Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    Hello Everyone! :hello:
    It's me Nacho, homeschooled since 1997 and ongoing, trying to keep up with the world. But it's not like I've never actually seen a school, (i did attend school for a year or so! :cool:) My unschoolng story started when my parents, back in 2005, were doing their research on 'learner autonomy' and decided to experiment on their own children. The theory is to make the student all independent, to study on their own. It was very weird indeed. Everyone, including my friends, thought we were just going to be left illiterate. Homeschooling is not practiced very commonly in our country or you could say, the society I live in. Even I myself was not willing. But well, I did what I was told to do and I just completed my GCSEs back in 2014, successfully getting A*s without any tutor, academy or any teacher at all! All Self-Study!! How much I learned along the way, there is no telling! Be it about study, my career or my dependence. I'm a completely independent student of A' Level now, already a Medical Transcriptionist (with 5 years experience and counting) and a responsible citizen of my country.
    My next ultimate goal is to now get A*A*A* in A'Level and at least with a distinction. I'm about to share my experience, my methods to study and little tips that I learned along the way.

    Whether you are heading for your GCSEs or A'Level, the technique is basically the same.

    #1: Get yourself a copy of syllabus
    The textbooks that you study are in fact, based upon the syllabus that you are required to know. Whether you attend school or college or not, it's equally important for you to know which parts of your topic you are required to focus on and which skills you are going to be assessed for.

    #2: Goals,the fuel for your path to success
    Setting goals is one of the treasures that hold inside the keys to success, ‘Goals' is actually success in chunks.It helps you get organized in the best possible way. You don’t have to worry about not being able to complete syllabi within a preferred time. You know in advance how much you can achieve within a particular time, say six months or a year. Goals can keep one motivated to study. If you easily achieve your first goals, you’ll feel a natural desire to move forward and keep on getting these chunks of success.But Goals can only work for you if they are easily achievable Check yourself how much can you do on daily, weekly or monthly basis. Never start by setting very high goals and expecting yourself to make big jumps in future! No, this is not going to work. You are what you really are. I usually spend one week before starting a task to test myself how much average work can I do daily and after that I make time-tables in accordance with my “capacity” to study. And I know if my set myself goals too high, I’m going to lose a whole lot pretty easily and it'll be too daunting!To sum up, if you are about to take exams in May, you must set up your goals in a way that you should have covered up all your syllabus at least once before February. Then is the time for revision.

    #3: REVISION ( an ultimately important aspect of your study)
    It might seem trifling, like if you go to college, you attended all your lectures and you are in fact, confident that you know it all. But once you revise, you are going to realize what secrets revision holds! you only got 50% of the knowledge the first time you learned a concept. It's in revision, that you gather up the concepts that you got in chunks and connect them together, linking to create one solid mind map. Even if you are going to try past exam papers, don't try before revision, it's all going to mess up!

    #4: Past Exam Papers and Mark Schemes
    Well, we are finally here, in the most important important phase of our study. No matter how much you studied, if you don't practice exam papers, you are going nowhere near As. Now this is VITAL for your exams, read all mark schemes and EVERY EXAMINER REPORT. They are AMAZING, DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE IT! Go through every Past paper, Mark scheme and EXAMINER REPORT and write NOTES for your past papers, like certain questions which used a tricky approach.

    AND finally:
    Study Smart not Hard
    doesn't mean that you stop being serious in your studies, no! It means be to-the-point. See what the examiner requires!

    Well, I've had my turn, now yours! I welcome all kind of suggestions, any advice or anything that could lead me to my beloved A* A'Level result and help me get a distinction! I'm studying Chemistry Biology and Mathematics. For my chemistry and biology I even I have a home science lab, if anyone is interested, I'd post my lab's pictures as well!

    Here is my checklist for past papers that I'll use to keep myself organized in solving past papers:
    Name:  cheklist.jpg
Views: 299
Size:  80.5 KB

    Thank you for hearing my gibberish! I appreciate your patience and would love to hear what you've got to say!

