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Monthly Archives: July 2015

GCSE Mathematics – Hints and Tips to Help You Succeed

If you do nothing else, read this document carefully. Especially important is advice given at the bottom of the page on the exam itself.

Be prepared!

Have pens and sharpened pencils at the ready. Don’t use pens that leak or ones with broad tips. By the same measure, don’t use untried new pens. They may let you down. Use a pen that you know is reliable.

Write clearly!

You might be the next Einstein or Dirac but unless you write clearly we will never know! Anything the examiner cannot read he/she cannot mark. If you are a poor writer, please take the time to write neatly.

Read the question !

This is not wasted time. Read the whole question once to get a rough idea what it is about. Then read it again from the beginning – slowly. It is a good idea to tick off each line, including information in diagrams. Do not start until you are sure you thoroughly understand what is asked.

Be Accurate!

Again, read the question! If it asks for 2 decimal places or 3 significant figures, then that is what it wants. Before going on to the next question, check you answer with the original question.

Simultaneous Equations

The answers to these types of exam questions tend to be nice rounded numbers. If they have a decimal, it usually ends in .5, but these are rare. Answers with a line of decimals are probably wrong, so check for errors.

Inverse % questions

These are ‘backward looking’ problems. With current values given in the question, you have to calculate some original value before the decrease/increase occurred. Again, the answers tend to be rounded numbers. If you get a train of decimals, check back in your working.


Simply check that your answer is between 1 and 0; and of course, there are no negative values.

The Mean

Common sense here! Check that the number is not silly – too high/too low, and that it is between the highest and lowest values, and not outside them.


Don’t round up calculator display numbers unnecessarily. If you do this, and the calculation has a number of stages, you final answer will be incorrect.

Quadratic Equations

A question asking for significant figures or decimal places indicates you should use the quadratic formula.


Look at your answer. You should never get a length longer than the hypotenuse.


Common sense here. Look out for silly answers. Again, lengths should not be longer than the hypotenuse.

Use of Bold Print

This means that the question is not straight forward. Bold print is a cue to read the question again carefully, so you understand exactly what is asked.


Tracing paper is useful for rotating shapes. Remember if you have forgotten something, don’t worry. Put your hand up and wait. The invigilator will come and supply you with the item.

Your answers

-write small
-show all working
-use words to describe your calculations/equation changes
-where space is at a premium, draw a vertical line and work either side of it, rather than sprawl work across a page

The Exam

Do not work late the night before, but do get up early to go through your final revision notes.

Revise right up to the point when you are told to come into the exam room, but please do not bring any revision materials into the exam room itself. Leave them in your bag outside.

Go through the paper quickly reading or scanning it to get an idea of what is asked.

Work your way through the paper. If you find any question particularly formidable, do not carry on with it. Come back to it later. You will lose valuable time being bogged down with one question. Get some easy marks in the bag first.

When you have finished do not sit arms folded looking up at the ceiling! You will not have scored 100%! There are some marks still to be had. Spend every last minute going through the paper carefully looking for errors. Trust me. There will be some!

There only remains for me to say good luck. But exams have little to do with luck. If you have done the work and revised thoroughly, you will undoubtedly do well. The fact that you are reading this shows your intent. So don’t look at exams as impossible hurdles to jump. Look at them as opportunities for you to shine and show everyone just what you can do!


Related Mathematics Articles

Six Useful Ways To Help Kids Learn Mathematics Well

Before learning mathematics, little kids would have too many opportunities to know some simple mathematical concepts, which is not only lay the foundation for their future learning, but also enhance their life skills during the process of learning.

Several tips about how to learn mathematics well by kids are introduced below.

Firstly, rich and vivid language
In daily life, when taking with kids, parents should use such words for too many times such as full, empty, big, small, light, heavy, long, short, more, less and so on. At the same time, it is better to use simple sentences such as one book, two pieces of peanut and three doors.

Remember numbers mechanically
At the beginning, parents can ask kids to remember some words and numbers mechanically. In other words, they just need to remember them and it is not necessary to understand their meaning. Singing number songs, playing finger games and count things around them, all of which is beneficial to remember numbers and their orders mechanically.

Counting on purpose
For example, give kids two apples and teach them that there are two apples so that kids would understand that number two means two items. At beginning, it is wise to understand simple number such as one, two, three and so on. Finally, increase the number of items and ask children to know more numbers.

Understand the meaning of the numbers
Put three small size bowls in front of kids, when counting one, kids would touch their first bowl, when counting two, kids would touch their second bowl, when counting three, kids would touch their third bowl. From such learning process, kids would know the specific meaning of these numbers.

Do simple addition and subtraction
If you are smart parents, you should ask kids the questions after you tell them one interesting stories. For example, you tell them that the rabbit babies and rabbit mother are eating radishes, there are ten radishes in all and rabbit babies eat three radishes, how many radishes are there still? Parents can ask questions with the same form.

Give example to classify items
Put some red small bowl and some green small bowl in kids’ front, and then ask them to put the red ones together. As is known to all, classification ability is important to kids’ intelligence development, therefore it is necessary to pay more attention on such aspect. If parents want their kids to be good at classifying, you can ask them to classify candles, silver coins and so on.

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Magnets In Alternative Medicine

Magnets have been used for purposes beyond science experiments and picking up metal for hundreds of years. In fact, the Eastern cultures use magnets as key parts in some of their ‘alternative’ medicine. They provide an amazing alternative to the pharmacological zoo most Americans live in, and all of its possible side effects. Not all magnets are created equal, though, and it is thought that only the best will help. For the best magnets rare earth are the ones practitioners and manufacturers of magnetic jewelry go to. 

Rare earth magnets are the most powerful magnets made today. They generate a magnetic field far above those of other kinds like ferrite or ceramic. Developed in the nineteen-seventies and eighties to further the automotive industry, they were quickly adopted by other areas and are currently used in a great many products, including consumer electronics. Despite their power, though, they are very brittle and are often plated with other materials in order to protect them from chipping, breaking and even corrosion. 
Magnets rare earth magnets in particular, are said to increase blood flow, decrease pain, and provide all manner of positive effects for the mind and body. It is thought that the magnets will have enough effect on the iron, and other trace metals, in the blood to alter its course. Along with that is the knowledge that the body creates its own form of magnetic field, and the belief is that the imbalances of this field is what causes a great many medical issues. To this mind, powerful magnets may correct the problem. 
In alternative medicine, magnets are applied in a number of ways, depending upon the problem they are supposed to be fixing. There is a form of massage that utilizes magnets for those who want a relaxation exercise with their health care. There are blankets with magnets woven into them, magnetic creams, shoe insoles, and even magnetic mattresses. The most popular incarnation, though, is magnetic jewelry. Rings, bracelets, anklets, necklaces and watches, just to name a few, have been bonded with magnets in order to take advantage of the magnetic health principal. 
It should be noted that there has been no scientific proof of the positive effects of magnets on the body. The scientific community has decided that the positive effects that are seen are simply the result of the placebo effect, in which the patient believes he should feel better, so he does. 
Magnets rare earth and otherwise, are an important part to some health regimes. Though positive effects on the body may not have been proven, there are also no negative effects on the body; making them perfect for anyone who wants to try a new treatment or pain management technique. Magnetic jewelry even makes a great gift for the hypochondriac, sine it can be said to treat a great many illnesses, and cannot be over-used.

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