Some Ideas about Teaching



GCSE 'Warm-Up' Sessions


Always have a word with your t-i-c cover as the GCSE exam approaches, and arrange to have a 'warm-up' session with your pupils for the half-an-hour before the exam.

Then you walk them down as a body into the examination hall to do the exam.


You will, of course, need to warn the pupils and arrange for them to come to you, half-an-hour before the exam.


There are three advantages of a warm-up session:

1.   It allows you to remind them of all those vital little tricks that they ALWAYS forget.

2.   It 'gets their minds working' - and working, moreover, about History.

3.   It creates a corps d'esprit, and psyches them up for the exam.


And what might you address during that half-an-hour?

Here is the crib-list I have used for a number of years:


1.   Remind them which section/questions they will have to do.

2.   Read quickly through the whole paper before you do anything.

3.   Rehearse the principles of how to choose the questions you are going to do.

4.   Avoid the typical goofs - e.g. mixing up Berlin Blockade and Berlin Wall/ answer on wrong source/ 'answer-grabbing' - seeing a word in a question - assuming what the question's about - and then setting off writing about what is in fact a different question.

5.   Remind them HOW TO DO the different kinds of question they will meet.

6.   Remind them about timing the exam. Spend 35 minutes on each question - if necessary, hurry up towards the end in order to finish on the 35 mins, but if you finish early, spend the rest of the 35 mins thinking about what you have forgotten that you should have out into your answers.

7.   Remind them to write a quick plan before writing.

8.   When you write 'from my own knowledge' you MUST then mention a specific fact!

9.   DEAL with analytical questions: describe - explain - assess - link.

10. Stop at the end of every paragraph and ask yourself: 'Am I still answering the right question? Have I answered the question?'


Posted on: Jun 8 2006, 08:45 PM





To cite this page, use:   CLARE, JOHN D. (2006), 'GCSE Warm-Up Sessions',  at Greenfield History Site (