Grade 4 in both Eng Lang and Lit at mocks... what to do about Lang?(35 Posts)
Does he like music? Could he write songs? Would he listen to audio books?
The first two things that jumped into my head because they are both things my ds-same age- loves.
Try read theory? My dc vocab has improved loads doing a few each day, plus a session each day on vocabulary . com. On the vocabulary . com site load up a list of words they should/are recommended to use - we did this for the 11+ list and it helped loads.
Are his school putting on any help or revision sessions he could go to ? A level 4 could be a level 5 by the summer it is seen as an OK pass. If he doesn't need higher for his A level choices then why worry. His other results are good especially maths. I have ds exactly the same predicted As in maths, triple science but English much much weaker so long as he gets his level 4 I will be pleased. Good luck
Does he want to do A levels? What subjects?
Have you considered asking for a referral to a Speech and Language Therapist?
This is worth reading to see if any of it sounds familiar
What syllabus? Can he get some past papers and example answers?
No-one knows how close it is to a 3 as no-one has the slightest idea what the grade boundaries will be. Everyone is making them up: his result is only comparable to those in his school, because the school down the road might have made up different boundaries.
English wise - the papers are quite formulaic, so worth looking at them and working out what is needed. Tech terms are very big in the Mark scheme, so get him revising grammar etc
My DD1 nearly failed her English Lang 2 years ago. Despite averaging As for the CAs (which I think your DS doesn't have) her written paper was so bad she would have got a D overall from her mock.
don't get me started on the teachers not picking this up and predicting her an A all the way to Christmas .
Anyway from Feb when we got her mock results to the exam we just pulled out all the stops. She went to every revision session going (from any English teacher). Came back and reported what she had learned was required for each type of question. I collated info and put together a strategy for each question which she then practiced, got marked and round we went again.
It was a massive struggle but she scraped by in the end.
I don't know the new specs, but you need to get a handle on what is happening with each individual question. Where is he losing marks. And then try to work out a formula.
Tech terms may mean being able to pick out things like alliteration and talk about its effect.
There's no substitute for reading, reluctant or not. He needs to get used to picking apart longer sentences as he will have to read challenging 19th and 20th century extracts in the exam. Start with basic comprehension, perhaps giving him some questions based on a short extract from literary fiction. Get him reading newspapers and summarising the opinion of TVs writer (like the Guardian opinion columns). Sadly there are no shortcuts. If his vocabulary doesn't improve you are absolutely right to expect him to struggle.
My DS's worst subject was lang. He used Mr Bruff's YouTube tutorials. He says they are the only reason he passed.
Mr. Bruff is quite good but the last time I looked all his tutorial material was designed for the legacy specifications. It is also squarely aimed at a 'pass' but that's great for many students.
I don't know what spec your ds is doing but in ours... (WJEC)
Paper 1 - read an extract from a Victorian novel, answer 2 information retrieval/comprehension qus, then a 6 mark question which requires some technical terminology (eg adverbial phrase, sibilance, metaphor) with explanation of effect, then a 15 mark qu where the student has to give opinions about how successfully the author has achieved their intentions.
Followed by a piece of imaginative writing with a significant amount of marks being scored for spelling etc.
Paper 2 - comparison of 2 non-fiction pieces, both modern but complex in sentence structures etc. Similar questions though different marks achievable. Then a piece of writing for a "real life" situation - a letter , a speech etc. Again SPaG counts as significant part of the grade.
Skills our students need to work on are spotting techniques and understanding their effect, proof reading their own work, higher level vocab. Perhaps the most important is reading stamina and resilience - not giving up if the text is hard/contains unfamiliar vocab etc.
So lots of reading, of complex subject matter, is prob the best approach as a start for your ds.
The papers now test for a more thorough understanding of linguistic and structural methods used by the writer. They require the student to pick out explicit and implied meaning. They have to summarise meaning. They have to synthesise information from two sources for one paper. They have to show an evaluative understanding of methods used by the writer, agreeing or departing from a given view. They have to explain the writer's views and how these are conveyed.
Could you get him a tutor? They would then be able to highlight areas needing improvement and work on those. If he started soon he would have five months of extra help.
First of all find out which exam board he is working for. The new GCSE is very structures and revision workbooks will help. If he is AQA the OUP workbook is great but it is crucial his vocab increases. Try a word a day.
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