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Cirencester Deer Park School

Cirencester Deer Park School

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Year 10 Learning

Year 10 Learning and Curriculum, November 2023

When in Year 9, the year group's Learning Conference was rightly focused on the curriculum and Key Stage 4 option choices. However, now that Year 10 are two terms in to their GCSE subjects, we shifted the focus to effective learning.

The aim of the Year 10 Learning and Curriculum Evening, which followed the pupils' Learning Conference that morning, on Wednesday 8 November 2023, was to look at learning through the lens of memory and how pupils can better understand the process by which they learn new material. This will help them manage their expectations, knowing the difference between learning and performance, as well as reinforcing the idea that revision, if carried out effectively, is a key part of the learning toolkit.

The conference began with a short reminder from Miss Brace, Assistant Head, about next summer’s Work Experience (1-5 July 2024) before Mr Clutterbuck, Headteacher, moved on to talk about mock exams.

Most of Year 10 will be sitting two mock exams in December for the GCSE Religious Studies short course (see Exams). He shared a revision timetable with them, put together by the Ethics and Computing team, which led the way into the link between memory, spacing revision, and the notion of little and often; there are lots of revision materials on ShowMyHomework.

Having featured in the Year 7 and Year 11 Learning Conferences, the Chinese Bamboo tree made a reappearance to show Year 10 why revising little and often is the most effective form of revision. The agenda moved on to creating the right conditions for revision, what to do and not to do and, crucially, how to plan an effective revision session.

The final parts of the conference involved sharing three Effective Revision techniques: mind maps, flash cards and past papers. Mr Clutterbuck demonstrated how to use mind maps in conjunction with flash cards and the Leitner method to plug gaps in knowledge and secure learning over performance. Past papers are a wonderful resource if used correctly, and deliberately targeting questions in past papers with the help of a specification, together with the mark scheme and astute use of the examiner’s report, is a sure-fire way to revise effectively and efficiently. Too often pupils use past papers inefficiently by working through whole exam papers on questions which they don’t need to revise, before getting to the questions which will benefit them the most. Mr Clutterbuck showed a method of using the past papers and associated resources, which is both efficient and highly effective.

The evening closed with a look at the importance of sleep and the conclusion that 8.5 hours is the minimum needed for Year 10 and that quality of sleep as well as the length of sleep is necessary to consolidate learning.

The presentation slides, exam boards links (for past papers) and a booklet on how to revise has been shared with every Year 10 pupil via SatchelOne's ShowMyHomework.

For parents and carers who were unable to attend this event, and any families who wish to revisit sections of the conference, a narrated presentation by Mr Clutterbuck is below.

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