“I don’t have time to do that, I’m a Leaving Cert!” – It’s been the go to excuse for the last year now. We’ve gotten out of housework, and other nuisances. And I for one haven’t mowed the lawn, cooked or cleaned in months. Another good one was – “I need to take a break from study, I’ve been working all day” and made it seem like we really deserved it. A combination of the two made us kings (/queens) of the household. Letting us do what we liked and being waited on hand and foot. The only downside is that these easygoing days are coming to an end. Once those exams are over the responsibilities of being an “adult” in the house will be on top of us. Quelle Domage!
You know I’d like to say that Leaving Certs have it good, but that wouldn’t be fair would it? We actually were really busy this past year. However I definitely not think that it was the Leaving Cert. that kept me busy. I recently wrote an essay for my class yearbook and I listed some of the things that kept me preoccupied; being chairperson Student Council, coming 7th in the ISTA Science Quiz, applying to UCAS, Doing well in my UKCAT, Doing crap in my BMAT, sitting the HPAT, coming 7th in the Irish Mathematical Olympiad (Just one place off a spot on the national team!! 🙁 ! ), doing stuff for the Gaisce award, putting together the booklet for my year’s graduation mass,…. etc. All of these things required a lot of preparation and ate up a lot of time. No wonder I stopped blogging regularly (Especially since nobody ever left any comments, I just want to know you’re reading, otherwise this is all a waste of time). If I really had been doing nothing but studying for the Leaving Cert. I would have gone mad! The distractions were welcomed even if they have hindered my outcome in the Leaving Cert Exams themselves.
So now to my regular points of advice to you, (The stuff I wish people would have told me earlier):
- English is first so make general plans of the essays you would write in the exam. Personally I prefer essays, articles and speeches so the stuff I’ll prepare to write about might be; the future, the education system, the environment, problems in the world, motivational speaking, hopes and dreams, and of course top tips for leaving cert. students!
- Make the same kind of plans for Geography, French, and Irish. It’s too late really to be writing out full essays.
- For the Sciences (Biology, Physics and Chemistry) I’ve asked my teachers for tonnes of old mock papers. Mock papers are really good for revision because they generally ask longer, more comprehensive questions and focus on unusual, harder aspects of the course or even easier parts that you may have forgotten about.
- For these subjects start making out lists of the stuff you know you tend to forget, and then try not to forget them!
- DCG is hard to give advice for but here are some practical tips: Get your hands on several compasses (bow compasses), get various leads as well (2H and HB). Have one 2H compass, and maybe 1 or 2 good HB compasses, This way you can keep your drawings neat and you can avoid constantly adjusting back and forth between the same measurements. Make sure you have an adjustable set square also. Again look up the things you tend to forget.
- Lastly for Maths and Applied Maths just remember that you don’t need to answer the questions in order. Do the questions you are most comfortable with first. For me I’m going straight to the option question, then anything on trigonometry, then calculus and then Q1.
- Draw Diagrams! (especially for the circle question)
And if anyone else has any tips for ME and anyone else, please comment below before June 8th,