Four top tips to wrestle with revision and win!

26th March

Four top tips to wrestle with revision and win!

Stressed student Doing Homework At The Desk

The Easter break is almost upon us and tens of thousands of teenagers facing their GCSEs and A-level exams in the coming months will be using this time to get their heads down and revise. Experts tell us that the most ineffective way to revise is to read through your notes. Not much goes in, your mind wanders and you spend ages “working” for very little learning. So, we have go together with teen magazine Future Mag to bring you their four top tips to help you ‘own’ revision this Easter break.


Revision should be active – doing things, so:

  • Make fact cards
  • Draw mind maps
  • Highlight notes
  • Make lists
  • Write essay plans
  • Answer past questions

Don’t work for hours without a break. Your memory and recall become less and less effective, so:

  • Plan your revision in sessions of up to one hour
  • Take a short break between sessions
  • Change topics each session – this is really hard to begin with as you may have just got stuck-in to a particular subject, but it is a really effective strategy. It focuses your mind to get a certain amount/task done in a set time and makes the time spent revising really count


For your revision sessions to be useful and worthwhile you will need to make a few sacrifices.

  • Find a quiet place to work. Not with the TV on
  • Tell all your contacts on Snap, Messenger, etc. that you’re exiting the social media world for one hour
  • Put phones on silent and out of sight, switch off social media on your laptop (you can do it!)

Your reward at the end of the session can be a quick communication frenzy, hopefully telling everyone how brilliantly you have just worked!


Make sure you include lots of essay plans, past questions and past papers.

  • Remember, application of knowledge has more marks than recall in some subjects.
  • Look at mark schemes and examiners’ reports. That is how you will learn what examiners expect you to answer for questions – know what gains marks and, equally importantly, what does not gain marks.
  • 50 per cent of your revision time should ideally be spent on past questions





First thing to do is ask your teen how you can help. Start the conversation by asking; ‘Have you planned your revision, do you need any help with your plan? How can I support you?’ It’s important to remember teenagers and young adults need routine – at home as well as in school and college, especially where a lot of independent study is required. Young people need right environment to work in at home, such as a quiet space and a tidy desk. There’s a lot of pressure on them, so comforting advice and support is much appreciated, as well as boosting confidence.

Parents and carers should always have high expectations of their children, but they should also be aware of their anxieties and their need for regular breaks. Parents should also understand their kids are thinking about their next steps – GCSE to A-level or apprenticeship / A-level to university – these are important months and big changes in their lives are about to happen; sometimes it can feel as though the earth is shifting right under their feet.
It’s also important for parents to recognise where their children’s motivation lies… it can sometimes come from being the first person in the family to go to university.

Remember most children really want to make their family proud.

Thank you to Future Mag