Sixth Form (A-Level) Advice

Hi everyone, I know that I haven’t posted anything on my blog recently, and it’s my fault for not keeping a notebook with blogging ideas on it. But, I am here now, and I’ve got a little something for new sixth formers – or students in general who are going to be studying their A-Levels!!

So, I am in the belief that the A-Levels have slightly (majorly!) changed this new school year! I believe that the AS-Level will become a stand alone qualification and that if you want to do a full A-Level you have to do the exam for both years 1 and 2 at the end of your 2 year course- which sucks big time, because this means it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to get the grade you really want! So, I wish you all guys the best of luck and study hard! This is not GCSEs anymore, you have to put your whole life into studying the next two years, because A-Level was hard enough, but it’s even harder now than before – not to scare you or anything!

But, I diverse, I am here to help you with some (hopefully) helpful tips!

  1. Start your year with asking your teacher about the syllabus – knowing what you are going to be studying for the next year or so is very helpful. It helps you focus on the topics that matters, especially if you are given a core book with all of the Units for the subject where some Units you may not need, so asking for the syllabus would really help you. So do that!
  2. Make outline notes! – once you are given all of your core books/text books, then I suggest that you get right down to it and start making notes from you textbook. It’s no use having the book just laying there collecting dust when you could be learning extra while at home. Yes, I know that home is where you’re supposed to be relaxing, but spending at least half-hour reading and making some notes from your textbook will do you no harm. It’s actually helpful in the long term you know. Buy a notebook that you will make your outline notes on, this could also be your revision notebook when the time comes.
  3. Pay attention and make notes while the teacher is talking –  I know it’s kind of the obvious thing to do, but sometimes people tend to forget to make notes while the teacher is speaking at the front of the room. It’s always helpful writing whatever the teacher is on about – as long as it is on the subject you are studying, as they are basically reiterating the important points that you should be learning about. Sometimes, they may also add some facts that may be useful when it comes to statistics and whatnot. So pay attention and make notes!
  4. Have a planner! – a planner/organiser/diary is going to be your best friend from now on! It’s always nice to keep everything organised, where you know when the deadline is and a timetable for revision. I highly suggest that you start using an organiser/planner because it will be a lifesaver. As the name suggest, it will help you plan everyday and keep you organised and on top of your school work as well
  5. It’s never too early to start revision – everyday after school I suggest that you re-write your school notes neatly, this way you are revising in a way, and it helps you sort of look at your notes and gives you the time to research things that you may not have fully understood when you were in the lesson.
  6. Don’t be afraid to talk to your teacher! – sure they may look very scary, but there’s nothing they would like more than help you with your studies. They are there to teach you for a reason, so make use of them! My teacher’s became like a walking/talking book for me on my first year of sixth form and they were happy to be one! Especially when you ask them questions that you haven’t touched on in class but can be relevant, oh the happiness in their eyes when they realise someone actually cares about the subject! So, talk to your teachers and don’t be afraid to ask them for help!
  7. Have some fun and relax – I know what I said before, that your studies are going to be your life, but you also have to have time to have fun and relax. Your brain needs to take a break to, so give yourself a day in the week where you don’t have to do any studying and just relax with friends and family or just by yourself. It’s very important that you give yourself a break!

Remember, that A-Levels are very different from GCSEs – when you could have passed GCSE with little work, A-Levels are a different story, they are by far the largest leap in your education, because it may seem easy at first but come midway you’re going to be struggling if you do little work. A-Levels mean hard work and dedication, and to succeed you have to have both. So I wish you all good luck in the new school year, and that you all succeed in studying! Give yourself a breather as well from time to time, having a fried brain is no good!

That is all I have for now, but I may start a ‘series’ which includes maybe tips on making notes or revising when the time comes. Who knows, I have started using a planner for blogging and have started jotting down new ideas on what I could be writing about, so hopefully I will soon have an update schedule 🙂

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