What the **** is a quadratic? - An A-Level student's blog

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Tomtide
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#1
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#1









Dude. I don't get it.

Tick.
Tock.
Tick.
Tock.



For what seems like the millionth time, I look at the clock and realise it's almost midnight. 𝘚𝘩𝘪𝘵.

Hi, I'm Tom and welcome to my blog. I'm a new sixth form student & I'm trying something new as a means to sort of face up to my flaws? I guess? Hopefully some accountability to the wider masses will do something..? maybe?

My forte's always been computer science. Practical though, not theory. I'm terrible at theory. I essentially grew up on the internet playing video games and soon discovered programming. I started by making some blocks explode in minecraft, soon moved onto Python & Lua programming, now I'm participating in hackathons & doing cybersecurity red-team pentesting for giggles.

my igcses
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I actually did pretty well in these, surprisingly. Guess the Asian genes paid off.

English Language - 9
English Literature - 9
History - 9
Drama - 9
Maths - 8
Physics - 8
Chemistry - 8
Biology - 8
Computer Science - 8
German - 7

A-levels
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Computer Science
Maths
History


I walked into my A Levels being super excited and stuff. I was like "Hey wtf these lessons are pretty fun". Two weeks later I got hit with the 55% in Maths and fell into a perpetual cycle of feeling like a tosspot and refusing to revise as a result.

To be honest though I've definitely noticed that I care a lot more about my subjects. I guess that's a result of you actually choosing to do them. Genuinely though, I don't look at the clock anymore. I'm really proud of that. My CS teacher is some crazy russian guy and he's such a lad while my history teacher makes us do jumping jacks to start the lesson. Love the guy.

My maths teacher on the other hand is a bit of a mixed story. He's such a genuinely nice guy but his method of teaching just doesn't quite work for me. I feel like he goes a bit fast and I constantly ask him for extra help but the shxt just flies past me. I feel like it's a daily occurance where I turn towards my mate and I'm just like "Dude. I don't get it. What the hell."

Whatever.

I'll try and keep everyone updated - keeping up to date on things has never been my strong suit. Whenever I find myself wasting time I'll come on here and write a few sentences.

next few years
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- A* A* A minimum. No negotiations.
- Leave sixth form with both fingers in the air. Have some fun. maybe.
- Gap year in the Army
- F off to the US somewhere. I'm going for MIT & CalTech as my first two choices but Georgia Tech & Stanford are top tier as well.
- Make six figures out of university
- Start a business, make a few million bucks, maybe move to africa and start a militia?




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Tomtide
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#2
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#2
First entry - pretty much spent the day playing csgo. balls. did some revision on quartics and stuff and went looking for an online tutor. also did an interview. yay?
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CaptainDuckie
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#3
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#3
I can tell you got grade 9’s in English tbh. The use of short sentences, and short paragraphs is absolutely compelling.

Good luck.
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Tomtide
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Ironically I've been more diligent to writing this "blog" than actually revising lol. Went out with mates to the movies today - if you're considering watching venom, don't, im willing to bet cash the screenplay was written for a primary student's creative writing coursework. I've got a fulbright commission interview tomorrow and another one on saturday (wish me luck). Also what the **** is a β????
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flaurie
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Good luck for this year :woo:
Also what the **** is a β????
In a maths context it's the greek letter 'beta', normally either used for a constant or an unknown
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Tomtide
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(Original post by flaurie)
Good luck for this year :woo:

In a maths context it's the greek letter 'beta', normally either used for a constant or an unknown
https://i.imgur.com/9HwatgN.png

yeah it was more of the shock factor from seeing that in maths 😔 horrible variable names why couldn't they just stick to english???
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KA_P
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If you're doing Edexcel, I recommend Haberdasher's Academy on YouTube. Or just learning from the textbook and doing as many questions as possible.

Also, take it a topic at a time. Differentiation and integration get easier the more you practice and the more you're able to recall the rules. Maybe ask the maths department to do exam technique and topic overview sessions at lunchtime or after school.

Yeah - YouTube is really useful.

For practice (under timed conditions is recommended), use past papers either on physics and maths tutor or whatever you can find on Google or on the exam board website, as well as the actual textbook.

