I’m feeling very positive this morning – which is something of a relief from my state of mind over recent weeks!
You may recall that we have recently been pondering the idea of a few IGCSEs for P over the next few years. I was aware, in our conversations, that P had no real idea of the whole ‘exam paper’ thingy. This morning I printed off some old past papers for the English Language IGCSE and P and I had a look at a foundation level comprehension exercise. I was rather impressed by both of us! P has not done a comprehension exercise since she left school. I find the ‘junior’ ones mind numbing and though we’ve browsed the odd book in a shop, P has never wanted one. So, I was amazed at how quickly she got the idea. I showed her how to pay close attention to the marks available for each question – and base your answer around that. I also emphasised the need to write in short, unambiguous sentences. She picked that up easily and was able to scan through the text, underlining relevant phrases, and so on. Then we discussed how to structure the answers. She came up with most of it without any help from me. I sometimes chipped in with suggestions of how to make the answers less ambiguous or convoluted but she was usually getting there anyway.
I reckon the challenge for P, and probably her home ed friends, would be in building up the stamina to write for two hours solid. She’s not used to that amount of writing in a single sitting. There is no rush to do any of this – and if P decides not to bother then that’s fine too. But I think that she might really enjoy pursuing this and tucking away a qualification over the next couple of years – especially if she can work alongside friends.
I’ve been having a slight re-think about qualifications recently. I still think that I have far too many and that the acquisition of them was largely an exercise in showing off! But a recent re-grading at work brought home to me the earning potential that I have because I did follow right through and get a professionally recognised MA. Several increments were added to the pay scale for my job in the re-grading – just because of the need to be professionally qualified. That means I can work in a part-time job and get paid a decent hourly rate, which is more than most part-timers can say. So, I think that a few qualifications is probably a good idea, if you don’t mind doing them. I wouldn’t encourage either of the kids to do the huge number that schooled kids do – just enough for what you need seems to be the best way to go. Why sit 11 GCSEs when no-one cares how many you’ve got once you have four or five?
While P and I were looking at the exam paper, Leo found himself a Doctor Who toy to bid for on Ebay. That’s ICT done then! He had a false start when he found one in the US but realised his mistake when the price was in dollars.
“Ah, yes, I need to go to .co.uk, not .com, don’t I?”
It still does pull me up short when I see how much the kids take the internet for granted. They can’t imagine how recent all these changes are.
Anyway, have to go and make lunch now. Yesterday was good, with the odd hiccup, but probably not worth blogging in detail. There was MMs, Kids’ Club, Grandmothers, B&Q and quiche for tea. That’ll have to do.