51UStudy IB Study Group – What will be covered
English - What will be covered
The year 11 study group focuses on the skills required for three of the major English final assessments: the paper 1 exam, works in translation essay and the individual oral presentation. This is done in a number of ways. Firstly, students are given a basic introduction to literary analysis. This involves studying different literary devices in an abstract form and seeing how they work (looking at things like alliteration and personification, in more complexity than is covered in secondary school). After this, students will begin to identify and analyse these devices as they appear in texts. Secondly, students are given the opportunity to develop their essay writing skills, looking specifically at the unique structure and style required for the paper 1 exam, and the general features of a literary essay as needed for the works in translation. This involves both a deconstruction of things like introductions and conclusions, and tips on how to improve the writing styles of the students. Students will be given the opportunity to receive individual feedback on their writing, and things they could do to improve. Lastly, these skills are brought together and consolidated orally for the individual oral presentation. Students will finish the year with a strong foundation for the completion of their English assessments in year 12.
The year 12 study group focuses on developing the complexity and nuance of the skills that were obtained in year 11, as well as the remaining English final assessments: the individual oral commentary and paper 2 exam. This is done in a few stages. Firstly, students are introduced to more difficult and challenging literary analysis. This is comprised of texts with more intellectual ideas that are harder to understand, and literary devices that are more subtle and difficult to identify. More and more, students will begin to analyse these devices under timed exam conditions to mimic what the final assessments will be like. Secondly, there will be an intensive focus on the individual oral commentary, centred on giving students the oral skills necessary to translate their essay writing into speech. This involves showing students the most effective methods to prepare for the oral commentary, and giving them the opportunity to rehearse and receive individual feedback in class. Lastly, students will begin to develop their essay writing skills in terms of the requirements for the paper 2 comparative essay, which involves looking at the differences and similarities between two texts. Within this, students will be given a number of different tactics and structures that they can use for the paper 2. Students will finish the year with firm grasp on all skills needed to confidently and effectively complete their English exams.
Economics - What will be covered
The year 11 study group focuses on developing a comprehensive knowledge of the foundational concepts of economics, as well as the skills required for two of the major economics final assessments: the commentary portfolio and the paper 1 exam. Firstly, students will be given an overview of all important economics concepts, definitions and diagrams. This will be targeted towards the specific demands of exam questions, and the information necessary to answer them comprehensively. Students will have the opportunity to ask questions about concepts they don’t understand and request a focus on what they find hard. Secondly, students will begin to develop an understanding of the paper 1 essay, looking at the specific structure and writing style needed. They will begin to write practise essays, and will receive individual feedback on what could be improved. Lastly, students will begin to look at the structure and requirements of the economic commentaries, which involve analysis of an economics news articles. In addition to this, students will be given advice on how best to compile effective notes and keep up with class work. Students will finish the year with the strong foundational knowledge required to confidently move into year 12.
The year 12 study group focuses more exhaustively on developing exam skills for the paper 2 and 3 exams, while also building on the conceptual knowledge students have already obtained. Firstly, students will finish an overview of the entire economics course, in terms of all the concepts that need to be covered and understood. Again, this will be targeted towards the demands of the exam questions and the way in which students need to frame their responses. Students will be shown how to make links between the different sections of the course, and will begin to consolidate their understanding of the content that has been explained. Secondly, students will begin to work on the paper 2 data analysis exam, looking at the specific skills required to finish the short and long answer questions effectively. At this time, students will begin intensive exam revision, and will be given the opportunity to receive lots of individual feedback on exam technique and preparation. Students will finish with a confident ability to complete the economics exams.
Mathematics - What will be covered
It is our objective to progress through topics following the schedule that students have in their own school. This will allow our students to get a really good understanding of the topic, excel in their internal tests and build up a good knowledge base for Yr 12. When we meet bi-weekly (once a month with each student group? I guess this depends on the students) we will work on a variety of problems pertaining to the topic at hand. We will also review any important background knowledge needed to tackle the exercises. Additionally, students will be encouraged to ask any questions that they have gathered throughout the week, any problems or homework exercises that were not clear in class.
For students in their final year of study, the study groups will be a little more intense. At the beginning of the year, each time we meet we will review a topic and work on the toughest math problems they could encounter as well as past exam questions. As we approach the date of the final exams, we will shift to past exam preparation. We will work on Paper 1, 2 and 3 past exams mimicking timed exam conditions. This will give our students a good feel for the layout and format of the exams and will shake off any initial shock at encountering the exam. At the end of the session we will go through the answers and write out in detail any problems that the students struggled with.
In addition to preparing for the past exams, we will provide guidance with the coursework component. Since the teachers are not allowed to correct it very much, we will be happy to review it, give tips to students on how to improve or what direction to take, and overall, make sure it’s the best it can be in order to attain a high mark.
Chemistry - What will be covered
Much in the same way as for mathematics, we plan to break up our study sessions by school year. For the students in Yr 11, we will work on topics as they learn them at school. Chemistry is more theoretical than math, and students will be expected to provide explanations for theories or observed trends. Providing clear, in-depth topic notes that the students can keep will be a great resource for them when they come to their final revision in Yr 12. In addition to detailed explanations during our study sessions, we will also put the theory to practice by looking at typical questions that the students could encounter in an exam.
Our Yr 12 students will work on past exams under timed conditions once due topic revision has been done. Going through the past exam questions in detail and clarifying any questions that they struggle with will make them ready for their final exams.
Similarly to math, we will provide guidance with the 3 course works that students need to hand in as part of their internal assessment.
Chinese - What will be covered
The study group features on providing the students with opportunities to practise and explore the language as well as to develop intercultural understanding through a list of topics such as Introductions, Daily Life, Food, Shopping, Education, Home, China and the World, Holidays, People, Work, Emergencies, Special events, Environment, Media and Theory of Knowledge. Through the development of receptive, productive and interactive skills, students should be able to respond and interact appropriately in a defined range of everyday situations.
The study group focuses on developing students with their awareness and understanding of the intercultural elements related to the prescribed topics and their ability to communicate clearly and effectively in a range of situations and by supporting them to prepare for their internal and external assessments including: paper 1, paper 2, Written Assignment and Internal Assessment (Individual Oral). The study group should cater different learning styles and personalize students’ needs so as to help the students to reach their full potential in order to succeed in their final IB exams.
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