Year 14 – Rachel

17 Dec 2014

2nd Sept


I am looking forward to meeting my friends! However I am worried about doing 4 subjects and if the workload will be too heavy. I might drop one of the subjects but I am not sure yet which one it will be. I am not looking forward to starting back to work and having lots of homework. Plus it will take a while to get used to the school routine again and having to get up at 7am.

7th Sept

It feels very strange to be back to school and it feels as if the summer just flew past! It is great to see all of my friends again but having to get up at 7am is horrible.


My first day back was spent mostly with my form teacher and form class so I was gently eased back into school life. However in all of my classes we started straight into work and I received quite a bit of homework throughout the week.


My first week back consisted of my teachers going through each person individually in the class to discuss our AS results and whether we needed to resit or get our papers remarked. I am fortunate that I don’t currently plan to resit any of my exams so it is one less thing to worry about in June. Many of my friends are still not sure about what to do because they need a higher mark to obtain the grade they need for their university course but it will mean extra exams in June.  I would advise anyone in lower sixth now to work hard and get as high a mark as possible because it will ease the pressure in Upper sixth so you can focus on you A2 exams.


I can’t believe this is my final year and I need to start seriously considering my UCAS application and my personal statement. My career’s teacher has already asked for a draft of our personal statement so my first week back has been very busy with a-level work and decisions that will affect my university options.


It really doesn’t feel as if I was even off for two months! We have started back to work and the teachers have wasted no time in getting the course started. I am extremely glad my first week is over and I have already started counting down the days to my next holiday!


14th Sept


This week has just flew past! It was a very busy week but I did not actually spend that much time in school. It was very heavily focused on careers and opportunities for us after we left school.


The start of the week was normal and just consisted of going to classes however the last few days were spent visiting universities.


I visited Queen’s University and University of Ulster with my school which was very beneficial. I was able to explore the campus and attend seminars on university degrees I would consider applying to. I was able to speak to lecturers about the course structure, grade requirements and career opportunities after leaving university. Furthermore I got the chance to speak to those concerned with admissions and ask them tips for writing a personal statement and how to make mine unique from other applicants. The universities also ran accommodation tours which helped to see what they are like inside and if I would consider applying for accommodation.


Overall the university open days were really helpful and useful to discover more about courses and university life. However we had to be back to our buses by 2pm and I wish we had longer as it was hard to fit everything I wanted to do in a small space of time.


My week was really enjoyable as I got out of school and had a break from the standard routine but I’m sure the teachers will make up for all the lost school time with lots of work in this coming week.


21st Sept


After last week’s disruption of going to different universities and career talks, it was back to normal this week. I think I was given the most homework last week since starting school and doing 4 A-Level subjects means there is a lot of work. I think I’m going to drop one of them as there is so much work and universities only ask for three anyway but I think i will give it a bit longer until I make the final decision. I don’t want to make a decision too quickly and then regret it.


I finally completed my first draft of my personal statement and handed it in to my career’s teacher however I’m still not really happy with it. Hopefully my teacher can help me to improve it as I think I will need all the help I can get to ensure it is ready to be sent off with the rest of my UCAS form.


This week I got to use the Mac suite in my school to work on a project which will be presented in front of the class. Personally I really do not like the Mac computers, I think they are really confusing and hard to work. We were given two periods to complete the project but we didn’t get it finished so we had to go back during our study period to finish it, which was annoying.


I don’t know whether it was because the week before I was barely in school but last week went so slow and it felt like Friday was never going to come. I just hope this week goes a bit quicker!


28th Sept


Another week finished and I’m really glad to know that September will soon be over! I had my first test this week and it was a timed essay question. I found it really hard to sit down and make notes and then to look over them. I tried to make notes in my study periods so I wouldn’t have so much to do when I got home but I’m still not looking forward to getting the test back but then again I never do look forward to that. Study periods are good to get work done and to make notes however it can be very easy to get distracted and then I end up doing very little.


Apart from the test I really didn’t have that much homework last week. I had to do an essay for one of my subjects but it didn’t really take that long to do. Although I haven’t been that busy this week with homework I’m very tired when I get home probably caused by getting up at 7am in the morning.


I have quite a bit of work already gathered up for this coming week including a mind map, essay questions and reading background notes for my subjects. It looks as if this coming week will be a busy week!


