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How to sort out my English literature and language GCSE Watch

    • Thread Starter

    I am extremely orientated towards maths and science which was evident when it came to my mock results. I got an A* in maths and an A in chemistry, physics and biology. However, my English results... I managed to scrape two Ds in lit and lang... my teacher was very disappointed but myself, I felt like I was never going to achieve at least a C in the real exams.

    I tried my hardest in the exams but English simply does not make sense too me... no matter how many hours I'll spend with my English teacher after school, I simply cannot understand it. Poetry. I cannot infer ANYTHING from a poem. I can't find one thing to say. This morning I was asked to say what the animals being by a pool meant. I sat there for 5 minutes while my teacher gave my gradual clues to what it could've meant... felt like a whole hour to me while every watched me.

    Novels. Of mice and men. Blood brothers. I cannot get my head around why this means this and why this means that. The fact that I just don't get it is so simple it's too simple.

    I urgently need help... are there any effective revision methods for English? How can I develop my poetry skills? How do I actually revise for my texts such as blood brothers and of mice and men?


    English is quite hard to revise for. A good place to make notes about and to analyse poetry is bbc bitesize,it has analysis on areas such as the themes of poems and you could revise any notes you make or print off pages. I'm not sure how you would revise the novels other than reading through them and perhaps doing questions such as past papers or quizes about them. Hope this helps and good luck!

    Luckily most novels and poems that you need to analyse for GCSE English have been analysed to death already. Seek out some past papers, look for other people's thought on these novels. Honestly sometimes just looking up novels on wikipedia can get the cogs turning.

    Tbh I'm kinda jealous, I studied English Language and Literature and uni and got a 2.1, but I'd kill to be good at Maths or Science.

    Try to think about why the author included details about settings, why describe a character a particular way. For of Mice and Men, just try to memorise the characters, their motivations and what happens to them. Why are George and Lennie friends? What do they want? What happens to them? Why does George make his decision at the end? Speculate how he must have felt and why.

    Poetry is very difficult, I used to write them in prose form and analyse the narrative that way, before returning to the original poem and trying to discover why particular metaphors were used and if that new usage infers a second meaning.

    Remember, if you can justify your motivation for something, them it is right even if it seems to contradict others' views. If you make your Point, find the Evidence (a quote) and then Explain how the Evidence proves your point, you have created a coherent answer. All that's left after that is using descriptive words and good spelling and grammar and you'll be on your way to a very good mark.
    Good Luck.
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