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Page 2 | Thread 3: Continuing to GCSEs Summer 2020 - Happy New Exam Year!

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OrangeCinnamon Tue 07-Jan-20 09:54:36

Continuation of previous thread
Thread 2

Thread 1 Year 10

At the end of last thread there was a bit of talk on prom dresses ( recommend Fonthill Rd in London if you can get there) by @proggymat and @crazycrofter

@TigerMum had a query regarding moving to foundation level at this stage.

Sorry peeps thread progressed without me noticing so none can reply to your queries!

OP’s posts: |
MarchingFrogs Wed 08-Jan-20 12:50:01

The TES has the links to all the boards' final timetables for GCSE here:

(Sorry, just realised may have to register to read all of it, but I'm only a parent and I don't remember telling any porkies when I registeredgrin).

RedskyAtnight Wed 08-Jan-20 12:51:11

On a similar vein, is there any practice Music (listening) questions that are available anywhere? Not found any on exam board website.

OrangeCinnamon Wed 08-Jan-20 13:21:00

Are they AQA @redskyatnight? This is the advice givento me form school ( don't think DD has touched the CD yet).

- GCSE AQA Music for the grade 9-1 Exams, Complete Revision and Practice CGP, ISBN: 978-1-78294-614-4
- GCSE Music for the Grade 9-1 Course Exam Practice Workbook including answers and audio CD. CGP, ISBN 9781782946175

The BBC GCSE Bitesize website also covers useful subject content and listening extracts in preparation for the final exam.

OP’s posts: |
RedskyAtnight Wed 08-Jan-20 13:35:10

Thanks Orange - he is indeed AQA. I'll check those out.

PatienceVirtue Wed 08-Jan-20 15:41:18

Hello, jumping in here for the first time. Now that ds has proper mocks, feels like s**t got real.

He goes to a high-achieving school (90%+ 7-9) and it seems to do things so differently to other people's schools, possibly because it has a different sort of cohort. For instance:

1. We've never had a single predicted grade. I've no idea what he's expected to get in his GSCEs. I'm presuming 8/9 for the ones he's good and 6/7 for the others (if that for French).

2. I don't know his GSCE timetable yet. In fact I don't remember ever being informed of which exam boards they do so I can't look it up.

3. They only do one set of mocks. Other schools we know do two (Nov/Feb) or even three (Oct, Dec, Feb).

Do you know how schools decide how many mocks to do? I'm not in education but I can't help thinking 3 sets is way too many and would kill any enthusiasm for learning. On the other hand, the school in question does brilliantly by their cohort.

DS worked quite a lot over Christmas but I'm not sure how constructively. Every time he asked to be tested on something he'd get it all wrong and say grumpily 'oh I'm not expected to know that' or 'they won't ask me that anyway'.

JustHereWithMyPopcorn Wed 08-Jan-20 15:50:05

@ProggyMat if your DS is doing AQA then this link takes you to the french past papers

JustHereWithMyPopcorn Wed 08-Jan-20 15:56:31

@PatienceVirtue My DS is at a similar school. Our school only do one set of mock now and, only if you do very badly in them, the re-sit in Feb/March.

I looked up the timetables for exams that AQA and Edexcel have published as I have not had anything from the school yet. The school have published the exam codes on their website though so I used.
these to determine which boards they were sitting. You may find that your DS knows the boards already though.

I would assume that your DS will be sitting the higher papers (unless you've been told otherwise) so they will have an H at the end as opposed to an F for foundation.

The comments from your DS sound very similar to mine - I suspect it just lazy teenagers though! grin I have to say, my DS was shocked at the French listening papers, he said the stuff they have been using at school is much easier (Caboodle?) and he got quite panicked about the real thing.

crazycrofter Wed 08-Jan-20 16:07:29

@PatienceVirtue dd is also at a school like that. We've also never had predicted grades, although dd accidentally caught sight of a predicted grades sheet before Christmas - almost handed out to them by mistake with their reports! She was a bit annoyed at a couple of the grades! But they were all above 7, which I guess is what they expect at these sort of schools.

They also only have one set of mocks. I have a younger ds and he always says he's not expected to know stuff/doesn't need to revise particular things etc. And he's very lazy!

As far as exam timetables are concerned, dd knows all her boards and has already looked up the dates of all her exams. That's girls for you though.... She hasn't actually been given a timetable from school yet.

PatienceVirtue Wed 08-Jan-20 16:26:06

If I ask ds what his boards are I think I'll get a sighing eye roll but I'm trying to work out when he finishes in the summer in order to try to organise stuff (I cannot bear the idea of him doing sod all for over 10 weeks). Yes I know he's of an age where he should be managing his own time...

That tip about French listening papers on the boards' sites is an excellent one. Now I need to find out the board and then actually encourage him to do some (cue more eye rolling).

Thanks to all the contributors to this thread. It's been really useful for us.

