Tolgarda's Summer 'n' Scholastic GYG! Watch

Tolgarda
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(Original post by Fazzy_77)
Seems like you're getting the hang of chemistry! Great to hear :^_^:
Yeah man. I just hope it can translate into results.

(Original post by Fazzy_77)
That man truly does sound like an inspirational soul.
That much is certain. I believe I arranged to meet up with him again.

(Original post by Matthew2422)
English Lit and Lang! Oof - on another note, I made it! Can i be tagged ahaha
Why oof? Far from it. It's chemistry that you should be having that reaction to if you've seen what that subject has put me through!

I'll tag you!

(Original post by laurawatt)
Amazing that you could help out at open evening :thumbsup:
I honestly don't think it's as great as it sounds, haha. I did enjoy it though!
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Matthew2422
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(Original post by Tolgarda)
Why oof? Far from it. It's chemistry that you should be having that reaction to if you've seen what that subject has put me through!

I'll tag you!
It's just so... English-ey ahaha and I'm trying to convince myself chemistry is a good subject ok ahaha
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(Original post by Matthew2422)
It's just so... English-ey ahaha and I'm trying to convince myself chemistry is a good subject ok ahaha
Well yeah, that's what I'm like! Like with someone taking maths and further maths (although that's far more common).

Chemistry is a good subject. It just may not be an easy one.
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Starting to pick up the pace...






Hello wonderful people that have bothered to read my GYG up to this point or have just decided to drop in now! Sixth form is picking up the pace and we’re approaching the week in which we break up for the Halloween half-term holiday (which is the 18th of October, I believe).

Things have finally starting to get interesting in my subjects, English, so I finally have a lot more to report about. Chemistry is no different, but then again, when isn’t it in this respect?

All I can say is that I better bring my ‘A’ game if I want to actually finish these, because they’re trying to finish me, and they have a reasonable chance of winning. This is a battle that involves serious application, so without further redo, let’s get into the breakdown!


Chemistry

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  • - Learnt about Gibbs free energy.
    - Learnt about Kp
    - Revised rate equations and the rate-determining step and making a standard solution.



My precis of this section began with the organic side of the course, so let’s dive straight into that. During the lesson that I was introduced to this concept, I learn the formula for calculating the entropy of surroundings for a system. There were also some logical connections that could be made regarding the theory (e.g. an exothermic system would have a high/positive entropy of surroundings because the heat released increases the disorder as particles’ mobility is increased with more kinetic energy).

This wasn’t the main part of the lesson though. Gibbs free energy was, which was an equation to calculate the spontaneity of a chemical reaction. Should the answer of the equation (also known as ΔG) be less than zero, the reaction will be spontaneous. Most, if not all, questions on this topic involved synoptic assessment that also brought back some AS knowledge as well. This was because the reaction not only involved the calculation of a reaction’s entropy change (ΔS), but also involved Hess’s cycles to calculate the enthalpy change (ΔH) before we plugged the values into the equation. It wasn’t an immensely difficult concept to grasp because I had a pretty solid foundation here, and I was comfortable with calculating these values.

Speaking of organic chemistry, we still haven’t received the scores for our diagnostic test, but that can be forgiven because our organic teacher is quite busy and is a very genial lad. However, we still have to prepare for another organic test, but this will just be an end-of-topic one, so no real worries here. I might have to recap a few topics like Born–Haber cycles a little more extensively so that I am completely comfortable with this test, but I shouldn’t be too bad for this one. That being said, our organic teacher (Mr N) did say that he’d include a question from any AS organic topic (selected at random). I have a feeling it’s going to be a mechanism question, but I have to be prepared, and he did say that it is just to encourage us to go back and revise content that we were taught in the lower sixth, which is good seeing as, you know, we’re meant to be tested on all of our organic knowledge in the second paper and potentially the third.

Moving on the more physical side of the course, I was introduced to the cousin of Kc, who is called Kp (No, not Kim Possible for anyone that remembers that best of a show). This quantitative equilibrium calculation is suited for gases because, surprise surprise, we don’t seem to use moldm^-3 when we use gases. Fair enough, we can’t exactly warp the rules of science too much. So we just have to use another equation. And, to be fair, this one is fairly similar. When doing some practice questions, I found that the only major difference with Kc was that we had to multiply our molar values at equilibrium with the total pressure before plugging our numbers into the Kp equation. Other than that, the units were different. I think I got a hold of this quite quickly because of the Kc experience, but we’ll have to see. Haha, get it? Anyway, we haven’t done proper exam questions just yet, so I think I should save my hubris for later.

We’re not done with the physical side of the course just yet though, for I had to return to face my nemesis so that I could settle the score. This mumbo jumbo about rate questions really had me stumped for quite a while, until I was introduced to a fresh, new perspective on the topic. In essence, the whole idea was based on the fact that there was not one sole mechanism for a chemical reaction. Rather, there was at least two. The other intricacies of the topic seemed to be predicated on this, and the fact that by deciding which step was the slowest, and which reactants (as ions in the mechanism) actually influenced the rate of reaction if their concentration was increased. By understanding the chemistry here, I could decode what some exam questions were really asking for when I was presented with a table of data and a graph. I grasped the gist of this concept and some of the terminology too (e.g. with respect to…). Now, I could isolate the data and get to the bottom of the question. I just have to repeat this process so that it becomes as effortless and painless as Hess’s cycles (honestly, that **** took me long enough).

Finally, I decided to look back on some questions I fudged up on in my organic diagnostic test. One of them involved a six marker that called my practical skills into question. Honestly, I hate these because my practical skills are just absolute codswallop (to put it nicely). I actually learnt the process of making a standard solution of, well, any acid really, by rote. I actually have it stuck on the door of my fridge. The process actually seems so simple and I did feel like my head was crashing against a wall when I realised it, but this just ensures that I won’t suffer such a humiliation if I need to answer it again.


English literature

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  • - I received my Hamlet assessment back.
    - I received a mark for my critical-appreciation homework task.
    - I continued to add the finishing touches to my NEA.




I was given a raw score for my first Hamlet assessment of the year. If you read my last update, you’ll know that I wasn’t too impressed by either of the parts for the question. With the dodgy excerpt and everything, I do believe as though I did what I could. I didn’t even properly remember where the scene I received placed (it was from Act 3), so Ophelia for part b definitely wasn’t easy either. Anyway, to get to my actual performance. I scored 12/15 for both parts, making a total of 24/30 marks, a solid C grade. Not bad for my first assessment of the year for this section of the exam. It can only improve from here (I hope). I got some decent feedback here. For part a, I need to make sure that I balance my analysis so that I don’t have disproportionately more language or structure than form. This is important if you’re trying to reach the higher levels. Part b’s criticism was a little basic and annoying, and it basically targeted my register. My style was far from academic in some areas when I decided to jump into the essay myself for the bits that discussed the extent of agreement with the question’s proposition. Not only that, but my critics weren’t used in a way that strengthened my arguments or helped the essay much at all. They were simply there to tick the AO5 box. Thus, I plan to shake things up a little next time.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the course, I received marks for my second attempt at a critical appreciation of an excerpt from a dystopian novel. This one was The Chrysalids and it was about a scene involving a dream and the narrator’s life growing up. Quite a decent excerpt to analyse for AO2 (the bulk of this essay). I actually procrastinated and wrote this quite quickly in the early morning, so I wasn’t expecting a masterpiece. I was awarded a mark of 21 out of 30. Not too shabby. Obviously, I would have liked more, and a female friend of mine actually scored 22/30, so it’s not exactly impossible at this stage. I think that practice and wider reading are truly integral to success in this section because you need to have a broad knowledge of the genre to make some strong AO1 links, but also need to know how to apply your AO2 knowledge as the prose will be unseen. It’s very similar to the reading-comprehension section in a GCSE English language paper. This is probably one of the sections I’d like to score the highest on because I really enjoy analysing language, form and structure.

