Exam time's getting closer - and whether your kids are taking GCSEs, Standard Grades, A-Levels, AS Levels or Highers, they can find all kinds of revision resources online. Just read on to find out how a little broadband and brain power, can help teens make the most of their study time ... Is your teenager about to start planning out his or her revision timetable? With Plusnet broadband, they can use t'internet to go to the top of the class. Here are some handy tips on using your home broadband to help them, as well our pick of the best exam revision websites…
Online revision tools
Remember when we all had to rely on when revising was our own notes and maybe a revision handbook? Well, today's teenagers have a whole host of free resources they can use when revising for their exams - all easily accessible at the click of a mouse if you have home broadband. One of the best-known educational resources on t'internet is BBC Bitesize, designed for pupils in England, Scotland and Wales. This easy to navigate website is divided into sections, each of which caters for a different level or qualification: KS1, KS2, KS3, GCSE, Scottish First Level, Scottish Second Level, Standard Grade, Higher and TGAU. Each of these sections is packed with revision material for a number of different subjects, and it's presented in handy 'bitesize' chunks, making it easy for your kids to break their revision periods down into short mini-sessions. They can also test themselves on what they've learned, listen to audio clips, play educational games and chat to other pupils on the message boards. But plenty of other sites feature great revision material too - your kids can: • Try S-Cool for GCSE and A-Level revision notes, test questions, and helpful articles. • Head to Get Revising to prepare a revision timetable, and create and share resources like revision cards and quizzes. • Visit Revision World to find free GCSE revision and A-level revision resources and tips. • Find hints and tips for revising and taking exams, and chat to other students in the forum area at The Student Room.
Online exam preparation tips and resources
Being prepared is the key to exam success - and your kids can use t'internet to help them get ready for the exam hall. The first destinations on their online exam preparation journey should be the exam boards' websites - they're packed with information for students and parents, including exam timetables and guidelines. You can also download past papers, so that your kids can get used to the format that the exams will be in, they could also write practice answers at home under exam conditions to make the experience less daunting. You'll need to check with the school to see which exam board and syllabus they are using for each subject to make sure you're using the right resources - but many schools include this information on their websites. The main exam boards are: • www.aqa.org.uk - AQA provides GCSEs, AS Levels and A-Levels in secondary schools and colleges in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. • www.edexcel.com - Edexcel is another of the main GCSE, AS Level and A-Level exam providers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. • www.ocr.org.uk - OCR (Oxford Cambridge and RSA Examinations) is another provider of GSCE, AS Level and A-Level exams in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. • www.wjec.co.uk - WJEC provides GCSEs, the Welsh Baccalaureate, AS Levels and A-Levels in Wales and England. • www.ccea.org - CCEA (Council for the Curriculum Examinations and Assessment) provides GCSEs, AS Levels, A-Levels and other qualifications in Northern Ireland. • www.sqa.org.uk - The SQA (Scottish Qualifications Authority) provides a range of qualifications, including National Qualifications and the Scottish Baccalaureate, in Scotland.
Virtual tutors and study buddies
If your kids are looking for a little extra help before their exams you could hire a tutor for them - and if you have broadband they may even be able to have sessions online, using video conferencing. Make sure you do your research before hiring a tutor to make sure they have the appropriate qualifications and experience. Ideally, choose a tutor who has been recommended to you by someone you know and whose opinion you trust. Kids can also use t'internet to encourage each other with their revision via instant messaging services. However, we all know how easy it is to spend hours online chatting, so it's best if they structure any online study sessions that they're planning with their friends. They could, for example, agree to spend 20 minutes studying a certain topic and then test each other via instant messenger to see how much they have learned. Alternatively, they could complete practice papers and send what they've done to each other to see how their answers compare.
Taking a break is essential when you're studying for exams - and your kids can use your home broadband to find some great entertainment for their downtime. Encourage them to use online entertainment as a way of rewarding themselves for the revision that they've done, rather than letting it become a distraction. They can build their relaxation time into their revision timetable too, so avid studiers won't feel guilty for taking time off. With online movie and TV streaming services like LOVEFiLM and Netflix, games sites like Steam, and music streaming services like Spotify to choose from, they'll have a whole host of entertainment at their fingertips, thanks to home broadband.
Taking their next steps
Your broadband can help your kids to plan for their post-exam futures too. They can use the web to find out about different educational courses, apply for university and hunt for jobs if they decide to get straight out into the world of work. And don't forget to add results day into your online calendar too. Although your kids may need to go into school to get their results or wait for the postie to arrive, they may access their GCSE, AS Level or A-Level results online if they have taken an Edexcel exam, providing their school or college has signed up to the service. The school or college will provide your teenager with a PIN slip containing the log-in information they'll need, so they can find out their results from Edexcel's ResultsPlusDirect website. Do you know of any other great online revision resources? Just let us know by leaving a comment below …