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HRM1999's A level study journey! Watch

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    Hi there!

    My name is Helen and I'm currently in sixth form doing one AS subject (music, which has less than 5 students in it!) and two A levels (with exams at the end of next year).

    My aims by the end of this academic year are:
    -to be an A/A* in Sociology and/or History (it's really difficult to maintain high grades in Sociology at the moment which leads on to my next goal...)
    -maintain my higher grades throughout the year
    -to get an A or B in music (depending on which part of music we're talking about...I'd love to get an A in both coursework and the final exam but after I got an E in my recent mock exam I'm being realistic and aiming for a B!)

    Long term, I would like to go to a Russell Group uni or somewhere I like the look of (currently awaiting to go to open days and request prospectuses) to do History and then a PGCE! I'd also LOVE to be a primary school teacher in NZ but that's a long long way away...

    I hope you will keep following my 'journey' and feel free to comment any tips or help or anything you want to ask!
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    (Original post by HRM1999)
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    :eek4: from what I've heard, music is quite difficult, as well as your first set of mocks for any AS subject, so don't beat yourself up too much the important thing is to learn from it.

    I like your goal of working in NZ too, would love to know a bit more about that and where it came from.

    Good luck!
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    (Original post by SeanFM)
    :eek4: from what I've heard, music is quite difficult, as well as your first set of mocks for any AS subject, so don't beat yourself up too much the important thing is to learn from it.

    I like your goal of working in NZ too, would love to know a bit more about that and where it came from.

    Good luck!
    Thanks for the advice and best wishes Yeah, my teachers have given us feedback for music and sociology (which I get the result tomorrow hopefully!)

    With regards to NZ, I've never actually been there but have seen so many pictures and my dad really wants to go there too! He's never been nor had any association with it but has said he would visit me if I lived there! I just love the place I mean who wouldn't want to live here?: https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=au...Liug8PNUXpM%3A

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    (Original post by HRM1999)
    Thanks for the advice and best wishes Yeah, my teachers have given us feedback for music and sociology (which I get the result tomorrow hopefully!)

    With regards to NZ, I've never actually been there but have seen so many pictures and my dad really wants to go there too! He's never been nor had any association with it but has said he would visit me if I lived there! I just love the place I mean who wouldn't want to live here?: https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=au...Liug8PNUXpM%3A

    Ooh, fingers crossed

    What a wonderful skyline, the beaches as well :daydreaming: I see why you and your dad like it so much!
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    Week 1: (25th-29th January)

    So this week I had not much homework until Tuesday and then Thursday and today I got given quite a bit. I manage to reduce my work load by quite a bit yesterday, but on Monday (before I started GYG) I had 6-7 hours from when I got home to when I went to bed (inc. dinner) in which I procrastinated doing work (I am a serious procrastinator, which really makes doing work and revision a lot harder!). At first I wasn't at all bothered by this and even asked my friends if they thought it was bad (which they didn't) but I now realise I could've done the essay I got set last week (due Monday) amongst other pieces. Now I have about 8 pieces of work to do, plus reviewing the week's work and then I'm supposed to do wider reading for music and hisory!

    Also this week I got my grade for my sociology mock which I was really happy with; 65% which is a C. Bearing in mind my target/predicted grade is a C for A2, I was pleased! I know what to improve to 'grow my grades' in music and sociology, as they're the ones I had a mock in. With history, I am working at an A/B and had an essay back which I got an A in!

    Overall, music and sociology are a work in progress and history is going really well!

    Any comments feel free, otherwise I'll write here again next week (unless I have any major update in the meantime!)
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    Week 2:

    SUCH A STRESSFUL WEEK (well the end of last week was!)...I had a breakdown last Friday over a Soc essay and in then in History with my favourite teacher on Monday (because I hadn't prepared enough for an assessment because I had spent my weekend working and writing my sociology essay!)...

    I had masses amounts of work at the end of last week; all of which got done on time! (and to a good standard!) This week has been relatively quiet until Wednesday, yesterday (Thursday) and today!