Finally, onto the non-exam assessed component of the course. This is probably the most tedious part of the course, but it has to be done, and I’m coming to the end of it all as well. Really, I’m finishing integrating paragraphs to bolster my AO4 in my comparative essay, but I should probably revisit my close-reading piece because I haven’t even seen, let alone amend, that piece in a while. I’m not too far off the full fifteen marks though, so I think that it would be good if I returned to it soon.


English language

Summary:

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  • - I wrote an opinion article on PC language.
    - We had our first lesson on texts and representations since the lower sixth.
    - I am ready to get to the final part of my NEA.




So, the best part of this week that pertained to this subject has definitely got to be the opinion article that I wrote on political correctness (in the linguistic sense, that is). This task is similar to our transactional writing one in GCSE, except there are a few differences: linguistic theory must be included in an article for a common audience, the creativity of the piece is worth approximately 33.3% if we are looking at things from an assessment-objective standpoint (where at GCSE it was actually nearly double that with a huge weighting of 60%). The article was actually derived from the 2018 paper. It was quite an interesting one to say the least, and it was definitely very well written. I think I became a bit of a socialist sympathiser with how left-leaning my article was, especially with the fact that I think I took a weird approach, which aimed to completely refute the article rather than actually ‘evaluate’ the sentiments expressed in it. That being said, it read quite well and I was pretty proud of it myself, especially since I forgot to revise for it (no seriously, the only reason I remembered because a peer asked, ‘I wonder if it’s open book?’). I’m curious to see the mark I am awarded.

Oh also, that reminds me of something! We’ve finally moved on from the ****ing NEA! Yes! Well, not entirely, because we have to continue it at home, but that doesn’t matter. It’s about time we moved onto exam technique. This lesson began with a technique our English department seems to foam at the mouth at, which is something related to information retrieval. Basically, our starters in all of our English lessons ask a few short and snappy questions testing our knowledge, and the ones that can’t be answered are researched at home. However, what this has apparently been proven to do (and what I feel it has done for me) is make me plumb to the deepest depths of my memory. We then went over the mark scheme and the exam rubric for Section A of the first paper, which will be in our December mocks. It’s a section worth 70 marks, with two 20-mark questions (10 marks for identifying different language features with accuracy and precision; 15 marks for historical, social, political and cultural context) and one 25 marker (with all marks being devoted to comparison with linguistic analysis). And finally, we were introduced to a modern text, one that we will be assessed on in Tuesday’s lesson for our tracking grade. So, no pressure or anything really.

There’s not much to talk about with NEA. It’s pretty much the same, collect more data and analyse it. I’ve now begun my analysis thanks to collecting data for female practitioners in both fields, so that should be interesting. I finally have a date for the collection of my data for a male science teacher. It’s all starting to come together though, which is nice. As you can tell by the length of these NEA paragraphs, there’s not much more to write or discuss. I’m definitely thankful that these awful things come to an end because I detest them so much.


Other things

So, I was actually one of the assistants on our school’s open evening for those transitioning into KS3. More specifically, I was an assistant for the English department, so it was nice helping them and greeting parents and all that jazz. It was also difficult to an extent because I had limited knowledge of their KS3 curriculum (you know, the thing they actually came there for). We had displays for the future of their children, which included KS4 and KS5. I had to say, when presenting those curricula to the parents, I seemed far more engaged. After all, I’ve been enmeshed in that stuff for a while now. That being said, I had looked at some KS3 work beforehand and seen how our school actually doesn’t use any prescribed texts, but rather a theme (which is ‘love through the ages’ in this case), and it's quite wide in scope. The rather broad range of texts even manages to fit in some classical Greek and Roman literature. I don’t know how fun that is for the students, and I honestly felt that it made us look like a bunch of slightly pretentious dilettantes at first, but hey ho, it’s there.

I decided to explain it very superficially but employed the ‘waffly’ style that was just about good enough to make most decent-looking crap seem quite good. Obviously, I didn’t do this often, but if I felt obliged to explain it because no one else was really there, I just had the little bombastic comments about it in my head, haha.

Another thing that I had, which was the highlight of my week, was speak to another chap in his 40s who had overcome his visual disability. Seriously, his vision was slightly worse than mine, and we both had nystagmus, but he also had a plethora of other ocular impairments that really made me feel quite fortunate for myself. However, he had gone extremely far in life, and seemed to thoroughly enjoy it. I actually skipped a literature assessment (30-mark comparative essay between Rossetti and Ibsen. Lol, byeee) to speak to this person over some nice tea and biscuits.

He took me through some basic but fundamental tenets of his. The first of which was spirit and desire. This message seems platitudinous at first but it means something very different when the message can be received on a personal level. At school, he was seen as a ‘rebellious’ pupil for merely asking if he could move forward to see the chalkboard or because he had his neck backwards (which was unavoidable due to his disability). Objects were even blithely lobbed at him. School was truly a different place in the ’80s! Compounded with this, there were no laptops to write on, and no extra time in his exams! What? I still find this incredibly impressive, especially seeing as he still managed to matriculate at Cambridge University to read history and politics. His visual disability wasn’t understood, even during his years in higher education (i.e. the ’90s). English society certainly has changed a lot! He told me that the reason he got through all of those years, including his two at law school (which he said he ‘wouldn’t give to his greatest enemy’, haha), was because his passion and determination was true and genuine. He developed an indifference to reactions about his sight and simply moved on and was motivated to continue and succeed. ‘Never giving up’ had never sounded so novel! The ability to persevere seemed like a superpower in this instance. He now runs his own law firm and has been with quite a few important people as a solicitor (including an invitation to Parliament).

The next was about confidence, along with a reasonable degree of arrogance sprinkled in there as well. **** like imposter syndrome and timidity just wouldn’t cut it for someone in our position, and it usually doesn’t for most people either. He allowed me to use a phrase that he had, and so I will use it here because it is absolutely brilliant: ‘you either have the arrogance to fake the confidence, or the confidence to fake the arrogance’ (this creativity is probably why he’s about to publish his third book!) His ability to manage most tasks with aplomb despite his poor hand he was dealt in life was down to this principle. For example, he mentioned about how whenever he’s in a room, he tells himself that he ‘owns it’. He basically dominates it and plans to ensure that he has control of his situations despite his disability. He doesn’t do it in an overpowering sense, but he does it in such a way that he can have quite a great presence in a pub or get an audience to completely focus on him (he gave a few brilliant examples here).

He also discussed the importance of connections in life, and how knowing the right people can easily set you on a much more successful path. The ability to socialise well is incredibly crucial. He used the analogy of the spider’s web and how so many doors can be opened if we continue to thread our web. He talked about life as a series of peaks and troughs, and that if we continue to help ourselves by helping others and networking, these peaks will probably last longer and the troughs will be shortened.

Love was rooted in all of his work. He taught me the value of immense passion, which he simple described as ‘putting some love into it’. This was incredibly important because to actually care for your work, even the most mundane bits, can really turn things in life around. Another thing to extending your peaks and shortening your troughs. I was given the example of taking immense care when making a cheese sandwich, like properly grating the cheese, buttering the bread properly, serving it on a nice tray and even having a good drink and some vegetables on the side. Not many people care that much about the little details, but sometimes they’re the ones that count the most. It’s easy to forget that, but your life can become better if you take the time to remember it.

He finished it off with a talk about he was glad that he is invited and appreciated not to tick a box and say that they are all-inclusive by showing a disabled person, but actually because he deserved it and was given the opportunity based on his merits, just like any other ‘nor mal’ guy (he had a little rant about that word as well, haha).

It was well worth missing the little assessment, in my opinion. This is the kind of edification that school doesn’t normally teach you, so I was very fortunate. I was also quite inspired to apply this to my life.



I’ll be impressed if anyone has got enough time and/or energy to get this far, ahha. Thanks to all for reading!



