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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:35 am 
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DS1 is about to make his GCSE subject choices. He wants to take either Drama or Music but has no strong feelings either way, and choice will not affect his future career plans which are science/maths related. I'd like him to take the subject with the highest chance of an A, for least amount of effort as DS is disorganised, untidy and lazy. His current levels are 7b for drama and 6c for music, which might suggest drama is a better option but last year only 7% of candidates scored A*A whereas 66% of music candidates did. DS is only at grade 3 for violin after 6 years of lessons (plus about 10 minutes practise a week). Would he stand a chance of scoring highly in music? I am assuming/hoping/praying that he will put in more effort when he enters year 10.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:06 pm 
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What are the other options? Both of these involve a lot of work from what I know. Drama is a lot of essays and Music a lot of composing. Get him to talk to the teachers - DS1 was considering Music and the Music teacher managed to put him off very effectively in her attempts to sell it to him. 8)


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:16 pm 
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At a guess it's a second MFL, art or a D&T subject, none of which he wants to do. Actual options list comes out in January.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 12:39 pm 
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new2me wrote:
DS1 is about to make his GCSE subject choices. He wants to take either Drama or Music but has no strong feelings either way, and choice will not affect his future career plans which are science/maths related. I'd like him to take the subject with the highest chance of an A, for least amount of effort as DS is disorganised, untidy and lazy. His current levels are 7b for drama and 6c for music, which might suggest drama is a better option but last year only 7% of candidates scored A*A whereas 66% of music candidates did. DS is only at grade 3 for violin after 6 years of lessons (plus about 10 minutes practise a week). Would he stand a chance of scoring highly in music? I am assuming/hoping/praying that he will put in more effort when he enters year 10.


Sorry if this sounds harsh, but he has had six years to put more effort into his violin, it is unlikely to change now. We cancelled ds1' s guitar lessons after 2 years, due to similar levels of practise, he got a bit upset to start with, but then realised we were right.
Does he enjoy theory and composing more than playing?
There may be other "hobby" (please don't get uppity about that) gcses on offer that inspire him, my friend's son chose sport studies, twinned it up with his duke of Edinburgh award, by helping with community coaching, and then used his experiences for his English creative writing. Impressive eh!


Last edited by southbucks3 on Thu Dec 19, 2013 1:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 3:04 pm 
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Completely agree with you about the 6 years and going nowhere. We only pay for lessons because he really doesn't want to give them up.

In terms of 'hobby' subjects, his school doesn't offer many. Unless they develop GCSEs in Minecraft Studies and Big Bang Theory, he's stuck with music or drama. He could be persuaded to take computer science instead if requires less effort.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 3:10 pm 
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Be aware that many of the less academic options can involve a lot of work - not necessarily challenging on the old grey cells but taking up a lot of time. If your DS isn't prepared to put in the effort then he could still come out with a lower grade. Given his current attitude is he hoping that one of these options will be an easier ride and that is why he wont consider an MFL or D&T subject?

Computer science used to require time for the coursework - don't know if that has been removed now?

Have heart - year 9 is notoriously difficult year.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 5:26 pm 
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He's hoping to include one 'fun' subject, to balance out the triple science, German, history and geography etc, so really doesn't want to take a second MFL. He works steadily and his excellent memory allows him to coast through the academic subjects, but I'm all too aware that more practical subjects need more than a good memory to get by, and he had no real interest in any of the D&T subjects on offer. I'd be happy with Drama if it wasn't for the 7% A*A issue. Maybe for him the least amount of work is actually to take only traditional academic subjects.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 5:32 pm 
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A teacher DD very much respected told her to forget the 'fun subject' and just choose academic ones. Not that she was tempted by fun but others kept telling her she 'needed' one. She didn't. :D Did 11 academic subjects very successfully.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 6:03 pm 
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
Both of my DC had to take a 'creative' option.

DS took music and it was his worst GCSE. He was about grade 4 in violin and 5 in piano at the start.

DD is taking drama and is loving it. She had to choose between art (hours of work), music or drama. I think initially drama was her 3rd choice out of the three. Her music has gone from strength to strength through playing in ensembles and orchestras and her grades are there to 'certificate' her skill.

Music is usually viewed as an academic GCSE; drama is not. But in amongst a huge haul of GCSEs, no one will notice if one is softer. DD has really enjoyed the break that drama lessons bring. The written work is all short, 1-2 pages, but there is a lot of it.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:31 pm 
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Location: Herts
We looked at Drama but the group assessment percentage mark put us off. We were not prepared to be in the hands of others for part of the grade. Started off being concerned about the composition element in Music as elder dd does not sit in her room composing. But we were reassured and she is really enjoying it. I would go for music. The lack of A*'s in Drama could well be down to that group assessment. DG


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