O-Level English

PSLE marks the graduation of Primary school students and their entry into Secondary schools as teenagers. Discuss all issues about Secondary schooling here.
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ongstarling
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Re: O-Level English

Post by ongstarling » Thu Dec 28, 2017 11:28 am

mum422 wrote:hi all. just to share my daughter's tutor's article. I think it'll be useful for o-level candidates!

https://usefulenglishtutor.wordpress.co ... -mistakes/
Hi any idea whether this tutor conducts class for Sec1 student? Foundation is relatively weak and will definitely need a few years to build up. Any parents had any comments on the classes? Kindly share if any or PM me if more convenient. Thanks!

kiasumom1
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Re: O-Level English

Post by kiasumom1 » Mon Jan 08, 2018 3:17 pm

Been reading her guides like
https://usefulenglishtutor.wordpress.co ... ng-skills/
https://usefulenglishtutor.wordpress.co ... -studying/
https://usefulenglishtutor.wordpress.co ... ing-speed/
https://usefulenglishtutor.wordpress.co ... rful-tips/

I think overall this tutor is quite different in her approach of teaching English compared to school teachers. Her approach seems to tackle fundamental weaknesses first before layering other advance stuff. Guess I'll put my 1st girl on a trial first since her English is quite weak.

happyfeet20001
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Re: O-Level English

Post by happyfeet20001 » Wed Jan 10, 2018 1:25 pm

Can PM me this Useful English Tutor's number? My sec 4 and JC boys need help with English! Thanks in advance!!!

Papabearaar
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Re: O-Level English

Post by Papabearaar » Wed Jan 10, 2018 11:03 pm

iceywind88 wrote:any recommendations? Quite desperate for a good english tutor. don't want a tutor that will come and read from the textbook only.
Hi there
I hope you have found suitable tutor. Anyway I've just joined so my 2 cents worth is that you need to ensure that the tutor not only knows the syllabus and exam format inside out but also more importantly know how to teach it. If you can get an MOE trained teacher trained in Secondary school English that would be a good start. The tutor should be able to identify the strengths and areas for improvement of your child (perhaps using diagnostics test) and also know how to remedy the situation. Don't pay for someone who is just going to make your child do 10 year series and mark without explaining to your child. Your child might as well not have a tutor if that is the tutor's "teaching method".
Hope this helps.

amizade
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Re: O-Level English

Post by amizade » Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:35 pm

My son just got his O-level results yesterday. He surprisingly got A1 for English. Although overall results were slightly disappointing, but English had always been his weakest.

Maybe it's luck or maybe it's his English tutor (Ms Felicia - I found her from this forum too) or maybe everything just clicked at the right time for him.

Just to give my 2 cents to O-level students or parents having their children always weak in English - FEAR NOT! I know English is damn hard to learn last minute but just WORK REALLY HARD and PRAY for the best. I truly never knew my son turned his English Prelim1 C grade to an A1 in just 4 months. So if my son can do it, so can yours too!


klim360
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Re: O-Level English

Post by klim360 » Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:14 pm

For O level english, it really isn't about how good you are at english but how you answer especially for the comprehension section. My son has been topping enlgish all his life, but when it came to secondary school comprehension he flunked like mad, got a B3 for O level english.

LanglitEnglish
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Re: O-Level English

Post by LanglitEnglish » Tue Mar 20, 2018 4:55 pm

Yes, for 'O' Level English, many students tend to do badly for the comprehension paper. To do well for the comprehension paper, students must be very familiar with the 8 types of comprehension questions, the techniques for answering each type, and the various thinking processes they can use to come up with good answers. For example, there is a 4-step formula that students can use to answer Use Your Own Words questions, which is one of the 3 most challenging types of 'O' Level Compre questions, the other 2 being Inferential and Language Use for Impact questions. And for summary writing,it is not enough to be able to find the 8 main points needed to get the 8 marks for Content. In order to maximise their marks for the summary question, students must not only be armed with the various skills for cutting down the number of words, but also how to write fluently, use sentence structures different from the author's, use a variety of sentence structures, and use their own words. So you see, summary writing is actually a very complex task. It is possible to increase one's marks for summary writing if one is armed with these skills.