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It’s actually amazing how many new words and concepts I learn from reading your gyg ..... I don’t have much to say tbh .... stay on the grind! Also I had some quick questions: are you an early or late applicant? What courses are you thinking of applying to and at what unis?
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Tolgarda
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(Original post by FlawlessChicken)
It’s actually amazing how many new words and concepts I learn from reading your gyg ..... I don’t have much to say tbh .... stay on the grind!
Thanks bro.

(Original post by FlawlessChicken)
Also I had some quick questions: are you an early or late applicant? What courses are you thinking of applying to and at what unis?
I'm probably going to be a late applicant. I'm not going in for early entry.

I'm probably applying for English literature at... well, I'm not too sure. Probably Durham, Birmingham, Leeds, something along those lines.

Honestly, I'm trying to look for good university alternatives, but there aren't many with English as it's quite an academic pursuit. That being said, I did find this. So yeah, I'm still in search to see if there are other routes that I can equally enjoy.
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FlawlessChicken
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(Original post by Tolgarda)
Thanks bro.



I'm probably going to be a late applicant. I'm not going in for early entry.

I'm probably applying for English literature at... well, I'm not too sure. Probably Durham, Birmingham, Leeds, something along those lines.

Honestly, I'm trying to look for good university alternatives, but there aren't many with English as it's quite an academic pursuit. That being said, I did find this. So yeah, I'm still in search to see if there are other routes that I can equally enjoy.
Wow yh digital journalism does sound really cool. I feel like whatever you'd do well. One piece of advice would be to never narrow your search. Always look out for more opportunities ... coz the best things in life usually come as surprises!
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yooo i learn so many new words in this blog its insane lmao
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Tolgarda
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(Original post by FlawlessChicken)
Wow yh digital journalism does sound really cool. I feel like whatever you'd do well. One piece of advice would be to never narrow your search. Always look out for more opportunities ... coz the best things in life usually come as surprises!
Yes, I completely agree. Maybe university just isn't the right path for me. We have to always keep our options open.
(Original post by troubletracking)
yooo i learn so many new words in this blog its insane lmao
Same with many blogs and posts I read on here too. Anyway, maybe it's good? I mean, at the end of the lower sixth (after my mocks), my English teacher, who has known me for a while, said that she saw the quality of my writing deteriorate over the year because she thought that I had got a little too cocky since GCSEs. An example of this was my basic phrasing (e.g. 'By looking at...' instead of 'In evaluating...').

I've been trying to improve it since. Let's see what happens.
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My pill of elation and stress negation







Greetings all. As you can see, I'm trying out a new font. Do tell me what you think of this decision. I also have an announcement to make.


I used to be under the impression that mental illness was a pitiful excuse used by the more cunning, indolent mendacious members of our workforce that tried to malinger… I was wrong. Very, very wrong, and so too were those that practically duped me into believing this erroneous notion for such a long time. But I forgive them, just as I have forgiven myself. After all, we were only as nescient as each other. But now it’s time to take the right steps forward. The right course of action, one that will lead to a happier, more mentally healthy world.

Some people, however, still think that mental illnesses are faux because they are invisible. But these mental illnesses were visible enough to hold their victims hostage on the inside, and real enough to, in some cases, end their lives. PTSD killed more American soldiers that served in Vietnam than the war itself. Is that not enough? The fact that malicious weapons and lethal traps actually didn’t take more lives than the minds of those lives themselves?

By virtue of the strong stigma that binds so tightly to mental-health issues, many people do not seek professional, medical advice when they can to stop or mitigate the incredibly deleterious deterioration of their mental state. Thus, mental illnesses are usually like standing on an active railway track with a speeding train hurtling towards you. You know you’re on a bad path, but you only see the real danger, the train, at the last second, and all the damage, every last bit of it, is thrust upon you in that last second. The final blow, the fatal one. You never even gave yourself a chance, and life doesn't give you a second. Suicide is NOT the ‘coward’s way out’. It is the fatal virus that is able to enter the body once your true last defence, your spirit, fails in fulfilling its duty guarding you, which can happen for a myriad of reasons. That is what suicide is. Not running away from your problems. Death is no escape route. Death is death. It is the end of a journey, the journey of life, and one that you can never go back on. It should never be taken lightly, and everything in our power should be done to prevent it.

We are mammals, not machines. Blood runs through our veins, not hydraulic fluid through pipes. We run on emotions, not discrete, algorithmic programmes. The sooner we all realise and accept this fact, the better for our fight against mental health.

All of this is why I was proud to don yellow a few days ago on Mental-Health Awareness Day. It is a globally recognised issue and should be treated as such.

---------------------------------------------------------

Apologies for the slightly sombre introduction there. A little bit of it was macabre, but I learnt a disturbing, personal fact this week.

Moving on to my personal matters, this week was quite eventful. I’m also thinking of adding a QotD (Question of the Day) in my posts, if that’s alright by you guys? Along with this, I’m thinking of uploading my essays (and potentially other exam scripts) to an exclusive Google Drive document for this blog if anyone would want to read them, if anyone cares in enough.

CHEMISTRY

Summary:

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  • Revised the Arrhenius equation.
  • Sat my test on chemical thermodynamics.
  • Received my organic diagnostic test result.






Chemistry can sometimes so beautifully juxtapose simplicity and complexity that it puts my creativity on the verge of tears because of how difficult it can sometimes be for me. The sheer power of the Arrhenius equation is its ability to quantitatively analyse chemical reactions, pretty much the core of this subject, effectively, efficiently and elegantly. The equation’s subject is the rate constant, simple known as ‘k’, which accounts for all factors that influence a chemical reaction’s rate (pressure, temperature and a catalyst – relating to collision theory here). I did not realise the significant of ‘k’ when going over this previously. It is a number that tells a lot about a little. While the equation looks simple, the symbols factor a lot in. I was thinking of going into this further, but my blog is about my opinions rather than it being a chemistry class.

In the freshness of the Friday morning, I sat my end-of-unit exam on chemical thermodynamics, a module that was quite interesting for me, and also easy to grasp (for the most part). Now my tests are usually internally enlarged (the awarding body modifies the exam papers for the real thing), but this one was done in a slightly irritating format because it wasn’t clipped together, and it was double-sided, so on lengthy questions that extended to other pages (because of the size-36 font), I could lose track and waste time having to flip pages or find the right data. It didn’t affect my performance entirely and it is nothing to fall back on if I underperform relative to my expectations (which were honestly very different before I sat the test to what they currently are). There was only one Born–Haber cycle question (phew!), and it wasn’t too strange. I think I lost around one or two marks on it out of around six? Oh well, we’ll have to see. One thing that angered me a little was the fact that I believe I missed two or three questions out because I had pages and a periodic table spread out everywhere and probably forgot to return to them or something. I really don’t actually know why I didn’t even go back and attempt those. I may have just forgot about them? My area was in disarray for a majority of it haha. Whatever, it’s done and dusted now. There was also no enthalpy of solution, which upset me because they are actually quite nice questions. The predictable ones on Gibbs free energy along with entropy made their appearance. And the surprise AS question was on… alcohols (mostly alcohol production, but also on the structures and reactions of primary, secondary and tertiary alcohols). My organic teacher (Mr N) said that it was a nice way to transition onto the next part of the course we would be taught, which was chemically organic in nature.

Now, onto the more nerve-racking bit of this section of my blog this week: my diagnostic test result. I had been eagerly awaiting for a few weeks now. I didn’t even care if I had flunked the exam, I just wanted to know how I fared! I received it instantly after my end-of-topic test on Friday, and the result is the following…

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As you may be able to tell, I was quite pleased. Delighted, if I’m being completely honest here. It gave me a spring in my step. Although I just about hit the boundary with that mark, it was the confidence boost that I need to prove to myself that I could maybe accomplish the unthinkable. I earnestly hope that I am able to maintain the work ethic and desire that has helped me increase my performance from what was an E in June this grade now. It’s time to go further. I want to prove that my ability is a fact, and the score is not a fluke. With the small scenes of jubilation out of the way, the pressure to perform is on!


ENGLISH LITERATURE

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  • NEA nearly done.


