Many young people find it difficult to revise effectively for tests and examinations. As parents and carers, you will likely have experienced the stress and anxiety that a test or exam can lead to in your child (and possibly even remember it yourself)!
At St Bede's, we aim to dispel the myths surrounding revision, and help students learn the skills to revise more effectively, in a more efficient way.
Here is what we preach:
- A revision timetable is an invaluable resource. The purpose of creating a revision timetable is to ensure that students cover the required material, and do so in a way that aids the way their brain works (i.e. interleaving topics, spacing topics, etc.). We guide students through the process of creating revision timetables, and provide one such example (used in a typical year 11 assembly) below:
- Revision needn't be a long, onerous task. If students use, for example, topic checklists, they can quickly identify areas of priority within each topic, and focus time on these.
- Application of understanding is the most effective way to revise. Certain tasks require the memorisation of facts or quotes, but when we apply our understanding to different scenarios (as would be presented in test or exam questions), that's when we find out what we can, or can't, recall. We recommend students prioritise practise, once a checklist and associated revision of identified areas, take place.
- Prioritise rest and/or leisure activities as highly as the revision. The health and wellbeing of our students is more important to us than trying to squeeze an extra hour of inefficient revision in an evening.
- Get organised and away from distractions. We always recommend, unsurprisingly, that students (and parents) ringfence a quiet area at home, away from distractions, which can be used for focused revision. The most successful students will ensure that they are organised and ready to revise, when they plan to. This means thinking ahead and gathering the necessary resources, such as calculators, revision notes and questions to practise (with mark schemes to check their work).
We will also explain to students how they can really aim to excel by utilising optimal strategies to aid the way our memory works. Here is an excellent guide: