In this post, Victoria Liang shares the tips that helped her ace Year 10.
Victoria had an exceptional year at school. In this post, we share her Year 10 High School Hacks for Macquarie Fields High School Students.
Macquarie Fields High School
Year 10 (2017)
I am a member of the school string ensemble, a volunteer for Christadelphian Aged Care and a classically trained pianist. I also enjoy reading books and articles, and watching documentaries.
My ATAR goal is 99+.
History is a subject that I have always performed well in as I find it to be an intriguing topic that is quite enjoyable.
English is another one of my strong subjects as it is an abstract subject that allows for personal perspectives and has many practical aspects.
While my marks in Mathematics have been steadily improving, there is still plenty of room for improvement. I personally find Mathematics to be a tedious subject that requires a lot more practice and effort.
The holidays are a break away from school and as there are no major exams such as the HSC or Preliminary Exams for Year 10, I don’t really have a routine.
Generally, my Maths teacher gives me homework or I have an assessment task to complete over the holiday. A few times a week, I will do some catch up work (if there is any) and try to solidify my understanding of a subject so that I will not struggle when school starts again.
During the term I use the following routine to keep myself on track:
Like most teenagers, I get distracted by my phone quite easily so I turn off all my notifications on social media so I’m not constantly checking for any updates. This has proven to be quite effective as I now spend most of my time reading books and articles instead of being on social media for the majority of my screen time.
Having a device sitting next to me as I study provokes the urge to check it so I put it away in a cupboard or under a pile of clothes. Even though I know where it is, I don’t check it as often as compared to when it’s beside me.
I also can’t study as effectively with any noise, music included, so I try to find a place where I can sit and study in silence. I also make sure to have an organised desk as I get distracted and don’t study as well if my work-space is messy.
For essays with a prescribed text, I research the text before I start to analyse quotes to be able to understand it and the context.
Your knowledge of the text and context is really important when writing an essay. If you don’t understand what you’re writing about, it will be clearly evident in your essay. After researching, I memorise quotes and techniques by writing them out over and over again till I know them off by heart. I then say them out loud to make sure that I have fully memorised them.
I also practice answering essay questions under time limits so I will have an idea of how I need to work through the exam and what I need to improve on. I have my Matrix English Advanced Teacher, Matrix tutor, or a friend to give me feedback because they identify things that I don’t pick up on. A second opinion is always really helpful.
With creative writing, the only way to prepare is to practice writing, read a variety of books and get feedback on your work.
Practicing past papers has really proven to be useful as it helps you to identify what you need to practice more of and can give you an idea of how you will perform in the exam. If the exam has multiple topics, assign at least a day or two to just focus on one topic so you can perfect what will be examined. If there is anything that you’re unsure of or don’t understand, don’t be afraid to ask for help.
My proudest achievements this year are:
I wish someone told me earlier to participate in class discussions or just made me go to teachers to ask for help.
Teachers are there to help you, not to embarrass you.
If you get something wrong, who cares? You’re at school to learn and you can only improve your studies if you learn from your mistakes so don’t be afraid of being incorrect.
If I could start the year again I would go to my teachers for additional help and not let my doubts compromise my grades. I would also be less careless and more attentive as I have lost marks to questions that I could have easily answered, simply because I didn’t read the question properly or double check my work. Studying and putting more effort in is what I would have also done as I know that my marks could have been a lot better.
1. Know that there is always room for improvement, so don’t be afraid to ask for help. Not asking for help can really affect your grades and it affected mine so don’t be afraid. There is no harm in asking for help and learning from your mistakes. If you can be good, why not be great?
2. Be prepared as the workload is much more than Year 9. And this will continue every following year. Create a routine to ensure that you don’t fall behind or slack off so you can perform at your full potential.
3. Create goals, because hard work without goals is just a dream. You may be working hard, but working hard for what? Having no goals can make you miss opportunities and you won’t accomplish as much as you want to.
1. Don’t procrastinate because it can prevent you from achieving your full potential. Not performing at your best just to watch that YouTube video or movie is not worth it. Don’t stray from your routine or goals. Doing things all at once can be overwhelming so work cumulatively.
2. Don’t think that you can apply the same effort that you did in Year 9 because the content is more difficult and the workload is not the same. Putting in the same effort and expecting better results doesn’t work.
3. Don’t stress too much because failing is not the end of the world. To fail is just your first attempt in learning; have a growth mindset. The only way to improve is to learn from your mistakes so don’t be afraid of making mistakes.
If your child is struggling with their marks in Year 10, now is the best time to help them get on top things. The study skills and practices that they learn now will stay with them through High School, university, and beyond. Actively working with your child now to help them improve their results will give them the best opportunity to get the ATAR and career they want. Why not see how Matrix can help your child succeed? Book a Free Trial Lesson now, and see why more than 4500 students attend Matrix each term.