CARE­LESS, FOR­GET­FUL OR SCARED?

Pri­mary 1 test jit­ters, solved.

Young Parents (Singapore) - - Contents -

“I didn’t have time to study for my test.”

tith so much on his plate, it’s im­por­tant for gu­nior to stay on top of things – but this isn’t al­ways easy.

So, when he learns that he has a test in a few days, he may find that he hasn’t got enough time to pre­pare for it.

bn­sure he’s not cram­ming at the last minute by mak­ing study­ing a daily habit. Con­sis­tent re­vi­sion means he’ll be bet­ter pre­pared.

Char­lie Spiller, head of Pri­mary Cour­ses at Bri­tish Coun­cil, sug­gests work­ing with your child to de­sign a study timetable. aon’t for­get to in­clude fun or rest breaks and “spare” pe­ri­ods that can be used to go over any top­ics he isn’t sure about.

And be strict about him fol­low­ing the sched­ule. “Stud­ies show that stu­dents learn bet­ter when there is va­ri­ety, when dif­fer­ent con­cepts or sub­jects are stud­ied si­mul­ta­ne­ously or very closely, and when they’ve had reg­u­lar breaks and enough sleep,” Char­lie ex­plains.

Lau Chin Loong, co-founder and cur­ricu­lum di­rec­tor, Se­ri­ously Ad­dic­tive Math­e­mat­ics (S.A.M.), sug­gests re­mov­ing or re­duc­ing any dis­trac­tions, like TV shows or elec­tronic de­vices, while he is study­ing.

“I thought the test was to­mor­row.”

ln top of mak­ing sure that gu­nior re­vises reg­u­larly, help him keep track of which tests are com­ing up so that he’s not taken by sur­prise.

lver time, let him man­age his study and test sched­ules in­de­pen­dently, sug­gests Chin Loong. So, don’t de­mand that he study for a test.

In­stead, say: “I see you have a math mini test next

“I was so ner­vous that I for­got what I learnt.”

This is com­mon when it comes to math­e­mat­i­cal con­cepts.

To min­imise your child’s anx­i­ety, be en­cour­ag­ing, and ex­plain to him that as­sess­ments are op­por­tu­ni­ties for him to demon­strate that he’s un­der­stood the math­e­mat­i­cal con­cepts and pro­ce­dural skills that have been taught,

Chin Loong sug­gests.

And re­mem­ber that achieve­ment will nat­u­rally fol­low when the learn­ing is in place. So, for in­stance, be­fore your child un­der­stands the pro­ce­dure of a sum (that is, how it’s writ­ten out), he should un­der­stand the con­cept be­hind it.

“Next, de­ter­mine which part your child is weak in: con­cepts or pro­ce­dures,” says Chin Loong.

“To ad­dress gaps in con­cep­tual un­der­stand­ing, have him ex­plain what he un­der­stands and prac­tise sim­ple ques­tions be­fore pro­gress­ing to more com­plex ones.

“To ad­dress gaps in pro­ce­dural flu­ency, have him prac­tise a va­ri­ety of ques­tions. This will help him feel more con­fi­dent and com­pe­tent. And re­mem­ber to re­view past er­rors and make sure that he’s learnt from his mis­takes.”

Note: Mem­o­ris­ing the pro­ce­dures or prac­tis­ing the test ques­tions is point­less if he doesn’t un­der­stand the con­cepts to be­gin with.

then it comes to Mother Tongue, say, Man­darin, prac­tis­ing the char­ac­ters will help your child recog­nise and be­come more fa­mil­iar with them, says Lim Szei Ching, aean/Cur­ricu­lum ae­sign & Im­ple­men­ta­tion at Han Cul­ture and bd­u­ca­tion droup.

And the more fa­mil­iar he is with them, the bet­ter his re­call abil­ity.

“In ad­di­tion to re­vis­ing vo­cab­u­lary lists and ex­am­ple sen­tences, he should also at­tempt to use the words in his school work and daily life,” Szei Ching adds.

“oead­ing is also im­por­tant in lan­guage ac­qui­si­tion. It’ll help him recog­nise Chi­nese char­ac­ters and learn how words come to­gether to form mean­ing­ful sen­tences and para­graphs.”

“I’m too shy to present at show-and-tell.”

Prepa­ra­tion is key to help­ing your lit­tle one get over his shy­ness, says Char­lie. bven the best speak­ers feel ner­vous, no mat­ter how many times they’ve spo­ken to an au­di­ence.

The trick is to dis­cuss with your child how he’s go­ing to start the pre­sen­ta­tion, what he’s go­ing to present, and how he’s go­ing to end it.

It’s also cru­cial to re­hearse what he in­tends to say. oe­hears­ing as of­ten as pos­si­ble helps your child build con­fi­dence and gives him the op­por­tu­nity to prac­tise his speak­ing skills.

It would be even bet­ter if he re­hearsed his pre­sen­ta­tion in front of fam­ily mem­bers – this will help him feel more com­fort­able dis­cussing his topic in the pres­ence of oth­ers and teach him valu­able tips, such as how to make eye con­tact with his au­di­ence, how to ad­just his voice to make an im­pact, and so on.

The same goes if his pre­sen­ta­tion is in Man­darin and he’s not com­fort­able us­ing the lan­guage in front of peo­ple.

“dive your child am­ple op­por­tu­ni­ties to speak or per­form in front of you,” Szei Ching sug­gests.

“It could be singing a song, telling a story or read­ing a pas­sage in Man­darin. bn­cour­ag­ing him and giv­ing him ad­vice will help him de­velop his en­thu­si­asm and self-con­fi­dence over time. bven­tu­ally, speak­ing Man­darin in front of oth­ers will feel nat­u­ral for him.”

“I for­got what I was sup­posed to say at my show-and-tell.”

Char­lie sug­gests teach­ing your child the sim­ple tech­nique of re­duc­ing his pre­sen­ta­tion to three key words. This will help him re­call his main talk­ing points.

So, for ex­am­ple, if he’s plan­ning to dis­cuss a re­cent hol­i­day, he might want to make “air­port”, “ho­tel” and “sight­see­ing” his key words.

He should use his fin­gers to count out these key words as he in­tro­duces them. Say­ing them out loud in the in­tro­duc­tion will also help him struc­ture his thoughts.

If he for­gets what he’s sup­posed to say mid-way through the pre­sen­ta­tion, he just has to look at his fin­gers to see which point he’s on. If “brain-freeze” kicks in he should move on to the next fin­ger (talk­ing point).

“My teacher told me that I spoke too softly at show-and-yell. But I speak up!”

Pos­ture is re­ally im­por­tant, so make sure your child stands up straight and isn’t look­ing down at his shoes or dip­ping his head while he’s talk­ing, says Char­lie.

To pre­vent mum­bling, he should fo­cus on the stu­dents far­thest away from him.

“Stu­dents are of­ten un­aware of how loudly they ac­tu­ally need to speak,” Char­lie adds.

“In their own head, their voice tends to be loud enough. det your child to prac­tise his pre­sen­ta­tion and place your mo­bile phone on record on the other side of the room.

“Play the record­ing back. If it’s clear, your child pro­jected his voice well; if not, have another go un­til your child knows how much louder or clearer he needs to speak.”

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