    I have another mock for music after February, 2 music essays to write in an hour; one comparison essay on two musical features in two pieces then one on a different piece. We don't know which pieces it could be so we are expected by our teacher to know lots, if not all, bar numbers for each piece! (5 pieces in total) So that's my half term gone pretty much >

    Sociology is really intersting even though we're still on Education and Culture/Identity (my grade was a C for the mock, which I was happy with!).. I wish I felt the same way about music...I just hate it! History isn't interesting really at the moment, not even the Middle East! We've just got up to the end of the first Civil War in England.

    I really still want to aim for AAB but at the moment I am struggling in all my subjects to achieve that, and with my AS in music fast approaching, I can't stop worrying about what will happen if I fail!

    Also, can't help but think I'm going to have virtually no half term to rest as I'll be either working or doing school work no doubt!


    See you next week!

    Helen
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    So it's now week 3/4 and I'm going to cover the past two weeks in this post! (from the 1st of Feb to now..the 19th Feb)

    Week 3: (8th-12th Feb)

    I can't really remember much from that week other than getting a lot of work! I didn't do much as I wanted to leave it until this week because I knew I had more time to spend on it (I already take quite a while on homework but I mean rather than rushing!)..Motivation wise I had very little! I got my AS Music exam date which is I believe the 23rd of May but it may be the 25th or something completely different! I just couldn't be bothered to do work but knew that was bad, which you would've thought would motivate me!

    I did have one/two wobbly days where I just cried in my History lesson (and it was with my favourite teacher!)...I had an in-class assessment and just had a mental block (I think because I match symptoms of anxiety and I want to see the GP to get properly diagnosed but whether I will or not is another thing...I just don't have time and it's impossible to get an appointment!). She went over with me what I found difficult/we made a list and we've agreed that I'll see her in one of my frees every two weeks and I'll have to do some extra work (which I don't mind) but she said she's determined to help me get an A/A*if that's my personal target! I'll do anything to get the grades I want! (which may make me sound like a nerd but I want to do well for me!)

    Week 4: HALF TERM YAY (15th-19th)

    I fell ill this week so didn't do ANY work from Monday-Wednesday (nothing major!). This meant yesterday and today I had to really get on with work! I did one piece of Sociology yesterday and today I've done 2 pieces and still planning on finishing all of my half term homework by tonight except for music revision as I have a test Wednesday so that will go on until then. I have had more motivation this week but just didn't feel well enough to do much

    Today though I did feel like I need to go over basic things with my teachers just to be reassured that I do know the things! It sounds really selfish but I don't have any confidence in my ability and always doubt myself...

    Anyway, without sounding too self-focused, I hope you will still follow my progress with me! This is definitely helping me to get work done and make me want to do well (not that I ever did want to do badly!)

    See you soon

    Helen
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    Oh and I thought I'd quickly write about the methods etc. I use when doing notes and revising as well as bit more about myself!I use the Cornell method to write my notes for most of my teachers except for one history teacher who makes us write in school books and one of my music teachers who does our theory as she doesn't go in an order! (which is not helpful, especially as she talks really fast and doesn't go over things she has said!) It is very useful for teachers who use a powerpoint and go in an order!For revision, I am going to come up with new methods as I didn't do as well as I wanted in my GCSEs nor A level mocks.However, I am using coloured flashcards for music for the different pieces, and small white ones for bar numbers as I need to know them for each piece:unimpressed: Sociology and will use the site 'quizlet' for History dates. I also use Excel at the moment for Music definitions as it is easier than putting a table into Word! Bubbl.us is good for mindmaps so I recommend that to anyone who is like me and a visual learner!If anyone wants me to put up any pictures of my revision resources I will try to, just comment


    A bit more about me:I play the flute and am studying for my Grade 8 at some point this year (although I was supposed to do it in the Autumn, I didn't practice really in the Summer!) I don't have any pets I would like a King Charles Spaniel though or a Dwarf rabbit (but my parents hate rabbits and won't let me have one :rolleyes:) just because they're both so cute! I love listening to music , especially EDM, Chart music and some Classical but definitely not Opera...I also like watching YouTube videos from ThatcherJoe, Caspar Lee, Zoella, Carly Rowena, Study with Jess and Alice M (these are both study/school help channels so definitely check them out!...) I've met Tanya Burr, go to the same sixth form as her and have her book although I don't watch her videos as much anymore (I don't know if you can tell but I'm running out of interesting things hings to say about myself!) I'm single:laugh: oh and I HATE marmite but love strawberry jamIf you want to know anything else relatively interesting about me just tell me haha (as long as it isn't too personal!)
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    Week 4 & 5: (22nd-26th Feb and 29th-4th)

    So I have been so busy for the past two weeks and when I have free time, I end up spending it on Pinterest......oops. But I had an overload of work the first week back and got it all done. I was rather annoyed that when I went to hand in a music essay I got told by my teacher that she wouldn't be marking it because two of my classmates had basically not done very well and assumed mine was wrong too Not impressed!

