Mechanics | | DJS


There’s quite a bit of Mechanics in the revision pages, such as the FM series 1-4. They are a pain to develop as they usually need pictures. I also tend to lean on other suppliers and these pages are supposed to be my own work.... so this is lean in the other sense.

For those students who want more examples to work on, I recommend all of the MEI text books and the associated webpages. If you are not an MEI student, their courses are designed to demonstrate applicable maths, so the examples are indeed based upon some semblance of real life, albeit simplified for the purposes of making a school-level question. I found that quite often we (the class) could have a sensible conversation about what an answer meant and how that might inform subsequent decisions (including further modelling).

For those who are already MEI students, go look at any other board’s past papers. 

If you do the exploration of questions from other boards, remember that they may have slightly different syllabuses and so some questions may end up giving rather more challenge than you anticipate, simply because some required/expected skill is missing from your course but included in the other one. My general observation is that you either see no change, find questions alarmingly easy or (less often) simply impossible due to missing knowledge.

A further fund of questions is very old papers; these will undoubtedly be based on a different syllabus, so you run a few risks (ooh, panic, you might learn something off-syllabus!!) but I do not see any of this as being damaging. Too many students are trying to do the minimum work for the maximum gain of grade, confusing this with education and learning. Get off the soap-box, Scoins.

If your objective is only the next qualification, which implies that thereafter you're expecting to do 'no more maths', then the is-it-in-the-exam strategy that rejects everything else and concentrates entirely on that examinationis in train. If that is the case then you have made a clear decision that this is, in some sense, an end. One recognised as such and with consequences; enough even. I'm fine with that provided it is an honest decision. Anthing else requires a recognition that such a strategy is no longer education, only qualification. Again, recognition of this position is sufficient to keep me satisfied (like you care!), because it allows for repair—a return to education—at some later point. If you no longer have curiosity, I wonder if you are still being educated. You might be, but not in the sense that I'd like to think of as education.

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