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National 5 prelims v's camps

(26 Posts)
myotherusernameisbetter Sun 01-Nov-15 20:55:31

I've posted this i Education but thought it may be relevant here too smile

DS1 has his prelims for his National 5s spread over the first 2 weeks of December.

He has basically 4 weeks available to study and also some time during the 2 weeks that the exams are on.

I have no idea how much study he should be doing tbh but we are trying to fill in his study diary.

He needs to go to a selection camp (Sat/Sun) next weekend for a trip next summer. He also has an opportunity to go to a camp in 3 weeks time (Friday night to Sunday) which he'd like to go to.

What do you think? Should he not go so as to give him more opportunity for study or would the weekend down time be more valuable especially as it's the mocks and not the real thing.

This is my first child doing exams so I really have no clue and I did my exams over 30 years ago.

kua Sun 01-Nov-15 22:28:19

I would let him go to both. You are no longer allowed to appeal based on the preliminary result so they are not as important as they once we're.

Your DS should get into the habit of studying daily. Little but often, don't wait until the study/ exam leave starts.

myotherusernameisbetter Sun 01-Nov-15 22:43:56

thanks kua, I didn't think about that smile

We were thinking about 40 mins to an hour a day during the week and maybe double that each day at the weekend. That would be for the next 4 weeks (obviously with 2 weekends missing but 2 in service days over that time too) and then 2 hours per subject during the exam leave apart from English which is on the first day so extra put in on the weekend before and Maths on the 2nd day where he will do an hour on the afternoon/evening of the first day as well as study prior to that.

We've slotted in the extra study during the exam leave based on doing an hour for the subject the night before the exam.

I have no idea whether that is too little or too much confused

he is doing 7 with only one less academic subject (Art)

prettybird Sun 01-Nov-15 23:34:19

Ds started doing a bit of revision every night after the October Week. He's not sure yet exactly when his prelims will be - he thinks the 2nd and 3rd week of December.

I think about an hour a night is about right. Ds is talking about upping that to two hours if he feels the need.

Remember to factor in "Quality Recovery Time" - down time so that he can absorb his revision better.

Ds also plays sport and has timetabled in practicing his sport (Wednesdays and Sundays plus some of a different sport before he starts on week day evenings.

I think the two weekends away are a good idea - they'll help keep your ds focussed because he knows they're coming up plus he should be able to get back into his studies after the weekends refreshed.

Ds is doing 8 Nat 5s but will only have 7 prelim exams as one of them is PE.

myotherusernameisbetter Sun 01-Nov-15 23:44:01

He is getting quite a bit of homework too which needs to be fitted in and has Scouts as well as being mid DofE silver. He does his volunteering one night and his sport another but hasn't started his skill, I think he should park it until he has finished the physical to ensure he has enough free time.

prettybird Mon 02-Nov-15 09:01:06

Forgot about the homework - ds is including that in his two hours grin -although to be fair, some of the teachers now seem to be setting "revision" type homework. His English teacher has them reading "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest", 20-40 pages a night.

He won't let us contribute to his study programme as he's a pretty good self-starter. As all the teachers last week at the S4 Parents night said to continue doing what we were doing which is nothing, we don't even see his homework , it's difficult for us to say we need to interfere now wink

Ds refused to do DoE Silver (having completed his Bronze last year) as he said he wouldn't have time if he wants to continue his two sports. I forgot that he actually does one of them 2/3 nights during the week, as well as a game on Sundays.

However, he put himself forward to be a Sports Ambassador for his school in response to me saying he needed to be thinking of additional responsibility for his university application.

If your ds is doing a little every night now in advance of the prelims and continues doing so after the prelims he'll have a good foundation for the actual Nat 5s

myotherusernameisbetter Mon 02-Nov-15 09:46:26

I don't have a lot of involvement in his homework either but he is borderline aspergers and likes to be told what to do smile

Parents night isn't for a few weeks yet, week and a half before the prelims. He seems to be getting a lot of homework for computing science which comes via edmodo.

Good on your DS for sorting himself out though smile I still have no idea how my DS is likely to fare in the exams.

myotherusernameisbetter Mon 02-Nov-15 09:50:11

Oh, meant to add that there is a PE exam on their timetable. An hour and a half, open book portfolio it says. Not sure what that consists of as DS only does core PE, not Nat 5

MrsJayy Mon 02-Nov-15 09:55:22

Let him go he needs a life as well as studying its 2 weekends life should not stop for studying they need a break or they will implode.

myotherusernameisbetter Mon 02-Nov-15 10:02:58

He loves camping and Scouts and I think his social development is probably more important than his academic achievement at the moment. So I am convinced that he should go if he wants to.

Thanks all.

MrsJayy Mon 02-Nov-15 10:07:53

When 1 of mine were doing her standard grades she was also doing her Baden powell badge for guides and young leaders so had weekends away its fine.

prettybird Mon 02-Nov-15 10:24:45

Ds has to produce a portfolio for his Nat 5 PE (I think it's either 40 or 60% of his final result) but his "exam" is an appraisal of his performance at an agreed sporting event, by a teacher who knows the sport involved.

