Mock horror! How to bounce back from bad test results

15th February 2019, 12:04am
Smelling Salts

Share

Mock horror! How to bounce back from bad test results

https://www.tes.com/magazine/archived/mock-horror-how-bounce-back-bad-test-results

The worst happens: your students’ prelim results are dire. The exams are looming. What the hell are you going to do? (Other than sing “it’s a hard mock life”?)

Well, you could read assistant head Mark Roberts’ five stages of recovery from crap prelim results (handily printed for you below. You’re welcome).

Stage one: denial

Why use that brutal paper from 2017? Who dreamed up this Draconian mark scheme, anyway? Denial always gets us through initial shock.

What to do?

Ask an experienced colleague to give your scripts the once-over. You’ll soon accept the blunt truth that your class have just…underperformed.

Stage two: anger

What’s the name of the game? Blame. But make sure your anger is released during a private conversation.

What to do?

Hold a post-mortem. Separate the disorganised from the idle, and the near-misses from the nowhere-nears. But accept your own responsibility, too. How might you have explained things more effectively?

Stage three: bargaining

Reflect on the root causes of mediocre results and consider “what if?”.

What to do?

Find nuggets of comfort. Amy didn’t answer the 16-marker, but managed to scrape a passing grade.

Stage four: depression

Despite your positivity, you still have to deal with the fallout. They’re desperate to know what marks they got.

What to do?

A calm facade is key. Tell them you’re not remotely worried. If they work hard on their weaknesses, they’ll do better.

Stage five: acceptance

You can’t forget the prelims disaster, but you can move forward.

What to do?

Focus on common errors and show exactly what went wrong. Orchestrate improvement time so it allows pupils to taste success. Ultimately, this will act as a great motivator.

You’ve reached your limit of free articles this month

Register for free to read more

You can read two more articles on Tes for free this month if you register using the button below.

Alternatively, you can subscribe for just £1 per month for the next three months and get:

  • Unlimited access to all Tes magazine content
  • Exclusive subscriber-only articles 
  • Email newsletters

Already registered? Log in

You’ve reached your limit of free articles this month

Subscribe to read more

You can subscribe for just £1 per month for the next three months and get:

  • Unlimited access to all Tes magazine content
  • Exclusive subscriber-only articles 
  • Email newsletters

This is 0 of 1

Now only £1 a month for 3 months

Subscribe for just £1 per month for the next 3 months to get unlimited access to all Tes magazine content. Or register to get 2 articles free per month.

Already registered? Log in

This is 0 of 1

Now only £1 a month for 3 months

Subscribe for just £1 per month for the next 3 months to get unlimited access to all Tes magazine content.