DS did really badly in AS mocks

(29 Posts)
truelymadlysleepy Tue 25-Feb-14 18:49:21

He worked hard and felt quite positive when he came out.
Got A in General studies (which seems to be be a waste of time) B in History, E in Geography & U's in Physics & Maths.
I feel like a crap mother for not forcing him to work more or maybe he's just not cut out for higher Ed.
He so wants to go to Uni, but it's not looking positive sad.

Logg1e Tue 25-Feb-14 18:58:17

It's his studying, not yours, and he's old enough to take responsibility for it.

What advice are the school giving?

ajandjjmum Tue 25-Feb-14 19:11:27

Might be a lesson for him.

DS got a U in a Physics module in the Spring of A2, re-sat a got an A, and went on to study Physics at uni. It can be put right - he just needs to want it enough, and be prepared to keep asking questions and bugging teachers until he understands.

I know there's no point in saying don't stress.....grin

truelymadlysleepy Tue 25-Feb-14 19:24:35

School say re sit. He only did Maths as he was told to if he wanted to do Physics.
He says the maths teachers have 'written him off'.
I know it's his problem and know that only he can put it right. But he has work quite hard.
I just feel so sad for him.

Olivegirl Tue 25-Feb-14 19:28:36

Both my dds are doing A levels

It's seems to be the norm that no one puts too much effort in for the mocks!
They did pretty average but they seem to manage to pull it together for the actual exams.

It's not your fault ...I can't make mine revise ..they are old enough now to know what they have to do to get good grades..

Logg1e Tue 25-Feb-14 19:32:59

I'm not sure how re-sitting his mocks would help. You don't fatten a pig by weighing it, so it sounds odd advice.

truelymadlysleepy Tue 25-Feb-14 19:37:48

I think that if he fails again they won't let him sit the real thing.

Logg1e Tue 25-Feb-14 19:44:13

So it's like a second chance?

I don't think I'd want to pay his entrance fees for maths and physics either.

truelymadlysleepy Tue 25-Feb-14 19:50:53

So on the strength of 2 rubbish results you'd withdraw him altogether from those subjects? Seems a bit harsh.

Logg1e Tue 25-Feb-14 20:05:26

I think a 'U' is worse than "rubbish" and I think for four months' work on the easiest part of the course it's pretty futile. I think your son has just discovered that physics and maths aren't for him.

truelymadlysleepy Tue 25-Feb-14 20:08:45

Very helpful, thank you hmm

TetrisBlock Tue 25-Feb-14 20:11:58

I'm not too far out of school so can I please reassure you that my mocks were much harder than the actual exams? I was a straight A student all through but had Bs and Cs in my mocks. Almost everyone in my year did worse than expected in them, pulled their socks up somewhat and mostly sailed the real exams. You'd almost think that was the desired effect? hmm grin

Unexpected Tue 25-Feb-14 20:12:02

How did he do in GCSEs? What does he want to do at uni? Does he NEED Physics/Maths? Why is he doing 5 AS subjects anyway? Shouldnt he be doing four? And who advised him to do General Studies?

truelymadlysleepy Tue 25-Feb-14 20:19:33

Unexpected, he did OK in his GSCEs; x4 As x6B's.
At his school (State Comp) General Studies is Compulsory. The norm seems to be x4 AS plus GS then drop one for A2.
He really wanted to do Physics and the school suggested he do maths.
Not sure what Uni course yet, maybe Geography or Land Management type thing.
Tetris thanks for the reassurance, I hope this shock will get him back on track.

inthisdayandage Tue 25-Feb-14 20:31:17

As he did well in gs and history it seems to he is good at essay style questions. Although not sure re the geography. Perhaps maths and physics aren't for him. Could he drop one of those to concentrate on the other stronger subjects. Most uni offers are based on 3 a levels. Unless of course he plans to study physics....then it might be worth a rethink.

I agree that most students do better in real exams than mocks so don't despair yet. Also it's quite early for mocks, my school are doing them in a few weeks time and we will be doing more papers subsequently. Tell him to keep working and be positive. Are school offering revision sessions he can attend?