Hope that helps.
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flaurie
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(Original post by Tomtide)
https://i.imgur.com/9HwatgN.png

yeah it was more of the shock factor from seeing that in maths 😔 horrible variable names why couldn't they just stick to english???
Haha you get used to it :lol: you might also see “α” (alpha) too. In the context of your question you can effectively replace it with x
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Tomtide
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(Original post by flaurie)
Haha you get used to it :lol: you might also see “α” (alpha) too. In the context of your question you can effectively replace it with x
yeah i replaced it with a (i tend to replace all things with a b or c just to cope with my rapidly degrading brain), currently chunking through calculus on khanacademy
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Tomtide
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(Original post by KA_P)
If you're doing Edexcel, I recommend Haberdasher's Academy on YouTube. Or just learning from the textbook and doing as many questions as possible.

Also, take it a topic at a time. Differentiation and integration get easier the more you practice and the more you're able to recall the rules. Maybe ask the maths department to do exam technique and topic overview sessions at lunchtime or after school.

Yeah - YouTube is really useful.

For practice (under timed conditions is recommended), use past papers either on physics and maths tutor or whatever you can find on Google or on the exam board website, as well as the actual textbook.

Hope that helps.
appreciate the advice, for my gcses I just paced it through past papers until I got an A+ on every single one and then went and did it again. hoping to rinse and repeat for a levels. i'm just pushing myself to learn as much as i can for maths until halfterm ends so i won't feel like the moron in the room anymore
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KA_P
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(Original post by Tomtide)
appreciate the advice, for my gcses I just paced it through past papers until I got an A+ on every single one and then went and did it again. hoping to rinse and repeat for a levels. i'm just pushing myself to learn as much as i can for maths until halfterm ends so i won't feel like the moron in the room anymore
Honestly, you're not alone. I found Maths A-level hard. The teachers went really fast especially with it being lockdown etc. Anyway, just try and stay motivated. Learning from the textbook saved me because I was going at my own pace and absorbing the information and practicing as I went. A-Levels, I would say, is learn, practise, review, review a bit more then practice and note down the topics you're finding difficult or the questions you're getting wrong time and again, then repeat the cycle.
Good luck!
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Tomtide
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(Original post by KA_P)
Honestly, you're not alone. I found Maths A-level hard. The teachers went really fast especially with it being lockdown etc. Anyway, just try and stay motivated. Learning from the textbook saved me because I was going at my own pace and absorbing the information and practicing as I went. A-Levels, I would say, is learn, practise, review, review a bit more then practice and note down the topics you're finding difficult or the questions you're getting wrong time and again, then repeat the cycle.
Good luck!
preaching the bible here man, thanks for the advice
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KA_P
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(Original post by Tomtide)
preaching the bible here man, thanks for the advice
😂 Happy to help.
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Tomtide
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spent the day with friends - holy shxt its been awesome man
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Muttley79
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(Original post by Tomtide)
appreciate the advice, for my gcses I just paced it through past papers until I got an A+ on every single one and then went and did it again. hoping to rinse and repeat for a levels. i'm just pushing myself to learn as much as i can for maths until halfterm ends so i won't feel like the moron in the room anymore
Presumably you've found Dr Frost for Maths? https://www.drfrostmaths.com/sow.php...2017&term=Main
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lunariumxo
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the tittle got me on the first half
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Tomtide
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(Original post by Muttley79)
Presumably you've found Dr Frost for Maths? https://www.drfrostmaths.com/sow.php...2017&term=Main
yup teacher made us grind it for my gcses lol more of a khanacademy guy
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Muttley79
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(Original post by Tomtide)
yup teacher made us grind it for my gcses lol more of a khanacademy guy
DO NOT touch Khan Academy - it's not suitable for the UK.
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summerbirdreads
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(Original post by Tomtide)
I walked into my A Levels being super excited and stuff. I was like "Hey wtf these lessons are pretty fun". Two weeks later I got hit with the 55% in Maths and fell into a perpetual cycle of feeling like a tosspot and refusing to revise as a result.
Why do I relate to that so much?

Best of luck!!
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summerbirdreads
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(Original post by Muttley79)
DO NOT touch Khan Academy - it's not suitable for the UK.
I cannot agree more. Khan Academy and Crash Course as well
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