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 Post subject: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 10:52 am 
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DD doesn't need to choose her options until next year, but she is a very organised and forward looking person, having already chosen most of her subjects!

However, one of the options is Astronomy (GCSE only - there is no A level in this subject). She has attended Astronomy club for a few years now and does have an interest in it - she quite often flummoxes us with long and complicated explanations of black holes, and the visiting professors love seeing this 13 year old amongst the 60/70 year olds at her club, but, that aside, I wondered if anyone (and I know it's not a widely taught subject in schools) had an opinion on the value of Astronomy at GCSE?

Is it looked favourably upon? Would it add extra interest?

Any and all thoughts appreciated - then I can (hopefully) gently steer her in the right direction (and I'll have a year to do it :lol: :lol: ).

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 Post subject: Re: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 11:12 am 
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Snowdrops it sounds like it would be great for your DD and having an interest and passion in the subject is a good start. I think it would be looked upon very well and fits in with other subjects. As long as it doesn't stop her from choosing other options then go for it. I bet it's really interesting.


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 Post subject: Re: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 11:30 am 
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DD has put it as a reserve choice for GCSEs.

I have had a look myself at the GCSE and while it is interesting I didn't learn any more than I (or no doubt yr DD) has picked up from general reading - the physics and maths was very easy (I did AS levels in these in 1977 so very little remains in the grey cells but it would, I presume be easy for those doing maths / physics GCSE)

I think the thing is not to let it replace another choice, Ermysted's are doing the GCSE via a luchtime club as an extra and also some come to the evening session.


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 Post subject: Re: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 11:54 am 
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Its worth having a go if she loves it. I think its good for a child to study a subject at GCSE that they love even if its deemed a soft. They have enough of the core (boring) subjects. Unless you feel she would be putting herself under pressure and compromising her other grades I dont see why not.

GCSE Astronomy also seem VERY popular with home ed kids...I wonder why?

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 Post subject: Re: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:06 pm 
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deleted by Loopy

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Last edited by Loopyloulou on Fri Mar 18, 2011 8:35 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:19 pm 
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sherry_d wrote:
GCSE Astronomy also seem VERY popular with home ed kids...I wonder why?



possibly because the observational work needed for the controlled assesment is easier if you are doing this at home - running around taking photos of comets and star trails and constellations + observations of the moon etc etc etc - not easy at school!


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 Post subject: Re: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:06 pm 
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So, no clear answer really.

I think the answer lies in the advice not to allow astronomy to take the place of another subject as advised by mum23 (thank you).

I think it would look 'interesting' on CV's etc, but how favourably unis would look upon it is another thing altogether!

Wish she had the option to do it at lunchtime + after school (although she enjoys a far too hectic social life to indulge in those sorts of activities atm :roll: ). It's interesting, Herman, how Ermysteads and Skippy Girls tackle it differently - do they not operate as 'sister' schools then?

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 Post subject: Re: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 7:34 pm 
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Snowdrops wrote:
Herman, how Ermysteads and Skippy Girls tackle it differently - do they not operate as 'sister' schools then?


ho ho ... no they try to do government and politics A level together but haven't got the times of the lessons to coordinate yet.... They are really very different schools - the boys rather more traditional and the girls taking on every new idea that comes their way :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 7:55 pm 
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I didn't realise this was considered a "soft" subject! DD is thinking about it as one of her choices and I've been encouraging her. She really does not want to be railroaded into History or Geography to keep Michael Gove happy and wants to do Astronomy instead - but with a good cross-section of other options including all the compulsory ones, 3 separate science and a language, is it really going to damage her chances that much?

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 Post subject: Re: Astronomy
PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 8:23 pm 
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Marylou - TBH I am not sure whether it is considered a soft option or not. Ignore my chunterings about the lack of physics and maths in it, I am a dinosaur...

...trouble is I also probably knew enough astronomy from years of reading and hours of watching Sir Patrick M commentating on moon landings to write the syllabus let alone study it.


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