Every student writing the PSLE in Singapore has at least a few hurdles to overcome. Some find the English comprehension passage an obstacle while others may find it difficult to scale the PSLE Math or Science paper mountain. Still others find the PSLE English Comprehension Cloze passage a humongous hurdle. Walls of text with blanks to fill up logically can be a living nightmare for many students.
The good news is that there is hope for all in the form of "clues" you can learn to identify and work with.
Let's look at the best PSLE English revision plan to tackle the PSLE English Comprehension Cloze passage to gain the highest success.
The PSLE English Comprehension Cloze Passage is comprehension and technical skills-based component of Paper 2, Booklet B. It is worth a whopping '15' marks, so you can imagine what all the hype is about!
As a first step, look at how this task is created so that you have a clue about where you can start your PSLE English Revision.
Examiners preparing the cloze passage have many criteria to keep in mind. The passages need to be taken from resources that use the authentic English language and meet the standards of the PSLE school examinations. Looking through previous year's papers, you will find passages sourced from storybooks, newspaper articles, and authentic English magazines like National Geographic, Reader's Digest, etc. And that gives you the best hint for what you can include in your PSLE English Revision for the cloze passage! Closely reading similar articles, stories and passages can help you understand the language techniques and styles usually used in authentic English.
It's good to remember that English language mastery and related comprehension and application skills are tested with the comprehension cloze passage. With this knowledge, you can set a blueprint for your PSLE English Revision plan.
The first step to your cloze-passage tackling strategy should be a thorough reading of the passage. You'd be surprised at the difference this could make to your comprehension of the text! Many students start filling in the blanks without reading through and fail to understand the passage thoroughly. Once you have read the passage thoroughly, you can move to filling in the blanks.
The blanks in the passage and the way the sentences are constructed will give hints about the answers. Knowledge of the following word categories will help you complete your cloze passage successfully:
Connectors are used in the English language to bring sentences or ideas together. Words like and, although, but, etc., can connect similar or related ideas and give coherence to the text. Similar ideas can be connected with words like "both," "and," "in addition to," etc. "Yet," "however," "on the other hand", and other similar words connect opposing ideas in the same sentence. There are connectors to show cause, comparison, choice, result, order or sequence, and much more. Consistent and expertly guided PSLE English revision will help you understand and apply this concept in the PSLE English exam.
Antonyms and Synonyms
Antonyms are the opposites of words, while synonyms are words with similar meanings. Read the sentences to see whether filling in an antonym or synonym will complete the sentence logically. Identifying clues in the sentences like connectors or words that show similarity or contrast can help you choose the right word to fill the blank.
These are words that go together in the English language. Phrases like "to look up to," "black and white," noun phrases like "short cut," "fast food," and other similar ones can often appear in the cloze passage. Collocations may be slightly difficult to pick up, so give it enough time for practice in your PSLE English Revision plan.
The need for using grouping words can be identified if you see clues like "for example," "like," "for instance," etc. A list of similar items may appear after this, and you will have to use a single word to categorize all the words in the list. For example, if you see "bear, tiger, elephants, and rhinos," you may have to use the word "animals," depending on the context.
1. Backwards or forward referencing
In these clues, you will need information from earlier passages (backwards referencing) or later in the passage (forward referencing).
Context is a very important clue to pay attention to when you attempt the PSLE English comprehension cloze passage. The author points you to the right answer through the way they write the sentence and may even give meanings in the following sentence or paragraph. For example, you may not have heard of the word 'catamaran,' but the author could hide clues like "sail with the wind" or similar phrases, which will help you derive the answer.
3. Overall or global comprehension
Sometimes blanks will be put at the end of the passage that you will need to fill in once you have understood the entirety of the passage. Clues to help you understand the answer may be in the form of a sequence of events that will lead to a logical end, etc. You must practise this comprehension in your PSLE English Revision through previous year's PSLE exam papers.
Over the years, teachers and other experts have noticed that students tend to make a few common mistakes. Find out what these are and ensure your child is aware of them, so they do not make the same ones.
1. Rushing through the task
Never rush through the cloze passage task! Give yourself enough time to comprehend and answer correctly.
2. Failing to read through
Ensure you practise reading the passage thoroughly during your PSLE English revision. This may be one of the most important steps in answering this task.
3. Not paying attention to grammar rules
Practise English grammar rules to make sure that there is agreement of verbs, tenses and syntax in your answers. The right answer must match the sentence context, meaning, and style to be completely correct.
4. Not prioritizing review
Consistent practice during your PSLE English revision will help you manage time so that you have enough time for reviewing your answers and making sure that all of them are logical.
The PSLE English Comprehension cloze passage can be a challenge to many. The tips above will help you succeed in the task and score well. For expert help in PSLE English revision and practical PSLE preparation help in all PSLE subjects, contact Studysmart, in Singapore!
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