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AIBU to want my DD to do her absolute best?

(64 Posts)
Lincspeeps Sun 31-Mar-19 17:14:14

DD is currently in Yr10 and about to take her mock GCSEs after Easter.

All her lessons are revision lessons and she is doing well (predicted a 7 in all subjects) but whenever I ask her about revising at home it results in World War 3.

Neither I nor DH did well at school and DD is naturally intelligent and I want her to push herself. She's not lazy but happy to watch shit on TV instead of revising - I haven't seen her lift a school book in a year but parents' evening are a joy.

We have just fought like cat and dog as I suggested she needed a revision timetable over the Easter hols - she exploded. DH stepped in and smoothed waters and DD went back to watching TV.

To make matters worse, her school sent a touchy-feely email to all parents on Friday saying the exams are nothing to worry about and not to put too much pressure on our children. My concern is we are only a year away from the real thing......when DO they start to matter? And how the hell to you motivate a teenager to revise at that stage when they're not used to it?

Sorry, I'm venting. Am I being a horrible, pushy mother or is it not unreasonable to hope/expect her to do some revision instead of watching bloody Riverdale???

EduCated Sun 31-Mar-19 17:18:16

A slight side-step, does she actually know how to revise? Like techniques to use rather than just reading her workbooks?

Before I properly learnt how to revise, ‘revision’ was this huge looming monster that I knew I should do but had no idea how to tackle or where to begin - so I didn’t. Once I learnt techniques (and revising is a skill in itself!) it was easier to approach.

I realise that may not be helpful in the context that she’s flat out refusing, but worth considering whether it may be playing a part.

BottleOfJameson Sun 31-Mar-19 17:20:57

If she's exploding is it because she doesn't know how to begin and is stressed? Could you agree on a small amount (Eg 1-2 hours a day over Easter) ? Making good revision notes will help her next year and as you say she needs to practise revising.

Thisnamechanger Sun 31-Mar-19 17:21:55

A slight side-step, does she actually know how to revise

This is a really really good point. I remember us just being told 'go and revise for GCSE' and just sitting there holding a book I just read it or what?

Crappmumm Sun 31-Mar-19 17:24:19

Perhaps you could try to spend some time with her working out which revision techniques work best for her, and possibly make some revision cards using her favoured methods?

Houseonahill Sun 31-Mar-19 17:25:22

YANBU to want her to do her best but personally I think the effort should come from the child, if she wants to do well she will but I don't think she should be forced to do it.

SmallFastPenguin Sun 31-Mar-19 17:26:30

I think you are putting too much pressure on and she is resisting because she feels she cant meet up to your standards. I know you only want the best for her but if she is in this state you may simply upset her by pushing.

ElizabethMountbatten Sun 31-Mar-19 17:27:20

Some people literally do not need to revise. I worked evenings all through my GCSE teen years. My free time was spent with my boyfriend or watching Friends. I took 12 GCSEs and passed them all. 2 c, 4 b, 5 a and 1 a*. I never revised once. Some people retain information well and don't need to. See how she does in her mocks with her method before you try to put any timetable in

Notmyideamovingon Sun 31-Mar-19 17:28:10

So she's getting 7 with bugger all effort? I would sit her down and point out how a bunch of 8 and 9s would change her options going forward. My eldest is only year 7 though. I can tell she's coasting (she's a bright kid) and I've been trying to motivate her. I've started pointing out the way money makes life easier. I've made it clear she can live her life how she wants but she needs to keep her options open and I want her to have the choice to pursue a well paid career. If she chooses not to that's fine too but she's too young to make that decision now.

Crappmumm Sun 31-Mar-19 17:29:15

YANBU to want her to do her best but personally I think the effort should come from the child, if she wants to do well she will but I don't think she should be forced to do it.

In an ideal world she would be self motivated but in reality this is not always the case. I was left to my own devices and totally fucked my entire life up by just not bothering.

She could just be feeling overwhelmed.

ZippyBungleandGeorge Sun 31-Mar-19 17:30:15

My DM was like you, she left school at 14 and was always on my case to revise. I was a bit cocky but also knew how easy I found GCSEs and that I could coast and get top grades. My homework was always done, my coursework achieved very high marks but she used to nag and it became such a bone of contention I just refused, when sometimes I might have done a bit of she hadn't made such a fuss. I got top grades, same at A level and didn't really have to start revising properly until uni. Don't back her into a corner, she's a teenager and stubborn. Mocks don't really matter, let the dice fall where they will, she'll either get high marks having not revised or it'll be a wake up call to her that she needs to

Blueemeraldagain Sun 31-Mar-19 17:31:27

I agree that she probably doesn’t even know where to start. There is a website called Seneca learning which is a free online revision platform. I use it in my secondary school where I teach boys with social, emotional and mental health difficulties and they love it. It covers most of the GCSE subjects and most exam boards and breaks each topic down into chunks and then tests you on what you have read or watched. You get points and there are leaderboards whivh my students find quite motivating. There are also a few Instagram and Youtube accounts run by teenagers about GCSEs/revising/Seneca that she might find helpful. They baffle me but some of my students use the “revise along with me” videos.

