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The AQA AS Level Spanish revision thread

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    As far as I can see, no one has started a thread for AQA AS Level Spanish exam (which takes place on 16 May 2011) so I thought I would go ahead and start one.

    I am concentrating on learning as much vocabulary as I can, as well as grammar and relevant content for the four topics: Media, Popular Culture, Healthy Living/Lifestyle and Family and Relationships. I am not making especially detailed notes for these topics; I have just been concentrating on the bullet points beneath each of them (e.g. AQA specifies "Changing roles within the home" as part of the Family and Relationships topic) and writing down headings and reminders for myself on each of the topics. And I will be doing my first past paper this week.

    How has everyone been revising? It would be great to share revision tips!
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    I'm resiting the exam from last year, I would say definitely make an essay plan no matter how good the question is or how confident you feel make one for sure, last year I stupidly picked the most horrible essay ever about "¿hay un edad mayor para tener un bebe?" I literally have no idea what i was thinking. Also vocab is the main thing to learn there are bound to be one or two words that you don't know last year mine was "estrecha", I had no idea it meant narrow and subsequently lost a mark. Also learn verbs because the gap fills are sometimes tricky.

    hope that helped

    As for my speaking resit. literally dreading it.
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    (Original post by Bella_Cullen)
    As far as I can see, no one has started a thread for AQA AS Level Spanish exam (which takes place on 16 May 2011) so I thought I would go ahead and start one.

    I am concentrating on learning as much vocabulary as I can, as well as grammar and relevant content for the four topics: Media, Popular Culture, Healthy Living/Lifestyle and Family and Relationships. I am not making especially detailed notes for these topics; I have just been concentrating on the bullet points beneath each of them (e.g. AQA specifies "Changing roles within the home" as part of the Family and Relationships topic) and writing down headings and reminders for myself on each of the topics. And I will be doing my first past paper this week.

    How has everyone been revising? It would be great to share revision tips!
    Hey Thanks for making this, really good idea

    I've got an exercise book that I'm using for revision (but I wrapped it in black card so it doesn't feel schooly hahah). So far I've made grammar notes on the subjunctive, using por/para and ser/estar and other verb stuff, because there are loads of marks for the gap fills and grammar's really important in the essay as well!

    Learning vocab is a good idea, I normally find vocab sticks better if I learn it in the context of a sentence or paragraph though, so I might do loads of open book essays, then again closed book, and see if I can use the new vocab! Also, I think if we do loads of listening and reading exercises that will help vocab wise as well, because we'll probably notice lots of words which are often used/repeated, as well as synonyms.

    Good luck for the exam


    (Original post by Birkatron)
    I'm resiting the exam from last year, I would say definitely make an essay plan no matter how good the question is or how confident you feel make one for sure, last year I stupidly picked the most horrible essay ever about "¿hay un edad mayor para tener un bebe?" I literally have no idea what i was thinking. Also vocab is the main thing to learn there are bound to be one or two words that you don't know last year mine was "estrecha", I had no idea it meant narrow and subsequently lost a mark. Also learn verbs because the gap fills are sometimes tricky.


    As for my speaking resit. literally dreading it.

    Thanks for the advice, my Spanish teacher is always going on about making an essay plan and now I see why haha

    Do you learn the vocab from the key vocab section of the AQA textbook? Or do you get it elsewhere? Because I have no idea where to start with learning vocab!!

    Thanks for the advice and good luck for your resit! And don't worry about the speaking, I had mine last week and had a really strange examiner , but as long as you have enough ideas in your head you'll be fine!
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    (Original post by liviluck)
    Do you learn the vocab from the key vocab section of the AQA textbook? Or do you get it elsewhere? Because I have no idea where to start with learning vocab!!
    For learning vocab I really recommend "Palabra por Palabra" by Phil Turk (you can get it quite cheaply on a site like Amazon). It's a fantastic book and my copy is well-worn with use - I use it nearly every day. It contains vocab on all of the AQA topics and also has helpful essay-writing phrases, e.g. a mi modo de ver, vuelvo a mi primera observacion...etc. The AQA textbooks are helpful as well but I've found "Palabra por Palabra" extremely useful. And reading around the topics (in Spanish) as much as possible is important too, for example, articles on websites for Spanish fashion magazines help with vocab. for the Fashion topic.
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    (Original post by Birkatron)
    I'm resiting the exam from last year, I would say definitely make an essay plan no matter how good the question is or how confident you feel make one for sure, last year I stupidly picked the most horrible essay ever about "¿hay un edad mayor para tener un bebe?" I literally have no idea what i was thinking. Also vocab is the main thing to learn there are bound to be one or two words that you don't know last year mine was "estrecha", I had no idea it meant narrow and subsequently lost a mark. Also learn verbs because the gap fills are sometimes tricky.

    hope that helped

    As for my speaking resit. literally dreading it.
    Yeah, I'm definitely going to do a good essay plan, because for some reason I find it harder to structure my essays when I'm writing in Spanish whereas when I'm writing essays in English I don't have a problem with it. I guess it's just a matter of getting to grips with writing in a language which is not my mother tongue.

    I have typed up a 10 page list of vocab (don't know if I'll be able to learn it all but I am hoping that I can!) - do you have any tips for memorising vocab?

    Good luck with your exam, by the way.
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    We get given alot of the vocab on sheets by our teachers, so currently i'm just going through them, I feel slightly more confident this year just because of the fact i know more about the exam structure and what to expect, also i can cram in as much imperfect subjunctive as possible muahahaha to you examiners.

