Young people like you all over the country are busy revising for their upcoming GCSE and A Level exams. Anxiety and stress levels for you and your parents are rising. In order to make the most of these exams, it is important to keep an eye on your mental health and wellbeing. The next in the exam season series is going to focus on keeping the anxiety and stress levels as low as possible.
The first trick is to REFLECT
At the end of each day, make a list that answers the following questions:
- What time did I start revising?
- What time did I finish? These two questions will allow you to see very quickly if you spent a suitable time revising. My tip: 4 – 6 hours a day is plenty! You have a long slog ahead of you and you do not want to burn out by the middle of May. They will also help you gauge if you have had enough sleep.
- Did I take breaks every 40 minutes to an hour?
- What have I done away from the books? Exercise, socialising, reading for pleasure. This will allow you to see very quickly if you have locked yourself away in your room without any meaningful social contact. Instagram is not meaningful! It is fine for a short break but it will not replace real, meaningful face-to-face contact.
- What did I cover today? Do not be vague. Be as specific as possible. “Cell structure” is better that simply “Biology”
- Now refer to what you did cover today and ask yourself:
- What went well?
- What went OK and I need to go back and check a few things?
- What was a disaster and I need to do it again? Not all revision goes to plan. If this happens, it not the end of the world. All you need to do is try again.
- Is there anything that I had planned to do today that I did not get to?
- Is there anything that I need to prioritise tomorrow
This will allow you to keep track of what you are doing and what needs a bit more work. But ultimately, it will keep the exam anxiety at bay.
(It is also a great way to show your parents what you have been doing while they were at work!)
Click here for a sheet that you can download and fill in at home.