results day

Well kids, 18 years of compulsory education are over.
18 years of being told to sit down and shut up.
18 years of being told to speak when you’re spoken to.

18 years of being intellectually measured and placing your value and self-worth on a series of arbitrary and meaningless tests.

18 years of government ideologies being implemented through textbooks and subliminal curriculum changes; I bet you can tell me how many apples Kumar Rajesh The Third bought, but I bet
you can’t tell me who Mary Seacole was. Without Googling her.

18 years of conformity, take off the suit or the shit school jumper
or the blouse or the knee-length skirt, ain’t no pervy teacher
gonna get all offended; even though it’s their lack of self-control
and inability to control their sexual desires and the bullshit belief
that the victims are the ones responsible for all sex crimes performed on them. (Here’s something they don’t teach you at school: there are no excuses for raping someone. None. Zero. Nada. Don’t fucking do it. No means no means no means no means no.)

18 years of useless bullshit, goodbye Golgi Apparatus, hello money!
Time for loans and jobs and bills and I bet they never taught you
about exchange rates and how to get the most out of changing
your money. At least you can work out a Triangle’s hypotenuse…

18 years, trying to get you to behave, get you in a nice little line
so you’ll be a dutiful employee, a simpleton, normal, the same,
a cardboard cut-out of everyone else, a follower of the status quo.

Well kids, after all of that, all 18 years, I hope you’re still you.
I hope you’ve found joy in your own company and the company of others. I hope you have a dream, a vision, a belief, something to stand for. I hope you’re happy; well, happy enough after being mentally tortured for 18 years by the most flawed institution ever created.

I also hope you know just how goddamn beautiful you are, and I fucking mean it. I hope you realize there’s more to life than fly-by-night popularity and that crushes are little more than dust in the wind and that you are not defined by any of the tests that you take.

18 years now, wipe the slate. Start over. This is not the end, failure is not fatal and success is not final. This is only the beginning. It’s a big beautiful world out there. Trust me, I didn’t believe in it either.

Well kids, that’s the bell; your 18 years of hell are now finally over. Breathe in. Relax. And remember; this is only Chapter 1…

— 

You Are Not Defined By Exam Results (Spoken Word)

By Ryan Havers

(If you want to read this and record it and post it, do. And also please send it to me or direct me to it!)

5

Just remember, these are only suggestions and I am by no way saying my method is perfect, but this is how I’ve been taking my notes for almost two years and it’s the method I’m most comfortable with. The best thing to do is find a method that matches your learning style and needs.

1. Do yourself a favor and go and buy an entire shop worth of different coloured pens. For me, coloured pens are my best friend. I have dozens from various brands - mainly staedtler, papermate and bic - which are always used and abused on a daily basis.

2. COLOUR CODE! this makes reading your notes and finding information in a flash so much easier. The second picture is a photo of the notes I took from my school website about my Politics course. As you can see, I’ve used blue for the titles, purple for the basic information and green for all important dates and percentages. I usually use at least three colours for my colour coding.

3. Always copy down the learning intention/objective or the point in your syllabus that you are covering in that class. It is essential for revising. I actually take my syllabus and write down the date during which I completed the work for that section and basic notes - essentially the bare minimum of what I need to know, like micro notes - this is easier to do if a learning intention is placed at the top of your work, or even the number of the point in the syllabus you are covering in that class.

4. Highlights are the best thing in the world. You’ll find this out fairly quickly. They go hand in hand with using pens. Again, I assign one colour for each different element of my work. For example, I used pink for the key points of my learning intention, orange for the most important terms that are likely to appear on a test or that may need to be used in an essay - think of what might be BUZZ WORDS for an exam or piece of coursework as you read through your work, this makes doing essays, homework or flashcards so much easier - important dates are highlighted in yellow and pieces of legislation are highlighted in green. The title of any parliamentary department is in blue.

5. For all my history or politics students I find that doing timelines are great. Again, I’ve used a basic three colour system. Additional/background information is in green; this is very similar to little ‘don’t forget’ notes and can be great to revise right before a test or exam to make sure you know the basic information. All dates are in blue so they stand out as soon as you open the page. The main events are then in brown. I suggest trying to stay away from complimentary colours such -such as like pairing pink and purple together - as you won’t get such a stand out affect as I have here.

7. Although it isn’t shown here, I always write down the chapter and page number for my textbook that goes hand in hand with my notes, this helps out a ton and saves so much time [You won’t be that student who spends half the class trying to find a page in their textbook!}

Best of luck! If you have any questions or concerns, drop me a message.

Why British Youth Have More to Worry About Than Americans

I’ve never realised how good American kids have it when it comes to the stress of being accepted into a university. Americans take what is basically the entrance tests– the ACTs/SATs– during their junior year (Year 12 for the Brits), and can pretty much gauge where they can get into and with how much effort they can get in with, especially since almost every school has a range of scores that accurately reflect the middle 50% of the student body. The tests themselves are pretty easy to prepare for, seeing as they always have the same subjects (English, Math, Reading, and Science for ACT; Math, Critical Reading, and Writing for SAT) and they are MULTIPLE CHOICE. Oh, and it’s not uncommon for a student to take the ACTs/SATs anywhere from 2 to 6 times.

British students have it SOOO much worse. They have to prepare for their “entrance exams,” aka A Levels, for two years in a single, dedicated subject, like Economics or History. It’s nowhere near practical for a student to retake the exam, especially if they took the A Levels and the AS Levels in one session at the end of their final year in school. And JESUS CHRIST the exams are no where close to being as easy as a multiple choice test. Those exams are written. Entire pages of my exam answer document have been dedicated to a single question. Then, just to add insult to injury, while us Americans are packing and prepping for the university we got accepted to in APRIL, British kids are just waiting to see if they made the grades to GET IN!!! It gets even worse when you mention that some Americans start their University courses before British kids EVEN KNOW IF THEY’RE GOING TO UNIVERSITY!!!  And God forbid the horror that befalls those who don’t get the grades they need for their choice university and have to go through clearing…

In all, I have so much respect for British students. They have far more strenuous testing conditions and far more stress to deal with. I wish you the best on your results!