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Thread: Being British Act VI

  1. #11
    Sixth Year Slytherin
    Snape's Not Evil?

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    If it's middle class I would say China was perfectly acceptable. It's not prohibitively expensive and depending on the occasion a middle class family or person would be highly likely to use china. If it's an ordinary occasion with no guests they might have a second set of crockery, as Siriuslymental suggests, made of porcelain.
    Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed.

    Alexander Pope

  2. #12
    Sixth Year Hufflepuff
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    Ginny Weasley Potter's Avatar
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    I was really amazed when someone told me that Britons like to dress very simply. Is it true? Do you people prefer simplicity and comforts to trends? (I think that's cute! I like simple people too!)
    ~ Pooja

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  3. #13
    LuckyRatTail
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    I don't know if that would be considered a trait of every Briton, to be honest. I'm glad you think it's nice, though! No, I'd have to say that, whereas some Britons might choose to dress casually all the time, others will dress just as over-the-top and outlandishly as those in other countries. I suppose what you might mean is that Britons aren't perhaps as fashion-conscious as a nation like the French, for example, where (apparently), especially in places like Paris, it's important to look good all the time.

    In actual fact, the British are quite an eccentric nation; whenever someone who insists on wearing 19th century clothes all the time appears on tv, someone always says "Oh, the British do eccentric very well, don't they?" But then, the Americans can be rather eccentric as well.

    I hope that's sort of helped ;o)

  4. #14
    Fifth Year Gryffindor
    I See Dead People... In Mirrors

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    I have a question about the British education system. Are there middle and high schools which you have to pass an exam or have a GPA higher than a standart to be accepted? Like, kids try very hard to get accepted to those schools? If yes, are they standart middle/high schools or for more intelligent, gifted, or specifically skilled children in different areas? (The point is to start those schools at age eleven.)

    I hope the question makes sense. Thanks in advance.
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  5. #15
    SiriuslyMental
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    There are very few left anymore, but what you are talking about sounds to me like a grammar school. It depends on the time period you are writing this from, because it would be loads less common nowadays for someone to be going to a grammar school than even in the 80s. A grammar school is free, but you've got to pass the exams for it once you leave primary, and if you do well on the Eleven Plus you can go to the grammar school.

  6. #16
    Cedric'sGirl
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    Ginny Weasley Potter - I think like anywhere else, the trends depend on the area and the people in question. I know where I live people are unfortunately very vain and looks-orientated, so they usually look as if they're part of a fashion show. On the other hand, in more rural areas it would probably be more common for people to dress more simply (although there are obviously exceptions in each case; I don't mean to generalise).

    Kehribar - as SiriuslyMental said, the grammar schools that admitted students based on tests have pretty much died out now, however if this was important to your story, some private schools still insist on admissions tests, or some people without the funds to afford the ridiculous fees would possibly be able to take a test to gain a scholarship to one of these schools. They are normally just regular schools, just with better facilities and staff, however lately it has become more common for secondary schools to apply for specialist status in certain subjects, for example my school was a specialist media school, which basically means it gets a load of money from the government to buy equipment and hire better teachers in that area. So I guess if there was a child who was particularly gifted at art for example (seemed appropriate as you're taking the art class ), they would maybe try to get into a specialist art school. I think this is all a fairly recent thing though, so I wouldn't include any of this if it is any earlier than trio-era. I hope this answers your question, I think this is what you were getting at anyway.

  7. #17
    TyrannoLaurus
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    Ginny Weasley Potter: I agree what everyone says, but I would just add that it's usually the younger ones who do dress up like a Christmas turkey (and can at times look as bad as a Christmas turkey) for day-to-day life. A lot of adults have the philiosophy of ' all you need is comfy pair of trousers from M and S or Debenhams' and as such they don't really bend towards whatever the latest fashion is. Then you'll always get the adults who don't want to grow up or are going through some mad midlife crisis, who dress like they're still in their teens with bleach blond hair, more makeup than a Beijing opera singer and stilletto's four inches high just to go to Tesco. And there's quite a lot of them; we don't usually blink an eye.

    kehribar: Cedric'sGirl has more or less answered it for you For the majority of kids, you go to your local school or at least a school in your region. Catholic families tend to take their kids to Catholic schools (sometimes slightly better school, because they get funding from the diocese as well as the gov) and because of this any Anglican child who isn't in one of the feeder schools might have trouble getting into a local school. But they don't take their intelligence into account, so this is really just trivial information.

    I know a girl who went to a middle school about the time I joined high (so we're talking 1999). We were both eleven, only she'd been in middle I think one or two years and would leave for high when she was thirteen) but it was the only one in the area and it closed down within a year or two. They're usually attached to public or private schools and not part of the norm, but they did exist in the late 90's.

  8. #18
    Sixth Year Hufflepuff
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    Ginny Weasley Potter's Avatar
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    Thank you so much! The younger generation is always conscious of looks and trends, but Christmas turkeys?

    Now, something about education. I know that British system of education has two important exams placed between three years (leaving a year in between the two), but at what age are these conducted? Am I right in knowing that the first set of exams are called GCSEs? Here, I gave something called ICSE boards last year (at the age of 15) and am going to give my CBSE boards next year. I was just wondering if the age coincided. And just as a matter of interest, do you do Julius Caesar in English for GCSEs? Only, my question bank last year had questions from those exams.
    ~ Pooja

    AMAZING story banner by Nadia/majestic_ginny! Dimply Sammeh by me.
    I found a liquor store. I drank it.



  9. #19
    padfootsgirl1981
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    Hi! Here in England we have GCSE examinations which are taken at the age of 16 and then there are A/S levels and A levels, A/S levels being half an A level qualification. But A/S and A levels are not compulsory examinations and are only taken by those who wish to further their education, but good grades at GCSE are required to do so. A/S levels are sat at the age of 17 and A levels at 18, it is these examinations that are needed to get into university.

    I hope I helped.

  10. #20
    TyrannoLaurus
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    Yea, I have Christmas on the brain at the moment. Don't ask why.

    GCSE's are a very long slog of disorganised exams that every sixteen year old has to suffer. You do roughly ten different subjects and are given at least two exams and one piece of coursework (a bit of a poshed-up homework assignment: usually an essay, or a dreaded logic puzzle for maths and a very dreaded experiment/practical for Sci). Exams are usually in May and June.

    It's pretty much mandatory to do one piece of Shakespeare for GCSE, either as a piece of coursework or as an exam question. Usually this is for English Literature - you also do English Language (unless really struggling to grapple the subject, in which case you only do the latter). The most popular plays are the four tragedies and Romeo and Julliet but it wouldn't be inplausible for a school to choose Julius Ceasar. You'd probably only study a key scene in depth whilst also knowing the full story so that they can refer to other parts of the text. A grade students will need to quote from a key scene with confidence and analyse it, whilst also being able to say how it relates to the play as a whole. Although, you can probably gain a B by only learning that one scene. It's only at A-level that we began to study a WHOLE Shakespeare play. This might sound silly, but with the amount of work you do for the other subjects at GCSE it's quite a relief.

    /flashback to the GCSE days

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