The PSLE exam is a breakthrough in a student's life in Singapore. Parents start worrying and pressurising their children to start preparing for the exams early on. The change from Primary 4 to 5 may not seem significant academically. However, it is important at this stage to start seriously thinking about PSLE before it is too late.
Primary 5 is crucial for any child in Singapore. It is when schools actively put a lot of emphasis on concepts, strategies and answering techniques for PSLE. Hence, if your child is about to enter Primary 5 you must read this blog to know how to help your child start their preparations.
Kickstart the preparation
Primary 5 shows a glimpse of what you can expect in the exam. The children should be mentally prepared first because primary 5 brings in a lot of new concepts and topics to learn and revise repeatedly to become exam ready. Parents who proactively prepare their children in primary 4 and 5 enjoy the benefit of extra time. Starting early can also help you identify your children's strengths and weaknesses. For example, if a child is poor at Mathematics, he/she can start with tuition and concentrate on his weak topics.
A student who starts working on his weakness early has sufficient time to learn, practise and revise to achieve a good score. PSLE exams are all about concepts learnt in the primary sections. Preparing early can make a student more absorbent for new concepts and make use of it to face difficult questions. Planning well and sticking to the timetable will always save students and parents from the last-minute rush.
What to expect in each subject for PSLE?
It is necessary that by the end of the year, your child should be well acquainted with all the topics and concepts in each subject. They will be exposed to difficult problems where he/she has to apply the concepts read earlier. Given below are some basic information on what type of questions your child can expect from each subject to be like.
English: The important thing to note is that in this subject, two components play a major role: composition and comprehension. Both of these components carry weight and even cause children to lose marks if they lack practice. If we talk about comprehension passages, students should expect tougher ones rather than longer passages. More indirect questions for inference may also be asked as compared to P4. You can also expect questions from situational writing.
Mathematics: The next crucial subject in which students struggle the most is Mathematics. Although they can use calculators in the examinations, that is only for Paper 2. Paper 1 has a lot of manual calculations, where students struggle the most. Practising manual calculations every day proves helpful. You can expect longer word problems and lengthy calculations in Paper 2.
Science: Just like Maths, children are introduced to newer topics in Science, which requires good prior knowledge and memory. Especially Biology, because its syllabus is pretty heavy and requires good memory to retain information. So, keep revising topics that are already covered. You can expect more conceptual questions rather than direct questions.
How can you help your child prepare for PSLE?
The secret for PSLE exams is starting early with the preparation to avoid the last-minute rush. Most successful students admit to it, but every child has a different strategy to face examination. How could you help your child prepare for PSLE? We provide you with a few points you and your child must take care of before starting the preparation.
1. Discuss school choices
Let your child participate in a conversation with you regarding the choices of school. He/she should feel that they can make significant decisions which is another very important thing for a child. You can also use MOE’s score calculator, to understand where he/she stands. You can also consider secondary schools rather than popular ones. In this way, you and your child can take the best decision from the spread of choices available.
2. Prepare a study timetable and set realistic targets
Prepare a timetable which is more real and can be followed and try to make your child stick to it in any situation. This will help the child get the most out of the day. A small and approachable target also helps the child get the desired results. Since starting early fetches more time, you can encourage your child to stress on the topics which he/she finds difficult.
Prepare your strategies and find proven study methods: Do not let your child get stuck in the rat race of mugging up books and the previous year's papers. Instead, let them explore proven learning methods and push them to prepare their own strategies to face the challenges. Search for his/her strong and weak subjects and prepare a personalised plan which is more effective.
3. Hold your Expectations
Every child has his/her own pace to learn things. Try not to compare your child with others. You may see low grades in his first few tests, but that doesn't mean you should stress. Instead, you and your child need to change the action plan or revise their strategies. He/she should be his/her own competition, so it is better to compare his/her current grades with previous ones to determine if there is any improvement.
4. Team up
Don't let your child feel left out in the learning phase. You can be the motivator. Try to cheer them up when they come with low grades, and make them understand that time is crucial and they need to work harder. Talk to the teachers, take feedback and together with the teacher, uplift your child for a better
5. Balance other activities and don't make things too serious
Other things are also equally important, along with PSLE preparations. Balance other activities with your child’s preparation., so that they don't feel left out anywhere in life. Make sure they spend time with friends, watch their favorite TV shows, and play enough. These activities will help them work further and harder.
All's well when it ends well
Once your child has started with the preparation, forget about a late start or early start. Maintain the momentum and pace until the PSLE exams last. Take care of your chid’s nutrition because they may tend to get exhausted frequently, and keep them well hydrated and rested so that they actively participates in the exams. You and your child can have a good celebration when the exams are over. Is your child moving to grade 5? Enroll with Study Smart, to optimise your child’s preparation strategy. Built on AI and backed by neuroscience, we help your child ace the PSLE exams with our tips and techniques.