Life has moved on in the Guineapig Household this summer. In fact, I was wondering if it was time for a name change but I’m really quite attached to Guineapigmum so I think I’ll stick with it for the time being. The biggest change is that Number 1 son, GP1, is now in residence at one of those institutions where teenagers practice sleeping, drinking and spending their parents’ money. Yes he’s now at university. It’s not quite as far afield as originally planned. He got cold feet at some point during the summer (it may well have been the point at which he hitched up with a new young lady) and changed his UCAS options. He’s now in halls somewhere on the outskirts of Edinburgh and learning to cook, drink (did I mention that?), run up phone bills and play. And he’s home almost every weekend. Well, you get fed at home, don’t you?
One hitherto unforeseen advantage of trundling round the house with the vacuum cleaner is that it gives you space to compose blog posts in your head. One disadvantage is that the instant you switch the machine off, those wonderfully crafted words disappear, sucked up as far as I can tell into the Dyson.
Anyway, there I was, mulling over the apparent impossibility of getting GP1 to even think about doing any revision for the forthcoming prelims or perhaps even making a list of what he needs to do. I don’t ask for much. His younger brother, on the other hand, also faced with exams, comes out with such gems as “Mum, if I do this past paper could you mark it so that I don’t cheat?” You’d throw up wouldn’t you, if he wasn’t your own son. So I just laugh, lavish praise, agree and wonder why the application genes couldn’t have been divided equally.
Meanwhile, I’ve been trying to auction tickets for someone to accompany me to Parents’ Evening tonight. Continue reading →
It was the end of June and so the end of term when I found myself reminded of the reason why I adopted Guineapigmum as my nom de blog. Three years ago (was it really that long ago?) the school decided to bring the Standard Grade exams forward a year. The students would choose their 8 subjects at the end of S1 (Year 8 ) rather than S2 and sit their exams at the end of S3 (Year 10) instead of S4. They would choose their 5 subjects for Higher at the end of S3, do a 2 year instead of the more usual 1 year course and sit Highers as normal at the end of S5. Got that? Come on, keep up at the back of the class. If you stopped gossiping you’d know what I said.
GP1 was in the first year group to go through this system and so he sat his Standard Grades a year ago, in 2007. With this first cohort, the teachers had to deal with two entire year groups Continue reading →
So there we are. External exams are over for another year. Next year will be the big one – GP1/Highers (I’m trembling and pale at the prospect) with GP2/Standard Grades (an entirely different proposition). This year, though, was a relative breeze.