-Feb-13 22:15:40

My DD has to choose now but she's only in Year 7 - they do a 3 year GSCE course rather than 2. She's only just turned 13 so it seems much too early to be worrying about what will look better on a university application. I think she's going for:

Maths
English Lit
English Lang
Biology
Physics
Chemistry
Computer Science
Geography
Philosophy and Ethics
Art

I think she should be doing a language really? [hmmm]

Yippee this school gate is the best one I have been to. grin I don't get to do school gates any more, DS1 on the coach and DS2 bikes.

YippeeTeenager Sat 16-Feb-13 22:16:24

Oh no, that was supposed to be a hmm

YippeeTeenager Sat 16-Feb-13 22:20:36

Me too Sparklingbrook, school gate is horrible, should be banned and everyone should collect their DCs at the school drivethru... grin

LadyMaryQuiteContrary Sat 16-Feb-13 22:22:38

A language would be helpful, Yippee. Does she have any idea of the sort of job/career that she wants to go into?

OddBoots Sat 16-Feb-13 22:24:09

I'm just coming to the end of my school gate time as dd is in Y5 and walks part way by herself now. I've been quite lucky to have good parents to chat to over the years, we catch up via facebook now we meet less often.

It's really good to chat here and see what other schools do.

YippeeTeenager Sat 16-Feb-13 22:43:02

Hi LadyMaryQuiteContrary, she doesn't really know - she quite fancies being an architect. She's very strong at maths, sciences and art. The school have said that they don't absolutely have to do a language and that they could do Latin instead of a modern one. If she could do 11 then she'd do Latin but with only 10 she can't fit it in. I'm thinking she should maybe do Latin instead of Philosophy and Ethics but that would be a shame as the P&E course sounds really interesting and she's very keen. What do you think? She's really good at Latin and they've said she could do Latin and Greek as one option, that would lead to 2 separate GSCES...Any advice very gratefully received. I want her to choose herself - but not get it wrong! confused

LadyMaryQuiteContrary Sat 16-Feb-13 22:49:03

I told ds to think about what he enjoyed and stick with that. Latin is fun if you can grasp it but would serve no purpose if she wants to be an architect. Philosophy and Ethics teach a different way of thinking and she'd always be able to use the skills that she picks up from studying this. Ds wants to be a barrister so Latin is useful. He's ditched biology because he doesn't like the idea of dissecting things. I did explain that it's not all like this, he couldn't study all he wanted to though so something had to go.

Theas18 Sun 17-Feb-13 09:14:02

Someone asked for advice about what not to do:

If say fine art unless you are seriously gifted/wasn't to continue.

It was terrible for dd1 -so much work-more that you can ever envisage, and shewas disappointed with an A, having been led to believe she was working at A* level.....

My 2 who have done it so far have found music very easy but they have been very experienced and able.the performance stuff was straight forward. I'd they are going to struggle with that side, think about it.

creamteas Sun 17-Feb-13 09:16:43

Languages are useful, but not essential, and can always be picked up later on. Many unis offer language classes outside of the main degree.

Lady Schools obviously differ, but none of mine have ever dissected anything at GCSE level.....

LadyMaryQuiteContrary Sun 17-Feb-13 10:41:55

They've already dissected an animal heart, creamteas. He didn't want to do that so sat on the opposite side of the room.

WynkenBlynkenandNod Sun 17-Feb-13 12:09:43

Can I join please ? We're a bit behind with options evening not happening until next month. The rest of my friends had it to contend with last week but DD has gone to a different school.

We've obviously discussed it but not seen the leaflet yet. Current plan is :

English Lit
English Lang
Maths
Science
Science
Spanish
Geography
Drama
Photography

We had a letter saying DD talented at Art and asking us to encourage her to either Art, photography or textiles. Have heard dreadful things about Art course load. I don't know anything about photography but DH pointed out it might be a useful skill to have in every day life so going with that.

She's not keen on Spanish or Geography but prefers them to History and French so going with those from the point of view of trying to get a good balance. Guess we'll decide further when we finally get the booklet.

treas Sun 17-Feb-13 12:57:51

DizzyHoneyBee - wasn't suggesting Music to be a light option just the lighter option out of the ones ds has chosen for GCSE.

