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 Post subject: GCSE Options!!
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 5:09 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 12:49 pm
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Location: berkshire
The topic of taking KS3 Sats early has been discussed before on the site but it is only now that some of the benefits/drawbacks are becoming clearer to me.

My son's school sit their KS3 Sats in Y8 and also take their GCSE options in Y8.

I am finding it hard to advise my son on his options as he is still only 12 (July birthday). One of the options he is considering is History and although essay writing is not his 'thing' at the moment (more math & science) he does have time to develop this skill before taking his GCSE's in Year 11.

In my opinion this is the only downside to an early start of GCSE's as being the youngest in the year he is not as mature or developed in some areas and therefore it makes it harder to assess whether he would do well in certain subjects.

It would be useful to have comments from parents who have already gone thru the same system or teachers that have an opinion on early KS3 Sats.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 5:57 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
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I'm not a fan of Year 8 GCSE options - it's hard enough to choose when in Year 9!

I really fail to see how a school can't think about KS3 and KS4 as being five years and not encourage pupils to 'drop' things - a year ago my child would have not made the same choices as have been made a year older and wiser.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 12:52 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2008 2:31 pm
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Year 11 daughter had to choosed at least 1 from history, geography and RS. She chose Geography being of a more scientific bent. Geography had 1 massive piece of coursework based on data collected on fieldcourse. There didn't seem to be much option to develop the particular format report writing skills; so her coursework mark is based on her first and only piece of work (though she did have the chance to submit chunks of it for comment as she went along). If she were to do a second piece of coursework, she would go about it in a different way from the start. The History students however have had a lot of separate esays to write, and so there is a better chance of improving over the 2 years. RS was probably the easiest option, with several pieces of coursework over the 2 years, but a less formal essay style than the history.

My daughter is looking forward to minimal amount of essay writing in 6th form, as she is planning to do Maths, Further Maths, Physics and Economics (she thought she ought to have something that involved some writing).


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 Post subject: options
PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 3:08 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 09, 2007 2:09 pm
Posts: 875
Location: Solihull, West Midlands
At our parents evening last night the geography teacher said that the quantity of coursework required for geogrpahy has been reduced recently, so I'm hoping my daughter will not be faced with the mammoth efforts that I know friends' offspring produced in previous years!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 5:24 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2006 10:05 am
Posts: 445
Location: LONDON
We have the first of our two options evenings Monday night. Options booklet came home today. The school is offering both double and triple science at GCSE for the first time this year. Only the most able children will be allowed to do triple science. Does anyone have specific thoughts about these two options? Son is keen to do triple but we don't know the level of work involved over and above the double option.

loulou

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 6:06 pm 
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If the child gets level 6 they ought to do triple Science -


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 6:19 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2006 10:05 am
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Location: LONDON
The school have said he needs to be acheiving 6a in his mocks next week to be allowed to put triple science as an option. So kind of ties in with what you are saying (except perhaps the school are being more demanding). Hopefully he will acheive as he has been managing 6a's or 7's in class tests this term.

Guest55. Do you know about the different work loads between the two courses. DS seemed to think with triple science he will be expected to put in a lot of effort off his own back. The problem is he is bright but inclined to be very very lazy. Does as little as he needs to do to perform on the day. Makes me wonder what he could acheive if he actually put in some effort!

Loulou

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 6:32 pm 
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Government is recommending three Sciences for all those at level 6 or higher -

I can't see why there should be much more work - all the Bucks GS are now encouraging separate sciences - they are a better foundation for A level.

Might be worth looking at one of the exam board websites:

www.aqa.org.uk
www.edexcel.org.uk
www.ocr.org.uk


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 7:54 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2006 10:05 am
Posts: 445
Location: LONDON
Thanks for the links. Will browse ocr (think thats who they will be using)

loulou

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 1:08 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2008 2:54 pm
Posts: 21
Location: london
my daughter's school is clearly moving towards all but the least able (it's highly selective so that won't be many) doing all 3. all the science staff say dual award is getting easier and easier and no longer sufficient preparation for individual A levels, so they teach well above it anyway. - given that our dd will drop all science as soon as she is able and is English/humanities/arts to her finger tips it's a little annoying but I can see she might as well clock up all three if she will have done almost all the work. They teach the extra for triple in the last term and a half, the girls all sit dual in Jan, and most will sit the final papers in the summer. Personally would rather she could do just biology and Physics (which at least she enjoys) and fit in both RS and Geog. Timetable doesn't allow.


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