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How To Get Ready For Year 11

Updated: Sep 15, 2022

Your final year in secondary school can feel like a daunting prospect, especially when it comes to preparing for your GCSE exams.

With year 11 looming, you might be curious about how you can get ready for year 11 to ensure that you’re as prepared as you can be.

To get ready for year 11, you will need to ensure that you:

  1. Start as you mean to go on

  2. Start preparing for GCSE exams now

  3. Familiarise yourself with the exam content

  4. Make a revision timetable

  5. Get a GCSE tutor

  6. Practise makes perfect

1. Start As You Mean To Go On

To make the transition into year 11 as seamless as possible, you will need to start the school year as you mean to go on.

You need to ensure that you have the right equipment for each subject, including a fully equipped pencil case, a calculator, and any other equipment you might need so that you’re prepared for all of your classes.

You will also need to make sure that you have the correct uniform, behave well and are respectful to others, and ask questions to ensure you know what’s going on in lessons.

Your final year is what you’ve spent all these years preparing for. If you don’t understand something in a lesson, it’s essential to ask your teacher for support to ensure that you don’t fall behind in any of your subjects.

A colorful bookcase
It's essential to your learning to ask for help if you don't understand something in class.

2. Start Preparing For GCSE Exams Now

It might seem like you’ve got a lot of time to prepare, but once term starts and you start receiving homework, the weeks will begin to fly by. As such, you need to start preparing for GCSE exams now.

Students who are proactive when it comes to revision perform the best in exams, and it’s essential to get started as soon as possible to highlight any areas that need improvement.

To determine which are your worst and best topics, it's good to use a traffic light system with marker pens. By highlighting the topics green (good), amber (needs work), and red (needs the most work), you can gain a better understanding of what you need to prioritise to ensure you’re prepared for your GCSE exams.

The sooner you get started, the better, so give yourself plenty of time to avoid feeling stressed.

3. Familiarise Yourself With The Exam Content

Familiarising yourself with the exam content is also important to ensure that you’re prepared for year 11 as well as your GCSE exams.

Be sure to ask your teachers for the relevant exam boards for your subjects and begin noting down the relevant topics, texts, and units in the exam.

This information will then help you to determine what you need to revise, and where your priorities should lie depending on how well you’re doing in those subjects/topics.

Students sitting in assembly.
The sooner you get started on working towards your GCSE exams, the better prepared you'll be.

4. Make A Revision Timetable

Making a revision timetable is essential to prepare for the year ahead, and will work to keep you on track and organised.

When you’re planning your revision timetable, it's important to allocate time for every single subject, and prioritise the subjects that require the most revision.

That said, if you know that you’re likely to fail a subject that isn’t a core subject, it can be a sensible idea to be strategic by dropping your focus on that subject. Instead, you can refocus your time and energy in ensuring the rest of your grades are up to standard.

Remember to remain realistic with your revision timetable. You need to ensure that you factor in adequate break times, otherwise, your concentration will begin to deteriorate and you won’t be as productive or motivated.

5. Get A Tutor

If your family has the means, investing in a 1-1 private tutor is the best way to improve your grades, and will also help you to get through the year with significantly less stress.

A tutor will help you to manage your workload throughout this busy period of your life, and will also help you to tackle year 11 and your imminent exams head on.

Getting a 1-1 home tutor is second to none in terms of improving your grades as they have an understanding of how to hit the assessment criteria for the top grades, helping you to focus your time and energy on what is guaranteed to get you those top marks.

They also provide support for exam questions, provide you with revision notes on what you need to improve on, as well as set you tasks that will improve your understanding of topics.

That said, while many tutors are of high quality, you need to be wary of substandard tutors, too. When choosing a tutor, it's essential that they're qualified, enthusiastic, and provide clear teaching methods.

All the tutors at GCSE Masterclass are highly experienced, qualified teachers who have been selected for their warmth and ability to improve grades quickly. For more information on how to receive a free consultation today, please visit GCSE Masterclass to enquire.

Revision timetable.
Making a realistic revision timetable that prioritises your weakest subjects is key.

6. Practise Makes Perfect

Last but not least, practise makes perfect, so revising with practise papers is very important.

Many students spend hours reading revision books and learning facts and formulas hoping to generate good results to no avail.

This comes down to the fact that there's more to studying than just reading, and studies have shown that the average person will retain 90% of what they learn if they 'put it into practise'.

Focus on practise essays as well as exam questions. When it comes to maths and science, these topics are easy to self-assess with the appropriate marking criteria.

That said, for your essay-based subjects, you’ll need either a 1-1 private tutor or a skilled teacher to help you mark these practise papers.

You can also get a better feel of what examiners are looking for by reading essays that received top grades in the past. In addition to this, watching guides on YouTube can also be a way to help you revise.

Good examples of educational YouTube channels are Dr Frost Maths, Corbett Maths and Mr Bruff, all of which post incredibly helpful and informative videos to aid you in your revision.

How We Can Help

At GCSE Masterclass, we use only the very best teachers. All our staff are fully qualified, experienced teachers who have a proven track record of high quality teaching and excellent results within their GCSE classes.

Contact us to find out more about how we can quickly improve your child’s confidence, grades, and future.

Written by Jemima, for GCSE Masterclass.

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