Last week we looked at ways to help your child ace their GCSE Maths exam. This week we’re looking at how to teach your child to revise for the GCSE Maths Exam.
“I have a whiteboard in my home office to use for work. My son would draw on it, and then he started practising sums on it. He found it much more interesting to write things on the board than he did to sit at a table and go over things. So we used to play “school”, where he would teach me about maths. We used it a lot when he was getting ready for his SATs – it was really effective.”
It is easy for a child to become overwhelmed when faced with a pile of facts to revise. You can work with your child to distil all that information into manageable chunks and to develop the skills needed to tackle the task in a sensible, efficient way. The BBC education website breaks down all the subjects into their curriculum areas, which is a great help in ensuring everything is covered.
12 Tips For Revising For Your GCSE Maths Exam
Your child might have a particular way that they like to revise. Here is some advice you can give them if they are unsure:
- Don’t leave it till the last minute. Research has shown students are significantly more likely to understand and remember material if they revise regularly throughout the year.
- Focus on one topic of study, such as triangles in Maths or poetry in English, at a time.
- Get an overview of the topic. Read the information, make some basic notes and get an idea of how much you need to learn.
- Look at exam questions. They will help you to identify exactly what you need to know about the topic.
- Test yourself on what you already know by simply writing it down or by trying to answer an exam question. Identify the gaps in your knowledge.
- Take it slowly. It is easy to get frustrated and to try to cover everything at once, but breaking down the information is likely to prove more successful.
- Pay attention to the feedback your teacher gives you. Read the notes on your work and homework. Don’t be afraid to ask if you are still not sure where you are going wrong – your teacher should be happy to help.
- Actively engage with the material. Don’t just sit and read – the chances are nothing will go in. Use a learning style that suits you – talk about the material, make notes or draw diagrams. It might help to revise with a school friend, as long as they aren’t too distracting!
- Take regular breaks. It can be tempting to “cram” if time is short, but cramming tends to be counterproductive. Make sure you have plenty to eat and enough sleep to maximise the quality of your revision sessions.
- Keep testing yourself as you study. Ask yourself questions to see if you genuinely understand what you are revising. Go back and look at the material again if you can’t answer a question.
- It might be better to learn one or two topics thoroughly than to try to cover everything if you are very short on time.
- Don’t panic. It is just an exam. Whether it’s a GCSE Maths Exam, SATs or 11+: it is just an exam. You may feel you will never know the material, and maybe you never will. That’s okay. Failing an exam is not the end of the world.
And of course, if you do nothing else, show them schoolonline.co.uk. Bite-size learning in a fun, easily digestible way.