Key Stage 3

Preparing for Exams

Firstly, watch this short video on exam preparation:

Although the video makes reference to end of year exams, the key tips can be applied to preparing for any test.

Those key tips were:

  1. Make Cue Cards to summarise the content and then Read, Cover, Test. 

Cue cards are a great way to break large text/information down into the key components and into smaller, manageable chunks. These can also be made online using a website like Quizlet (https://quizlet.com/en-gb). 

Once you have made the Cue cards, it’s time to test yourself. Read them, cover them and then try to repeat them either verbally or by writing them down – whichever works best for you. 

If you are unsure how to make Cue cards, ask your teacher for help and while you are asking – see if they have any Knowledge Organisers for the topics you need to revise. 

  1. Plan your time 

No highlighters please! This isn’t a time for making a fancy timetable with glitter and sparkly bits J . The aim of the plan is to put different subjects together on the same day. No brain can focus on a day of Maths! Split your subjects up and give yourself that time to forget, that way when you test yourself on that subject, you can see what you have learnt. 

  1. Test yourself 

Verbally with a parent or friend, more formally in the form of a past paper – testing works to embed material in your long-term memory and, as previously mentioned, it helps you to see what you know and what you don’t. This then allows you to focus on the content you don’t know when you revise. 

  1. Give yourself a break 

Be realistic – maybe 40 minutes on, 20 off if you can manage it, or 30 minutes on, 15 minutes off if you can’t. A tired brain isn’t an effective brain. Give it some rest by playing on your games, watching videos on your phone, going outside to play… whatever you like to do. 

Make sure you are also getting plenty of sleep - sleep meaning actually closing your eyes and drifting off into dreamland – not getting into bed but having the TV on or your phone on ‘pretending’ to be asleep. 10 hours sleep a night is what your brain needs – you’ll feel much better for it. 

The last piece of advice to give is to ask your teachers – we are here to help if you aren’t sure of anything!