Find out what you need to know
- Make your revision plan as early as possible. This will allow you to work out how much time to spend revising each day and, just as importantly, when to take breaks.
- The first step is to get organised: find out when your exam is, and work out how much time you have until then.
Write a revision checklist
- Start by dividing the number of days you have until the exam by the number of topics you need to revise. Ask your teacher for a list of topics, or make your own by going through your notes.
- Think about any topics that will need more revision time – perhaps you covered them in more detail, or you found them more difficult.
- Look at your work, realise what you need to learn and divide it into the topics. Don’t just stick to what you’re good at (and find easy to remember).
Make a revision plan
When you know how many days you need to spend revising each topic, you’ll be able to make revision part of your daily routine. However, you need to be realistic:
- set aside time on your plan for things you need to do, like going to school and mealtimes.
- split the remaining time into half-hour slots.
- break each topic on your revision checklist down into chunks that you can cover in 30 minutes, and fill your slots with these chunks.
- It gets easier once you actually do something.
Revise in the best way for you
- The most futile way of revising is to sit down and read. It’s so passive that after about five minutes you will probably have switched off.
- Find something that works for you — if you need to walk around, do so.
- Or if you just need to sit at your desk making notes, do that instead.
- Most of all practice questions after revising a topic.
- Get hold of past papers and involve friends and parents if you need to. Saying answers out loud may help you to imprint them on your brain.
Find out about anything you don’t understand
- Ask someone to explain it to you (Teacher, friend or Parent).
- Regular breaks are important if you’re going to stay alert while revising.
- A five-minute break every half-hour is better than a 30-minute break after five hours.
- Get up, make a drink, tidy your room, check your email – you’ll come back refreshed and ready to carry on.
- Breaks will also help you absorb the information and avoid overload.
Look after yourself
- Make sure you include a leisure activity in your revision plan twice or three times a week.
- It’s important to set aside time to take your mind off exams.
- A healthy mind needs a healthy body, so look after yourself.
- Lots of sleep and regular exercise will help you stay alert.
- Your body needs fuel, so eat plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit to help keep your energy levels up.
Remember to turn up
- Check when and where your exams are. Don’t let that revision go to waste.