GCSEs will be a big part of a child’s development into their future. These exams will determine where your child will go next – whether they decide to head to a college, or progress further into sixth form. There are also other options your child could consider; as parents, we should ensure we know every pathway to help support our kids.
In this guide from one of the best sixth forms in London, we take a look at the ways you can better support your child through their GCSEs.
How the exams work
Children will be exploring the GCSE curriculum from at least year 9, so they’ll need to be prepared for the sudden shift in their studies. From there it will become noticeably more difficult, which is where you come in. Talk to your child often about their progression and look at the areas in which they need some extra support.
Focus on the more essential subjects first
In order for a child to progress into most areas of study, they will need to put their focus into the compulsory subjects. In the UK, a lot of progression is based on 3 key subject areas – English, Maths and Science (often split into Chemistry, Biology and Physics). Students should be aiming to get at least a grade 4 in these subjects (previously known as a C grade) to proceed into further education.
Don’t forget to pay attention to their interests
A lot of a child’s decisions will be made in year 9. They will be able to pick out the subjects they’d like to study at GCSE level, which can ultimately decide if they want to progress with these subjects at A Level. These subjects will be a part of a child’s life for a few years, so they should pick subjects that they really enjoy and want to pursue.
It’s not the end if your child doesn’t do well
GCSEs can easily be sat again if your child needs a specific grade or didn’t perform as well as they had hoped in the exams. There are a lot of exams that happen in one batch during the summer break, which can mean prioritising revision is key. That said, your child will have plenty of chances to improve on any grades they’re not happy with, and there are other ways to progress in their studies aside from A Levels.