Logg1e Tue 25-Feb-14 20:34:20

I think he needs remedial work rather than revision. Revision sessions might leave him feeling even more lost.

truelymadlysleepy Tue 25-Feb-14 20:40:38

He doesn't seem to worried about Geography, as he spent all his revision time doing Maths & Physics (and went to all the revision sessions) and his teacher predicted a B.

He could drop them both but I understand GS isn't accepted as an A2.
My feeling is that he should drop maths and concentrate on the Physics.
Thank you for the comments.

inthisdayandage Tue 25-Feb-14 20:46:39

Possibly. It depends why he did badly. Does he understand the content or is it a case of poor exam technique? Had he done many practice A level questions prior to this mock. I would suggest he tries some past papers at home and identifies areas of weakness and understands why he is failing the exams.
Also had the teachers warned you that he was under performing prior to mock results. I would have thought that if he was struggling at a u level this would have come up at parents evening etc. If so perhaps the mock result is valid and a reassessment of what to do is needed. If not surely it is feasible that he just needs exam practice and additional support. I had a pupil achieve a u in his A2 mock who achieved an A in the real exam so it does happen.

truelymadlysleepy Tue 25-Feb-14 20:58:47

We haven't had parents evening yet, it's in the next month.
He says he does understand the content but patently is doing something very wrong.
Getting some past papers is an excellent idea, thank you.

inthisdayandage Tue 25-Feb-14 21:01:15

Most of the past papers and mark schemes are available on the exam board websites so very easy to access. Good luck.

Logg1e Tue 25-Feb-14 21:02:32

Has he not been doing past paper questions throughout the course? If not exam technique?

I'd also be concerned that the teacher's assessment was a B and he got a U. That's a big difference. I'd want to know what they based their prediction on, not in an accusatory way, just as a way of understanding.

TheBeautifulVisit Tue 25-Feb-14 21:09:28

Sheffield accept General Studies as one of their approved A levels for some of their course, including law. So long as the other two subjects are sensible. So he could do GS, History and Geography.

I would say he's spreading himself a bit thinly. And also be aware that mocks are often harshly marked to ignite the rocket.

TheArticFunky Tue 25-Feb-14 21:25:42

I failed all my mocks as did most of my year group. This was a long time ago and I put it down to the teachers not knowing their arse from their elbow. Could this be the case here?

truelymadlysleepy Tue 25-Feb-14 21:28:28

Artic i wish it was but the staff seem very focused and committed.
Although no one got above a C in Geography.

fuzzle Tue 25-Feb-14 21:53:08

If he can get a B in History in his first AS mock I'd actually say that is rather impressive. I'm sure they either mark the mocks harder to force the students to revise loads or (like when I did mocks) tell you not to bother revising too much for the mock so you can see what you can do without revision and then give everyone E/Us to panic them into revision. If he can get a B in History he can surely pass Geography too. I understand that Maths and Physics are the hardest A levels and are usually done together. Like some people have said maybe his brain does not find those subjects innately easy. I would have thought that he would find both tough if he didn't get an A*/A at GCSE. That doesnt mean obviously that he can't do well in them, but that it might take him more effort than for other subjects. Can't he do all 4 AS real exams and then drop either Maths or Physics after if he doesnt do well in the AS.

furlinedsheepskinjacket Tue 25-Feb-14 21:55:45

a b and e will get him into uni - try not to worry too much but he does need to work harder/focus

Timeforabiscuit Tue 25-Feb-14 22:09:00

Does he know why he want to do maths and physics?

I unfortunately got it into my fool head at that age that I needed a "proper" a-level in chemistry - which I promptly got a U in - and then went on to waste a foundation year at uni where chemistry was required.

If I could have my time over I would have dumped it and taken an a-level to complement my strengths and what I enjoyed studying.

mindgone Wed 26-Feb-14 00:11:29

Going over his mock papers should help him to find out where he went wrong, maybe individually with a teacher if this would help, also good to show them how keen he is. I have discovered that at A level, they need to know the work, understand it, and, (crucially) be able to answer the questions in exactly the right way, for sciences anyway. These results may just give him a good fright. I think you need to help, support and believe in him, especially if you believe he is a hard worker. He can come back from this. Good luck smile

truelymadlysleepy Wed 26-Feb-14 06:52:55

Thank you for your comments. Fingers crossed for the next few months.

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