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Silver D of E in year 11- how doable is it?

(11 Posts)
whataboutbob Sat 07-Jul-18 10:43:01

DS did bronze this year which has been really good for him. He has the option of silver but I.’m wondering how practical this will be in GCSE year. He is doing Art and DT amongst others, which are famously work intensive. He’s not sure whether to go for it . Any comments / advice gratefully received.

OP’s posts: |
ReservoirDogs Sat 07-Jul-18 12:18:38

Everyone I know does silber in yr 11 ans starts gold in yr 12

ScipioAfricanus Sat 07-Jul-18 13:04:46

It depends a great deal on how he responds to extra pressures. I like to feel I have time to manage my work and therefore choose to have few hobbies and extracurriculars (only 3 A Levels, no D of E etc). Some kids I teach are similar and would feel over stressed by the hours required. Others would enjoy it. Yes, Art will eat up hours, so it depends how much down time he needs.

Also worth thinking about from the point of view of uni applications - often pupils are told ‘this is good for UCAS’. For some unis, yes, but you could do something less time consuming and less common (r.g. Work experience for two weeks in an area connected with degree) and write about it in personal statement and what you learnt and actually end up with a more interesting personal statement. Schools routinely overestimate the valure of this kind of thing for UCAS in my experience. Grades will be more important for the vast majority of pupils and if D of E is going to eat up too much time then I wouldn’t advise it. But if your DS would sacrifice gaming/snapchatting/etc time to do it, that would be a different story!

ragged Sat 07-Jul-18 18:39:57

DD is going on silver expedtn next week.
Not been that time-consuming at all. The hard part was (practice expedtn) the 3 days of hiking when she's not very fit. She's out running 15 minutes every day since, trying to make sure no rescue required.

I doubt any of the kids did art GCSE in same year, though they were all part of the school musical which was 4-12 hrs/week from September to end of March.

BackforGood Sat 07-Jul-18 22:24:35

I think it depends if he is a youngster who does lots anyway, and is just adjusting things to fit it into DofE categories, or if he normally doesn't do anything outside of school and home so everything will be starting afresh.
Mine have had no problems with it, but they are all dc who were already volunteering, were already doing stuff for physical, etc,etc anyway, so nothing much extra to be 'fitted in'. A lot of youngsters sign up because 'they think it will be good for CV' or more likely their parents do and never complete it because they just aren't motivated by the activities.
Of course, there isn't an 'end date' by which it needs to be completed. SO they can sign up, and then, if they wish to not do one section until after exams, then so be it - it doesn't 'expire'.

MonumentVal Sun 08-Jul-18 14:05:43

There is a limit, but it's age 23. I did my Gold expedition with a guy who was nearly 25, as it occurred to him he might as well finish what he'd started at 17.

If the expedition is well before, or after exams, I'd be happy. Encouraging exercise and a hobby as a contrast to revision is probably a better lesson for life than more revision and equally helpful in getting increased grades.

LucyFox Sun 08-Jul-18 14:22:14

Actually, many of those who do try it find that the odd break from revision is actually very helpful! Most organisations(it doesn’t have to be done with school!) actually schedule the expeditions with exams in mind. I know 3 girls who did theirs this year & they really enjoyed it as a break from exam stress! An hour of sport/physical a week is easily doable, an hour pursuing a hobby to relax (skill) and an hour giving back to the community (volunteering) should be possible even with exams!

AChickenCalledKorma Sun 08-Jul-18 15:59:42

DD1 has just completed her silver alongside GCSEs. She didn't take Art, but her best friend did and has also managed it.

The practice expedition was scheduled for early in year 11 and the qualifying expedition was after the exams were finished. It made for a long gap between the two, but I think the timing was sensible from the point of view of not interfering with key revision periods.

DD also choose her activities carefully. Her volunteering and physical fitted in with hobbies she was intending to continue with regardless. And the physical (swimming) proved to be quite a good stress buster when the pressure was on.

Her skill was a new thing that could be mainly done at home and didn't require her to attend classes or anything structured.

She's also learned a lot about time management!

Topseyt Sun 08-Jul-18 16:08:41

My DD3 is doing D of E Silver this week. She is year 11 and has just finished her GCSEs, including art.

It has been fine. Even the practice expedition was held after the exams had finished. The real one starts tomorrow and she is running about getting packed up for it right now. It hasn't impacted on studying, revision or coursework at all.

RedSkyLastNight Sun 08-Jul-18 16:25:06

You don't have to complete the whole of the silver in one year. If it proves too much he could just complete the expedition (which is limited time outlay other than the actual expedition and practice) but is the one section that is easier if coordinated via school and completed with peers. And then maybe one other element?

whataboutbob Sun 08-Jul-18 18:16:43

Thanks everyone that’s really useful info. Scipio, that’s exactly what I want- an opportunity to do things other than playing fortnite and whatsapping his mates. I think the physical activity aspect is very beneficial. From my POV, it isn’t primarily about his university application ( if he does indeed go on to university, which Is not a given).
Good to hear it doesn’t necessarily have to be completed in one year. I will try and encourage him to go for it.

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