After months of procrastinating and pretending the Leaving Cert exams are a very distant problem, the Mocks are wrapping up and the Orals are only a month away. It’s time to kick into action but depending on their Mock results, some students might be feeling less than optimistic about what lies ahead.
A lot of students may be unhappy with their results. There will always be that one student that manages to get the results they need but that does not guarantee that things will go as well for them in June. The most important thing to remember, by far, is that the Mocks were a practice test to give you a sense of how the official exams will operate.
A classic mistake is being unhappy with your grades but not doing anything to fix them because ‘the results aren’t accurate’. Students get the marks they get for a reason. They reflect how ready they are for June while there is still plenty of time for improvement. Whether it be time management, reading the question properly or not backing up your correct answers, everyone has things to improve on.
The most valuable tool for all students in the next four months is exam papers. School books are a great way to learn how to do the task at hand but in most subjects, questions are presented very differently in the actual exam. They can seem like riddles on the first read but the more time spent working through them, the stronger the realisation comes that the papers really don’t change much year to year.
Look at the comments your teacher gave in relation to your results. After the Mocks, students might be faced with the decision of staying at higher level or dropping to ordinary. If a teacher advises you to drop, take it on the chin as a recommendation because they are not saying it to be mean. Think about how much you need to improve and how achievable it is.
Finally, take a step back to realise that the Leaving Cert is a means to an end and doing badly does not equate to failure in life. There are plenty of back doors to careers and if you are driven enough you will get there, the route is irrelevant.