    On a more positive note, I met one of my history teachers to discuss how best to go forward with a specific type of essay I find difficult! She said my knowledge is fine and asked what my target grade for next year is (A) and we've developed a 'plan of action'. Also, I've decided that I'm going to do the EPQ (and decided my topic) despite being unsure right up until when I had to to decide!

    Right now, I'm revising for a mini history test tomorrow on Nasserism but I also have a mini test in Sociology on Gender difference in achievement, which I have no idea what to do! (It's with the teacher who I get worst grades with too!)

    I'm thinking of drawing up my revision plan soon for my Music AS hopefully this week if I get time! I'm rather nervous though as music is my worst subject!

    Helen
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    (Original post by HRM1999)
    Week 4 & 5: (22nd-26th Feb and 29th-4th)

    So I have been so busy for the past two weeks and when I have free time, I end up spending it on Pinterest......oops. But I had an overload of work the first week back and got it all done. I was rather annoyed that when I went to hand in a music essay I got told by my teacher that she wouldn't be marking it because two of my classmates had basically not done very well and assumed mine was wrong too Not impressed!

    On a more positive note, I met one of my history teachers to discuss how best to go forward with a specific type of essay I find difficult! She said my knowledge is fine and asked what my target grade for next year is (A) and we've developed a 'plan of action'. Also, I've decided that I'm going to do the EPQ (and decided my topic) despite being unsure right up until when I had to to decide!

    Right now, I'm revising for a mini history test tomorrow on Nasserism but I also have a mini test in Sociology on Gender difference in achievement, which I have no idea what to do! (It's with the teacher who I get worst grades with too!)

    I'm thinking of drawing up my revision plan soon for my Music AS hopefully this week if I get time! I'm rather nervous though as music is my worst subject!

    Helen
    Music is your worst subject? You're working on Grade 8 flute!!!!

    I have two King Charles Spaniels and they are the cutest things ever! We've had two litters of puppies and I can't even...

    Pinterest is where I spend 3/4 of my time too. Your music teacher sounds great! It's typical of a teacher though not to mark a piece of work but I guess they do have a lot to do...

    Good luck with your tests! I'm sure you'll be fine!
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    (Original post by Ara8311a)
    Music is your worst subject? You're working on Grade 8 flute!!!!

    I have two King Charles Spaniels and they are the cutest things ever! We've had two litters of puppies and I can't even...

    Pinterest is where I spend 3/4 of my time too. Your music teacher sounds great! It's typical of a teacher though not to mark a piece of work but I guess they do have a lot to do...

    Good luck with your tests! I'm sure you'll be fine!
    Ah thanks! I just find the theory side really difficult because I don't do a band/orchestra like the other music students do!

    Omg I'm so jealous! I wish we had a dog

    Haha my flute teacher is amazing and my school music lesson teacher is not so! I guess but she doesn't have much excuse when there is only 4 of us in AS and about 6 in A2!

    Thanks for the support! Both got postponed, so one is tomorrow and the other Thursday!

    What subjects do you do?
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    (Original post by HRM1999)
    Ah thanks! I just find the theory side really difficult because I don't do a band/orchestra like the other music students do!

    Omg I'm so jealous! I wish we had a dog

    Haha my flute teacher is amazing and my school music lesson teacher is not so! I guess but she doesn't have much excuse when there is only 4 of us in AS and about 6 in A2!

    Thanks for the support! Both got postponed, so one is tomorrow and the other Thursday!