EwwSprouts Wed 08-Jan-20 16:45:21

PatienceV We have no timetable yet from school but have been strongly advised to not book anything before 25th June as that is the exam contingency day.

EwwSprouts Wed 08-Jan-20 16:46:43

Sorry the exam contingency day is Wed 24th so don't book for before 25th.

crazycrofter Wed 08-Jan-20 17:14:37

@PatienceVirtue is there an ‘options’ booklet on your school website? DD’s school has one which describes all the subjects and gives the boards.

MarchingFrogs Wed 08-Jan-20 17:43:10

There is little variation in the timetable, if you check a few random subjects - so if a subject has two papers, Paper 1s will be on the same day at the same time for each board, similarly Paper 2s. This makes avoiding clashes easier and stops schools putting candidates in for multiple versions of the same thing, to see which one they get the most publishable grade in.

For those who haven't yet had anything from the school re the exam timetable etc (definitely not buried somewhere on the website?), you should at least soon have a printout of the subjects / tier / boards for which the school intends to enter them, which you need to check and confirm as correct. Which, I agree, may be a little difficult if you genuinely have had no information to date regarding anything bar the first of those. Perhaps contact the Head of Year / Key Stage 4?

ProggyMat Wed 08-Jan-20 18:20:25

DD is at a high achieving school/ but not as high as that 7-9 grade percentage!
Your DS’s text books will show the exam board?
Only one set of mocks for us- DD currently sitting them. 6 down and 13 to go!
Exam proper time table, for us, will be issued after mocks. I guess to allow for students wishing to drop a subject(s) and for those unsure which tier to take.
DD’s school only report attainment grades and not target grades.
In respect of ‘expected GCSE’ grades we were advised to consult DD’s Yellis chance graphs.
Her school use CEM suite of assements for Yr7, 10 and 12.
DD is a happy bunny tonight - the trip into town in between exam 2 and 3 was successfully completed and helped her to ‘clear her head’ smile

Newhouse76 Wed 08-Jan-20 18:29:45

Im a bit of a lurker on this thread but had a question please - how many hours of studying a week should our DC being doing at this stage?

DD finished her mocks in December and achieved 5-8s and is prone to anxiety and over studying. Im worry that she just want to take any time off and may burn out

JustHereWithMyPopcorn Wed 08-Jan-20 18:29:59

DD was also happy after today but has Physics tomorrow and is currently 'revising' in a bad mood as he realises he has't done enough. History straight after that but that's another of his favourite subjects so I'm hoping that one will be OK.

JustHereWithMyPopcorn Wed 08-Jan-20 18:30:26

DS not DD!!

mcmen05 Wed 08-Jan-20 18:43:04

No timetable from school
Cea exam board but so many science my dd doesn't know what date she finishes.
No help from school emailed them.
They haven't even discussed courses for after GCSE. I'm tearing my hair out and my dd is so laid back

ProggyMat Wed 08-Jan-20 18:51:54

Physics is next week for DD grin
History paper 1 done today- only 2 more to do.
DD is sitting 2 Geography papers in mocks, soo if she decides one humanity is to dropped the mocks will determine which one/ hopefully!

Littlefiendsusan Wed 08-Jan-20 20:25:16

Hi, jumping on this thread to help clue myself up for the coming months.

Oblomov20 Wed 08-Jan-20 20:28:39

Checking in.
Thank you OP.

Tumbleton Wed 08-Jan-20 20:52:12

DS has mocks (just the one set) at the moment.

He seems to have found a balance of revision and rest that works for him.

Alsoplayspiccolo Wed 08-Jan-20 21:04:28

Ewwsprouts, Mr Bruff on YouTube is fab for English.
I'm now wondering whether a revision timetable would actually benefit DD; because of her SEN, there's no saying predicting how long a topic may take to revise, so even if we devised a plan together, there's no way of knowing whether she'd be able to stick to it, and maybe that would stress her out more?

2 papers of geography, English lit and drama done so far, with maths and Latin tomorrow, chemistry and history on Friday, and a full week of every subject except drama, chemistry and English lit. next week.
She seems happy so far, but who knows?

Oblomov20 Wed 08-Jan-20 21:22:10

Parents evening tomorrow.

On a lighter note, I've bought Ds1 his Christmas (and part of birthday) present: They ( a group of 16 : mainly boys plus a few girls) are going to Reading festival (the music one) in the summer.

Even I think that is a totally brilliantly cool thing to do with your mates. Wasn't cheap. £220 for 4 days.

ProggyMat Wed 08-Jan-20 21:34:59

I’m of the mindset get mocks done and wait for results.
In the meantime, keep on top of homework and come half term plan revision for exams proper.
It’s Leeds for us !
Nothing booked for them all as yet as DD’s group can’t decide on accommodation,
Is your DS and mates planning to camp?

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