New IGCSE English Teacher Wanting Advice

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grady_pendragon
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#1
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#1
Hi guys, I'm a teacher in China, and in the past I have taught SAT and AP English/Literature classes. I'm not so familiar with the IGCSE, so I have a few questions if you don't mind answering. I'm teaching the A and B levels for English.
  1. In the curriculum, it says students will have to know texts like "Touching the Void" and "Taking on the World." Do students have to read the whole novel, or just the selection given in the text book?
  2. How often did your class meet? Mine is scheduled to meet every day for about 45 minutes (the students all have pretty good English).
  3. Is there anything you wish your teacher had done differently? Anything you wanted them to focus on more? Did you feel they prepared you adequately for the test? If any of you still have the syllabus from your class, I would love to take a look at it to compare it to the one I'm making.

Thanks for all your input! I want to give my students the best chance they have at passing the exam.
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Mariosworldxd
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#2
Report 6 years ago
#2
I just took my igcse English this year. To answer your first question they don't have to read the whole novel it's just certain sections picked by the exam board. The classes over here are a little different we only met up once a week for 3 hours not including breaks this is because our coursework for it was fairly high. In my opinion I thought my teacher could of helped a bit more by making some extra classes because I ended up getting a private tutor for the extra help. I hope this helped
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Kusja
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#3
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#3
I just got my results back. I got an A(88) in english as a second language, which I am disappointed in, as my predicted grade was a stable A*. For literature part I got a B(76), which is partially my teachers fault, she didn't give us the actual preparation. In my opinion, she should have taught us better how to write essays and concentrate on that more, with analyses. Even with more knowledge I wouldn't have done better, because of lack of skills to write essays.
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grady_pendragon
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#4
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#4
Yes, thanks! Does the section of the novel chosen by the exam board change every year, or is it the same?
Also, if you used the Edexcel book, did most of your coursework come from that? I find that book to be a bit boring.
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grady_pendragon
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#5
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#5
(Original post by Kusja)
I just got my results back. I got an A(88) in english as a second language, which I am disappointed in, as my predicted grade was a stable A*. For literature part I got a B(76), which is partially my teachers fault, she didn't give us the actual preparation. In my opinion, she should have taught us better how to write essays and concentrate on that more, with analyses. Even with more knowledge I wouldn't have done better, because of lack of skills to write essays.
Sorry to hear it didn't go as you wanted. Thanks for your feedback, I will make sure to include a lot of extra writing and analysis.
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username1750959
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#6
Report 6 years ago
#6
Hiya, iGCSE student in Hong Kong here currently waiting for her results to come out I did CIE English Language (did that last year and got an A*) and World Literature.

1) My teacher liked to remind us during each class to read our assigned books at least twice. More often than not, set text exams and coursework based upon them are closed-book (though your school can opt for an open-book exam, I think) meaning that specific quotes and the-like have to be memorised completely.

So, yes, tell your students to read everything and memorise significant quotes from their novels.

2) Between 3-4 times per week. English every day sounds fun o_O

3) The only thing I really wished my English teacher would have placed more emphasis on were timed exam practices in class, really. Of course, the ever-omnipresent: "do past papers" was always told to us, but I felt as though we could have done more in class. Other than that, exam prep was fairly well-done, with Jeopardy-styled games used to help us remember quotes for just about every theme and character under the sun as well as chapter-by-chapter analyses, for instance.

In terms of syllabus-y things, I'm sorry to say that I don't have anything to offer.
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grady_pendragon
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#7
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#7
(Original post by LeFeuilly)
Hiya, iGCSE student in Hong Kong here currently waiting for her results to come out I did CIE English Language (did that last year and got an A*) and World Literature.

1) My teacher liked to remind us during each class to read our assigned books at least twice. More often than not, set text exams and coursework based upon them are closed-book (though your school can opt for an open-book exam, I think) meaning that specific quotes and the-like have to be memorised completely.

So, yes, tell your students to read everything and memorise significant quotes from their novels.

.
Thanks for your reply! I thought the test makers had supplied at least a few paragraphs from the relevant text on the exam paper, but maybe I am mistaken?
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username1750959
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#8
Report 6 years ago
#8
(Original post by grady_pendragon)
Thanks for your reply! I thought the test makers had supplied at least a few paragraphs from the relevant text on the exam paper, but maybe I am mistaken?
Aye, they do, but you can't use any of the quotes from those paragraphs - which is used for question one: an unseen-styled sort of thing - in the second "blind" question.
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Turtlebunny
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#9
Report 6 years ago
#9
Being familiar with the entire novel is standard, so that those aiming for top grades know what to write about. Use of past papers, and then subsequently markschemes is vital toward exam confidence. Coursework is a huge bonus to do well on, so if there is any, make sure your students produce quality work.
Make sure essay practice is drilled into them. I never really got this - we were just told to follow an incredibly tight format for iGCSE English, so naturally, for the less able (in English) we wern't able to get creative with our writing.
I'm getting my iGCSE English result on the 20th!
If you need any advice from a student's perspective, PM me
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