ThinkEnglish
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Re: Improving O levels English to A1

Post by ThinkEnglish » Wed Mar 21, 2018 10:26 pm

bandmate wrote:Hi everyone, im hoping to get admitted to RJC after my Os next year and so far I have A1s for everything except for English, and my current combination is triple science. I know the very basic for someone like me without HMT to even have a chance for RJC is to get 8 A1s. I'm rather struggling with my English grade, a constant C5 student for English but i managed to pull off a B3 for my end of year exams, hence the overall B4 grade. Does anyone know of a reliable way to jump my grade to A1? Does reading the news help? I've found the news rather ok to read except for the politics part, ive only little idea of what's happening in the euro economy since I've only started newspaper reading this November. Do I have to read politics news? I find it rather tedious to read something which I don't understand extensively. But if it's anything related to my English grade I'll will work hard towards it. Now what i need are ideas that can help me improve my English. I'm very determined to enter RJC for it's h3 physics and more. Please help :(
Hi there, one strategy you may wish to adopt to boost your content knowledge would be identify popular themes from past year O level essay topics and oral themes as well. Assessment books containing past year O level papers would help you in this. For these popular themes (e.g. aging population, transportation, technology), you can do a breakdown of the content using 'Compass Points (North, South, East, West).
For North (N), it is about what you Need to know about the topic, e.g. facts
For South (S), it is about the Strengths about the topic, e.g. effects of cyberwellness programmes
For East (E), it is about what Excites you about the topic, e.g. what are the impact of bike sharing in Sg?
For West (W), it is about the Weaknesses of the topic, e.g. what are consequences of a fast aging population?
Using this thinking tool to frame your thoughts, there will be a greater sense of purpose and better knowledge retention when you read up on general topics.

sherly
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Re: O-Level English

Post by sherly » Thu Mar 22, 2018 4:06 pm

klim360 wrote:For O level english, it really isn't about how good you are at english but how you answer especially for the comprehension section. My son has been topping enlgish all his life, but when it came to secondary school comprehension he flunked like mad, got a B3 for O level english.
Same problem with my kid. He is very good at English but always scores low for his compre....
Pls can anyone suggest any good assessment books/websites which clearly tells how to tackle the O-level compre questions ?
TIA

D3@n
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Re: O-Level English

Post by D3@n » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:04 am

sherly wrote:
klim360 wrote:For O level english, it really isn't about how good you are at english but how you answer especially for the comprehension section. My son has been topping enlgish all his life, but when it came to secondary school comprehension he flunked like mad, got a B3 for O level english.
Same problem with my kid. He is very good at English but always scores low for his compre....
Pls can anyone suggest any good assessment books/websites which clearly tells how to tackle the O-level compre questions ?
TIA
I am not sure what the definition of "good" is. But comprehension DOES require a certain mastery of the English language. Scoring well in Primary English does not guarantee the same for Secondary. Comprehension OE only figures 10% of the entire paper at the Primary level but 35% at O Levels, and this will be further increased to 50% at the A Levels. It is no longer about how solid your Grammar and Vocabulary are, or how well you can synthesise or transform sentences. It is all about understanding the passage, ability to read in between the lines for inferences and writer's opinion, expressing your answers succinctly, and also the ability to sieve out the main points to summarise, in one's own words.


So if your child is struggling with Comprehension, there are a few possibilities.

1. Student has a lack of understanding of the passage. If one cannot understand the passage, how can one claim that one is "good in English", when one is lost in the sea of words, sentences and paragraphs? Reading more to train for a better understanding of the written language is the solution here. Many students are so intimidated and weak-willed that they immediately "switch-off" once they are faced with a Comprehension passage.

2. There is some understanding of the passage, but student fails to answer TO the question. Many students often fail to see what the question demands and hence does not provide an accurate or direct answer to the question. Of course there'll be guide books in bookstores, but I think a teacher and/or tutor will be better to guide the student. Each comprehension text , along with its accompanying questions, is unique. A huge key to progress here is practice practice and more practice with understanding.

3. There is understanding of the passage, but student fails to answer the questions FULLY or fails to answer in OWN words. These are common problems with many students. For the first, they assume the marker can follow their train of thought and will know what they are driving at despite giving half-baked answers. For the latter, it is the bad habit of copy-n-paste brought over from their Primary school days. And/Or this may also be a result of poor vocabulary and/or expression ability.

4. The Summary may also be the crux of the problem as it weighs 30% of the Comprehension paper. See if your child's score is being pulled down by his Summary. Again, there'll be tips and techniques from guide books. But a teacher/tutor and practice are still essential for a thorough understanding of what to do in this section.

Hope this information can bring some clarity to the issues your child may face.

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