All About Preparing For Primary One

Academic support for Primary 1

All About Preparing For Primary One

Postby jedamum » Fri Feb 29, 2008 9:00 pm

Dunno where to post this, but can veteran dads and mums advise on what does a kid need to know to smoothly transit into Primary 1?

Thanks.

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Re: Primary 1 Preparations

Postby ChiefKiasu » Fri Feb 29, 2008 10:25 pm

jedamum wrote:Dunno where to post this, but can veteran dads and mums advise on what does a kid need to know to smoothly transit into Primary 1?

Thanks.


My kid is in Primary 3 and I'm still learning :).

OK... here's what you need:

1. Mental Preparation
- Your kid needs to learn to listen and record instructions from teachers. Normally, the teacher will get the kid to write down homework or instructions to their parents in a Parents-Teacher booklet which YOU need to check religiously everyday. That is the main way by which you know what is happening in school, besides the occasional handouts. You probably need to get the email addresses of at least the form teacher.

- If your kid goes to school in the morning, it is necessary to condition him/her for at least 3 months before school starts. Sleep no later than 9pm and wake up at 6:30am.

- Train your kid to operate a regular schedule with specific timing. Wake up, brush teeth, eat breakfast, exercise, and then lessons. If your child is already in a PCF or similar kindergarten, you have your job cut up for you. But make sure you follow up on the teachers' comments on homework and stuff.

- Train your kid to be self reliant, confident and independent from a young age. This is the TRUE key to success and it will save you a lot of heart ache and stress later. I'm not just talking about teaching your child to order his/her own food. A child that is self-driven will accomplish much more than one with very high IQ. You should attend parenting courses yourself to learn how to do so. Mindchamps comes to mind.

2. Academic Preparation
There are only 3 subjects in Primary 1 and 2 - English, Chinese and Maths. While there are variations, in general the following can be expected:

a. English and Chinese
P1 kids are expected to do:
- spelling, 听写 and dictation every week (word list of 10 words)
- show and tell every term
- tests involving multiple choice grammar, comprehension, and picture composition
- oral tests involving picture compositions.

To prepare for this, it will be good to encourage kindergarten kids to:

- read voraciously to build up grammer and vocabulary. It is a given these days that kids are EXPECTED to know phonics and all 26 alphabets BEFORE they enter P1.

- attend speech and drama classes to improve confidence and presentation skills

- learn to write simple Chinese characters properly in terms of all the basic strokes 笔画 (heng, shu, etc) and in the proper order. Some teachers are VERY sticky such that even though the character looks correct, if the strokes are wrong, it will still be marked wrong.

- For Chinese, make sure there is a strong foundation of Hanyu Pinyin. I would recommend that you consider sending your child to group-based learning such as the Hua Language Centre as soon as he/she reach 4 years old - it is VERY difficult otherwise to build an interest in the language unless you constantly use it at home.

b. Mathematics
P1 students are expected to:
- Add/subtract up to 100
- Number bonds
- Times table up to 10 (some 12)
- Abstract modeling to solve problems
- Read analog time (half past, quarter to, etc)
- work with numbers in numeric and alphabet form: eg. 10-8=? or what is the difference between ten and eight?

It is very different from during our times, where all we need to do is to memorize by heart the 12 times table. Kids are required to really UNDERSTAND the logic behind the math.

Take a peek at the P1 assessments when you drop by a Popular bookstore to get a feel for what your child is going to be up against.

To prepare for P1, the main thing to focus on would be to work on the speed of doing the fundamentals of addition and subtraction, and multiplication. Then your child can focus in class on the more complex and abstract logic and modeling processes. I highly recommend Kumon for this job... if you start your child in Kumon by K1, you can be sure that he will well prepared for P1 (and even P2!)

3. Parental Preparation
You must also prepare yourself to support your child! At least one parent has to take time out to guide the child on a daily basis on his schoolwork. It is VERY unlikely the child knows how to manage all the work thrown on him by himself. Nowadays, the schools EXPECT parents to do the job, or at least outsource the job to tutors.

