GCSE Subjects & My Opinions

Currently nibbling away at a packet of Munchies and laughing that at the top it says ‘Love to share.’ LOL, who wants to share chocolate?

School is hard. I once saw someone had tweeted that school kids didn’t deserve half terms and do you know how angry that made me? Very. In secondary school theres a lot of content to learn, homework, and some pretty two-faced people, so yeah, its quite hard. And I’d also like to say that everyone keeps making GCSEs harder and harder, so if you’re complaining that school was easy then it’s probably quite a bit harder than it was in your days. My year (I’m currently in Year 10) are the first year to take all our exams on the new 9-1 scale. If you don’t know what that is its basically 1 is an F and 9 is an A**. I know, why? THE AMOUNT OF TEACHERS THAT HAVE CALLED US GUINEA PIGS THOUGH…

So I’ve seen a lot of videos, like Molly’s and Eve’s, where people talk about the A Levels they are taking, what they think of them, whether they would recommend them and just talk a bit about them, as the exams and content have changed a lot recently so I thought this might be useful for anyone in Year 9 or picking options at the moment. I probably should have written this post at option picking time, oh well. Its fresh in my mind now as I’ve been taking these subjects for almost 2 terms but I can do an updated version near the end of Year 10 if that will be helpful.

The subjects I am taking are English Lit, English Language, Maths, Combined Science (all compulsory) and then my options are Drama, Photography, Spanish and History. I’m not going to talk about the first lot because (sadly) at GCSE they are compulsory so you’re stuck with them. At my school everybody has to take Combined Science, which I think is 4 exams, or the equivalent of 2 GCSEs, but if you really enjoy science you can take Triple Science as one of your options and you have 6 exams and 3 GCSEs, although don’t quote me on that because it could be different at your school.

My school chose to not make any blocks to start with, then once everyone had picked their 4 options, make the blocks that would fit in the best and sort out any clashes. I did have a clash where 3 of my subjects were in the same block but luckily my amazingly persuasive parents managaged to talk to the school and make them add an extra class to a block so I could do the subjects I wanted. What stars. I’m definitely not one to pick subjects because all my friends are taking them, otherwise everything would be very different. The subjects I picked were ones I really enjoyed and I could see myself taking for 2 years, so I haven’t had to change any of them.

If you’ve read my blog for a while you will know Drama is my PASSION, my hobby, my favourite subject. I’d love to be an actress when I’m older and honestly some time last year I had completely lost all love for it (if you want a laugh read this post I wrote because oh my god I was still young but I thought I knew what I wanted to do then I started hating it. It’s hilarious.) but since I started having the lesson really often I’ve just become a drama queen again. I love acting and I’m pretty confident but if you are not confident, or don’t like performing in front of others, and are not focused and dedicated and willing to put extra time in then mate, why are you doing drama? Some people think its an easy subject but it really isn’t – we have 30% of our GCSE in February(ish) so we have to learn a crapload of dramatic techniques before then because apparently our old Drama teacher didn’t teach us any and just let us play games for Year 7,8 and 9. Also, if you’re taking Drama you will have to work in a lot of different groups and maybe not with your friends all the time, but from the devised play we did in the first term, I actually made a pretty good friend of someone I never thought I would be close to. Sadly we’re in new groups now but I still talk to them so that’s what talking to new people can get you. So yeah, if you are pretty hardworking and you like performing, you will LOVE Drama as an option. I wish I didn’t have to say this but you also have to write essays. Lets go cry together.

Right so history is the only subject that I picked that I wasn’t completely sure on. I do find it very interesting, but honestly I’m more interested in politics than anything else. If I had to change one of my subjects it would probably be History (or maybe Photography) but I do enjoy it. The lessons are lots of fun but that may just be because I really like my class and teacher. We have been doing the Elizabethan Era but soon we will be changing topics and doing a lot of more modern things like Migration and Iraq. There is a lot of content to learn for history and its pretty class based, unlike some other lessons that are more independent. There is a little bit of homework, but rarely, and usually would be revision if we have any. I don’t really have much else to say about History, other than its very intriguing and thought-provoking but there is a lot of content to learn. Our class always has chats about whatever we’re learning and its a pretty useful subject.

You may (or may not) know that my aunt and cousin live in Spain. You also might not know that I spent September and October of 2015 living in Spain and going to school there. Whenever I tell anyone that they ask ‘So you’re completely fluent in Spanish then?’ Haha no. But since I was in Spain I love visiting and I find the language really cool to learn, so I picked Spanish as a GCSE option. Its another really interesting one and I feel like its so interesting. There is quite a lot of grammar and vocab to learn but, at the moment anyway, it doesn’t feel like a chore and I quite enjoy learning it. I would definitely recommend Spanish because languages in general are just so helpful and a great skill to have, it’s very satisfying to talk in, and its an excuse to take a trip to Spain. I wish! There are 4 main parts: Writing, Reading, Speaking and Listening. I would say speaking is probably the hardest as you have to prepare some parts but I also find coming up with things to say in Writing so difficult.

Before I started I told my friends I was so soooo excited to do photography. I enjoy taking photos in general so I thought what could be better? It is very different from what I expected but I do like photography. Yes, you can do photo shoots and go on trips to take photos, but also there is a LOT of analysing to do. Once you’ve taken the photos, get them uploaded and make a contact sheet. Analyse that in detail then pick around 3 best images and do any editing needed, then analyse those 3 further. So its not all fun. There is a LOT of work, I can’t remember which but its either 60 or 40% coursework based so I constantly have work to do on my Portfolio (which is virtual which I’ve gotta say is so much easier than having to print them all). A lot of homework is given but its a lot more of an independent subject where you’ll be taught the technique, take the photos for homework, then just be expected to get on with the task in the lesson, rather than a more writing, class based lesson like History. Photography is definitely not an easy option either.

I hope you enjoyed this or found it helpful in some way. If not, I’m very sorry for making you read my rambles about the subjects I’m taking for GCSE. But blimey you now know exactly how much of a nerd I am! If you have any questions feel free to comment them or tweet me (@ellsworldd) and I will answer them for you. I would have to say my favourite lesson is probably Drama just because its what I love doing. My least favourite is definitely English Lit or Science but thats a whole other rant.

Ellie xo


One comment

  1. This was such an interesting post! I’m sure it will be very helpful for many Year 9s. I’m sitting my GCSEs this year too and I totally know what you mean about the ‘guinea pigs’ 😂 The same is true for me but for German I lived there for two years when I was little so now everyone expects me to be fluent! Best of luck for your exams and if you ever fancy a chat you can hit me up on twitter @hitcblog
    Keep up the great work!!


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