His new PE teacher was concerned that he is choosing to do a team sport, "What happens if he had a bad day or if the team are no good that day?" and wanted him up do something like life saving which is nice and clearly defined. We had to tell him that we've never seen ds have a bad day at his sport and even if the team is playing badly, he still shinesgrin. The teacher then admitted he knew nothing about the sport; just as well it's not him that will be going the assessment them wink (It'll be the teacher who had been supplementing his coaching him since S1 ds has been playing since P1)

I agree with MrsJayy - your ds needs to have some down time - his studying will be the better for it. If he is borderline aspergers, then having these weekends timetabled in - and the encouragement to study hard before and after to "fit" them in - will suit him.

prettybird Mon 02-Nov-15 10:31:13

Meant to add - your ds may end up with a Nat 4 in PE. I know that ds is on course to get a Nat 4 in his core RME - at least, according to his school report at the end of last year. I didn't bother seeing the RME teacher at the parents' night, as it's not one of his "real" exam subjects.

myotherusernameisbetter Mon 02-Nov-15 10:45:44

Yes, they've said that they may find Nat 4s and Nat 3s awarded on their results for subjects they didn't take forward. DS isn't good at sport except swimming (and lifeguards) but the school don't have a pool so I can't see him getting anything for PE.

He is a busy boy sometimes but he will always prioritise beeing on his PC gaming. He has however started socialising a bit more with school friends on it so it's a bit of a balance. Despite being nearly 6 foot 2, he has hit puberty relatively late so we are only now seeing a bit more of teenage behaviour and stubbornness. Not much though, he is still overly compliant.

prettybird Mon 02-Nov-15 11:47:32

We're lucky that ds' school has a pool smile

Ds still hasn't fully gone through puberty. He's had a proto-moustache now for a couple of years shock and his voice hasn't broken yet. He's only 5'6" so far - he's not going to make 6 foot grin We do get the teenage strops though! wink

He also spends more time than we'd like on his XBox One (got Halo 5 last week hmm) but he does seem to do his homework and revision first.

myotherusernameisbetter Mon 02-Nov-15 12:03:09

We have the moustache and a few chin hairs. He still has some growing to do yet though but hopefully not too much, if he stays under 6 4 I'll be happy enough.

Groovee Tue 03-Nov-15 15:07:49

My Dd is being laden down with homework too. Am trying hard to let her have a good balance of social and school life. So far she has been passing the nabs but having melt downs regarding them.

She's in a huff as they don't do the prelims til January! And they start on her flaming birthday.

myotherusernameisbetter Tue 03-Nov-15 15:14:38

I have no idea how he is doing with nabs as he tells me nothing. I've asked if he has had any tests and he says either No, or when the answer is yes, he did "okay" but can't remember what he got.....I'm hoping parents night might be a bit more illuminating.

okay or fine is what he replies to any question so not necessarily any indication.

Poor DD what a way to have your birthday.

Groovee Tue 03-Nov-15 15:44:45

Apparently it's just a pass with the nabs. But I think they can resit if they need to.

My friends son is going through the same melt downs and we're both confused about it as they've always been fine at school.

prettybird Tue 03-Nov-15 17:29:26

Ds occasionally mentions the nabs he has taken/passed - but tbh, we got more info from his teachers hmm

Is your school doing any "supported study" sessions? Ds had just come from school late, after going to one for Computing Science (he did text us to let us know).

myotherusernameisbetter Tue 03-Nov-15 18:08:00

No meltdowns, just the Secret Service smile

Hoping to get a bit more info from teachers at Parents night. I haven't seen anything about supported study sessions, it's CS that seem to be giving him the most homework but it may just be that as they are using Edmodo (as are Engineering Science) they are more visible. I have to say though that the last 7 lots of homework aren't down as being marked so unless he has been given the marks in class there isn't any feedback going on.

Also now worried about his handwriting which is pretty poor. His English teacher told us last year that she was going to put in place for him to use a laptop, she assured us that there was no action we needed to take and that she would arrange it all.......as you can guess this hasn't been done.

prettybird Tue 03-Nov-15 18:20:16

I never see ds' homework (or homework diary for that matter!) so no idea if it's marked or not. But he got "1" across the board for his homework in the interim report we got prior to the Parents' Night, so I'm not too worried. It also had him down as 1 or 2 (ie A) for both Target and Working grades for all subjects.

He has a day's outing next week to do a field trip (on Rivers) which will form part of his Geography National 5.

It's all getting much closer! shock

myotherusernameisbetter Tue 03-Nov-15 18:25:48

We had on-line reports this time - only a mark for effort which was pretty much 6 across the board, I think there was one 5 but iirc it was PE which isn't one of his Nat 5s.

He's had a few trips - 2 Geography, 1 Art and 1 physics.

So academically we don't have a clue how he is doing. No calls to come in and discuss so I guess that he must be doing enough but who knows....

Groovee Tue 03-Nov-15 20:46:05

They are running supported study at lunch and after school and Dd has been using it.

dotdotdotmustdash Sat 14-Nov-15 22:00:06

If it's Blair Atholl Jamboree he's trying to be selected for - tell him to really go for it! My Asperger's boy went last year and loved it - despite me really worried that he'd find it too much.

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