    :P
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    How can I revise for writing? How do I go about structure?
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    hi im also revising for my spanish aslevel, and wanted to do more past papers for practice, does anyone know if the jan 2011 paper available anywhere?
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    (Original post by gullysidhu)
    hi im also revising for my spanish aslevel, and wanted to do more past papers for practice, does anyone know if the jan 2011 paper available anywhere?
    I don't think AQA releases the papers to the general public (i.e. on their public website) until at least six months after the exam - this could be wrong though so I'd check if I were you. I know that they sell exam papers on their online shop so they might have the Jan 2011 paper there or you could e-mail them to ask about it. Good luck with the exam!
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    (Original post by Jowett)
    How can I revise for writing? How do I go about structure?
    The writing section is actually pretty easy when you know how - it's one of my favourite sections. Make sure you make notes on the AQA bullet-points underneath the topic headings (you can look in the specification on the AQA website for a page which lists the AS Spanish topics and suggested sub-topics) and learn vocabulary. Plenty of vocabulary is the key to success, in addition to using a variety of tenses (the imperfect subjunctive + the conditional is a useful combination) and varied grammar.

    Regarding structure, it is very important to make an essay plan (AQA provides an essay planning sheet in your exam paper) so that you don't write a muddled essay. Structure - it depends what type of essay you are writing, e.g. a balanced argument weighing up the pros and cons of an issue, but you should always start an essay with an Introduction (introducing your topic and what you are going to write about) and finish with a Conclusion ('rounding off' your essay and neatly summing up your views and the main points of the essay). Also, use paragraphs as they help make your essay more structured. You can use phrases such as "primero, segundo, tercero" etc. to introduce points and phrases like "concluir" (to conclude), when you are writing the final paragraph of your essay.

    Buena suerte!
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    (Original post by Bella_Cullen)
    I don't think AQA releases the papers to the general public (i.e. on their public website) until at least six months after the exam - this could be wrong though so I'd check if I were you. I know that they sell exam papers on their online shop so they might have the Jan 2011 paper there or you could e-mail them to ask about it. Good luck with the exam!
    thank you !
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    hiii would anyone mind sharing their notes from the specification stuff? i have some but they're pretty basic alsooo anyone know a good general imperfect subjunctive phrase to use in any essay? omg i'm am so nervous about this exam
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    (Original post by mallyjj)
    hiii would anyone mind sharing their notes from the specification stuff? i have some but they're pretty basic alsooo anyone know a good general imperfect subjunctive phrase to use in any essay? omg i'm am so nervous about this exam
    It's good if you use the imperfect subjunctive + the conditional tense, in a sentence like "si yo fuera famosa, compraria una casa grande" (If I were famous, I would buy a big house). Sentences with the imperfect subjunctive + conditional can be used in all topics when you're discussing hypothetical situations. If you do a Google search you will be able to find more info on this. There are a few threads with useful phrases on this site as well if you search for them. Good luck!
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    Yep, attempting to revise for the Spanish exam on Monday...
    Listening to Spanish radio, which really helped for my oral and will help tune the ear to Spanish to prepare for the listening.
    I've also made 'mind maps' or 'spider diagrams' for each sub topic which topic specific vocab and good sentences that my class and teachers have come up with together.

    I find it really really hard to revise for languages, I never did for my GCSE or any of my mocks, but I really want to do well because I want to do Spanish at Uni...


    anyone got any really good tips?
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    (Original post by cerrr)

    anyone got any really good tips?
    Here's a few:

    Read as much Spanish as possible. All of the main Spanish newspapers and magazines have their own websites so you can read articles online.

    Learn as many useful phrases (especially subjunctive phrases) and as much vocabulary as possible.

    Memorise the different tenses and use a variety of tenses in the exam (as many as you can manage to fit in), especially imperfect subjunctive + conditional.

    Listen to as much Spanish as possible (I get Spanish podcasts from iTunes which I listen to on my iPod).

    Do past papers. Read the mark schemes. Test yourself with online Spanish quizzes. AQA Nelson Thornes revision books are good and they sell them for both AS and A2 Spanish (I got my copy from Amazon, by the way).

    Think about the issues and themes presented by the AS topics. Imagine how you would approach them.

    Good luck!
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    (Original post by Birkatron)
    I'm resiting the exam from last year, I would say definitely make an essay plan no matter how good the question is or how confident you feel make one for sure, last year I stupidly picked the most horrible essay ever about "¿hay un edad mayor para tener un bebe?" I literally have no idea what i was thinking. Also vocab is the main thing to learn there are bound to be one or two words that you don't know last year mine was "estrecha", I had no idea it meant narrow and subsequently lost a mark. Also learn verbs because the gap fills are sometimes tricky.

    hope that helped

    As for my speaking resit. literally dreading it.
    Just wondered if you have any tips about the 'cloze' test (the one where you have to manipulate a noun/verb/adjective in a sentence) as that is the question that I really find difficult. I'm not bad on tenses or grammar but I dislike this question.

    The exam is tomorrow so I'm feeling quite nervous now!
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    Right now I'm doing the June 09 listening test X_X It's not bad actually, all I'm doing basically, whilst doing the exam is noting down vocab I don't know, then I'm gonna look at the key vocab for each unit and make sure I know all the irregular forms for all conjugations and blah... Tonight's gonna be fun.
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    anyone have any ideas about what the writing will be about? i'm thinking friendship... i dunno just a feeling :/
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    (Original post by mallyjj)
    anyone have any ideas about what the writing will be about? i'm thinking friendship... i dunno just a feeling :/
    Do you know what essay topics came up in the last paper? And god, don't have any ideas about friendship...
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    in jan the topics were family relaionships, like sharing of household chores, tv, and health and well being

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