This post came to me the other day whilst I was re-reading my textbook for about the eighth time, trying to memorise it word-for-word. It dawned on my quite how stupid exams are and I’m going to share how stupid they are with you 🙂
Yesterday was my final exam of the year, so for me, it’s now officially summer!! Time to start on that summer bucket list of mine! Hopefully, the fact that my exams are now over means that this will be the last post on exams and school etc. until August! As I kind of want to forget about this whole experience. Or at least, not keep reminding myself that actually I could have to re-sit them due to failing…
So I was sat there reading my textbook, as my study technique is just read the thing over and over again until eventually I remember it and I thought that in fact, that is what exams are all about. My GCSEs – if I pass – are going to prove literally nothing. They’re not going to prove that I’m clever, smart, bright etc. all they’re going to prove is that I read a textbook to absolute exhaustion and remembered the words on the page. I bet I don’t even remember half of the things I’ve read in those textbooks by August!
I think exams are so unfair because of the fact that they’re just about re-reading something until you know it, literally, even if you re-read it and write notes in different colours and draw diagrams and anything else you might do, it’s just another way to re-read it later and memorise it… for people who don’t like reading and writing – or can’t – exams are basically impossible and it’s so unfair to have exams that we claim are the most important things in life and you can’t get a job without having these qualifications and that you’re not clever or smart if you can’t pass a GCSE. FACT: passing a GCSE does not make you smart – it means you can read and write well and memorise words well. I know plenty of people that don’t have any GCSEs and they’re smarter than I am. And they still will be if I get good grades in my GCSEs, because ultimately, my GCSEs don’t prove anything… it’s tough to realise as we spend so much time revising and stressing about them and you should aim to do well, but if you don’t then it’s not the end of the world.
I absolutely hate history! I don’t enjoy it, I can’t memorise it, I don’t see how history is all that relevant to the present day. But because to do a GCSE all I would have to do is read a textbook and memorise the words written in it, I actually think I could pass a GCSE history even though I have literally no interest in it. This is how unfair the education system is People who have an actual interest in history and think it’s the best thing in the world may get a worse mark in a GCSE than me when I don’t even have an interest in it, just because they can’t read and write as well or as fast.
My Mum and I were having this rant the other day and she made the example that although I’ve done lots of revision for my exams and I’ve done well in pass papers and I clearly know the stuff, I haven’t been studying the subject for two years – I’ve been studying it for literally two weeks (I’m not even joking! I literally hadn’t even opened the textbook until the 20th may…) so people that have been studying the subject for the two years that’s required at school might have wider knowledge, and they may have conducted their on research and go on school trips about it, and read other books about the subject as well as knowing the stuff in the textbook. So ultimately, they may know more about the subject than I do but if I’m the faster reader and better writer then I might get higher marks than them and although I want high marks in everything I don’t I think I deserve higher marks than people that have been studying this subject for two years and know it a hell of a lot better than I do. I don’t consider that something to show-off about, I consider it to be really sad and so wrong!
Not only have we already got such an unfair system but now the government are going to take the vocational parts of exams away, so the things that could have potentially bumped up the person who can’t read or write wells grade is now not going to exist anymore. The government are trying to completely cut all diversity and creativity out of the world. But I can’t see a way that it’s not going to back fire. People with vocational skills are sometimes needed more than people who are really academic. We need plumbers, builders, electricians etc. without offering qualifications and experience at school that can make students realise they have an interest in this career how are we going to continue to have enough of all these people? If everyone is encouraged to become a scientist or teacher of literature? It’s just crazy. I’m actually working with an organisation currently to hopefully put more creative arts opportunities into schools. Hopefully it will work.
Sorry this post has been kind of long and not very interesting, I have loads of tidying and organising to do now that my exams are over! I’m also baking cakes today!!
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OPPORTUNITY: I am doing a post on Sunday about home-education – Home-educated Q&A – and was hoping you could all send me some questions about home-education that you would like to know the answers to. I originally said it would be today or Saturday but I now don’t have the time to put it together in time and I have a shortage of questions, so go and leave a comment in the above link, tweet me or e-mail me – firstname.lastname@example.org Questions need to be in by 2PM on Sunday.
Lastly, if you have now finished your exams CONGRATULATIONS! I hope you did well and you’re feeling positive about it! I hope you get the grades you want! Enjoy the summer! If you still have exams to sit then GOOD LUCK!
That’s all for now!
Inspired Teen 🙂