Honestly not much to do here. I’m so close to refining comparative essay on postcolonial literature. I just have to look over the last paragraph, add my conclusion and possibly a little more AO5.

I also just need to go over my close-reading NEA and add some finishing touches. I haven’t looked at that piece of NEA for a while, but I can’t run away from my responsibilities so easily.

It’s all the same and all a little vague. Hours seem to last years in these lessons. I am also yet to receive my latest mark for my dystopian-genre critical appreciation.

My NEA deadline is on 18 October, which is also the day we break up for the half-term holiday. I feel as though I really should make it.


ENGLISH LANGUAGE


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  • Nearly finished NEA.
  • Did my first texts-and-representations assessment in exam conditions.
  • Received my result for article.




As with English literature, the NEA chapter of this course is coming to a close for me. However, unlike literature, I still have to collect some data and finish the analysis, along with writing up a conclusion. So, this will be quite a close finish, and compounded with all of this is the fact that my NEA gets increased scrutiny because I fall into the ‘ablest’ category of student out of both groups, which means that the teacher really wants me to attain every single one of those twenty-five marks on offer. This investigation has been a stultifying process. A brutally arduous journey at times.

On Tuesday, I wrote my first texts-and-representations essay in quite a while. It was also my first ever in exam conditions, so it was quite interesting to see how I coped with an unseen text (which was a blog about a Gothic festival in Yorkshire). I think I did pretty well, actually. The awkward thing about this was that we were only assessed on AO3. Fair enough, more marks come from that than AO1, but I just could not write an essay responding to a question from this section of the course without that AO. I knew it was slightly redundant, but I feel that it helped me write a more fluent and succinct response. We’ll see how well this goes next week when I receive my score.

Speaking of results, the mark that was awarded for my article in response to Text A from the second paper of the 2018 examination series was given to me. I had a feeling the article went alright, although there were some things I could have changed. The raw score is below:

Spoiler:
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So, as you can see, there is definitely room for improvement, especially for AO2. However, I am quite impressed with myself because I hadn’t written an article like this in a while. I also hadn’t revised or brushed up on linguistic theory. This was, once again, the first time I had written a response to this type of question in controlled-assessment conditions. So yeah, if I actually try, I might get somewhere.



OTHER THINGS


The proper first draft of my UCAS personal statement went through the rigorous quality control that my school has in place. Like the security at an airport, my teachers’ advanced X-Rays that passed through what my eyes could see when looking at my work detected a few ‘lapses in clarity’ and improvements that could be made to make the statement more ‘personal’. After rapidly producing a second draft, I’m pleased to say that only a few minor details need to be looked at before I send it off. The amendments are small alterations that probably wouldn’t be so important in most other contexts, but I’m pleased to declare that my application is nearly complete!

I also had my first lesson as a ‘subject ambassador’. I basically did what I had done throughout the lower sixth, which was joining in GCSE English lessons and help teachers and students alike. Only now I have a little more of an official status with a title and everything. We have mixed ability classes, so it’s always interesting to see what the mixed bag has to offer. These classes have an eclectic character because there’s no homogeneity in any department that I can really think of, or at least any major one that might make for a duller learning environment. It’s fun to help. And while I go over Romeo and Juliet for the third time in this school, the different impressions Shakespeare’s characters have on different classes, and the different interpretations this begets, never cease to amaze me. I’m so glad that I negotiated this role. I can’t wait for the next lesson. It is a testament to the beauty of literature. The beauty in the wonderful array of ways to engage with the same text. This stuff’ll never get old.


Thanks to everyone that read.

Tag list:


Last edited by Tolgarda; 4 weeks ago
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laurawatt
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Wow! I love how eloquently you write your posts! :hugs:
Well done for your chemistry test, and your student ambassador role sounds really cool
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FlawlessChicken
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The font is pretty. I remember using it for my computer science gcse NEA ... so it was somewhat .... nostalgic? Qotd sounds cool as well. I was gonna do one for my gyg but I would think of boring questions ... lmao.

Well done with nearly finishing your NEA! Lots of people in my school who are doing English were stressi spaghetti last week coz some of them had done hardly anything. Also congrats on nearly finishing your PS, you still have time but it's obviously better to finish it early so you don't need to worry about it!

You're doing a different topic to me in Chem. I think we start thermodynamics and the Arrhenius equation in a few months time. Good luck with Chem and that's an amazing exam result btw .... it clearly shows that putting in hard work gives you results!
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8472
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(Original post by Tolgarda)







My pill of elation and stress negation







Greetings all. As you can see, I'm trying out a new font. Do tell me what you think of this decision. I also have an announcement to make.


I used to be under the impression that mental illness was a pitiful excuse used by the more cunning, indolent mendacious members of our workforce that tried to malinger… I was wrong. Very, very wrong, and so too were those that practically duped me into believing this erroneous notion for such a long time. But I forgive them, just as I have forgiven myself. After all, we were only as nescient as each other. But now it’s time to take the right steps forward. The right course of action, one that will lead to a happier, more mentally healthy world.

Some people, however, still think that mental illnesses are faux because they are invisible. But these mental illnesses were visible enough to hold their victims hostage on the inside, and real enough to, in some cases, end their lives. PTSD killed more American soldiers that served in Vietnam than the war itself. Is that not enough? The fact that malicious weapons and lethal traps actually didn’t take more lives than the minds of those lives themselves?

By virtue of the strong stigma that binds so tightly to mental-health issues, many people do not seek professional, medical advice when they can to stop or mitigate the incredibly deleterious deterioration of their mental state. Thus, mental illnesses are usually like standing on an active railway track with a speeding train hurtling towards you. You know you’re on a bad path, but you only see the real danger, the train, at the last second, and all the damage, every last bit of it, is thrust upon you in that last second. The final blow, the fatal one. You never even gave yourself a chance, and life doesn't give you a second. Suicide is NOT the ‘coward’s way out’. It is the fatal virus that is able to enter the body once your true last defence, your spirit, fails in fulfilling its duty guarding you, which can happen for a myriad of reasons. That is what suicide is. Not running away from your problems. Death is no escape route. Death is death. It is the end of a journey, the journey of life, and one that you can never go back on. It should never be taken lightly, and everything in our power should be done to prevent it.

We are mammals, not machines. Blood runs through our veins, not hydraulic fluid through pipes. We run on emotions, not discrete, algorithmic programmes. The sooner we all realise and accept this fact, the better for our fight against mental health.

All of this is why I was proud to don yellow a few days ago on Mental-Health Awareness Day. It is a globally recognised issue and should be treated as such.

---------------------------------------------------------

Apologies for the slightly sombre introduction there. A little bit of it was macabre, but I learnt a disturbing, personal fact this week.

Moving on to my personal matters, this week was quite eventful. I’m also thinking of adding a QotD (Question of the Day) in my posts, if that’s alright by you guys? Along with this, I’m thinking of uploading my essays (and potentially other exam scripts) to an exclusive Google Drive document for this blog if anyone would want to read them, if anyone cares in enough.

CHEMISTRY

Summary:

Spoiler:
Show







  • Revised the Arrhenius equation.
  • Sat my test on chemical thermodynamics.
  • Received my organic diagnostic test result.






Chemistry can sometimes so beautifully juxtapose simplicity and complexity that it puts my creativity on the verge of tears because of how difficult it can sometimes be for me. The sheer power of the Arrhenius equation is its ability to quantitatively analyse chemical reactions, pretty much the core of this subject, effectively, efficiently and elegantly. The equation’s subject is the rate constant, simple known as ‘k’, which accounts for all factors that influence a chemical reaction’s rate (pressure, temperature and a catalyst – relating to collision theory here). I did not realise the significant of ‘k’ when going over this previously. It is a number that tells a lot about a little. While the equation looks simple, the symbols factor a lot in. I was thinking of going into this further, but my blog is about my opinions rather than it being a chemistry class.