    UPDATE:

    I've also got a lot of flashcards displayed all around my house to help me learn important facts. I just got some pictures. Here they are (aren't very good quality but still, will give you an idea):
    Attachment 505453505293 Name:  IMAG2621.jpg
Views: 283
Size:  347.5 KB Attachment 505455505457
    Attached Images
      
    • TSR Support Team
    • Very Important Poster
    Offline

    21
    ReputationRep:
    TSR Support Team
    Very Important Poster
    Really great to hear your story - I am just about to do my GCSEs: http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show....php?t=3897511

    What methods do you use to revise, apart from past papers?
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by brainzistheword)
    Really great to hear your story - I am just about to do my GCSEs: http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show....php?t=3897511

    What methods do you use to revise, apart from past papers?
    Oh great to hear from you! For Maths revision, I use notes but for Bio and Chem, I think nothing is better than the textbook, I just read my textbook like 3 to 4 times, which helps me solidify my concepts!

    Uh your thread is cool too!
    • TSR Support Team
    • Very Important Poster
    Offline

    21
    ReputationRep:
    TSR Support Team
    Very Important Poster
    (Original post by NachoPhilosopher)
    Oh great to hear from you! For Maths revision, I use notes but for Bio and Chem, I think nothing is better than the textbook, I just read my textbook like 3 to 4 times, which helps me solidify my concepts!

    Uh your thread is cool too!
    Thanks for those methods - I don't think I've ever just read a textbook because we've had it drilled into us at school that we must take notes - although I don't really see why. I will certainly give them a go - thank you
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by brainzistheword)
    Thanks for those methods - I don't think I've ever just read a textbook because we've had it drilled into us at school that we must take notes - although I don't really see why. I will certainly give them a go - thank you
    Yeah you know, if you are using latest books, they cover all your syllabus! and I take help from khanacademy.org as well...it's great site!
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    Have you got aspirations for university in the next few years?

    Your story is truly motivational, I too am studying Maths and Chemistry (and Physics) however I've no idea how I would have self studied Chemistry in particular. What exam boards are you doing?
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by BryonyG98)
    Have you got aspirations for university in the next few years?

    Your story is truly motivational, I too am studying Maths and Chemistry (and Physics) however I've no idea how I would have self studied Chemistry in particular. What exam boards are you doing?
    Thank you!
    I'm taking CIEs.. and you?
    • TSR Support Team
    • Very Important Poster
    Offline

    21
    ReputationRep:
    TSR Support Team
    Very Important Poster
    (Original post by NachoPhilosopher)
    Yeah you know, if you are using latest books, they cover all your syllabus! and I take help from khanacademy.org as well...it's great site!
    Oh that's good to hear and Khan Academy - I 've heard good things about that but never actually tried it - that's my weekend sorted then.

    Thanks again
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by NachoPhilosopher)
    Thank you!
    I'm taking CIEs.. and you?
    Edexcel for Chemistry and Maths and then AQA for Physics (:

    I would be really interested to know how you work your day. Do you "pretend" to have a school timetable or have you got other methods?
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by BryonyG98)
    Edexcel for Chemistry and Maths and then AQA for Physics (:

    I would be really interested to know how you work your day. Do you "pretend" to have a school timetable or have you got other methods?
    Haha...
    Oh Yeah! I pretend to have a school timetable! I've set up everything for myself, like I've to get up early, really early like 6 in the morning, I start studying by 7, from 7 to 8, do chemistry, then Biology. I take breaks, refresh myself, or sometimes it gets too daunting, when I don't understand a concept, but ultimately I do understand!
    But you know what, this homeschooling is very relaxing! like it's all up to me, when I take exams, when I get myself holidays and so on! I'm totally independent, on my own in everything!
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by NachoPhilosopher)
    Haha...
    Oh Yeah! I pretend to have a school timetable! I've set up everything for myself, like I've to get up early, really early like 6 in the morning, I start studying by 7, from 7 to 8, do chemistry, then Biology. I take breaks, refresh myself, or sometimes it gets too daunting, when I don't understand a concept, but ultimately I do understand!
    But you know what, this homeschooling is very relaxing! like it's all up to me, when I take exams, when I get myself holidays and so on! I'm totally independent, on my own in everything!
    So do you get all your work done in the morning do you just take the afternoon off or get ahead ? Sorry for all the questions! Do you not have to take the exams at a centre on the same day as everyone else? Or do you mean smaller exams (mocks or tests)? Who did your reference and predicted grades for university applications?