    What subjects do you do?
    Have you tried musictheory.com? It might not relate to a-level music but it might help! It got me through grade 5 theory in one day.. (Let's say I procrastinated a bit )
    Our school doesn't have big or many music classes for a level but our department's quite good. I don't know what I'd do if it wasn't.
    Good luck with tomorrow's test! I'm currently working on GCSEs but my options are Music, French, IT and Geography. (I'm not taking Music next year though, that much I'm sure about!)
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    (Original post by Ara8311a)
    Have you tried musictheory.com? It might not relate to a-level music but it might help! It got me through grade 5 theory in one day.. (Let's say I procrastinated a bit )
    Our school doesn't have big or many music classes for a level but our department's quite good. I don't know what I'd do if it wasn't.
    Good luck with tomorrow's test! I'm currently working on GCSEs but my options are Music, French, IT and Geography. (I'm not taking Music next year though, that much I'm sure about!)
    I've just had a look at it and some of it is relevant, so thank you for sharing that with me! Haha gotta love a bit of procrastination!

    Thanks! Turned out I had two tests today; my other history teacher gave us one and then I also had my sociology one! Both went well; the history one I got 31/38 which is around B/A I think?

    Yeah, a lot of schools tend to have smaller A level groups because people get put off (I regret taking it and never really wanted to in the first place!)...

    Music GCSE is much more fun; make sure you do all the pieces you are most unsure of (in terms of order of revising) first then go over the ones you find easier! I also took French and got an A (I got a B in music), so as long as you have done well in your controlled assessments (assuming you still have them) then the exam shouldn't worry you too much! Just learn lots of vocab; Linguiscope is useful if you haven't heard of it (it was the main source of my revision for French!), although I'm not sure if your school has to have a membership or if you can register separately!

    If you need any help with music I can try my best to help but I'm aware of certain changes to the course Good luck revising! Starting early is the best thing you can do
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    (Original post by HRM1999)
    I've just had a look at it and some of it is relevant, so thank you for sharing that with me! Haha gotta love a bit of procrastination!

    Thanks! Turned out I had two tests today; my other history teacher gave us one and then I also had my sociology one! Both went well; the history one I got 31/38 which is around B/A I think?

    Yeah, a lot of schools tend to have smaller A level groups because people get put off (I regret taking it and never really wanted to in the first place!)...

    Music GCSE is much more fun; make sure you do all the pieces you are most unsure of (in terms of order of revising) first then go over the ones you find easier! I also took French and got an A (I got a B in music), so as long as you have done well in your controlled assessments (assuming you still have them) then the exam shouldn't worry you too much! Just learn lots of vocab; Linguiscope is useful if you haven't heard of it (it was the main source of my revision for French!), although I'm not sure if your school has to have a membership or if you can register separately!

    If you need any help with music I can try my best to help but I'm aware of certain changes to the course Good luck revising! Starting early is the best thing you can do
    Good to know that it's helpful! Yay! Well done on the test! My teacher asked me once to do a-level, took one look at my composition and hasn't asked again (thank goodness!).

    We don't have pieces to learn. We're with AQA so we have to listen to random songs in the exam and comment on musical terms but thanks for the tips!

    I'd forgotten about Linguascope but I'll try to find my school's username tomorrow (we used it a lot in year 9).

    Thanks! I think I'm okay though for now. Starting early is easier said than done!
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    Week 6 - 7th to 11th March (already!):

    This week was extremely stressful! I was behind with work nearly every day and I'm not really sure why! It's not like I was deliberately avoiding work, I just couldn't seem to get any done! In terms of homework received, I only got 5 pieces, one of which was due during the week so I only have 4 pieces to do! However, one of these is my first draft of my music "sleeve note", of which we have been told very little in terms of how to write it! My friend has done his and he wasn't even in the lesson but I just don't understand how I'm supposed to write it! My teacher (the one who marks our essays) is virtually useless when it comes to this as she hasn't said how to start it, how to include references or the way it should be written! So if anyone can help with sleeve notes/writing them then please help!!

    I've also decided to re-evaluate my targets for the year so instead of aiming for A/A* this year in History and/or Sociology, I'm aiming for a B in history (as I said in my last week's post) and a B/C in Sociology, as I can then aim for As in both next year!

    I have parents evening this week and I'm worried about what my teachers will say especially for Sociology, as I have the teacher who I get the worse grades with rather than the one I get A/Bs with!

    Lastly, I didn't do my revision timetable this week as I'd hoped, however, I will this week! I am determined to get the grades I want and am trying to get more organized! I will see if I can post it on here by the time I do next week's update.