In the freshness of the Friday morning, I sat my end-of-unit exam on chemical thermodynamics, a module that was quite interesting for me, and also easy to grasp (for the most part). Now my tests are usually internally enlarged (the awarding body modifies the exam papers for the real thing), but this one was done in a slightly irritating format because it wasn’t clipped together, and it was double-sided, so on lengthy questions that extended to other pages (because of the size-36 font), I could lose track and waste time having to flip pages or find the right data. It didn’t affect my performance entirely and it is nothing to fall back on if I underperform relative to my expectations (which were honestly very different before I sat the test to what they currently are). There was only one Born–Haber cycle question (phew!), and it wasn’t too strange. I think I lost around one or two marks on it out of around six? Oh well, we’ll have to see. One thing that angered me a little was the fact that I believe I missed two or three questions out because I had pages and a periodic table spread out everywhere and probably forgot to return to them or something. I really don’t actually know why I didn’t even go back and attempt those. I may have just forgot about them? My area was in disarray for a majority of it haha. Whatever, it’s done and dusted now. There was also no enthalpy of solution, which upset me because they are actually quite nice questions. The predictable ones on Gibbs free energy along with entropy made their appearance. And the surprise AS question was on… alcohols (mostly alcohol production, but also on the structures and reactions of primary, secondary and tertiary alcohols). My organic teacher (Mr N) said that it was a nice way to transition onto the next part of the course we would be taught, which was chemically organic in nature.

Now, onto the more nerve-racking bit of this section of my blog this week: my diagnostic test result. I had been eagerly awaiting for a few weeks now. I didn’t even care if I had flunked the exam, I just wanted to know how I fared! I received it instantly after my end-of-topic test on Friday, and the result is the following…

Spoiler:
Show





Name:  TSR Chem result proof.jpg
Views: 23
Size:  491.8 KB



As you may be able to tell, I was quite pleased. Delighted, if I’m being completely honest here. It gave me a spring in my step. Although I just about hit the boundary with that mark, it was the confidence boost that I need to prove to myself that I could maybe accomplish the unthinkable. I earnestly hope that I am able to maintain the work ethic and desire that has helped me increase my performance from what was an E in June this grade now. It’s time to go further. I want to prove that my ability is a fact, and the score is not a fluke. With the small scenes of jubilation out of the way, the pressure to perform is on!


ENGLISH LITERATURE

Spoiler:
Show



  • NEA nearly done.


Honestly not much to do here. I’m so close to refining comparative essay on postcolonial literature. I just have to look over the last paragraph, add my conclusion and possibly a little more AO5.

I also just need to go over my close-reading NEA and add some finishing touches. I haven’t looked at that piece of NEA for a while, but I can’t run away from my responsibilities so easily.

It’s all the same and all a little vague. Hours seem to last years in these lessons. I am also yet to receive my latest mark for my dystopian-genre critical appreciation.

My NEA deadline is on 18 October, which is also the day we break up for the half-term holiday. I feel as though I really should make it.


ENGLISH LANGUAGE


Summary:

Spoiler:
Show

  • Nearly finished NEA.
  • Did my first texts-and-representations assessment in exam conditions.
  • Received my result for article.




As with English literature, the NEA chapter of this course is coming to a close for me. However, unlike literature, I still have to collect some data and finish the analysis, along with writing up a conclusion. So, this will be quite a close finish, and compounded with all of this is the fact that my NEA gets increased scrutiny because I fall into the ‘ablest’ category of student out of both groups, which means that the teacher really wants me to attain every single one of those twenty-five marks on offer. This investigation has been a stultifying process. A brutally arduous journey at times.

On Tuesday, I wrote my first texts-and-representations essay in quite a while. It was also my first ever in exam conditions, so it was quite interesting to see how I coped with an unseen text (which was a blog about a Gothic festival in Yorkshire). I think I did pretty well, actually. The awkward thing about this was that we were only assessed on AO3. Fair enough, more marks come from that than AO1, but I just could not write an essay responding to a question from this section of the course without that AO. I knew it was slightly redundant, but I feel that it helped me write a more fluent and succinct response. We’ll see how well this goes next week when I receive my score.

Speaking of results, the mark that was awarded for my article in response to Text A from the second paper of the 2018 examination series was given to me. I had a feeling the article went alright, although there were some things I could have changed. The raw score is below:

Spoiler:
Show

Name:  TSR English blog proof.jpg
Views: 18
Size:  505.4 KB



So, as you can see, there is definitely room for improvement, especially for AO2. However, I am quite impressed with myself because I hadn’t written an article like this in a while. I also hadn’t revised or brushed up on linguistic theory. This was, once again, the first time I had written a response to this type of question in controlled-assessment conditions. So yeah, if I actually try, I might get somewhere.



OTHER THINGS


The proper first draft of my UCAS personal statement went through the rigorous quality control that my school has in place. Like the security at an airport, my teachers’ advanced X-Rays that passed through what my eyes could see when looking at my work detected a few ‘lapses in clarity’ and improvements that could be made to make the statement more ‘personal’. After rapidly producing a second draft, I’m pleased to say that only a few minor details need to be looked at before I send it off. The amendments are small alterations that probably wouldn’t be so important in most other contexts, but I’m pleased to declare that my application is nearly complete!

I also had my first lesson as a ‘subject ambassador’. I basically did what I had done throughout the lower sixth, which was joining in GCSE English lessons and help teachers and students alike. Only now I have a little more of an official status with a title and everything. We have mixed ability classes, so it’s always interesting to see what the mixed bag has to offer. These classes have an eclectic character because there’s no homogeneity in any department that I can really think of, or at least any major one that might make for a duller learning environment. It’s fun to help. And while I go over Romeo and Juliet for the third time in this school, the different impressions Shakespeare’s characters have on different classes, and the different interpretations this begets, never cease to amaze me. I’m so glad that I negotiated this role. I can’t wait for the next lesson. It is a testament to the beauty of literature. The beauty in the wonderful array of ways to engage with the same text. This stuff’ll never get old.


Thanks to everyone that read.

Tag list:


Per PM can I be removed from the quote list.
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Fazzy_77
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Your intro was very well said :congrats:

Well done on your chemistry score! I knew you'd improve in no time :yep:

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I usually skim read long posts but the way you write make me want more from you
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troubletracking
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Nice one on your NEA!! Not long to go now until it's all over thank god for that ahahah
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Tolgarda
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(Original post by laurawatt)
Wow! I love how eloquently you write your posts! :hugs:
Well done for your chemistry test, and your student ambassador role sounds really cool
Thanks. Much love.

(Original post by FlawlessChicken)
The font is pretty. I remember using it for my computer science gcse NEA ... so it was somewhat .... nostalgic? Qotd sounds cool as well. I was gonna do one for my gyg but I would think of boring questions ... lmao.
Yeah, I like Century Gothic. It gives the text that nouveau flavour, in my opinion. It's pretty cool that you were allowed to use that for any NEA really. I thought it would look a little informal because it isn't ‘the standard’.

Yeah, on my next post, I plan to start with the QotD with my next post.

(Original post by FlawlessChicken)
Well done with nearly finishing your NEA! Lots of people in my school who are doing English were stressi spaghetti last week coz some of them had done hardly anything. Also congrats on nearly finishing your PS, you still have time but it's obviously better to finish it early so you don't need to worry about it!
Yeah, I have to admit. It's been kind of rough. I HATE NEA! I'd much rather it be 100% exam. It's so tedious. I've never been a fan of this stuff. I don't blame some people for procrastinating. It actually feels like it melts your mind because of how ludicrously boring it is. ****ing risible lmao.

(Original post by FlawlessChicken)
You're doing a different topic to me in Chem. I think we start thermodynamics and the Arrhenius equation in a few months time. Good luck with Chem and that's an amazing exam result btw .... it clearly shows that putting in hard work gives you results!
Oh, really? It is true that different teachers deliver the spec in different order. In the end, we all sit the exam at the same time and they know what they have to teach. I'm not too worried about course chronology, haha. But it does make me wonder if there's a certain way AQA prefer their course to be taught.

