darkforest's Stressful Studies!Watch this thread
darkforest's Super Study Stresstival
(a bit like a festival, except more stress and less music)
A brief bit about me
I'm actually a privately taught student, meaning that I teach myself everything and I will be sitting my exams at a private centre in June.
I did attend sixth form for Year 12 and Year 13, but I ended up dropping out in around March of Year 13 last year due to health reasons, deciding to save myself for the next exam season where I'd be better prepared.
I'm pretty much just making this blog to make sure that I do enough work. If I feel obligated to update here with some good progress then I should in theory work harder. (well, that's the plan anyway...)
What I'm studying
Mathematics A2 AQA (old spec)
C3, C4, M1
Further Mathematics AS+A2 AQA (old spec)
FP1, FP2, S1, S2, D2, M2
Physics AS+A2 AQA (new spec)
Originally I was going to sit Chemistry, Maths and Physics in June of Year 13, but then I realised that Chemistry is awful and I'd much rather do Further Maths. So that's what I did, and I started teaching myself in September and finished in early January.
Where I currently am
So I have actually learned all of the content I need to know for the exams, meaning that all I have left is to do the hundreds of past papers on offer for my three subjects. I don't expect to know everything greatly so I will be revising my weaknesses along the way of course.
What I am to achieve
I have UCL as my firm choice for Physics (AAA), and King's College London as my insurance for Physics and Theoretical Physics (AAB). I would realllllly love to get into UCL, and I must at least get into KCL. Therefore I guess my target is AAA, but my real target of course is to do as well as possible.
I think that's everything I need to say... Let's begin!
Today wasn't so grand, I woke up rather late as I couldn't sleep well (bloody insomnia...) and lazed around for a while. I managed to whip myself into gear late into the evening though.
- Core 3 June 2005 - 73/75 - A*
This was a nice start to things. I dropped the two marks due to small errors in my working, since it didn't match the mark scheme well enough. I made up a document where I bullet point these mistakes down so that I don't do it again, e.g. mark the co-ordinates on the inverse trig graphs in radians, not degrees.
- Core 4 June 2005 - 70/75 - A*
This rather annoyed me. I was stumped on a vectors question for a long time and hence didn't have enough time to check through my work. So before my next paper I need to skim over vectors again, and also polynomial division (or whatever it's called in the textbook).
*None of the papers up until 2010 had the A* grade, but I'm just using it here anyway for consistency. These marks are pretty firmly in A* territory from comparing them to the average A* boundaries, so I don't think there's any harm done.
I'm not sure how often I will be updating this, daily seems like it would be an utter slog... but I'll see how it goes.
I couldn't sleep again so I ended up waking up late, didn't do much either.
- Mechanics 1 January 2005 - 60/75 - A/B
So yeah that's pretty depressing. I slipped up majorly on one question, idk what happened but I had a brain fart and just couldn't realise to use the SUVAT equations. Should probably go over that part of the kinematics chapter to make sure I know when to apply SUVAT.
I also switched from my Classwiz calculator to my graphical one to solve a quadratic equation, but the problem is that I entered one of the values as 24sin40, and my calculator was still in radians from my Core 4 paper yesterday. Safe to say I'll be checking to make sure my calculator is in degrees before any mechanics paper...
I'm pretty sad right now so I'm unmotivated and don't feel like doing much. I still want to do at least one more paper today, so I'll probably update this entry later.
- Further Pure 1 January 2005 - 71/75 - A
I'm happy with this It's my first ever FP1 paper so I wasn't expecting a completely solid grade. I did mark this one rather harshly, but my aim in the end is to make sure my answers are the exact same as the MS, that way there's no doubt.
I did make quite a few silly mistakes, so I'm going to make a note of them in my 'exam tips' file so that I (hopefully) don't do it again. Having a graphical calculator gives me so much ease of mind as I can check pretty much all of my answers roughly to see if I did it correctly, though the only issue is that time is not on my side and I won't have enough time to check everything properly.
I managed to somehow procure a cold overnight, so I hardly got any sleep at all. I for some reason didn't start any studying until 7pm, even though I was awake at 10am. Somehow lost about 7 hours of my day, absolutely no idea what happened.
