How does your kid prepare for the exams?

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How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby wongth » Sat Aug 23, 2014 10:39 pm

Ben here.

Just wanted to ask if other parents here have the same problem.

my boy is 15 this year and he's okay when it comes to homework and assignments. not like fantastic or anything but he gets his B3s and even A2s sometimes.

just that when the exams come, everything seems to fly out the window and he always ends up with lower grades than he's capable of.

does anyone have any tips to help him?

is it specific to subjects too because this always happens for math and science subjects. his languages are so-so but my wife says he's always fantastic at home but seems to forget or mess up during the real thing.

any help/tips are welcome. we are happy to try anything at this point.

thanks in advance.

wongth
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Re: How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby slmkhoo » Sun Aug 24, 2014 8:55 am

Sounds like it might be nerves and stress. Not sure how to combat that though. Sometimes, talking about it more makes it even more stressful. If he really knows his stuff outside exams, then building his confidence and reducing his stress may be the way to go.

Do note that some kids (I was one of them) tend to sound good outside exams and do actually understand the subjects, but somehow don't manage to answer questions in the way expected, make the mental leaps to solve problems (especially Maths and Science) or be able to work at the speed required during exams. Again, I'm not sure what can be done as I didn't find a solution for myself, and I have a 17yo daughter with that same issue too. Focusing more on answering techniques and building up speed may help. We have just accepted that exam results are not necessarily a good measure of a person's knowledge and ability.

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Re: How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby wongth » Mon Aug 25, 2014 11:39 pm

Exactly, we figured that it was something to do with the stress of a major exam. We have told him time and time again that he just has to relax and take it in his stride, but it just doesnt seem to work. We really want to help him and thus are willing to try anything that can build up his confidence and reduce his stress level.

Thus, we were wondering how and what other parents like ourselves do to help their kid? What could we do as parents?

wongth
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Re: How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby mathtuition88 » Tue Aug 26, 2014 12:02 am

Just to share an inspirational video about how a girl managed to overcome her anxiety for Math exams, and graduated in Maths from UCLA (good university in America).

Inspirational Math Video

For Math, maybe timed practice will help to get used to the Math exam. Currently, the Math exams in O Levels are rather fast paced (1.5 minute per mark). Hence, for one long question worth 10 marks, students have barely 15 minutes to read, understand, do, and check the question. Speed is really essential.

Also, nowadays the trend is that the hard question in a Maths paper may not be at the end of the paper. The hardest question may appear as early as Question 4 (2013 A Maths Paper 1). Students will need to judge when to "skip" a question to be attempted later, rather than being stuck there.

Once the student overcomes the time barrier and improve in time management, good improvements can be made. Short cut methods in Maths will also help to save precious time. For instance, shortcut method to find the remainder of a polynomial divided by another polynomial, shortcut method for memorizing special trigonometry angles without drawing/memorizing any diagram or table.

mathtuition88
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Re: How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby slmkhoo » Tue Aug 26, 2014 7:07 am

wongth wrote:Thus, we were wondering how and what other parents like ourselves do to help their kid? What could we do as parents?

We tell our kids to do their best rather than think about what marks they want to achieve. If you have a religious faith, you can ask him to pray before starting, but to pray for a clear mind, calm head, carefulness etc, not "help me get an A!". Also, explain that papers may be tough or easy, but what counts is his ranking in the cohort, so it doesn't really matter whether the paper is tough or not as long as he does his best since others will find it tough/easy too. And we are realistic about our kids' standing in the cohort - if they are just middling or poor, we don't expect them to ace exams no matter how hard they've worked. Even if they are strong, we don't tell them to aim for a good score etc. The nearer we are to an exam, the less we mention marks!

If it helps (try before exams first), taking a few slow deep breaths can help calm nerves. If he can recognise when he is getting too anxious, a couple of deep breaths may help.

For every paper, have a simple plan of action. Eg. some kids may prefer to do Math problem sums first, then the shorter ones later. Others prefer to start from the beginning. Figure out what works best and tell him to stick to that. Or for compos, make a short outline before writing etc. Having a routine can be calming too. Also plan what he should do if he gets stuck, if he's running out of time for a particular kind of question etc. Just talking it over in advance may help although there is no guarantee that he will remember all the advice under exam conditions!

Shortcut methods (as suggested by the previous poster) can be helpful, but there are pitfalls too - if the child has to memorise too many such methods, that can cause additional stress, especially if he finds he can't remember them. We also try to help our kids understand the basic principles so they can work things out from scratch if necessary, but this of course wastes time.

At the end of the day, some people just cope with stress and exams better than others. In my family, my husband and younger daughter are the kind who tend to do better under stress, while my older girl and I are the opposite. And my older girl also has slow processing speed, which makes exams even more pressurising for her. What to do?

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Re: How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby wongth » Tue Aug 26, 2014 10:29 pm

Thanks everyone for your helpful shares. Perhaps, we will take this 2 days to research on our own and see if we can find anything useful that would be beneficial to all of us and especially our children (with the major exams coming in a few short months).

wongth
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Re: How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby wongth » Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:22 pm

hi!

saw this on a local mummy blogger's instagram (klessislee). she writes on j babies in the daisies.

anyway, she posted on her instagram this picture with link (TheExamAce.com) so I went in and took a look. looks quite interesting ... talks about mindset being important for exams.

i put my email in - but once again, i will wait and see what happens first. will update everyone in time.

wongth
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Re: How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby Mdm Koh » Sat Aug 30, 2014 10:00 am

Could it be a time management issue? Some students do well in their home assignments because they can work at their own pace. During exams, they have to be mindful of time constraints.

Mdm Koh
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Re: How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby sodawoo » Mon Sep 15, 2014 9:14 pm

[quote="wongth"]Ben here.

Just wanted to ask if other parents here have the same problem.

my boy is 15 this year and he's okay when it comes to homework and assignments. not like fantastic or anything but he gets his B3s and even A2s sometimes.

just that when the exams come, everything seems to fly out the window and he always ends up with lower grades than he's capable of.

does anyone have any tips to help him?

is it specific to subjects too because this always happens for math and science subjects. his languages are so-so but my wife says he's always fantastic at home but seems to forget or mess up during the real thing.

any help/tips are welcome. we are happy to try anything at this point.

thanks in advance.[/quote]

same issue with my 8yo DS.
I ve been also tried many ways to solve this problem for 1yr. will try!!!

sodawoo
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Re: How does your kid prepare for the exams?

Postby CHEERS LS » Thu Sep 18, 2014 8:49 am

Image Image Image Image Image Image Image

CHEERS LS
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