Also, thanks! Yeah, this result really shocked me (in a good way). I honestly want to keep it up!

(Original post by 8472)
Per PM can I be removed from the quote list.
Sorry, I forgot. It's done now though.

(Original post by Fazzy_77)
Your intro was very well said :congrats:

Well done on your chemistry score! I knew you'd improve in no time :yep:

Spoiler:
Show
I usually skim read long posts but the way you write make me want more from you
Thanks, man. I really am trying to make sure that I can do these things. Looking over the paper, there were errors that I made that I really think I should have got right, but it's in the past and I hope to learn from my mistakes and continue to improve.

It's nice to hear that I can keep you entertained.

(Original post by troubletracking)
Nice one on your NEA!! Not long to go now until it's all over thank god for that ahahah
**** NEA! Useless piece of ****! Aaargh! You're damn right! Thank goodness that nonsense will disappear. NEA BEGONE!
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wazzupitsme
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#76
(Original post by Tolgarda)







My pill of elation and stress negation







Greetings all. As you can see, I'm trying out a new font. Do tell me what you think of this decision. I also have an announcement to make.


I used to be under the impression that mental illness was a pitiful excuse used by the more cunning, indolent mendacious members of our workforce that tried to malinger… I was wrong. Very, very wrong, and so too were those that practically duped me into believing this erroneous notion for such a long time. But I forgive them, just as I have forgiven myself. After all, we were only as nescient as each other. But now it’s time to take the right steps forward. The right course of action, one that will lead to a happier, more mentally healthy world.

Some people, however, still think that mental illnesses are faux because they are invisible. But these mental illnesses were visible enough to hold their victims hostage on the inside, and real enough to, in some cases, end their lives. PTSD killed more American soldiers that served in Vietnam than the war itself. Is that not enough? The fact that malicious weapons and lethal traps actually didn’t take more lives than the minds of those lives themselves?

By virtue of the strong stigma that binds so tightly to mental-health issues, many people do not seek professional, medical advice when they can to stop or mitigate the incredibly deleterious deterioration of their mental state. Thus, mental illnesses are usually like standing on an active railway track with a speeding train hurtling towards you. You know you’re on a bad path, but you only see the real danger, the train, at the last second, and all the damage, every last bit of it, is thrust upon you in that last second. The final blow, the fatal one. You never even gave yourself a chance, and life doesn't give you a second. Suicide is NOT the ‘coward’s way out’. It is the fatal virus that is able to enter the body once your true last defence, your spirit, fails in fulfilling its duty guarding you, which can happen for a myriad of reasons. That is what suicide is. Not running away from your problems. Death is no escape route. Death is death. It is the end of a journey, the journey of life, and one that you can never go back on. It should never be taken lightly, and everything in our power should be done to prevent it.

We are mammals, not machines. Blood runs through our veins, not hydraulic fluid through pipes. We run on emotions, not discrete, algorithmic programmes. The sooner we all realise and accept this fact, the better for our fight against mental health.

All of this is why I was proud to don yellow a few days ago on Mental-Health Awareness Day. It is a globally recognised issue and should be treated as such.

---------------------------------------------------------

Apologies for the slightly sombre introduction there. A little bit of it was macabre, but I learnt a disturbing, personal fact this week.

Moving on to my personal matters, this week was quite eventful. I’m also thinking of adding a QotD (Question of the Day) in my posts, if that’s alright by you guys? Along with this, I’m thinking of uploading my essays (and potentially other exam scripts) to an exclusive Google Drive document for this blog if anyone would want to read them, if anyone cares in enough.

CHEMISTRY

Summary:

Spoiler:
Show







  • Revised the Arrhenius equation.
  • Sat my test on chemical thermodynamics.
  • Received my organic diagnostic test result.




Chemistry can sometimes so beautifully juxtapose simplicity and complexity that it puts my creativity on the verge of tears because of how difficult it can sometimes be for me. The sheer power of the Arrhenius equation is its ability to quantitatively analyse chemical reactions, pretty much the core of this subject, effectively, efficiently and elegantly. The equation’s subject is the rate constant, simple known as ‘k’, which accounts for all factors that influence a chemical reaction’s rate (pressure, temperature and a catalyst – relating to collision theory here). I did not realise the significant of ‘k’ when going over this previously. It is a number that tells a lot about a little. While the equation looks simple, the symbols factor a lot in. I was thinking of going into this further, but my blog is about my opinions rather than it being a chemistry class.

In the freshness of the Friday morning, I sat my end-of-unit exam on chemical thermodynamics, a module that was quite interesting for me, and also easy to grasp (for the most part). Now my tests are usually internally enlarged (the awarding body modifies the exam papers for the real thing), but this one was done in a slightly irritating format because it wasn’t clipped together, and it was double-sided, so on lengthy questions that extended to other pages (because of the size-36 font), I could lose track and waste time having to flip pages or find the right data. It didn’t affect my performance entirely and it is nothing to fall back on if I underperform relative to my expectations (which were honestly very different before I sat the test to what they currently are). There was only one Born–Haber cycle question (phew!), and it wasn’t too strange. I think I lost around one or two marks on it out of around six? Oh well, we’ll have to see. One thing that angered me a little was the fact that I believe I missed two or three questions out because I had pages and a periodic table spread out everywhere and probably forgot to return to them or something. I really don’t actually know why I didn’t even go back and attempt those. I may have just forgot about them? My area was in disarray for a majority of it haha. Whatever, it’s done and dusted now. There was also no enthalpy of solution, which upset me because they are actually quite nice questions. The predictable ones on Gibbs free energy along with entropy made their appearance. And the surprise AS question was on… alcohols (mostly alcohol production, but also on the structures and reactions of primary, secondary and tertiary alcohols). My organic teacher (Mr N) said that it was a nice way to transition onto the next part of the course we would be taught, which was chemically organic in nature.

Now, onto the more nerve-racking bit of this section of my blog this week: my diagnostic test result. I had been eagerly awaiting for a few weeks now. I didn’t even care if I had flunked the exam, I just wanted to know how I fared! I received it instantly after my end-of-topic test on Friday, and the result is the following…

Spoiler:
Show





Name:  TSR Chem result proof.jpg
Views: 23
Size:  491.8 KB


As you may be able to tell, I was quite pleased. Delighted, if I’m being completely honest here. It gave me a spring in my step. Although I just about hit the boundary with that mark, it was the confidence boost that I need to prove to myself that I could maybe accomplish the unthinkable. I earnestly hope that I am able to maintain the work ethic and desire that has helped me increase my performance from what was an E in June this grade now. It’s time to go further. I want to prove that my ability is a fact, and the score is not a fluke. With the small scenes of jubilation out of the way, the pressure to perform is on!


ENGLISH LITERATURE

Spoiler:
Show



  • NEA nearly done.


Honestly not much to do here. I’m so close to refining comparative essay on postcolonial literature. I just have to look over the last paragraph, add my conclusion and possibly a little more AO5.

I also just need to go over my close-reading NEA and add some finishing touches. I haven’t looked at that piece of NEA for a while, but I can’t run away from my responsibilities so easily.

It’s all the same and all a little vague. Hours seem to last years in these lessons. I am also yet to receive my latest mark for my dystopian-genre critical appreciation.

My NEA deadline is on 18 October, which is also the day we break up for the half-term holiday. I feel as though I really should make it.


ENGLISH LANGUAGE


Summary:

Spoiler:
Show

  • Nearly finished NEA.
  • Did my first texts-and-representations assessment in exam conditions.
  • Received my result for article.




As with English literature, the NEA chapter of this course is coming to a close for me. However, unlike literature, I still have to collect some data and finish the analysis, along with writing up a conclusion. So, this will be quite a close finish, and compounded with all of this is the fact that my NEA gets increased scrutiny because I fall into the ‘ablest’ category of student out of both groups, which means that the teacher really wants me to attain every single one of those twenty-five marks on offer. This investigation has been a stultifying process. A brutally arduous journey at times.

