If your child is sitting for the PSLE this year, here’s a note from Ms Cassondra Tioh, English Teacher at The Learning Lab.
In just one month, your child will be sitting for his or her first PSLE paper.
It isn’t about clocking studying hours or memorising a mountain of information anymore, it’s about studying smart. And studying smart means adopting effective learning strategies that maximise your child’s revision time.
As you stand by the sidelines and watch your child march into battle, your most important role is to be a cheerleader. So here are some simple tips I would like to share with you to help you to keep your child motivated in these final weeks.
Use Words Of Appreciation And Inspiration
Praise your child for work that he or she achieves and, in the case of failure, be nurturing and guide him or her towards overcoming the mistake.
To ensure that your child’s mental and emotional well-being are not overlooked, make it a point to talk your child through his difficulties and insecurities.
Your anxieties often rub off on your child and may cause undue stress. So be supportive and remind your child that he or she can always turn to you for help.
Know Your Child's Strengths (And Weaknesses)
More often than not, you will find that your child is making the same (exasperating) mistake over and over again. It could be a particular component, question type or topic.
Instead of relentlessly clearing assessment papers one after another, have targeted practices!
After conducting an analysis of errors, focus on your child’s common pitfalls by applying the answering skills needed. Not only does this help familiarise your child with the material, it also boosts his or her confidence in taking on a perceived difficult question.
Remember — quality, not quantity, is the best measure of intelligent effort.
Set Goals Together
Besides managing your child’s schedule, talk to your child and discuss the milestones both of you would like to reach at different stages of revision. It could be to learn ten new phrases by the end of the day or to master the transition from direct to reported speech in ten days.
Tiny, attainable goals help keep your child motivated and makes revision seems less daunting.
Remember To Take Breaks
There is virtue not only in work but also in rest!
Even for an adult, it would be demanding for you to remain seated, hunched over a desk for an extended period of time. So have your child take regular study breaks so that he or she can unwind whilst consolidating the lessons learnt.
It could be chatting with a family member or reading a chapter of his favourite novel — a break is necessary to reinvigorate your child so that he has the learning stamina to last through the final intensive month.
The day before the exam — do not cram! Everything that can be done should have been done by this time. Last minute panic will only do more harm than good.
Have your child review notes on what he or she has already mastered. He or she can even engage in self-testing to ensure that he or she clearly understands concepts and materials.
Do ensure that your child has packed his or her school supplies and turns in early. A good night’s rest forges your child’s battle-readiness.
PSLE is just the first hurdle of the academic race. Even if your child stumbles, he or she should know that you will love him or her regardless of the outcome.
There are many routes to excellence and some children are late bloomers. As long as your child has a positive growth mindset, your child can always pick himself or herself up and charge ahead.
All the best!
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