Speaking of YouTube there are some great study/revision accounts.
Mr Bruff for English
Science and Maths by Primrose

teyem Sun 31-Mar-19 17:33:49

It's not just about results though. It's about cultivating some discipline around revising. Most intelligent people can just wing the GCSE stage but, if they do, then A-levels can bite them in their arse.

HeathRobinson Sun 31-Mar-19 17:37:00

I'd let her do the mocks her way and then go by the results.

Merryoldgoat Sun 31-Mar-19 17:37:55

It's not just about results though. It's about cultivating some discipline around revising. Most intelligent people can just wing the GCSE stage but, if they do, then A-levels can bite them in their arse.

This is hideously true.

I got essentially all As and Bs at GCSE with ZERO work and about 80% attendance (A’s in English and Maths).

A-Levels smacked me about good and proper and I had to resit.

Namenic Sun 31-Mar-19 17:38:33

i would sit with her and try and work out revision techniques. Test her on vocab if foreign language. Get exercises with answers for maths. Say that you will do ‘work’ ie something you don’t like doing (eg cleaning toilet or ironing) while she is doing revision - to offer moral support (it’s much more encouraging when you don’t feel you are the only one working while everyone else is watching tv).

If you observe her working encourage her and maybe take her for a treat for working hard. I would be focusing less on grades than on her putting the effort in.

mynameiscalypso Sun 31-Mar-19 17:38:39

I always thought the whole point of mocks was that nobody took them particularly seriously and then they got a kick up the bum when the results weren't as good as they wanted?

Comefromaway Sun 31-Mar-19 17:42:09

My ds is in year 10 & dd in year 12.

Dd got fantastic results and she did no work at all during the Easter of Year 10. I think starting too early can be counter productive.

Ds will be doing a little work in preparation for his year 10 exam. He’s not good at traditional revision so we use Seneca & Tassomai which his teachers also recommend. His school sets very little homework so he does 15-30 mins a day.

SandyY2K Sun 31-Mar-19 17:43:21

YANBU to want her to do well, but it seems like she is achieving good grades as it is.

If I were you, I'd leave her to it. Let the exams come...if she doesn't do well I'm sure she'll be gutted, but she'll have enough time to turn things around.

My DD has a revision timetable, but she did it on her own... I didn't tell her to. She is well organised, but she didn't always used to revise. she was able to achieve top Mark's without revising.

That was until about year 9, when she realised her memory alone wasn't enough to get the top marks without revising.

Long story short...she knuckled down and worked hard for her GCSES and aced them.

sar302 Sun 31-Mar-19 17:52:48

I'm fairly bright (educated to masters level now) and breezed through my GCSEs. My mum is probably not quite as academic, but was always a very hard worker, and the fact that I didn't work as hard as she did, drove her to absolute distraction. She thought I was lazy, but for me it was just easy. We had huge rows, and barely spoke to each other for about two years. None of which made me revise any harder. I just resented her massively.

She should be doing mocks etc and those grades will tell you both how she's getting on. Try again to support her to make a revision timetable, and understand the need for breaks. Ultimately you can't make a 16 year old revise. You have to trust her, guide her in the right direction, and if it doesn't go as well as she would like, she can resit, or take a slightly different path into her desired A Levels.

EvaHarknessRose Sun 31-Mar-19 18:01:38

She's not going to flunk. I would back off praise her ability and hope she finds her motivation. She won't find it while she is resisting you. Why not see your role as keeping home stress free. Be a bit more positive.

SandyY2K Sun 31-Mar-19 18:04:42

Is her school high achieving? I understand the sentiment of not worrying and putting pressure on them. That would only make it worse and stress them out, but my DDs school did tell parents to encourage and support their DC during exams.

They would say to remove distractions like phones, take your DC snacks when revising and offer to help test them on things.

I'd ask if there's anything she wants that might be helpful in revising. My DD wanted coloured card paper to make revision flash cards. Another resource is things like York notes/study guides usually for English Literature. Amazon sells them....but I'd not mention it today. Leave her to calm down.

Heronwatcher Sun 31-Mar-19 18:05:12

For the mocks the very best thing you could do is leave her alone, let her make her own choices and learn to motivate herself. Offer support, if you’re concerned she doesn’t know what she should be doing raise it with the school but otherwise leave it to her. She has to learn that they are her exams, the results will affect her future and it sounds as though you getting involved will make her do less, not more!!

SeventhWave Sun 31-Mar-19 18:07:00

Agree with keeping home stress free - they will have been under enough pressure at school and it is the end of a long term. The last thing she wants to do throughout the school holidays is carry on with school work. She needs some rest, both physical and mental, so she can recharge her batteries for the new term. Pushing her to revise will be counter-productive at this stage.

MitziK Sun 31-Mar-19 18:07:20

By next year, you'll be wondering how she has time to breathe, much less do even more work at home - Saturday intervention, early morning intervention, after school until gone 5pm intervention, holiday intervention, quite possibly Study Leave cancelled in favour of 8am-6pm revision in class right up to and including each exam - she could end up handing in her Maths GCSE Paper and have ten minutes free before being required in English for yet another practice paper (and then going into another GCSE exam in the afternoon with an expectation to attend after school revision straight afterwards).

Leave her be. The pressure will turn up soon enough.

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