    Sorry for all of the questions!
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by BryonyG98)
    So do you get all your work done in the morning do you just take the afternoon off or get ahead ? Sorry for all the questions! Do you not have to take the exams at a centre on the same day as everyone else? Or do you mean smaller exams (mocks or tests)? Who did your reference and predicted grades for university applications?

    Sorry for all of the questions!
    Oh no! no problem at all! You may ask whatever you wish to!
    Well, mostly I'm just studying all day long! you can't know how it feels when all the responsibility is yours. I mean like if a college student doesn't get good grades, the fault is half the institution's and half the student's but if I fail, it would mean our system failed! or I failed! This is the motivation that keeps me going, sometimes I do get fed up, but to know your exams are just two months away, I'm just back to my study table!
    I take exams privately, there are centers, British Council, that holds exams for private candidates and they are held at centers, at the same place like for other school candidates. The only difference is that we are being represented by British Council while others by their school or college. I haven't gone for any university yet and I know nothing about it yet!...seems like you have a different system there in your country
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by NachoPhilosopher)
    Oh no! no problem at all! You may ask whatever you wish to!
    Well, mostly I'm just studying all day long! you can't know how it feels when all the responsibility is yours. I mean like if a college student doesn't get good grades, the fault is half the institution's and half the student's but if I fail, it would mean our system failed! or I failed! This is the motivation that keeps me going, sometimes I do get fed up, but to know your exams are just two months away, I'm just back to my study table!
    I take exams privately, there are centers, British Council, that holds exams for private candidates and they are held at centers, at the same place like for other school candidates. The only difference is that we are being represented by British Council while others by their school or college. I haven't gone for any university yet and I know nothing about it yet!...seems like you have a different system there in your country
    What year are you in? I'm in year 13 and in England; hence have applied to university already. That is a really good work ethic; I wish that mine was similar!
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    I'm in Pakistan and our A'Levels are counted as Year 11 and 12, then we get enrolled in university here for Bachelors or we may go abroad for our Bachelors study.
    (Original post by BryonyG98)
    What year are you in? I'm in year 13 and in England; hence have applied to university already. That is a really good work ethic; I wish that mine was similar!
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by NachoPhilosopher)
    I'm in Pakistan and our A'Levels are counted as Year 11 and 12, then we get enrolled in university here for Bachelors or we may go abroad for our Bachelors study.
    are you thinking about staying in Pakistan for university then? what year are you in?
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    Ahh what a great story! Very inspiring, thank you Best of luck to you!
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    aww...thank you so much!
    (Original post by Noooollllaaaa)
    Ahh what a great story! Very inspiring, thank you Best of luck to you!
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    well, I haven't decided yet...it depends upon the situation. I may go abroad for my masters but may be not yet because my parents are currently doing their Ph.d and kinda very busy, so we'll see what happens. I'm in AS so it will be counted as Year 11 and I'll take my A2 in November of 2016 (after six months of AS), which will be counted as my Year 12 so I can get into year 13 next year in uni.
    (Original post by BryonyG98)
    are you thinking about staying in Pakistan for university then? what year are you in?
    Offline

    17
    ReputationRep:
    This is fantastic! What exactly do you mean by study smart and not hard?
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    21
    ReputationRep:
    Study Helper
    (Original post by Someboady)
    This is fantastic! What exactly do you mean by study smart and not hard?
    It's a clichéd phrase used for decades in corporate-speak and means think about what you are doing before doing it. i.e. plan your work intelligently including time management and how you will monitor you are on track for success.

    There is no escaping working hard though, because you still have to learn and apply the syllabus so the phrase is somewhat misleading in that context.
 
 
 
Poll
Do you agree with the PM's proposal to cut tuition fees for some courses?

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.