Take the Cat’s Advice.
- Revision Timetable
- Getting Help
- Index Cards
- Ask the Cat
- Places to revise
- Sambal Says
Ask the cat is a special service: It does not work so well when my owner is away on holiday and I am left by myself in the house because our cat sitter does not know enough to help me to help you. You have to ask specific questions: it is no good saying “Please tell me everything you know about …. ”
Index cards are very useful. You can keep them in your pocket and get them out for a few minutes when there is nothing else to do: e.g. when you are by yourself on the bus, when you are sitting on the loo or lying in the bath, just before you go to sleep.
You just have to repeat things to yourself over and over again until you cannot possibly forget them. This is best done whilst you are in the bath or sitting on the loo. You can also try when you have just got into bed and turned the lights off. In fact you are more likely to remember things if you “revise” them as you are falling asleep in bed than if you are wide awake earlier in the day. This is “learning by rote”. Even if you don’t really understand something, you will be able to remember it.
You really should find a nice warm place where you can work without being disturbed by other people. Don’t try to work with the TV on, it will distract you. Put a “Keep Out” or Don’t Disturb” notice on your bedroom door whilst you are revising. Make sure that you have everything you need close by: cup of tea or cool drink, a packet of biscuits, books, paper, pens, pencils etc.. It will not help you remember things if yuou have to keep on going into another room to get something.
Your school probably has several science teachers; they are all able to help you, but only if you ask. Most teachers like to help students: if you ask nicely, they will probably be flattered that you have come to ask them, but don’t be upset if the one you ask is busy and says “come back later”. You could also try asking a sixth-form student. If you have not got any friends to help you ask the cat: just register, login and fill in the comment form at the bottom of this page.
Try to work out what it is that you don’t understand. Perhaps you could make a list of the things you do understand and a list of the things that you do not understand. Show your “DON’T UNDERSTAND” list to a friend or teacher and ask them if they would please explain at least one of them to you. If other pupils in your class say that they don’t understand them either you could tell your teacher that you all need a bit of help with that topic.
Put a tick by all the things on your “I Understand it” list that you have memorised. Now you will be able to plan your revision because you will know what you have got to do. You can add more things to this list when you have got a teacher or a friend to explain them to you. You can put more ticks on the list when you are sure that you have memorised them.
Count up how many days there are until your exam. Choose two subjects for each evening and perhaps three for saturday or sunday, but don’t work all seven days in the week. Decide which day of the week you will keep for enjoyment. You can always swap days later if you need to go out to a party or watch a special TV program one evening.
- Don’t waste time on things which you have already understood and memorised.
- Decide when you are going to see a teacher or a friend to ask for help.
- Decide how much time to spend trying to memorise things.
- Make sure thaat you spend enough time on each subject.
- Don’t spend too much time onone subject because you like it.
- Don’t spend more than 90 minutes at a time on one subject.
- Give yourself a break of 30 minutes onanother subject.
Count up how many days there are until your exam. Choose two subjects for each evening and perhaps three for Saturday or Sunday, but don’t work all seven days of the week. Decide which day of the week you will keep for enjoyment. You can always swap days later if you need to go out to a party or watch a special TV program one evening.
90% ~ good and 95% ~ possible. Happy your SATs.”