5th Oct


Finally we are into a new month and at least at the end of this month I get to have a mid-term break.


I was busy with homework this week and had two tests throughout the week as well as other smaller homework for my classes. I try my best to start my homework as soon as I can, so I am not rushed the night before trying to finish all my work as well as everything else I have to do. I have managed so far to keep on top of all of my homework but my teachers keep saying to start making notes and go over everything we have done in class but it is hard to find the time to do everything. When I come home from school I never want to start straight into work and you need some chill time in the evening when you can just relax.


Everything else at school is fine apart from when you are let out late from class before lunch which means you have to queue for ages at the canteen. Your whole lunch is basically spent in the queue, which is extremely boring!!


I have been trying to compete my UCAS form by adding university course I want to apply to. I have spent quite of bit time researching different courses and the modules within them to see which ones best suit me and what I want. It is difficult to know what to choose and I want to make the best decision for me because it is so important for my career and opportunities for when I leave school.


12th Oct


I think this week it has really hit me how much work there is with A-Levels. I had a lot of work last week and a test on a Friday which was really annoying because I was waiting all week to get it over and done with.


Plus I had so much homework to do over the weekend. I was trying to revise for two tests for this coming week and I have 2 essay questions to do as well. It is hard to find the time to complete everything and to also have time for a break. Moreover this year I wanted to stay on top of my revision notes and to make them as I finish each topic so I am not rushed when my exams come around. It has been really hard to keep on top of this and I have just had to put making revision notes behind all of my current homework.


The closing date for our UCAS forms in school is fast approaching and I need to alter my personal statement and complete my form with my university choices this week. Therefore I need to look over my choices and make sure I am happy with them and the university I decide to apply to. There are so many decisions that need to be made and It all quite scary to think this time next year I will hopefully be in university.


19th Oct


I thought last week was busy but this week the work has been non-stop. I had homework for every day as well as UCAS work to do e.g. Completing the form, finishing my personal statement. I had a test in the middle of the week and because I had so much homework to do, I didn’t really have enough time to revise properly. I was able to manage my time and finish all my homework and fit in time for revision, it wasn’t an easy or enjoyable week but I got though it.  It has been a very stressful week and it felt like I didn’t have a spare minute. Although I was kept busy through the week, it felt like the weekend was never going to come and that I was never going to ever get a break.


I received one of my tests back that I did a week or so ago and I did a lot better than I expected I would do, so I am very pleased about that. It is quite surprising how much a test score can affect your mood because before I got the mark I was very worried but after I was very happy with myself.


Thankfully at the end of this week there will be a mid-term break which I think i truly deserve. I have been working very hard trying to keep on top of all of my work and making sure that I try my best. I just hope that my teachers are lenient and don’t give me too much work over the break.


27th Oct


At the start of last week, I had a lot of homework, which consisted of very long essays however at the end of the week I had basically no homework to do, which was great. The week before I was really busy doing stuff outside of school and I had so much homework as well but this week I wasn’t as busy and was given hardly any homework, which always seems to happen. You have so much homework all at once and then nothing. I would really prefer if it was more evenly spread out.

I am really glad that last week was my final week before the mid-term break. I feel as if I have been working so hard in the past term and I really deserve a break. I am really looking forward to being able to lie-in and to sleep in past 7am in the morning. Thankfully, my teachers have all been very nice and given me very little homework to do over the break. Therefore I will be able to enjoy my time off school without having to worry about all the homework I have to do.



2nd Nov


I was really glad to have a week off and I was even more happy that my teachers had not given me that much work over half term. Looking back I really should have tried to make revision notes because I have quite a few tests in this coming week. I think I was very fortunate to not have been given too much homework because some of my friends were having to work non-stop over half term.


It was great to be able to sleep in past 7 o’clock and not to be worried about school work. I found my week off very relaxing and stress free. I got to go shopping with my friends and treated myself to some new clothes, which I probably didn’t need but I just couldn’t resist.


The week just flew past and now I can’t wait to getting off for Christmas in a few weeks. However every time I think of Christmas I am reminded that I have mock exams in January. I really need to start revising but I think I will take each day as they come and make sure I complete my current homework.


