I didn’t like doing past papers until I had completely finished learning the content. I tried as best as I could not to do any practise questions until I had finished going through the process of making notes, summarising them, then learning it all. Of course there was some past paper questions I had to just do because they were part of lessons/homework, but for my own personal revision I didn’t touch past papers until we had finished the content and I had finished learning everything.
For that reason, for both Biology and Chemistry the past papers I did were without using my notes. I wanted to test the effectiveness of my memorisation as well as my ability to apply it to the question all in one. However, if I was doing a past paper and there was one little bit of knowledge that I knew I had included in my notes but just couldn’t remember (such as a small equation or a little fact that I got confused about) then I would take a peek at my notes and make note that I needed to learn that part more properly.
However, for Maths I didn’t make any proper notes and instead made myself a little formula book containing all the equations and step-by-step methods for approaching different question types. So…when doing past papers for Maths, I used that formula book because I knew repeated use would embed these formulas and methods into my mind. Of course, juts sitting there and trying to memorise a bunch of formulas wasn’t going to work so I kind of learnt the formulas through the practise.