Year 12 marks the start of the final grueling year of high school! But it does not come without reward! This final year is the most important year of high school and students should not lose sight of the end goal. Although, the HSC gets students worried about the final exams, everyone should remember that assignments and homework tasks also contribute to success. This is because 50% of the final HSC mark received for each and every student comprises of a student’s internal/assessment mark. This leaves students under a lot of pressure to outperform one another through the entirety of Year 12.
In this survival guide we will discuss what Year 12 students should look out for, the expectations of the HSC stage and how to make the most of their time towards the final exams!
Year 12 students should be aware of a number of essential details in Stage 6, listed below!
- Year 12 does not start at the start of a new year.. It continues on to the 4th term of the 11th grade! Thus year 11 is only 3 terms.
- Year 12 students must also be aware of the significance of carrying a syllabus for each subject
- Year 12 students should also consistently follow the syllabus throughout their courses to ensure every requirement is met and every point is discussed and taught in class. We don’t want to walk into the final exam having no knowledge of something just because your teacher did not teach or mention it !!!!
- Year 12 should also treat this year as the final straw of high school examinations as motivation to race towards the finishing line for their secondary school career.
- Year 12 students should also learn to refer back to preliminary course content as that forms the basis of the content taught and tested in year 12!
- Be consistent with study and revision to ensure no knowledge gaps in preparation for the HSC Exams
- Year 12 students must also look towards their end goal, expect an increase in workload once again and undertake self directed learning
- Be aware of what subjects they should consider discontinuing in if it is a waste of time. The indication? They’re probably underperforming! But remember that 10 units must be carried out throughout the HSC Year, 2 of which must be english.
Year 12 is no easy year and students often share common challenges moreso discovered in this final year of high school because:
- Students underestimate the increase in workload and content that is introduced in the final stage.
- Students did not follow the syllabus during the beginning of Year 12. No one wants to learn aimlessly. Have a plan, follow the syllabus, NESA (formerly known as the Board of Studies) will only issue exam papers according to the syllabus and nothing else! Make use of the backbone of all courses in order to outperform those who don’t refer to the syllabus.
- Poor time management. Students start to procrastinate because they underestimate the workload that is required of them.
Assessment Schedules and Notifications
Students are given assessment schedules and notifications in advanced. This is a mandatory policy of NESA.
Assessment schedules outline when assessments will be given throughout the school year, this is increasingly important in Year 12. Each and every subject will have its own assessment schedule and contains important information:
- Type of task
- Which topics or modules are the main focus of the tasks
- What student learning outcomes are being assessed
- The time period you have to start and finish the assessment or exam.
- The weight of the individuals assessments as a percentage that contribute to 100% of the student course.
Assessments are usually notified to students in-class and are given at least 2 weeks to complete the tasks. The notification is handed out as a single piece of paper stating important things such as:
- Date of Issue
- Assessment Due Date
- Title of task
- Task outline
- Task description
- List of student learning outcomes students are to achieve from doing the assessment
- Finally, a marking criteria
Students should remember to stick by their assessment schedules and thoroughly read through assessment notifications to know what is exactly required of them. This helps with achieving the best marks by shaping your assessment to what the teachers expect you to answer or create from what you have learnt in the past few weeks.
How to achieve a smooth transition into Year 12
Your child’s mental and emotional health during this period is important due to the changes that come with going through their last year of secondary school. The challenges presented alongside competition, course work and increased study load and difficulty can overwhelm Year 12 students. Therefore it is important to find a balance between studying and being a teenager!
Helping your child develop good study habits during this year is not too late and it is better late than never! Consistency is the key to studying in high school and it is important to develop this skill early on so your child does not lose focus on their studies. Good study habits such as being on top of homework and assignments is a good sign of success in the future! If these habits have only come along recently due to the increased workload, don’t fret! The good study habits will stick with you in university and even in future employment!
How are a few ways you can help your child:
Develop a daily and weekly routine
Simple things such as having a routine is a great way to get your child accustomed to the ways and times he or she should be doing things. Things such as
- Waking up or leaving the house at the same time
- Aiming to have dinner around the same time
- Having a consistent bedtime will enable your child to plan their evening
Help them get organised
Parents should help their children plan out their days according to a daily timetable that considers:
- Wake up time, bed time
- Set amount of hours to study
- When and what subjects they should aim to study
It is also a good idea to have a calendar of all events including the extra curricular activities, and sunday family fundays as well as maths exams that are coming help to help your child get prepared.
Help them set goals
By helping them set goals, you are teaching them what is realistic and what isn’t. Especially in this final year of school goal setting is an imperative skill to possess. You should also ask them what they want to achieve not just relating to school but also in sports, etc. Goal setting limited to academic success can stress students out and even demotivate them from studying. Being overwhelmed from study is not a new thing among students, thus it is important to give them their own time and space to choose how they want to spend their time as opposed to forcing them to set goals as soon as you find them not studying. Goal setting is a very important skill that allows them to aim for a specific achievement and plan towards attaining it. It is important that students have a wide range of goals not limited to academic achievements to relieve stress.
Show interest in their homework
It is important to know what your child is studying and how they are doing. You should be aware of when they seem to be struggling or seek help! It is easy to forget how difficult learning is. Your aim is to help your child before they fall behind their peers. By expressing interest in their homework and what they are studying, they might just feel the need to explain their knowledge to yo. While high school students are seen as independent and self-directed, they still may need assistance every now and then! Some ways to show interest in their homework is to:
- Ask them what they are doing for various subjects
- Get them to explain any problems they might have (sometimes, discussing the issue will give them the solution)
- It is important not to give them answers but instead, to work through the problems together
Listen to what they have to say
Children need to be able to open up to their parents and talk about any problems that they may be facing! Often children are scared that their parents will be upset that they struggle with a subject. Rather than asking their parents for help, they try to hide their issue and quickly snowballs into a big problems especially if it is still the early stages of highschool i.e Year 12!!!
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