We didn’t get to be Editor’s pick in this magazine – but to be fair, Malala is more deserving, so fair enough, but it’s still nice to be included.
Remember, even those teenagers in your life on the Naughty List should have a copy of The Brain Box in their stocking this Christmas!
It’s good to work together.
A problem shared is a problem halved.
So divide up the work and put your heads together.
You learn one bit.
Your mate can learn another bit.
Then come back together and teach each other. You’ll learn it because:
- You have to teach it.
- It’s easier to learn from our friends.
I used to live in Dudley.
There were two year 11 lads there who were fast approaching their GCSEs.
They had to revise, but they’d rather play basketball.
So what did they do?
They took their books down to the basketball court. One would ask the other a question. If he got it right, he got a shot at the basket. If he scored, he got to answer another question. If he missed, or got the answer wrong, they swapped.
Then more of their mates joined in.
Then their girlfriends came along too.
Soon there were about a dozen of them, at the basketball court, taking shots at the basket and quizzing each other for their exams.
And that’s how they did their revision: working smart. Not hard.
Why not have a mini basket ball hoop in your class? If students get an answer correct, they have a shot at the hoop. Motivation!
This Brain Box is a book that focuses upon guiding students through that sticky period of preparing for and taking exams at all levels. This encompasses presenting good learning habits and how they can become habitual and normal practice as well considering motivational issues. The book is written primarily for students as it is part guide, part notebook, part reference book. However, I would argue that the book would be of great use for teachers, as the book contains easy to implement activities, particularly for revision, which can be used in lessons for any subjects, as well as parents, as there is plenty of practical advice which can enable parents to support their child effectively in that nervous exam season. I would also add, that this book would be an ideal resource for any teachers who oversee their school’s PSHE programme, as the activities in this book can (and might say) should be implemented in a Year 11 PSHE provision.
The book is well structured and starts with considering effective habits of success and motivation issues, which are clearly rooted in theory and modern thinking as mindsets and the theory behind flow are covered extremely effectively here. Indeed, this resource would be very effective in a CPD session on how these ideas can be implemented in the classroom. Then, it takes us through exploring effective ways of working including some great strategies and the best explanation I have seen on how to use the popular idea of foldables. Then the book methodically looks at how to deal with revision, exams and results, which all students and parents should read as they would gain great advice and confidence from the information given here.
As with all Independent Learning Press books, The Brain Box is gorgeously and attractively designed which makes this wealth of great advice and information eye catching and well-structured. Benton and Hodgson have adopted an informal and accessible writing style which adds greatly to the value of this book and helps communicate a range of potentially challenging and demanding theoretical ideas effectively. This is a resource, which can help all those – teachers, parents, and, most importantly, students – who are stakeholders in the examination season maximise performance at whatever level they are at or role that they carry out. Highly recommended.
Reprinted from Jivespin
At the Tears, Tantrums and Tiredness parent nights, I suggest certain reading materials. Here are a few recommendations. I’ll add more as I find them.
Inside the Teenage Brain
A useful, American book which looks at what happens to teenagers’ neurology alongside practical parenting tips and ideas.
Sheryl Feinstein R&L Education isbn: 978-1-60709-118-9
“The New Science of the Teenage Brain”
Article in National Geographic, exploring recent discoveries in teen neurology. You can find it online here:
The Parenting Book
First class book which covers all aspects of parenting, from babies to teenagers and beyond. Possibly the best book on parenting on the market right now. Highly recommended.
Nicky and Sila Lee Alpha isbn: 978-1905887
The Brain Box
Tim Benton and David Hodgson
See link here: http://www.bluecaterpillar.co.uk/education/the-brain-box/
Revision has changed!
These days there are so many new apps and websites to help you navigate your way through the madness of revision, and more and more are coming on the market all the time..
Here are a few we’ve discovered to get you started (we’ll add to this page over time – let us know if you find any other great apps or sites that work well for you, and we’ll share them):
Top 20 Revision Tips App
Collins Revision App
GCSE Revision App
Ultimate Revision App
Simple Mind (for mind mapping)
Evernote (keep all your notes in one place)
Maths Alarm Clock (if you struggle to get up – solve a maths problem to turn off the alarm!)
Timeline Maker (organise events in order – can be printed too)
CPD Revision Guides
Get Revising (pay site, but lots of user driven content)
Blue Caterpillar (obviously!)
If you struggle with online distractions, try this software:
Mac – Self Control http://selfcontrolapp.com
PC – Cold Turkey http://getcoldturkey.com
The software blocks chosen websites for a certain period of time.
More revision app ideas:
How to make an revision planner (also see our Brain Box book):
To get you thinking about podcasts;
Here’s a teacher whose made a load of history podcasts and put them on iTunes! You could do the same and, if they’re good, you’ll make some money at the same time! Win-win!