For your year group, I have so much respect! Schools closed back at the end of March. It’s since been over 3 months. Though schools are slowly reopening for years 10 and 12, schooling won’t be quite as you ‘normally’ expect.
You may feel like you’re in a bit of a limbo state. If that’s you, then I’m hoping some of the tips in this article can help you out.
Firstly, I’m going to be honest, you’re going to have to take your GCSE preparation more so into your own hands than GCSE students have ever done before. Unfortunately there is a lot of work for teachers to catch up on. They’re still unsure of how exactly GCSE exams will take place in the summer of 2021 and what content they should be teaching you.
It is now crucial for you to timetable the time you have left before the start of year 11 and to ensure that you’ve covered as much of the year 10 content as possible.
You need to check with your teachers and school what content they will be teaching you at school. You then also need to look at the content which you’ve been expected to learn at home the last three months and identify any areas you’re unsure about. Take questions in to school and ask your teachers during your lessons or lunchtime. Once you have a basic understanding of all the year 10 work it is crucial that you plan to recover the work over your summer holiday - or at least the first couple of weeks of the summer.
Go through your subjects one by one, and apply the knowledge to some exam questions. This will quickly identify strong and weak areas in your knowledge base. For those of you that have tutors, make use of them. Get them to go through things which you are unsure of.
Alternatively, make good use of the many resources on the internet.
Unfortunately most libraries are currently closed. Once you can get a hold of a computer or laptop try out resources like ‘freesciencelessons’ on youtube and the MathsGenie website. Of course the resources which you use will depend on where you need the help.
Do not be afraid of emailing teachers with questions and asking them for help. Exploit all the resources that you can find because this is ultimately your GCSE year at stake.
The more work that you can catch up on now, the easier your year in year 11 will be.
Aside from academics, I’d also recommend considering work experience opportunities.
Many of you may have planned to do some work experience in Year 10 but had it cancelled due to the Covid pandemic. If you feel you do need work experience, look into booking something now for next year. Again, this will reduce the workload on you in year 11. For courses like Medicine and Dentistry you may have specific work experience requirements. Do your best to plan to be able to fulfill their requirements before you apply to university in year 13. For others of you, you may want work experience purely to get a better idea of what the work involves. This is also important. Try to avoid neglecting work experience opportunities.
All the best!