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As teachers we know how stressful it can be watching students go through exam season but we also know that stress is more often than not vented at home rather than in the classroom. It is difficult to know what to do especially as you don't know the syllabus requirements or the best way to revise or when the exams are.

This post is aimed at supporting parents in helping their students prepare for the English exams at home.

This year all Year 11 will have exams on Tuesday May the 5th. This is a reading exam.

Some but not all Year 11 students will have a writing exam on Friday 8th May.

All Year 10s and some Year 11 students will have Literature exams on Monday 18th and Friday 22nd of May.

The best way students can revise at this stage is by carrying out practice questions which all students have had set as homework.

There are a number of posts on this blog with guides on developing exam answers and there are links to a range of revision videos.

If you have any questions about the examination period or supporting your child's revision, you can post a comment below.

Extended Exam Timings

Below are the scripts we used for your Walking Talking Mocks.

You can use these to support your revision.

Question 3a

Requirements - 1 Black Pen
                        1 Highlighter

Write your answer using short notes.
You do not need to use your own words.
Up to 15 marks are available for the content of your answer.

To begin with, you will just focus on 3a. This question asks you to look at passage B and you’re going to have to do some summarising. However, before you read the passage, read the question so you know exactly what you’re looking for.

Highlight the key words from the question.

Now you need to read the passage highlighting or underlining any important information from the text that refers to the topic you’re going to be summarising.

There are 15 marks for content in part A. Therefore, you need to aim to find 15 separate points and jot them down on your paper.


Spend 10 minutes reading the text and highlighting those key points, aiming for at least 15 points relating to the question. You MUST read the italic introduction to the text so you understand WHO it has been written by and the CONTEXT.


Your next stage is to quickly number the points you have and check you have got 15.

If not, you need to go back to the text and find more - try looking for some implicit answers.

If you have 15 you need to check to make sure they are focused on the correct parts of the question.

By the end of the timer you should have your 15 bullet points completed. Remember you can use focused quotations OR your own words.

Move to Question 1


You need three highlighters (or different coloured pens).

Look at the bullet points for the question - underline each one in a different colour. Call these A1, A2, A3. Circle the form you are writing in and who you are writing as.

Read the text highlighting the passage as you go along. You have ten minutes and there are time reminders below.

Time reminders:
1 minute: You should have between 1 and 2 points underlined.
3 minutes: You should have between 5 and 8 points underlined.
6 minutes: You should have between 9 and 12 points underlined.
9 minutes: You should have between 13 and 15 points underlined. If you have finished, you need to go through and find MORE points to underline.


Draw a quick grid with 3 columns, with headings of A1, A2 and A3. Now write down the points you have for A1, A2 and A3. Count up how many you have in each column.

Are they equally covered? If not, go back into the passage and find some more points. Do that now.

Now look at the points you have made for A1 and A2 and A3. Can you add DETAILS from the passage to each of your points? DETAILS are facts – names of people, place names, temperatures or any factual details you have from the passage. Do this now.

1- 2 minutes - List your ideas in a grid.

3-5 minutes - Add Facts to your bullet points.


Now try and add DEVELOPMENT to each of your points – DEVELOPMENT is often an emotional response to the A1/A2/A3 point. You will get marks for developing the ideas in the text but you MUST stay true to the original. With this question, it is not just about taking information from the text and putting it in your own words; it’s also about inferring from these points so that you can develop them.

1-2 Minutes - Add emotions to A1 / A2

3-5 Minutes - Add emotions to A3


You have to include all of the information you have underlined and included in your table. As you include it, tick it off.

The best tip is to try and put a each bullet point into every paragraph.

Before you begin, look back to the question to check how you have to start:

Don’t forget, include all of the key points you have underlined and planned in your table and tick them off as you go, develop the ideas, making inferences about thoughts and feelings your character might have had but stay true to the text and remember to write carefully, using paragraphs, high level vocabulary and correct punctuation.

Include high level vocabulary - make sure it is in your own words.
Include your key points
Tick the points off as you use them
Make sure you include DETAILS (facts from the passage)
Extend on each of the points you make (DEVELOPMENT emotions)
Check you 've been true to the meaning of the text
Check you' ve covered all 3 bullet points


Check your plan to make sure you have a balance of all bullet points. Spend the last 10 minutes making sure you finish the question with even coverage.

You are now 1hr 15 minutes into the exam.

You have answered 35 marks out of the possible 50.

You now have 45 minutes to complete the final 15 marks.

Hopefully you have gained between 23 - 35 marks so far.

Q3a: 10 - 15 marks.

Q1 Reading: 10 - 15 marks. 

Q1 Writing: 3- 5 marks

Move to Question 2 - Requires 1 or 2 Highlighters


First things first - put a box around the paragraphs you need to analyse and note the key words in the question.

In five minutes - Decide what effect each paragraph has (This will be your point for part a and b).

Highlight the 8 words or phrases you are going to use. Make a rough note of the meaning in context.

Remember - there should be some words used to create specific pictures (imagery).


You are now looking to write up your answer to the question. You have 20 minutes to do so:

Remember to put part a and part b where you begin each section.

Use the checklist below:

Make a clear point about language.
Use your word / phrase (preferably embedded in the sentence).
Define the meaning of the word in the context of the sentence.
Analyse (and evaluate) your word / phrase focusing on specific effect.

Key hint: Remember if all your quotations link to the same point instead of writing the point each time you can write things like 'this is further developed' etc.

e.g. The writer creates fear...

This is further emphasied...

This is developed in...

This idea is continued...

Return to Question 3 b)


We'll quickly write this up to gain our final five marks.

Return to your bullet points. You are going to plan your summary now.

Take the next 5 minutes to group your bullet points together - these will make up the content of your paragraphs.

Underline any facts, dates, names, places, statistics that cannot be changed into your own words.


Now you are ready to write:

The question specifies that you should write about 200 to 250 words in total; that is only one side of A4 so don’t add in any unnecessary explanations. Simply, summarise the information you’ve bullet pointed. Don’t forget to use your own words as much as you possibly can and try and get one or two points in each sentence to be really concise.


Include at least 15 points from the text
Tick the points off as you use them
Use your own words where you can
Write in paragraphs
        Use complex, compound and complex / compound sentences.
        Use discours markers, coordinating and subordinating conjunctions to make your writing sound less list like..
        Use the key words from the question throughout your summary.
Check you've been true to the meaning of the text.

If you complete this before the time is up, make sure you have 15 bullet points, check you have covered each bullet point in Question 1 and they are balanced.

You've now completed the mock:

Hopefully you have gained:

Q1 Reading: 10-15 Marks
Q1 Writing: 3 - 5 Marks
Q2: 7 - 10 Marks
Q3 a) :10-15 Marks
Q3 b) : 3 - 5 Marks

33 Marks + will gain you a secure B pushing to an A.

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