- Statistics 1 January 2005 - 61/75 - A/B
Another **** grade. I did expect to not do great on my first Statistics paper though, as it's all exam technique and stuff for the applied modules. But still, it doesn't make it much less demotivating. It would also help if I knew how to use my calculator, I wasted so much time trying to figure out how to use the statistics functions on my graphical calculator as I've never used them before. I ended up just resorting to the manual methods in most cases.
I also do really awfully on the worded explanation questions as it's very hit and miss whether you say what they want, it's pretty much down to predicting what they want you to say after doing many many papers.
I'd like to do another paper later and I'll edit it onto this post like I did yesterday.
- Statistics 2 January 2006 - 56/75 - B
Lol, loving life. The thing is, I know the content. Well I feel like I do, but maybe not? I'm just so ****ing stupid why do I always mess everything up.
I just make stupid mistakes, and they're not even small mistakes either as they're blatantly obvious to any person with more than one brain cell. I take too long doing the paper anyway. I'm going to stop using my graphical calculator for some questions to save time.
I know I have the time to turn it around, but do I have the ability? Only time will tell I guess...
Thanks for reading, have a good night.
Woke up at about 08:45 this morning which was great.
But then I was feeling rather run down with this cold, so I had a 2 hour nap in the afternoon and got to work shortly after.
- Further Pure 2 January 2006 - 52/75 - B
Not great, but FP2 is a toughie so honestly in hindsight, a B on my first ever paper isn't too bad. I'm also quite proud that I managed to ace the first third of the paper, and then it started to go a little downhill after that.
I guess my struggles were mostly with how the questions are presented. It's a definite step up from the A2 core Maths modules.
But yeah this paper is going to help with my overall revision for this module, as I know now that I need to really understand everything and how/when to apply it, all of that stuff. I possibly need a second textbook as the one from the AQA website leaves much to be desired.
I hope to also do a Mechanics 2 and Decision 2 paper today, so I'll edit those in later.
Thank you, and have a good evening.
So I apologise for the lack of content for this update today, I was sorting out something on my computer which took much longer than I anticipated.
I also haven’t been feeling too good this evening in many aspects, so there’s that too.
Despite all of that I’d still like to do something today, so I’ll see what I can do and possibly update this later on.
Put on Classic FM and lit some relaxation incense, managed to relieve quite a lot of stress so I decided to do a cheeky paper.
Huge thank you to everybody who replied, I really appreciate it.
- Decision 2 June 2005 - 68/75 - A/A*
Honestly I really dislike this module as it's so boring and confusing. I was really dreading doing papers for it as I just thought I would do absolutely dreadful. Luckily though it's a fair bit kinder than D1 in that there are less 'wordy' questions and more 'just apply the same method as you always would' questions, so there's less room for error.
Saying that, I still made a silly mistake (or two) (... or three...) but I think after doing more papers I'll do it less.
Slightly off topic, but here's a video that always manages to make me smile, no matter how I'm feeling. Her infectious laugh and lovely voice.
I'm sharing it in hopes that it will have the same effect on others.
Posting to subscribe! Look forward to following along with how your revision happens and your past paper scores improve!
Missing a huge chunk of my day again, I can't remember where it went or what happened.
I was hoping to do quite a bit of work today but of course I lost time so I've only done one paper so far, I have work tonight but hopefully I can squeeze a Physics paper in or something
- Mechanics 2 June 2005 - 60/75 - A
So I didn't expect it to be such a nice paper. I'm rather annoyed with myself because I completely flunked a 6 marker (didn't realise to make a differential equation...) and I made like 5 silly mistakes across the paper.
I really need to start checking over everything. On the plus side, there weren't any topics I struggled with in general, so I just need to get the exam technique down. The differential equation question caught me by surprise, I'll have to look out for that in the future. I could have completely aced that paper if I wasn't so silly.
If time permits I shall do a Physics paper lately before I leave for work at 22:30, if not I guess I'll be working extra hard tomorrow.
Thank you for reading, and have a good evening.