On Tuesday, I wrote my first texts-and-representations essay in quite a while. It was also my first ever in exam conditions, so it was quite interesting to see how I coped with an unseen text (which was a blog about a Gothic festival in Yorkshire). I think I did pretty well, actually. The awkward thing about this was that we were only assessed on AO3. Fair enough, more marks come from that than AO1, but I just could not write an essay responding to a question from this section of the course without that AO. I knew it was slightly redundant, but I feel that it helped me write a more fluent and succinct response. We’ll see how well this goes next week when I receive my score.

Speaking of results, the mark that was awarded for my article in response to Text A from the second paper of the 2018 examination series was given to me. I had a feeling the article went alright, although there were some things I could have changed. The raw score is below:

Spoiler:
Show

Name:  TSR English blog proof.jpg
Views: 18
Size:  505.4 KB



So, as you can see, there is definitely room for improvement, especially for AO2. However, I am quite impressed with myself because I hadn’t written an article like this in a while. I also hadn’t revised or brushed up on linguistic theory. This was, once again, the first time I had written a response to this type of question in controlled-assessment conditions. So yeah, if I actually try, I might get somewhere.



OTHER THINGS


The proper first draft of my UCAS personal statement went through the rigorous quality control that my school has in place. Like the security at an airport, my teachers’ advanced X-Rays that passed through what my eyes could see when looking at my work detected a few ‘lapses in clarity’ and improvements that could be made to make the statement more ‘personal’. After rapidly producing a second draft, I’m pleased to say that only a few minor details need to be looked at before I send it off. The amendments are small alterations that probably wouldn’t be so important in most other contexts, but I’m pleased to declare that my application is nearly complete!

I also had my first lesson as a ‘subject ambassador’. I basically did what I had done throughout the lower sixth, which was joining in GCSE English lessons and help teachers and students alike. Only now I have a little more of an official status with a title and everything. We have mixed ability classes, so it’s always interesting to see what the mixed bag has to offer. These classes have an eclectic character because there’s no homogeneity in any department that I can really think of, or at least any major one that might make for a duller learning environment. It’s fun to help. And while I go over Romeo and Juliet for the third time in this school, the different impressions Shakespeare’s characters have on different classes, and the different interpretations this begets, never cease to amaze me. I’m so glad that I negotiated this role. I can’t wait for the next lesson. It is a testament to the beauty of literature. The beauty in the wonderful array of ways to engage with the same text. This stuff’ll never get old.


Thanks to everyone that read.

Tag list:


I loved your GYG entry for the day!

Pssstt! You really are taking your english teacher's comment about your language deteriorating seriously, aren't you?
The intro by itself shamelessly took me beyond 5 minutes to get through because I had to read it over. Twice.
Last edited by wazzupitsme; 4 weeks ago
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Fazzy_77
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(Original post by Tolgarda)
Thanks, man. I really am trying to make sure that I can do these things. Looking over the paper, there were errors that I made that I really think I should have got right, but it's in the past and I hope to learn from my mistakes and continue to improve.

It's nice to hear that I can keep you entertained.
Don't stress too much over the little mistakes. That will get better with more practise.

And yepp, you definitely keep me entertained

Spoiler:
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Tolgarda for GYG winner 2020?
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Tolgarda
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#78
(Original post by wazzupitsme)
I loved your GYG entry for the day!
Thanks. I know this is a little late, but that's done fashionably and better than never!

(Original post by wazzupitsme)
Pssstt! You really are taking your english teacher's comment about your language deteriorating seriously, aren't you?
The intro by itself shamelessly took me beyond 5 minutes to get through because I had to read it over. Twice.
Yeah, of course I am. The teacher in question knows me very well and I trust her a lot. For her to say something like that actually disappointed me quite a bit because she was one of the people who inspired me to get into English. So for her to say something like that, well... it hurt.

Also, I don't mean to make my writing tortuous. If you are struggling to interpret what I write, I apologise. That is a failure on my behalf.

(Original post by Fazzy_77)
Don't stress too much over the little mistakes. That will get better with more practise.
I bloody hope so!

(Original post by Fazzy_77)
And yepp, you definitely keep me entertained

Spoiler:
Show

Tolgarda for GYG winner 2020?
That's good to hear.

Also, thanks for the suggestion but I don't think I'm consistent enough for that. If RazzzBerries and mez_merising failed to attain the prestigious, much coveted accolade, my chances are slim.
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Tolgarda
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#79


At first, I thought my sixth-form experience was a tragedy, but now, and only now, do I realise that it's a comedy!


QotD: What's the best movie that you've watched recently?
Which is slightly fitting since I am an English student. Moving on, I give Jacquelin Phoenix for his phenomenal performance when he played as the eponymous DC villain in ‘Joker’. He is incredibly talented and his Oscar-worthy performance made him a nonpareil actor in bits for me. I could feel every emotion. This interpretation of the psychopathic villain was very good, but its execution was great. I don’t know why I had to pay to see it to be honest. It was priceless. I actually supported the grassroots movement here. The austere tenor of the film allowed it to touch upon real, relevant and important matters that exist in society. It had all the elements of a great film for me. I’m no film critic though, so take that with a pinch of salt. I don’t expect everyone to have watched it yet, so I won’t spoil anything, but I absolutely loved it. Anyway, onto the breakdown of this interesting week:

Chemistry

Summary


Spoiler:
Show

  • I learnt about chiral centres and nucleophilic addition.
  • I got the results for my thermodynamics test.
  • I was introduced to paper three.



So, this was quite interesting because we learnt about chiral centres, more specifically the ones that included carbon atoms. They’re basically atoms with no line of symmetry (speaking of that, I need to go over the term ‘superimposable’) and have four different groups attached to them (e.g. a carbon atom with the four groups adjoining it being a methyl one, chlorine, fluorine and an alcohol one). We labelled chiral centres when we could see them with the common symbol (an asterisk). There were some lengthy and quite prominent chain molecules in there, and the formulae were all in skeletal form, which had its upsides and downsides. I think skeletal formulae have some artistic merit to them, but they can also be a little difficult to understand at times.

We also extended our knowledge of mechanisms. We were introduced to a new, which also involved a nucleophile: nucleophilic addition. This wasn’t dissimilar to the substitution mechanism, and I think I grasped the gist of what was on the whiteboard quite quickly for the first time in a while. This was good because it was also the first lesson that I was observed by some people who visited from another sixth form from up North to peer-review our one, so I couldn’t have picked a better time to look like I knew what was going on. We did practice on both an aldehyde and a ketone. In the same lesson, we also looked at typical pitfalls in mechanism questions in a sheet that asked us to spot the errors in particular mechanisms. While some were more obvious than others, there was one where the hydrogen state symbols weren’t even drawn on the structural formula of the hydrocarbon! I couldn’t out the reason for this actually finding its way into the ‘common mistakes’ list. How did it get to the point where A Level students were losing marks as a result of seemingly pre-GCSE content?

At the end of the observation lesson (yes we’re still on the same one hour, be patient, It’ll be over soon), I got my thermodynamics result back. And, well, it was bad. My grade was lower than my diagnostic, much lower. It was an E, with 40% marks. To be fair, I missed more questions than I remember, and I think that I definitely could have gained around 10–12 marks, which is annoying because that would put me on a C as the test’s maximum mark was fifty. Oh well, at least I got the AS organic question right, and some of the others too. Okay, no we can move on to the other side of the course, which mainly relates to physical chemistry, but also topics that are chemically inorganic as well. In our most recent lesson, we were asked to try and flex our mental muscles and consolidate our knowledge by going over exam questions on the practical-endorsement task that we did in the previous lesson. Too bad the iodine-clock experiment just wasn’t my thing and I was ****ed right over when the dismal six-mark question made its absolutely unwanted appearance (on the first question of the 2018 paper as well, the ****?). What an interloper. The other questions were, on the whole, mostly okay. They were quite graphical in nature and pretty much only called my ability to apply knowledge into question. Pure application, by far the hardest aspect of the course for me. The fact that the first half of this dreaded paper is practical-based and the second half is a cluster of MCQs that could be from anywhere in the spec makes this by far one of the most daunting papers that I will have actually faced, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it. Looks like I’m really feeling the sting of chemistry!

