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EMERGENCY NOTICE
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Early Preparation, Practice and Collaboration: The Key to Academic Success

16 January 2015

Chris Share, Head of Secondary: Just a couple of weeks into the new year and some parents may be surprised to see that already I am giving a reminder about how our students can prepare for the summer exams.

In reality however, there are only 15 weeks or 107 days until the 4th May when the IB exams start and very little extra time until our IGCSE exams.  Following the mocks, our teaching staff have analysed the results and are busy trying to organise the exam students’ sprint to the starting line in May.

In school we are now running a number of revision classes that for some are optional but others recommended. Our Heads of Faculty will liaise with Heads of Year and communicate with parents, when either a student did not do so well in their mocks and needs some extra help, or alternatively some students have shown promise and need that little bit of extra help to achieve their golden targets. All our IGCSE and IB students have a personal tutor, some meet with them on a one to one basis and some in small groups: peer work and discussion is something that is seen to be a particularly effective way to inspire and help young people learn. We also need your help as parents, and this is important in all age groups of the school, as we prepare our students for any exams.

Having a clean, clear, quiet space is important to set the right tone for sitting and revising and in fact also doing homework. The importance of having a revision timetable is something that we stress to students. Having an organised and realistic set of targets and a set time for each subject is also very important, just like a homework timetable. Of course at the moment students are still studying new content across the school so parents please be aware that they are completing homework as well as needing to revise. We very much value the confidence and familiarity that practice can give students and we have all the past papers on our moodle pages for our IB and IGCSE groups.  

For all students, reading through notes and writing them down onto revision cards is a proven successful revision technique.  Feedback is vital to a student’s success and therefore the collaboration of student, teacher and parent is aided by a number of Student Parent Teacher Conferences coming up in the next few weeks and these build upon the tracker information you were sent home before Christmas.

As we get closer to the exams we will give parents and students more information on preparing and coping with the stresses and strains of exams. This week we had Clive Leach working with staff and offering parents information sessions on his positive education programme about helping students and parents cope with the stress of growing up and academic expectations.

We are working with other experts to bring you more information evenings to help parents and students navigate the tricky teenage years.  We aim to give our staff, parents and students extra help to be aware of the issues of growing up specifically in Shanghai, as well as the general child health and parenting issues that are common throughout the world. By working together on the well-being and motivation of our children of all ages we are hoping that that their time here at BISS Puxi will be as happy as possible and ultimately as successful as possible.

- Chris Share, Head of Secondary

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