Struggling through A levels

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nat123452626
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#1
Report Thread starter 3 months ago
#1
Hello. i am currently in Y13 doing Maths&Physics ( don’t ask me how I ended up doing two from 4).
My grades were terrible last year however it was not without reason: my mum died last year all of a sudden, i changed schools as my old school where i did GCESs closed so i was forced to look for a new one.
I am international student in UK and when ny mum passed away i just quickly returned to England without fully processing what happend. As you might guess , I was feeling horrible in Y12, didn’t pay attention to studies, was extremely antisocial ( i am shy in general but last year it was extreme) i hated everyone at new school as no one really supported me in the way some school should. My grades were pretty bad. After Y12, i realized i messed up greatly an started paying attention to academics again( i was really good at GCSEs tho). This year my grades are better but still not what I want- Aiming for As but currently have predicted to Bs although i think i am more of a C student but ok. My mental health this year got worse and in last term i was crying constantly, having anxiety attacks and constantly under fear of exams. During holidays i visited doctor and she prescribed me antidepressants to take. After a bit of peace, I am starting to have same time as i just described although i am following school online from home- i am actually doing the work! Now i am freaking scared of A levels and after my mum’s grieving, that is the second thing that gives me such terrible feelings. Could someone suggest me something or wants to share similar experience? I would be very grateful!
PS planning to do electrical engineering at uni as I enjoy physics A LOT!
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atmospherity
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#2
Report 3 months ago
#2
(Original post by nat123452626)
Hello. i am currently in Y13 doing Maths&Physics ( don’t ask me how I ended up doing two from 4).
My grades were terrible last year however it was not without reason: my mum died last year all of a sudden, i changed schools as my old school where i did GCESs closed so i was forced to look for a new one.
I am international student in UK and when ny mum passed away i just quickly returned to England without fully processing what happend. As you might guess , I was feeling horrible in Y12, didn’t pay attention to studies, was extremely antisocial ( i am shy in general but last year it was extreme) i hated everyone at new school as no one really supported me in the way some school should. My grades were pretty bad. After Y12, i realized i messed up greatly an started paying attention to academics again( i was really good at GCSEs tho). This year my grades are better but still not what I want- Aiming for As but currently have predicted to Bs although i think i am more of a C student but ok. My mental health this year got worse and in last term i was crying constantly, having anxiety attacks and constantly under fear of exams. During holidays i visited doctor and she prescribed me antidepressants to take. After a bit of peace, I am starting to have same time as i just described although i am following school online from home- i am actually doing the work! Now i am freaking scared of A levels and after my mum’s grieving, that is the second thing that gives me such terrible feelings. Could someone suggest me something or wants to share similar experience? I would be very grateful!
PS planning to do electrical engineering at uni as I enjoy physics A LOT!
Hi,

First of all, I am so sorry to hear about your mum, I recently lost a parent whilst in my 1st semester of university and have found it hard to cope. During Y12 and Y13 I had to care for my ill dad, who went from fully functional to having to have a carer 24/7 to help him with anything. My grades ended up slipping up and I ended up failing my A-Levels getting DDC during 2020. Luckily my school took me back due to my extenuating circumstances, and I was able to resit the year and get the grades I need.

If you haven't already, please do tell your school. Ask if you could have a mentor (Head of the year, or one of your teachers that you feel that you could relate to and have a conversation with). Even if it is just some small talk, as to how you are doing, it will definitely help a bit. Occasionally talking to some of my professors/lecturers/teachers with who I was close allowed me to release some internal stress and tension that you get in a situation like this.

Process a Mitigating/Extenuation Circumstances Form to your school, they will take this under heavy consideration but do tell them what is going on. Be as honest as you can. If you end up having to retake the year, your school will have to take you as it will be documented. And even if you do end up retaking, it is not a bad thing. I was able to help out a lot of people and have a distraction from my situation with my dad.

Grief is complex, painful and unpredictable. I didn't cry after my dad passed away and when I got back to university, the moment I closed my door I cried for hours. I had trouble sleeping, eating, socialising even just doing basic things such as taking care of myself. It comes in waves and you will learn to adjust to the new reality that is life.

I would definitely recommend talking to someone professionally if you can be it through the school/local borough/private. Even places like Reddit or online grief support rooms have helped me and my sister in dealing with the grief associated with a loss.

Please feel free to PM if you have anything you would like to ask, be it with regards to Maths or Physics (As those were 2 of the A-Levels I did and got A*s) or in general.

I hope this helps a bit.
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nat123452626
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#3
Report Thread starter 3 months ago
#3
(Original post by atmospherity)
Hi,

First of all, I am so sorry to hear about your mum, I recently lost a parent whilst in my 1st semester of university and have found it hard to cope. During Y12 and Y13 I had to care for my ill dad, who went from fully functional to having to have a carer 24/7 to help him with anything. My grades ended up slipping up and I ended up failing my A-Levels getting DDC during 2020. Luckily my school took me back due to my extenuating circumstances, and I was able to resit the year and get the grades I need.