English language

Summary:

Spoiler:
Show

  • I completed my NEA.
  • Received my first internally assessed texts and reps mark.
  • Delved into the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis.




Alright, so, thank **** that the most enervating part of the course is practically over, with a whopping 20% to show for all my efforts if I defy the laws of existence and score full marks. The investigation is over. My findings? The pragmatics actually affect the speech of practitioners more than the field that they work in. They speak very differently depending on the situation, but both STEM and humanities teachers had the capacity to speak the same. I handed it in just hours before the end of the deadline day, but as I write this, I realise a few stylistic errors that I’ve made (e.g. being inconsistent with regard to the capitalisation of data sets). So yeah, I’ll probably have to amend that when I get back. Damn! I also forgot to send her the data sets, which were supposed to be a part of the package, so I just sent them to her now (thank goodness I wrote this blog post).

We also got our results back from the Texts and Representations essay back. I scored 12/15 (we were only marked on AO3 in this instance). Basically, I didn’t evaluate, the higher-order skill that grants me access to the top level in the mark scheme (i.e. level five). I was capped at the ceiling of the fourth level. Now I just need to respond to the comments and practise more of these. To be fair, it was a solid AO3 mark, and I think I can hit AO1 quite hard.

While we’re on the topic of AOs and essays, I finally know the configuration of my English-language December mock paper: two questions on Texts and Reps (with the first question on the modern text removed) and all of paper 2’s Section B. That adds up to a grand total of 115 available marks. That’s a pretty hefty paper! No mercy!

Moving on, we put the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis under the linguistic microscope. While I’ve always believed that language shapes our Weltanschauung (especially after discussions ith others), I like the idea of the notion being somewhat corroborated by academics. You know, it gives that little bit of an official status, the vibe of true episteme, unlike some wishy-washy doxa, especially with the idea of language relatvism (yep, that was actually the video played in our class). We also got introduced to language determinism, the idea that language controls the way we think, and language reflectionism, the idea that language reflects the society that produced it. So, which do you think is valid?

In the same class that we discussed the aforementioned concepts, we were being observed, but I was far less nervous because I was at the front, so I didn’t see them.

English literature

Summary:

Spoiler:
Show

  • Went over Hamlet Act 1, scenes iii, v and vi.
  • Flopped an in-class assessment.
  • Handed in my NEA.
  • Finished the first part of unseen dystopia.



So, in our quest for more knowledge of this tragic Danish prince’s play, we went over the next scenes in the first Act. To be honest with you, what’s good about this is that it bolsters the living **** out of our AO1. Seriously, in part a, contextualising a scene is major bonus points, and its relevance in part b is just axiomatic really. During a lesson in which I was observed in, I actually froze in front of the observers for some odd reason, and it was slightly embarrassing.

We also had an in-class assessment on the last day of term (fun, I know). I had prepared for Hamlet so much that I was confident that I would sit on the sixth level of the mark scheme, but NO. **** THAT! It was a comparative between Rossetti and Ibsen! No! I couldn’t believe how badly prepared I was. I wasn’t going to go out writing a shoddy few paragraphs, so I wrote an introduction and one paragraph of substance instead. Sure, it isn’t worthy of maximum credit, but it saves my teacher’s time and I don’t humiliate myself either. I think the fact that it was the end of term was a good thing because it meant that I didn’t have to worry about it much and instead have some fun before I get the result back, but that was quite the plot twist!

With regard to the contextual and comparative side of the course, we got our results for our second attempt at unseen dystopia (which was a paragraph in class), and I scored 23/30. Not bad, but not exactly good when you’re A* boundary is consistently around 92% every year.

As was the case for language, I was informed of the exam rubric for my paper in the December mocks. Like with English language, it will comprise two sections, although these are more equally weighted. The first section would a question from Section A of the first paper (a Hamlet question in my case), and Section A from the second paper (unseen dystopia in my case). It’s nice to see that there will be a greater emphasis on practical criticism here since our lower-sixth mock exams were solely focused on the set texts of the OCR spec. It’s interesting to see the shift from knowledge to skills as we will be faced with an AO2-heavy paper, so our close-reading powers count! Last time, I scored a B with approximately 88% (yes, the fact that 53/60 was a B still has to be mentioned). Now, I plan to raise my game!

Finally, NEA is done for the most part. I’ve handed in both essays. Now, while my comparative essay feels good, I’m a little uncertain about my close-reading analysis. I think I was close to the full fifteen marks, but I just didn’t put enough effort. I think it’ll either be twelve or thirteen, which doesn’t bother me too much really (even though it probably should seeing as every mark counts here because of those insanely high grade thresholds). You cannot afford to make a mistake, because it ripples outwards like a domino effect, and I think I’ve just knocked over the first domino!

OTHER THINGS

So, my life has been pretty interesting this week actually. The first major event was my very late bid for early entry. Now, I wasn’t initially planning to do it, but after discovering the fact that I could actually negotiate my set of predicted grades to two starred As and B, and after having a long discussion with my mother who was really passionate about me applying, I made the decision to go forward with it on the 15 October, the deadline day for earlier entry (i.e. entry for Oxbridge applicants). However, while everything was ready (including a nice, hasty selection of four other universities), there was one issue that blew it apart: the entrance exam. For me to have my entrance-examination paper, the ELAT, enlarged, I would have had to apply earlier. Oh well, I made no big fuss and held no grudge (unlike my English language teacher, who lambasted them for being privileged, old, straight White men lol). I mean, I think it would have been too stressful for me anyway. Applying on the last day, only having around two weeks to prepare for the ELAT, negotiating slightly inflated predicted grades. My head would have been spinning, and I think I would have been overwhelmed. So yeah, nothing too great there.

Then, on Friday, I had an absolutely classic story that I think I’ll tell my grandkids lol. So, we are a Catholic educational institution. And we have a building where our SENCO is situated called ‘Emmaus’ (yes, very nice, pious theme, I know). So, I was invited to read in front of some important individuals on the day of its opening ceremony. The building was fantastic, everyone was smartly dressed and ready to perform. There was just one issue though. I’m not everyone. Everyone was indeed ready, except me. The only reason I went was because I was remembered at the last minute instead of going to my second lesson. And because I forgot, I was in my extremely informal sixth-form clothes. For God’s sake! My garishly green T-shirt had ‘I’m not always right, but I’m never wrong’ written in emboldened, majuscule letters all over it, and my trousers were for jogging. Meanwhile, my peers and all of the important officials attending were either wearing suits or dresses. I had forgotten to comb my hair! But I wasn’t going to run away from my duty. I’m areligious, but I had to stand up, for God, especially since it was too late to find a replacement. So, I did. I stood in front of the crowd all immaculately dressed in their fancy attire and spoke some gospel in a divine, orotund voice that I prepared myself to compensate for my lack of formality.

I had the ultimate religious speech, yo! To be honest, I think my lack of vision really helped here. Thank **** my disability means that I didn’t see all the raised eyebrows probably wondering which street they found me off of, or whether they really wanted to see diversity with a homeless-looking student daring to even be in their presence. Oh well, it’s over now, but I couldn’t have looked more incongruent amongst these people with the way they were dressed. I was the ultimate proverbial sore thumb that was sticking out. I guess it goes to show that you can get away with a little more than you think if you don’t give a **** lmao.

Thanks for reading guys. I much appreciate the time you take out of your day to bother to read what I have to say!

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Last edited by Tolgarda; 3 weeks ago
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Obolinda
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#80
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Can't remember the last time I even watched a movie. I can never find the effort in me to leave the house and sit down for 2 hours or something. But during it, it's fun. Anyway, probably Descendants 3, I watched it on Disney Channel love the soundtrack.

That opening ceremony story is funny 😂
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