In this guest blog, Deana a GCSE Maths Tutor and Presenter shares her perspective about school teachers and gives students advice on how to cope with GCSEs and school pressures.
We hope you enjoy!
Teachers ey? You have the ones you love, the ones you hate, the annoying ones, the funny ones, the unpredictably moody ones, the naggy ones, the stressed ones and the angry ones.
I believe all teachers want students to be the best they can be BUT how many teachers are unconsciously leaving a negative mark on young people?
I say this all the time on my podcast: school environments can be really toxic. For some, it is toxic all the time and for others, it can be toxic sometimes. Year 10 and 11 can be the toughest years of secondary school because of the added GCSE pressure: Students are constantly questioning about their abilities, their futures as well as juggling personal issues.
I stopped teaching in a school environment 6 years ago and it is the best decision I ever made.
I have worked with young people and supported them in many different capacities including workshops, tutoring GCSE Maths students,
my 13 to 19 Podcast and maths channel Maths with Deana.
But anyway, I am not writing this to talk about me. I am writing to tell young people that you need to get your priorities straight.
There is no doubt that school is not helping people reach their full potential. I am not talking about academics only, I am talking about personal development, awareness of how the world works and what life is REALLY like outside of school.
The way the education system is now has made teachers’ roles very complicated and for some people turned them into baggy, demotivating and pressuring individuals so, I have a few pieces of advice for any young people struggling to get through this year.
1. Don’t take what your teachers say to heart
I KNOW TEACHERS CAN BE AMAZING.
They work super hard and really want the best for you. But on the off chance, you end up with a miserable teacher or one that takes out their anger on you OR one that says “you’ll never amount to anything’ in an attempt to get you to bounce back, ignore it.
People are motivated by different things, but NO TEACHER can predict what your future holds. If a teacher ever tells you that you won’t amount to anything mumble in your HEAD, ‘you know nothing’.
2. Work Hard
I get it. I know GCSEs are HEAVY. So much content, revision, exams and sometimes it can feel like you are drowning. But you need to work hard.
Not just to pass GCSEs but to build good habits. Life has many obstacles and if you are not used to pushing yourself, then you will never be the best version of yourself.
- Make a plan.
- Write all your deadlines and exam dates.
What do you want to do well in? Which topics do you need to know? Which topics do you already know? How many days a week are you dedicating to revising? Make a plan and that will make you feel a bit more organised.
4. Self-care is IMPORTANT!
No, I am not contradicting myself. As much as it is important to revise, you need to switch your mind off too.
Meet up with friends, exercise, watch TV, have a bath or whatever you do to destress.
Buy some incense; Any time it all gets a bit much light one and have a nap.
THANK ME LATER.
5. Help each other
Revising together and learning from each other is super powerful. Trust me.
6. Understand it is never too late!
If you are revising or buckling down later than others, don’t worry. Don’t compare yourself to others, this is your life, not theirs. I honestly believe it is never too late to make a difference. THERE IS NO BETTER TIME THAN THE PRESENT!
I know right now, it feels like this is the most important stage of your life, it is not.
It is the most important stage of your life, so far as it can unlock doors in the future.
However, please believe that no one knows what the future holds. You can only give yourself the best opportunities by doing your best. There are many ways to succeed and as long as your mindset is strong, you can overcome anything.