If you haven't already, please do tell your school. Ask if you could have a mentor (Head of the year, or one of your teachers that you feel that you could relate to and have a conversation with). Even if it is just some small talk, as to how you are doing, it will definitely help a bit. Occasionally talking to some of my professors/lecturers/teachers with who I was close allowed me to release some internal stress and tension that you get in a situation like this.

Process a Mitigating/Extenuation Circumstances Form to your school, they will take this under heavy consideration but do tell them what is going on. Be as honest as you can. If you end up having to retake the year, your school will have to take you as it will be documented. And even if you do end up retaking, it is not a bad thing. I was able to help out a lot of people and have a distraction from my situation with my dad.

Grief is complex, painful and unpredictable. I didn't cry after my dad passed away and when I got back to university, the moment I closed my door I cried for hours. I had trouble sleeping, eating, socialising even just doing basic things such as taking care of myself. It comes in waves and you will learn to adjust to the new reality that is life.

I would definitely recommend talking to someone professionally if you can be it through the school/local borough/private. Even places like Reddit or online grief support rooms have helped me and my sister in dealing with the grief associated with a loss.

Please feel free to PM if you have anything you would like to ask, be it with regards to Maths or Physics (As those were 2 of the A-Levels I did and got A*s) or in general.

I hope this helps a bit.
It does, makes me feel a bit less stressed about everything as there is someone who was in same position as me, of course it helps.
I am really sorry to hear about your dad, and I fully understand. It’s exactly what you wrote- grieving comes in waves. Some months after mums death I would say i was not fully aware of what happened and i was still processing it- kinda like being in shook.
But now, at start of Y13 it was pretty bad in terms of my mental health, i was crying litteraly everyday in the first term. My grades are getting better but still not wow..
Now I would like to ask you for opinion: do you think in these couple of months i would be able to work and by the time exams come improve my grades significantly? Let me be completely honest - my last year grades for maths and physics were D and E respectively. However, during Y13 I “improved significantly “ as my physics teacher told me, i was vetting Bs and on mock i got C.. could be better but yes, thats my levels now! On one test I managed to get A* in physics!!!!
Now i have to learn past year content and do you think it would be possible for me to do it in those months tull exams? I mean i do know some topics but still need to revise it throughly.. just your opinion would be helpful.
Thanks a lot anyway ❤️
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atmospherity
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#4
Report 3 months ago
#4
(Original post by nat123452626)
It does, makes me feel a bit less stressed about everything as there is someone who was in same position as me, of course it helps.
I am really sorry to hear about your dad, and I fully understand. It’s exactly what you wrote- grieving comes in waves. Some months after mums death I would say i was not fully aware of what happened and i was still processing it- kinda like being in shook.
But now, at start of Y13 it was pretty bad in terms of my mental health, i was crying litteraly everyday in the first term. My grades are getting better but still not wow..
Now I would like to ask you for opinion: do you think in these couple of months i would be able to work and by the time exams come improve my grades significantly? Let me be completely honest - my last year grades for maths and physics were D and E respectively. However, during Y13 I “improved significantly “ as my physics teacher told me, i was vetting Bs and on mock i got C.. could be better but yes, thats my levels now! On one test I managed to get A* in physics!!!!
Now i have to learn past year content and do you think it would be possible for me to doYe it in those months tull exams? I mean i do know some topics but still need to revise it throughly.. just your opinion would be helpful.
Thanks a lot anyway ❤️
Yes it's possible. It may seem hard, but when I resat my A-Levels I was supposed to have mocks in January that I was not prepared for. Every day I made some flashcards, posters (Use Anki for spaced repetition) and just did numerous practice questions. Ask your teachers if they can help you or if you can attend extra lessons or stay behind after school and they can help with you with certain topics.

Physics is a game of understanding applying principles. Circular Motion, Radioactivity etc. As long as you can simplify each chapter or section to a few big key points and understand the topic well enough a 5yr old could understand you have got it. It is absolutely possible to go from B/C to A* but you will have to work hard. Remember to give yourself some time off during the week (I used to do 1 day where I didn't do any work and I would go to the gym or work my part time job).

Just keep doing questions and be harsh on marking. Like I used to do a bit of Nucleophilic Addition and then I would do a paper purely on Inorganic. And then you can see what you don't remember/understand well enough.

And do speak to your teachers as well, they will be able to set you up with questions and extra help and it will really help. Even if you do not get the best grades this year you can resit another year due to your circumstances and hit the exam out of the park.

Again if you need any advice or help with certain topics in physics or chemistry please message me.
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