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Is it really such a good thing to be getting level 9 in English and maths this early into yr10?

(19 Posts)
drivinmecrazy Thu 26-Nov-15 10:21:50

As the title says, how can this be a good thing?

DD1 is less than a term into her GCSE courses and this week has come home with grade 9 results from tests she has done in English & maths.
I have to say she is very bright, finds learning very easy but is not off the scale bright.

She, of course, is over the moon. I am very proud. But what motivation does it give her, where is there room for improvement?

In contrast, she sat two tests in chemistry and biology last week and scored a 'high level B'. Surely this gives her more motivation and desire to improve?
I was far more comfortable with the science results than the English and Maths TBH.

This is in no way a stealth boast, just genuinely curious as to whether this is such a positive thing. Particularly as she is prone to laziness. She's one of those kids who does her homework at 9pm on a Sunday then has a melt down because the printer's run out of ink, or spends an hour doing a piece of homework they have been given 2 weeks to do. So motivation is a real issue.

SeekEveryEveryKnownHidingPlace Thu 26-Nov-15 10:25:01

I wouldn't worry about it. Teachers' assessments aren't the end of the story, and you might find that some of them are more optimistic than others. Ultimately the only number that counts is the one she gets in the final exam, and I would make this really clear to her in relation to the motivation issues you mention.

lovelyupnorth Thu 26-Nov-15 10:30:37

is that new level 9 or old - new level 9 would put her off the scale. but as we've found one assessment can vary from the next main thing is not to put the pressure on.

SeekEveryEveryKnownHidingPlace Thu 26-Nov-15 10:32:38

If she's this year's Year 10, it'll be the new one, which equates to A/A*. But honestly, I have learned from experience not to pay much heed to their grades and assessments - there can always be surprises at the end, in both directions.

drivinmecrazy Thu 26-Nov-15 10:33:10

I think my main worry is that she's so enthusiastic about her GCSE courses at the moment, and think she'll find it hard to keep up this level of enthusiasm for the next year and a half.

Would rather see her slow and steady than peaking too soon. I also worry that she might become de-motivated when she gets lower marks. She is prone to anxiety and is so hard on herself. She recently told me that if she doesn't get 'at least A or level 8 grades' she will feel as if she has failed. Pressure really isn't coming from us it seems to be coming from her teachers and herself.

I see trouble ahead!

SeekEveryEveryKnownHidingPlace Thu 26-Nov-15 10:39:17

My year 10 is the opposite - she does well in all her subjects but feels next to no enthusiasm for any of them! It concerns me equally hmm.

My advice to her would be to take it with a pinch of salt: tell her that if those are the grades she wants, then she has to make everything she does now count for as much as possible. If she's working late on Sunday and the printer's running out of ink, she will get stressed, and she won't do as well as she can do.

All A grade students have to work and think like all A grade students, IMO, and they have to do it consistently. So don't take these predictions/assessments as faits accompli: what matters is what she does, not what she is predicted.

drivinmecrazy Thu 26-Nov-15 10:47:40

Thank you of your sane words of wisdom SeekEveryEveryKnownHidingPlace

I think I need to work on controlling my own anxieties for her and stop anticipating problems that may or may not arise!

SeekEveryEveryKnownHidingPlace Thu 26-Nov-15 10:51:00

Sounds sensible grin. I'm sure she'll be fine - she's obviously bright and ambitious and happy; she just needs to remember that it's down to her to be careful and consistent if she wants to sustain and maintain (and improve!).

noblegiraffe Thu 26-Nov-15 13:16:16

Any school that is giving a grade 9 to work done in Y10 on the new GCSE are being rather optimistic seeing as that is the grade that will only be achieved by the top 3% of Y11s in the country, and we will not know what that looks like until they sit their GCSEs and the top 3% is calculated based on their actual performance. Kids may be given a false impression of how good they are.

drivinmecrazy Thu 26-Nov-15 13:45:37

That's what worries me, though it was only DD and one other student out of a cohort of 240 children given a 9.

Autumnsky Thu 26-Nov-15 14:07:12

That's what confused me. I had thought, there will be a GCSE course to be taught in 2 years, the test is at the end of the GCSE course. Even some school would like to fast pace finish the course, and spend some time do the mock exam, at least Y10 will be used teaching rather than practice exam.

My DS1 is in Y10 as well, they have been doing quite a few GCSE mock exam as well, which is boring for him of course. And also, does this mean the GCSE is too simple, they have already covered the most in Y7-9, otherwise, why they are doing mock exam now?

BrianButterfield Thu 26-Nov-15 14:13:26

They're doing mocks now because without coursework it's the simplest way to assess as they go along. The mock will be only on the topic taught to date, not the whole course.

Autumnsky Thu 26-Nov-15 14:23:09

So you mean the mock exam is only aim at the part that has just been taught, that would be fine then. I will check with DS.

drivinmecrazy Thu 26-Nov-15 15:14:33

That's my understanding too Autumnsky . I still think the teacher in DD's case would be doing her more of a favour by lowering her grade to 7/8 rather than DD thinking she now should be scoring 9 on future tests. They have enough pressure as it is

cricketballs Thu 26-Nov-15 16:17:18

My GCSE classes regularly undertake tests, with questions from previous papers on the topic just covered. Content is not the full story for success, a lot depends on technique which should be ongoing and not left until the full content is taught.

ConesOfDunshire Thu 26-Nov-15 22:52:17

As a teacher, I'd go so far as to say that it is downright foolish to award 9s at this stage. We simply don't have enough guidance and information from the exam boards to make that judgement right now, quite apart from the fact that none of us knows what the top 3% of kids will look like in summer 2017.

RalphSteadmansEye Thu 26-Nov-15 23:02:32

This is exactly what ds's English teacher said at parents' evening - that ds and a lot of his set were working at grade A* in old money / probably grade 8 in new money but she didn't want them getting complacent so the highest mark she will award right now for an assessment is an A.

Witchend Fri 27-Nov-15 12:08:35

I would suspect it may be that they are giving predicted grades rather than current.
We get predicted and current, but different teachers predict different ways so you can actually end up with a current higher than predicted (at the end of year 10hmm).
But some predict from expected progress from current level (which varies depending on the teacher how much they expect you to progress), some predict from CATS score in year 7 and some seem to randomly pick a grade out of a hat and PE gives everyone the same which renders it useless...

jeanne16 Fri 27-Nov-15 12:25:46

She will not have finished the syllabus for either subject. So although she may be scoring a 9 on the work she has done so far, she will still have a lot of topics to cover. This should keep her motivated.

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