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Starting secondary in year 9

(13 Posts)
jomidmum Sat 23-Apr-16 13:44:08

We are currently living in the Middle East and are moving back to the UK at the end of the summer. My son (13) will be starting Year 9 this September in the UK: he's been home educated for the past 4 years.
Just wondering if there is anything essential academically he needs to know. He's had a broad educational experience and is half way through some IGCSE courses (which we know he can't continue with). He's going to sit GCSE law as a provate candidate as his school won't offer this.
He's had a broad educational experience here and is quite a deep thinker and is academically pretty able. We are starting to think about what he needs to concentrate on over the next few months.
Any advice appreciated. Thanks.

titchy Sat 23-Apr-16 14:32:03

Presume you have a school and GCSEs options all lined up? In which case ask them! Otherwise basics - look for KS3 curriculum in Maths English and Science and make sure he knows everything in those areas at least.

lljkk Sat 23-Apr-16 16:14:17

has he any experience in exam technique? HEing friend found she had to spend a lot of time on that topic, with her children. In mainstream schools they spend ages on exam technique.

jomidmum Sat 23-Apr-16 18:23:04

titchy: yes we have a school lined up and they will be emailing us his timetable etc. We don't have GCSE options lined up though. I've got some KS3 books in maths and English for him, just to refresh as he's been studying for igcse for the past 6 months.
lljkk: thanks, that's a good idea. He's looked at a few past papers in a few subjects but not specific exam technique yet. Do you think they'll cover that more in year 9 and above?

lljkk Sat 23-Apr-16 19:53:22

yeah yr9 DD is covering technique lots & I suppose DS is in yr11, too. But still, just get him used to idea of producing work in quiet no interaction environment, timed test, fixed questions, essays etc. DD is taught to do the high mark questions first & the low mark questions later. DD rarely has time to come back to any question. I hate this, but her teachers are adamant it's best strategy.

jpeg28 Sat 23-Apr-16 20:55:17

I would say if he has been following the igcse syllabus while abroad he will be in a great place when he gets back to the UK as it's often more challenging. I'm a maths teacher so I can't speak for all subjects though.

cricketballs Sun 24-Apr-16 08:08:53

Lljkk; what subjects is this technique being suggested? For the subjects I teach this method would do far more harm than good.

If your DD doesn't have time to cover all questions then she needs to reduce time spent on the questions she is completing

lljkk Sun 24-Apr-16 08:25:29

history & geography definitely, cricket. But I kind of thought ALL of them, they were told do the high mark questions first. This logic is to make sure they don't waste time on low mark questions. What do you teach? DD did have time to check her answers on math test the other day, so sometimes it works.

AtiaoftheJulii Sun 24-Apr-16 08:33:37

My dd started school in year 9 after being home educated up till then. We did nothing extra as we only had the place confirmed a couple of weeks before. But there was no need to have done anything anyway, she has sailed through (she's now in y13), and her teachers are still complimenting us on what a great job we did until she was 13! (Unfortunately I can't take the credit, it's all hers!)

I think three years is plenty of time to learn some exam technique - tbh it's not rocket science. I think for A level my daughters have found technique more important, for GCSE (although who knows about the new ones) it's not such a big deal. My dd certainly had never done a timed test in her life before she went to school smile but none of my other kids did any exam technique in years 7 or 8 either (three different schools between them).

I think y9's a good time to start school ffor a home educated kid, I don't see an awful lot of point before then wink

cricketballs Sun 24-Apr-16 08:45:26

Business and IT

Might be different for history and geography but for my subjects the papers are designed in sections. Within each section the questions are designed to 'flow' which aids students to gather their thoughts around the base of the questions which prepares them for the longer one (s) at the end of the section.

How many marks/time are the papers she is doing? For business extended writing paper for example it is 90 marks in 90 minutes so my students are told to allow 1 minute per mark, therefore if they haven't completed a 3 mark Q in 3 mins move on, this works for them, especially the 1/2 mark ones as they do these really quickly thereby banking time

cricketballs Sun 24-Apr-16 08:45:54

Sorry op first the derail blush

jomidmum Sun 24-Apr-16 09:57:13

Thank you everyone for your input. I think he'll be ok as he's studied to a higher level and he's very motivated. We've just chatted again and he's started a KS3 English book which he is going to select areas he might need to brush up on. He's also sat starting to work through a KS3 higher level maths book, to ensure he has no gaps.....we weren't sure whether to just continue with IGCSE maths he's half way through or go back to KS3, which he's opted for. He loves maths!
Then he's going to continue with all the other things he loves (law, 20th C history, politics, graphics) and make the most of the freedom he currently has.
Thanks again, particularly for the reassurances from jpeg28 and AtiaoftheJulii (so encouraging to hear your daughter is doing well at school).

lljkk Sun 24-Apr-16 12:29:27

@cricket: slow build base is the way I like to do tests, too, but no... not the modern way!!

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