Exams are upcoming, but here's why I'm not panicking

Scribbles from Lydia Wilkins
Scribbles from Lydia Wilkins

(As a disclaimer, in case any teachers-including any of my lecturers-are reading this, I am not advocating not revising, and therefore not preparing, for exams. Simply, I think students should take them seriously, but have a plan!)

It's already March; seemingly, almost a countdown to exams has begun. We are constantly told that we have X amount of weeks left of teaching, that we should be revising NOW, but don't panic. Start now, and these exams should easily be conquerable! (For college students also, there's extra pressure-negotiating your way to what to do next, maybe university or an apprenticeship, added to possible paid work, and a social life.) For me, there's my blog, from which I post daily, sorting out where I'm going next, pursuit of a new job, revision, and a heap of other commitments.

Exams are not easy-they are hard work for a lot of us. (Myself included.) They're meant to be testing, but they don't always 'compute'. I've always had trouble writing a set response to a question I had trouble interpreting-and writing correctly still seems like an impossible feat, in spite of the fact that I write this monthly column. Mock exams would come back, always questioning the relevance of my arguments, as well as drawing attention to the clunky use of the English language. (And the irony is that I study Language and Literature as a combined subject!) Nowadays, I have a laptop to work on, as well as extra time; they make the physical logistics of any exam easier, yet they do not necessarily help with formulating a response, writing coherently, or arguing for or against a question.

If you're like me, I feel your pain.

Education is not forever; the time you spend working towards your dream career-or even doing it-outweighs the time you spend in any institution. Yet education is a founding basis that sets you up for the rest of your life; it aims to develop your skills-Reading, writing, with numbers-, teach you a required discipline, open your mind to different opinions, and so much more. It is not just something that pushes you towards a career.

Therefore, as a general strategy, here is what I advise; start early, and cram as much into your brain as you can-all that information, all those tidbits you'll need to look back on in May and June. Practice the required skills, because the more you do, the more of an asset they will become. Dare to be ambitious! (It's not a crime.) And if you find exams difficult, have a back up plan. It's advisable, and we all need to keep moving forward.

Currently I am planning to read: Othello by Shakespeare. (All a part of the exam preparation!)

And I also plan to listen to: Divide by Ed Sheeran. (Who else has 'Shape Of You' stuck in their head?!)