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To think different revision techniques suit different people?

(24 Posts)
Theoryofparenting Thu 21-Sep-17 18:47:30

Ds (15) is in year 11 and has his GCSE's next May. His way of revising is reading a small subtopic from a revision guide/the specification then scribbling it down without looking and going over what he forgot/filling in gaps in his knowledge. He also does past papers.

I had a friend round the other day who also has a ds in year 11. She said that the way ds revises will get him nowhere and doesn't work for her ds. Her ds writes out notes and files them, and reads over them when he wants to. She said obviously my DS is doing it wrong as he's predicted lower grades than her ds (mine is predicted 3 7s, 4 8s and 2 9s whereas hers is predicted 11 9s). She was a bit rude about it, saying ds will never get decent grades hmm

I think ds was a bit miffed as since using this technique his grades have improved dramatically and he is a lot more motivoted than he was. AIBU to think different revision techniques work for different people??

ButFirstTea Thu 21-Sep-17 18:49:24

Of course you're not, and getting a mix of 7s 8s and 9s would be a huge achievement, they're brilliant grades.

Constantlurker Thu 21-Sep-17 19:07:49

I used to get laughed at for my revision technique, which was to pretty much write everything down on huge sheets of paper, or even better a big whiteboard. Short quotes sentences and silly pictures. Sit and stare at the big picture and when I sat down in that exam hall I could close my eyes and see and remember every dang thing on that page. They told me I would never pass and should be doing long notes and use highlighters and marker pens and oodles of paper books blah blah.

Changed their tune on results day when I got all A*s, including 100% on 3 of my papers...

You do what works for you. People learn in different ways. Good on you for encouraging your kid to learn the way they want to learn smile

noblegiraffe Thu 21-Sep-17 19:11:15

Your DS's method of revision (retrieval practice) has been shown to be more effective at getting knowledge to stick in the brain than the other boy's method of reading and rereading notes.

www.retrievalpractice.org/overview/

DJBaggySmalls Thu 21-Sep-17 19:11:41

YANBU, and whats most important is that your DS is motivated and working on revision. He stands a very good chance of pulling his grades up.

Bambamber Thu 21-Sep-17 19:13:48

What works for one doesn't work for another

PurpleDaisies Thu 21-Sep-17 19:16:03

His what is what worked for me, and works for many.

Make sure he does LOADS of past papers too though. Even if he knows the content, exam technique is often underestimated.

SandyDenny Thu 21-Sep-17 19:16:17

Of course people revise in different way just as they learn in different ways.

As long as your son's doing well and his method is effective what does it matter what your friend says?

HolidayHelpPlease Thu 21-Sep-17 19:22:39

Unless your friends son goes to Eton, I'm fairly sure his predicted grades are a load of crap... and I'm a teacher! If it works for him, let him get on with it - kids know how they learn best. Kudos to your DS for starting now!
www.tes.com/news/school-news/breaking-news/exclusive-only-two-pupils-will-get-straight-top-grades-new-gcses-dfe

Theoryofparenting Thu 21-Sep-17 19:38:41

Thanks everyone. I wouldn't have been as bothered by friends comments if she hadn't been so rude suggesting that her son is somehow superior to mine because of his grades. Good to know others feel the same. Ds (and dd - twins) have got mocks coming up soon so they're both working pretty hard at the moment.

SignOnTheWindow Thu 21-Sep-17 22:44:50

She doesn't sound like much of a friend.

Well done to your boy - he sounds like a sensible chap who'll come out with handfuls of really good grades.

Daddystepdaddy Thu 21-Sep-17 22:50:34

Everyone is different, but I have to say that studying from a revision guide or specification is probably not the best approach as they both will lack detail. Doesn't DS have his own notes? If not it suggests that there isn't enough 're' in the revision.

I used the 'condensed notes' technique of revision where I would try and distil my notes for a particular topic as much as possible by rewriting notes until I had a set of key words and sentences that triggered my recollection of the detail.

Seemed to work as I got a first class degree from a top uni.

Noodledoodledoo Thu 21-Sep-17 22:53:54

Different subjects also tend to require differnt methods for a lot of students. One technique may not work as well for very different subjects ie Geography and Maths.

BenLui Thu 21-Sep-17 22:57:55

Sounds like she’s protesting a little too much to me.

I wonder if she’s very stressed about her son’s exams? I can’t imagine telling anyone my kids predicted grades.

Is she putting a lot of pressure on him?

I hope you defended your son if he had to sit there politely in the face of her egregious rudeness?

Allthebestnamesareused Thu 21-Sep-17 23:02:57

Holidayhelpb as a teacher you will know that link regarding only 2 students getting straight 9s has been discredited and it is likely to be up to 1-2,000 students!

Allthebestnamesareused Thu 21-Sep-17 23:05:17

We all learn differently. DS likes background music which DH tried to stop. However I explained I used to study with background music (and got better grades than DH) so he relented.

Let DS study how he wants especially if it looks like he is settling down to study which is more than my lazy yr11 is doing

noblegiraffe Thu 21-Sep-17 23:05:51

Only 2000ish students got 3 9s this year in Lit, Lang and Maths, so it's unlikely that next year the same number would get straight 9s across many more subjects.

angelsgirls Thu 21-Sep-17 23:06:38

I think everyone is different and we are trying to figure out the best way for my dd (year 10) to revise as she has a problem with her working memory

Fucky Thu 21-Sep-17 23:11:23

Christ my year 11 hasn't even started revising yet

Theoryofparenting Fri 22-Sep-17 06:30:50

Ben I think she is putting a lot of pressure on her ds. And yes, I stood up for him and told him to carry on doing what works for him.

Daddy He does have his own notes but finds they're either lacking in detail or contain too much unnecessary info. He does write short notes on what he forgot.

Thanks everyone.

Crumbs1 Fri 22-Sep-17 06:39:23

You're son is right. Long winded notes and filing is less effective than past papers. Past papers help not only the knowledge but also the exam technique and timing.

supersop60 Fri 22-Sep-17 06:45:33

My DD would write out all her notes over and over again. Despite everyone telling her it was the least effective method, she persisted and got 4 As and 5 Bs. Everyone is different.
I used to reduce my notes down to postcard size, so that ultimately a single word would trigger a whole topic in my memory.

TheZeppo Fri 22-Sep-17 06:59:45

I actively teach kids that there are several different ways to revise and they should find a way that works for them.

She is exceptionally rude to put your son down. Those grades sound amazing.

And, actually, there's more to life. A decent human being doesn't come solely from what grades you get on a piece of paper. Kindness, empathy etc, all more important in my book.

BenLui Fri 22-Sep-17 13:41:59

Theory in which case it sounds like she’s just off loading some of her stress onto your lad.

She’ll be just delightful by exam season I imagine.

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