Unfortunately, ds's music teacher has mentioned in ds's hearing that he would have no trouble in doing well in Music GCSE, so now I have to be the voice of
doom reason and nag remind him that he has to work hard and pull out all the stops as he'll have to do group performances.

DizzyHoneyBee Sun 17-Feb-13 14:17:31

Sorry treas, didn't mean to suggest that you were suggesting that, more I didn't want you thinking it was lighter in terms of work and then finding that your DS had a terrible shock!

Why do teachers have to say that....my DD has been told that she will have no problem getting A*/A and I was not impressed, it's stupid IMO because she may not get A*/A and it just puts the pressure on, though it does allow for semi stealth boasting on MN grin...just wish they wouldn't do it, it's futile.

I much prefer this school gate too smile

MelodyBaker Mon 18-Feb-13 16:14:24

Can I join?
dds school do some Gsces in year 10 and some in year 11.
She's doing (if she gets them!)
Maths (compulsory),
English lit and lang (compulsory)
Rs and citizenship (compulsory)
Core and additional science (compulsory)
Business studies (her choice)
Spanish (her choice)
Geography (her choice)
And history (her choice)
all very academic!

DizzyHoneyBee Mon 18-Feb-13 17:27:08

Course you can Melody, the more the merrier smile

doglover Mon 18-Feb-13 19:15:22

Our dd is planning to study:

Maths
Eng Lit
Eng Lang
Chemistry
Physics
Biology
RE
History
French
Music
Media Studies

I'm a bit 'meh' about the Media Studies selection but she really doesn't want to do Spanish or Astronomy which are the other options. If the rest of the subjects are conventional, does it matter if she's got a 'studies' in there?!!

DizzyHoneyBee Mon 18-Feb-13 19:23:17

I wouldn't have thought so; she is doing triple science which is a good academic base and she's got a language and a humanity. I'd encourage astronomy because I did it and loved it it is a great combination with physics but I'm sure one "studies" is OK too.
My DD is doing much the same as yours - she's doing the same but has swapped history for geography, engineering for music and art and design for media studies.

doglover Mon 18-Feb-13 19:35:57

Thanks, dhb. Our dd is not really 'sciencey' - top set and will do well - but loves her English, History and Music. I'd feel a bit mean encouraging her to do another subject that isn't really her thing, if you know what I mean. Her A levels will probably be the 3 subjects listed above - she can't wait to drop maths and chemistry!!

DizzyHoneyBee Tue 19-Feb-13 11:59:29

Out of interest, what made you encourage her to do triple science rather than other stuff that fits with the ones she will do at A Level, geography and stuff like that?
Just curious, not being critical.
What does she want to do after A levels?

doglover Tue 19-Feb-13 15:42:55

Because she's in the 'accelerated' set - they started their science GCSE courses last Sept - they have no choice for these subjects. She's ok-ish about it - all her friends are following the same pathway.

Gosh, the whole after A level bit is a complete mystery! Our dd is starting to really stressed about the whole uni / career thing. She doesn't want to teach (I'm a teacher so can completely understand that!!), doesn't want to work in an office, doesn't want to do anything ................................ Can you see a pattern here?! We make suggestions and nothing is currently 'right'. She is seeing a Careers person after half term so hope that might give her some pointers.

There does seem to be a lot of pressure on them to get their future mapped out at a very early age.

LadyMaryQuiteContrary Tue 19-Feb-13 16:00:23

I don't get why some schools teach GCSE's over three years. Surely it's a 2 year course? confused

MelodyBaker Tue 19-Feb-13 16:02:49

My dds school do them over 1 year! I think its ridiculous

FrogPrincess Tue 19-Feb-13 16:06:22

OOh just the thread I need!
Dd is doing
Maths
English Language
English Literature
Biology
Physics
Chemistry
and is choosing the following options
French
History
Drama
and either Classical Civilisation or Music

Now, any advice on which she should pick out of these two? She is very good at English (level 8) and History (level 7), and also at music (although a bit lazy, she is talented, plays cello, bass guitar, sings and has just begun acoustic guitar). Her dream is to study English at Oxford or go to RADA!!!

Help!

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