advice, exams, ramblings, school

Midnight Post


Hey guys,

It is currently 00:00 and I’m in bed but I’m not asleep. Obviously. Otherwise I wouldn’t be writing this post. *DUH*

My next exam is this Thursday, so I’m feeling a little less stressed because it is one of my AS retakes and although it is important, it’s not an A2 exam which is higher up on my priorities. So I decided to write a little post about how I’ve been doing in my Semi-Hiatus thing.

Firstly, last Thursday I had my first exams which were my AS and A2 French Speaking exams. The examiner arrived about an hour late because on the way over, he was caught in a traffic jam which was really quite serious and involved a few cars, so we just had to wait rather impatiently for him to arrive. I was second to go, and all I wanted was for my AS speaking to go better than it did last year- I mean, I did get a D in it. However, last year was the first time I met the external examiner, and I had to go first (My surname begins with a B so I’m at the top of the register) and I wasn’t helping myself by having a mini panic attack. I felt sick. I didn’t tell anyone, which I probably could have done, but they would have just told me to “take deep breaths”, which may or may not have helped. Anyway, in the exam, you are given two cards at the beginning, on two topics you have studied. They aren’t allowed to be in the same topic- i.e. two topics about media. So, the examiner went and gave me two media cards, but one of them was in Spanish. Great. So I told him and he was very apologetic, and swapped it for another and then I had 20 minutes to prepare the card which went okay. But it was when he started recording, he got my candidate number wrong or something and I was so confused and it just went downhill from there.

This year my retake definitely went better. I felt really confident and not nervous at all. However this time when giving out the cards, he gave me one AS card, and one A2 card. It didn’t bother me too much though. After I had prepared the card, I started answering the first question and the examiner was still walking around organizing sheets and things, when one of the invigilators came in to say the person who had to go after me had two of the wrong cards, so we had to stop and start again. The whole thing was just a bit ridiculous really, but I don’t feel too worried about the AS speaking. It’s the A2 one I’m concerned about.

The A2 speaking test was my first “proper” A2 exam, and the fact it was on the same day as my retake didn’t make things much better. Mine was scheduled for 14:40, and I think it was because it was second to last that he was maybe feeling a bit rushed or something, but I just don’t feel like the A2 exam went as well as it could have. Clearly it all depends on what questions you get set on the day, but he just didn’t seem to be as nice in the afternoon as he did in the morning. And I’m at that point where I don’t know if I really understood all of the questions he asked me, and if I answered them right. This time last year, I was on the route to thinking and then convincing myself that I had failed French, but I came out with a C overall, so I’m going to try and remain hopeful.

Then I had my English AS retake on Friday. This was an exam I still don’t feel like I revised enough for, even though I have been attending revision sessions every week. You’ve heard me complain already that this exam was on the same day as mt leaver’s day (which was good, by the way), and it was just frustrating because my friends and I went as the Avengers so everyone arrived at my house, because it’s the closest to my school and we were all going to go in together, but I said several times that I wanted to go in early so I wouldn’t be late for my exam. I specifically said to everyone that I wanted to leave the house at 8:30, not have everyone arrive at 8:30, which is kind of what happened. Some arrived earlier than others, but by the time I got to school I was “late” for my exam. Except I wasn’t really “late”. There was someone else who is in the year below me who was walking to the hall so I just followed him into the hall, and the Chief Invigilator Lady, who I’ll call Mrs B, wasn’t really happy. The exam hadn’t started yet, but it was just that we’d missed the briefings which everyone has heard before. You know the whole “don’t bring in your phones/iPods/notes, don’t cheat, blah blah”. And also, the exam was timetabled to start at 8:50- I definitely got there at least five minutes before that. I think everyone else was just super early.

So yeah. Now I’m here. 17 minutes later… today has been fairly mundane. I did as much of a French Past Paper as I could without the listening resources, as they are no longer on the AQA website because the papers are too out of date or something, so I’m going to have to wait for Monday to try and find them on the school system. I still have another paper to do tomorrow (or should I say today, as it’s past midnight…) which will probably take me all day to get motivated for.

Anyway, I hope you’ve all had a good weekend so far, and for those of you who are currently in exams, I hope they all go well. If you’re stressing about the amount of revision you’re doing because you have friends who say they are doing at least 4 hours a day, just ignore them. Revising for 4 hours a day is the worst thing to do, especially without taking breaks. You need to focus on a particular thing rather than trying to cram all the knowledge from all of your subjects into your head in just a few hours. Take one day to revise one or two topics, and what I do is prioritize as to when your next exam is. So for me, my next exam is French, so I’m mainly going to revise that.

Anyway, I really need to start thinking of going to sleep. Writing a midnight post may not have been the best idea. Anyway, if I re-read this in the morning, I’ll be the one to judge it then!

-The Storyteller

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