9th Nov


It definitely wasn’t easy getting up on Monday morning after the week off, which went past soo quickly. I planned to make revision notes over the break but was very busy and I didn’t get any time to do so.


Thankfully last week my teachers were nice and eased us back into school. I was only given a small amount of homework: finishing booklets and copying notes from textbooks. It was boring to do but at least it was easy and did not require too much time to complete.


Although, I do wish that the nights that I had no homework I tried to make revision notes for the topics I have covered in my subjects so for or at least read over them to keep it fresh in my mind.  I have quite a few tests coming up and I think that it would have been helpful to have started revision because homework can pile up and if you are busy in the evening doing other things then you don’t really have enough time to properly revise for the test.  Plus if I make the notes now I won’t have to do them later when it comes closer to my mock exams and therefore I won’t feel as rushed or worried about them. However it is easier said than done because revising and making notes is extremely boring and I get distracted very easily so I am not going to place that much hope on me doing that much revision this coming week.


16th November


I have been soo busy this week with homework and tests. I had two tests this week on everything we have done so far, which required a lot of revision. I always end up wasting time trying to decide whether to make notes or just read over my class notes and then by the time I decide what to do I don’t have as much time to actually revise for my test.


Thankfully I used my study periods wisely this week and I managed to get most of my homework done or at least started which meant I had less to do when I got home and I wasn’t rushed in the evenings. Furthermore I started making notes for a test I have next week which means that I will have these notes for my test next week and when I do my mock exams in January.


My teachers always say that it is important  to read through and make notes as you go along and not just to cram revision in a week before your exam. I am starting to agree with them because when I was making notes I could see that I had forgotten some of the topics we had covered in class. It is beneficial to even just read over your class notes as it keeps what you have covered in class fresh in your mind and it makes revising for tests a lot less stressful.


23rd Nov


This week I had two tests which were quite hard but at least they were only 15 minutes each. Moreover it is usually the build up and the night before the test which is harder in comparison to the actual test. Usually the night before I can not be bothered revising and then I feel guilty for not putting enough effort into the test.


Apart from the tests I had quite a laid back and relaxed week with little homework and a lot of free time. However I am quite fed up having to queue for so long in the canteen for lunch and even for break. It ends up that I spend basically half my time in the queues and because of this my friends and I have a rushed lunch.


1st December


Last week I received two offers for universities which is very exciting. All of last week there were many people receiving offers and you do get quite anxious waiting for the university to respond to your application. Thankfully the two offers I got are the ones I wanted the most so I am very happy. Now all I have to do is ensure that I get the grades required for the university course but it is quite scary thinking that this time next year I will be in university. I don’t feel mature enough to be going to university or prepared enough to handle the workload of a degree but I just have to take each day as they come and worry about that closer to the date.


I can’t believe it is only 3 weeks to Christmas! Since we came back after half term I think the weeks have flew past but saying that I still can’t wait to get off for two weeks. I hope to be able to manage my time and workload well so that I won’t have to be working throughout the Christmas holidays.


9th December


I’ve had such a crazy week! I was so busy with school work for example I had an 8 page essay for the start of the week and then a test as well as a presentation for the end of the week.  I really hate presentations, because I get nervous about speaking in front of the class. I always feel as if my voice is shaking and that I have been speaking for ages when in reality it has only been a few minutes.

I know that presentations are important for building self confidence and public speaking skills but I still dread having to do them.  Plus, even though I have done quite a number of them it doesn’t ever seem to get any easier but I just have to tell myself it’s not that bad. Honestly I do just work myself up over nothing because they are over in a few minutes and within the next half hour everyone has forgotten about your presentation plus everyone is on the same boat. I think I just like to exaggerate!


14th Dec


I think last week went in super fast and now I can’t believe I only have one more week until I’m of for Christmas. I can not wait to be off! However, I am not looking forward to having to study for my exams which happen in January.


The worst part of last week was having to get the bus in the morning and having to wait outside in the freezing cold. It is soo cold in school at the moment  and especially when you have to wait for the bus in the morning, when it is raining and windy you are left feeling cold for the rest of the day. It is really dark in the morning and when my mum wakes me up I feel as if I’m getting up in the middle of the night, however it makes me super happy to know that next week I won’t have to worry about this problem.