Students: Use Lockdown to Your Advantage

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Focus on tackling your academic weak spots

Let’s face it, most of us have a lot more free time these days. Without the need to travel to school, move between classes, or attend registration and assemblies, it should be easy for you to find just 30 minutes per day to really knuckle down, revise and practice your least-favourite topics. 

Once you’ve decided what time of the day your focus and energy peaks, commit to a daily half-hour slot during which you tackle the toughest Topic Questions, study the Revision Notes you’ve been putting off, or watch a Revision Video on a Maths topic you haven’t yet mastered. 

Sticking to this routine will not only give you a huge sense of achievement, but after a few weeks you’ll really start to notice its impact on your academic attainment too.

Experiment with new learning strategies

When you’re studying in your own home, there are no teachers breathing down your neck and telling you how you should be revising. So make the most of it!

Want to write and sing a rhyming song about the Halogens? Go for it. 

Keen to cover your whole bedroom wall in drawings to help you get your head around Respiration? Now’s the perfect time. 

But before you start experimenting, make sure to read our blog posts on Visual Learning and the Pomodoro Technique!

Develop your independent research skills

Have you come across a subject or topic recently that really fires up your interest? Seize this chance to dive deeper and explore the topic further, whilst practicing your independent research skills. 

This doesn’t have to be something on your exam syllabus – it might be a piece of family history, a pop-culture trend or a local tradition. Whatever you choose, challenge yourself to use the internet, books or conversations with others to learn more about the topic at hand. Perhaps it might help you to decide which subjects you’d like to pursue at A Level or college, but at the very least it will be excellent preparation for future university projects.  

If you are fed up of scrolling through unhelpful results on Google, try iSeek or  Infotopia, both of which describe themselves as safe Google alternatives for students looking for information for homework or projects.

Lay the groundwork for upcoming university applications

Even if you’re only in Year 10 or 11, it truly is never too early to start thinking about your university applications. Use your free evenings to research the course options that are open to you, or to narrow down your top university location choices. Then you can get a head start on preparing for any tests or interviews you might have to take, or essays you might have to write.   

Even if you don’t come to any permanent decisions, seeing all the incredible opportunities you have to look forward to should motivate you to work that extra bit harder this term. 

Not sure how to get started? Take a look at our bumper collection of blog posts, specially written for students who are thinking about university!

Start up-skilling for your future

Being at home under lockdown does not mean that you can’t gain incredibly valuable work experience, or do some good via a volunteering project

Over the past year, numerous big companies have launched their own online work experience and internship schemes; explore the SpringPod website or search online for the best opportunities for you. 

If you can’t see a position advertised with your dream employer, don’t be shy about sending them an email to ask if they would consider hosting you for a virtual work experience project. You could even offer suggestions as to the kind of project you’d like to complete. 

Haven’t got the time to commit to a work experience project? You can also add valuable points to your future university application and to your CV by getting involved with online volunteering. You can make a real difference by spending just 30 minutes each week reading online with disadvantaged children, or perhaps you could lend your epic social media skills to a local small charity?

Create a perfect at-home study space

If you want to spend your weekend doing something practical, ask your parents if you can give your home study space a mini-makeover

According to the Save My Exams study experts, the most productive workspaces are those with plenty of natural light, a clutter-free desk, and calming decorations like candles and plants. 

You’ll also need a comfortable, supportive chair, and perhaps a stand for your books and laptop. 

There’s no need to spend lots of money on this makeover – just look for second hand bargains online or upcycle things you already have around the house. Of course, sometimes a good tidy up and clear out is all you need!

Browse Instagram and Pinterest if you’re in need of some inspiration.

Start a journal or blog

If you have something you want to say, or if you just want to get better at getting your ideas across in writing, starting your own journal or blog can be a really rewarding experience. 

To keep a personal, reflective record of your thoughts and experiences during this strange time, all you need is a pen and a notebook. However, if you want to share your opinions and ideas with the world, consider setting up an online blog where you can publish your work for all to see.

Remember; you are in charge, so you can write about whatever you want to, whenever you want to. The most important thing is that you are giving yourself a creative outlet and working to improve your own writing ability

If you want to brush up on your English skills before you get going, explore our English revision resources here.

These suggestions should get you off to a positive, productive start this month. But don’t stop there! Once you’ve built up the momentum, keep challenging yourself to try new things and explore more opportunities. Let’s make this lockdown the most rewarding one yet! 


We’d love to hear how you get on with these ideas and what you’ll be trying next. Join the conversation by sending us a message or comment via our social media channels (@SaveMyExams).

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