5 ways to pass your exams

It’s exam central in our house at the moment.


How likely is an A? About as likely as it being 40 deg C tomorrow in London.

Not only do we have Son doing his A levels and Dark Princess doing her GCSE’s but we also have my Englishman doing exams for a professional qualification. I don’t have exams, and in fact, thank God I can’t remember the last time I sat an exam.

Job interviews, radio interviews, squits-inducing-scary-meetings?

All the time! But exams? Not lately.

As you can imagine I am overwhemed with empathy for the poor dears.

Just this afternoon I heard a pained thin gravelly voice singing ‘No I don’t have a gun..’ He wasn’t considering ending it all rather he’d found his fave song on Grooveshark and was singing along. As you do, whilst you are studying hard!

“Are you laughing at me?” my very twitchy Englishman asked me last night, when he stopped chasing his tail in deep doodoo panic about ‘all this bloody work I have to learn’ and ‘the exam’s on Friday’. I looked up at his ashen face and casually placed a hand over my smirking mouth.

“Of course not darling. I’m crying….with empathy. Tea?”

“Hmmmm.” And his eyes narrowed.

It’s not that I’m unsympathetic – of course I am (sympathetic not unsympathetic)  but he did look a little like a cartoon character that had eaten too much chilli. He could have sent smoke signals with the amount of steam pouring out of that frantic hot red head. The image was interrupted by the dulcet tones of a guitar wafting downstairs.

“How much work has he done today?”

Son got a guitar for his 18th birthday two weeks ago. On reflection perhaps the timing of the purchase was not ideal. I mumble something about ‘having a break from all the swot’ and didn’t mention that the riff he’s been working on all day sounds rather good now.

At least I know that one day, he will be a very useful busker.

And speak of the Devil, Son appears in the doorway waving a Rubik’s cube.

“I’ve just had the most brilliant idea about how to work out Rubik’s cube using maths.”

“Excellent Bill Gates Jnr but could you please finish that study for your Chemistry finals. Without the musical interludes?”

He humphs off to see what my Englishman is up to. I don’t need to go and see. I know. He’s flying planes – yes, inside the house – again! No they’re not even planes that can carry us all long-haul to Australia and New Zealand. I notice we now have five RC planes parked on the tarmac atop our living room bookshelf. I swear there was only three last time I looked.

My Englishman is playing Flight Sim on the laptop – it’s good stress relief from all. that. swot.

Or so he says.

I’m making dinner and as I quickly check the smartphone for a recipe for bulghar wheat I click through Facebook, and notice Dark Princess online. If I strain I can just check make out the duh-doh sound of Facebook chat and gales of giggles coming from her bedroom.

Who knew swotting for GCSE History was so funny?

In fact who knew that studying was so different from when I last did it. If my family is anything to go by these are the 5 best ways to pass your exams.

1/Practise your guitar, until you’re Jack Johnson level.

2/Sing along to Grooveshark, after spending thirty minutes setting up a ‘Study Play List’ of course.

3/ Run around in a circle, flapping, waving your BIG FOLDER OF NOTES, mimicking a cartoon character. Then slam down exhausted into your chair and…

4/ Start a game of Flight Sim. For relaxation and stress relief.

5/ Commune with friends and family on Facebook chat. There’s nothing quite like sharing the pain of study.

Funny, things have changed so much since I was a student. Back in those days the surefire way to pass your exams included –

1)Eat chocolate. Then feel sick. Then need to go to kitchen to have a drink to rinse out your mouth from all the chocolate. Continue until all chocolate within six km radius has been consumed.

2) Listen to Walkman especially moody songs about ‘I hate Mondays’ and ‘What About me, it isn’t far, I’ve had enough and I want my share…’

3) Volunteer to tidy your bedroom. Then revive fainted Mother.

4) Ring cute guy you fancy and get so embarassed you spend fifteen minutes on the phone saying ‘Um. How are you? Um’ Then follow up call doodling love hearts with his initial and yours and practising your married name.

5) Stay up to 3am mainlining coffee to stay awake, whilst staring out the window dreaming. In the morning point to the dark circles under your eyes and mutter about ‘studying late’.

Things have certainly changed sooooo much since I was a student. How lucky am I that I have my family to educate me in the very modern art of studying for your exams.

They’re all going to get A’s, aren’t they?



Image: Flickr CC







'5 ways to pass your exams' has 12 comments

  1. May 17, 2012 @ 6:17 pm Steve

    You do know that blokes only take tests and exams so we can have more R&R time to recover from it, don’t you…?


    • May 18, 2012 @ 3:28 pm vegemitevix

      So that’s the weekend’s fun organised then?


  2. May 17, 2012 @ 10:36 pm veryboredincatalunya

    Good luck to all in the VV household. I’m sure they’ll all pass with flying colours. x


    • May 18, 2012 @ 3:29 pm vegemitevix

      Thank you VBIC can’t say I’m convinced of this though. I suspect there could well be tears before bedtime.


  3. May 17, 2012 @ 11:23 pm Monique Devroeg

    My goodness it seems that with only a few minor adjustments my kids have the same study patterns as your family ;~D good luck I hope you survive all the exams.


    • May 18, 2012 @ 3:29 pm vegemitevix

      Is it how they teach them these days? And how about my own list, did you ‘study’ that way too, back in the day?


  4. May 18, 2012 @ 11:46 am Katriina

    When I was studying for high school exams another tactic was:
    (6) Count number of hours between now and time of exam tomorrow, and console self that since it is a surprisingly large number it would be fine to take a little break, and possibly try on clothes in front of the mirror to see if they make bum look fat or not


    • May 18, 2012 @ 3:30 pm vegemitevix

      I love this. Absolutely spot on, except for me it wasn’t my bum, more my tum.


  5. May 18, 2012 @ 2:05 pm expatmum

    Or, you do what mine (the Queenager) does. Leave it till the very last minute, (because they were actually being given new material till the day before the final exam), stay up till 5am, sleep for a few hours, and yell at your mother every time you have a phone conversation. Come home at the end of term and sleep till past noon for the next 7 days. Get up, go out with friends, come back, stay up late, sleep till noon…..


    • May 18, 2012 @ 3:31 pm vegemitevix

      Oh no. Son has taken to coming home from college late, not eating dinner going to bed, waking at 2am, studying until 5, sleeping until 8am, then running for the bus and starting all over again. Sigh. Wonder how he got on today?


  6. May 22, 2012 @ 11:53 pm Ca4ole

    Hi, just to let you know that I added this post to
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  7. May 31, 2012 @ 10:02 am vegemitevix

    Hi Ca4ole thank you so much! I have had this experience with Stumpleupon with some posts getting over 1000 hits in one day. Will go into Stumbleupon and look you up and return the favour. Thank you! Mwah x


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