    If there's anything you would like to see/know in my blog, then please let me know! As always, feel free to leave me a comment

    Helen

    P.S My hockey team secured our promotion yesterday, in our last game of the season, so we will be in the same league our 4s have been in (they too will get promoted if they maintain their position!) which is good news for me :P And it's 2 weeks until I go to Lourdes (my friend and I are taking disabled children to go round the town) and it's going to be my first ever flight! Ngl, I'm pretty terrified...
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    Congrats for the hockey team promotion!!! (I'll just pretend to know what that is but it sounds impressive. ) Flying is easy, I've only been on a plane twice but if you stay relaxed the flights are fun. Try to get a window seat if you can though because they're the best! Also take a boiled sweet or something for take off because it makes your ears not pop as much.

    I'm sure you can get the grades you want whatever they are. I hope your parent's evening goes well. Remind your parents before the meeting that this is your teacher you get the worst marks for and it should go a bit better! Hopefully anyway... Good luck!
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    (Original post by Ara8311a)
    Congrats for the hockey team promotion!!! (I'll just pretend to know what that is but it sounds impressive. ) Flying is easy, I've only been on a plane twice but if you stay relaxed the flights are fun. Try to get a window seat if you can though because they're the best! Also take a boiled sweet or something for take off because it makes your ears not pop as much.

    I'm sure you can get the grades you want whatever they are. I hope your parent's evening goes well. Remind your parents before the meeting that this is your teacher you get the worst marks for and it should go a bit better! Hopefully anyway... Good luck!
    Haha thanks! Yeah it is good, it's like a championship team in football being promoted to the premier league!

    I guess I'm just worried that everything that could go wrong with the flight, will.. but that's my anxiety
    I've not heard the thing about the boiled sweet so I will try that!


    Ah thanks, and I will haha but guaranteed he will criticize me in some way (and not constructively!)..But the good news is that I received my marks back for my improvements for one section of my Sociology mock and I got 17/20 (whereas my original was 14/20) which means I got an A in that section and got around a B/A overall!
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    (Original post by HRM1999)
    Haha thanks! Yeah it is good, it's like a championship team in football being promoted to the premier league!

    I guess I'm just worried that everything that could go wrong with the flight, will.. but that's my anxiety
    I've not heard the thing about the boiled sweet so I will try that!


    Ah thanks, and I will haha but guaranteed he will criticize me in some way (and not constructively!)..But the good news is that I received my marks back for my improvements for one section of my Sociology mock and I got 17/20 (whereas my original was 14/20) which means I got an A in that section and got around a B/A overall!
    I'm sorry I've taken so long to reply! I've not been on TSR for a few days!
    I have to admit that I don't understand football but I know the premier league is really good so yay for you! I'm sure the flight will be fine.

    Hope your meeting wasn't too bad! Congrats on your improved mark! You deserve it!!!
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    (Original post by Ara8311a)
    I'm sorry I've taken so long to reply! I've not been on TSR for a few days!
    I have to admit that I don't understand football but I know the premier league is really good so yay for you! I'm sure the flight will be fine.

    Hope your meeting wasn't too bad! Congrats on your improved mark! You deserve it!!!
    Ah no worries! Me neither! Although not because I've been revising (because I haven't started yet!)...I'll be posting my weekly update soon...not sure when though! I may just combine this week amd last week, as I finish early on Thursday!! (Going bowling with a massive group of friends after school which will be fun!)

    I've started planning my revision though which is a start!

    How are you getting on (anyone reading this!)? Let me know what methods do you use to revise?
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    (Original post by HRM1999)
    Ah no worries! Me neither! Although not because I've been revising (because I haven't started yet!)...I'll be posting my weekly update soon...not sure when though! I may just combine this week amd last week, as I finish early on Thursday!! (Going bowling with a massive group of friends after school which will be fun!)

    I've started planning my revision though which is a start!

    How are you getting on (anyone reading this!)? Let me know what methods do you use to revise?

    Planning? That's as far as I seem to get to doing revision. I finished early today too! My friends were all doing tech coursework so I just went home ... Bowling sounds like fun! I hope you had a good time!

    I revise mainly using notes, flashcards, mindmaps and past papers.
 
 
 
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