Wish somebody has taught me all this before :cry: . But hey... at least others can now learn from my pain :).
Last edited by ChiefKiasu on Sat Mar 01, 2008 10:17 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Primary 1 Preparations

Postby jedamum » Sat Mar 01, 2008 12:04 am

:shock:
Wow! Thanks!
I nearly fainted.... :?

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Re: Primary 1 Preparations

Postby ChiefKiasu » Sat Mar 01, 2008 8:59 am

jedamum wrote::shock:
Wow! Thanks!
I nearly fainted.... :?


Yeah... I used to think P1 is nothing and that all those parents trying to prepare their kids early for Primary school are just kiasu and want to make their children top the class - until I realize the school itself expects the children to be already steeped in such a culture! So by the time parents come to this realization, they panic and try to start the processes of external enrichment courses, and that gives the children a LOT more stress since they also have to cope with the work in P1.

IMO, parents who prepare their children early are really helping to give their children less stress by the time they go to school. The danger that kids will be bored in class is nothing compared to the self-confidence and self-esteem that the children gets when they have already been exposed to what the teachers are teaching.

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Re: Primary 1 Preparations

Postby jedamum » Sun Mar 02, 2008 11:41 pm

ChiefKiasu wrote:
jedamum wrote::shock:
Wow! Thanks!
I nearly fainted.... :?


Yeah... I used to think P1 is nothing and that all those parents trying to prepare their kids early for Primary school are just kiasu and want to make their children top the class - until I realize the school itself expects the children to be already steeped in such a culture! So by the time parents come to this realization, they panic and try to start the processes of external enrichment courses, and that gives the children a LOT more stress since they also have to cope with the work in P1.

IMO, parents who prepare their children early are really helping to give their children less stress by the time they go to school. The danger that kids will be bored in class is nothing compared to the self-confidence and self-esteem that the children gets when they have already been exposed to what the teachers are teaching.

yes. i am also concern that my boy may find school boring if we over-stimulate him now.
additionally, we can prepare the kid for P1, resulting them going through P1 in a breeze, but when they reach P2 and will they find it hard to accept that they are no longer as 'wise' as they were when in P1 (cos no P2 pre-preparation)?

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Re: Primary 1 Preparations

Postby ChiefKiasu » Mon Mar 03, 2008 9:34 am

jedamum wrote:yes. i am also concern that my boy may find school boring if we over-stimulate him now.
additionally, we can prepare the kid for P1, resulting them going through P1 in a breeze, but when they reach P2 and will they find it hard to accept that they are no longer as 'wise' as they were when in P1 (cos no P2 pre-preparation)?


Well, in P1, you can start preparing your children for P2 - always 1 year ahead :lol:

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Re: Primary 1 Preparations

Postby jedamum » Mon Mar 03, 2008 11:54 am

ChiefKiasu wrote:
jedamum wrote:yes. i am also concern that my boy may find school boring if we over-stimulate him now.
additionally, we can prepare the kid for P1, resulting them going through P1 in a breeze, but when they reach P2 and will they find it hard to accept that they are no longer as 'wise' as they were when in P1 (cos no P2 pre-preparation)?


Well, in P1, you can start preparing your children for P2 - always 1 year ahead :lol:

:shock:
i thought in P1 then concentrate on P1...every week spelling and tingxie and merxie...where got time for P2 preparation? during Nov/Dec holidays?

feel like i am going back to school...........

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Re: Primary 1 Preparations

Postby ChiefKiasu » Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:42 pm

jedamum wrote: :shock:
i thought in P1 then concentrate on P1...every week spelling and tingxie and merxie...where got time for P2 preparation? during Nov/Dec holidays?

feel like i am going back to school...........


If your kid is well prepared for P1, then he/she will not need to spend much time to complete all the schoolwork, which means you can use the extra time to enrich him/her further each week with more challenging things. Keep in mind the Ministry of Education's view of primary school:
Lower Primary - P1 & P2
Upper Primary - P3 & P4
PSLE - P5 & P6

So the kids are really sitting in a 2 year course, NOT a single year course. P2 is the 2nd half of P1. In fact, P5 is the start of the training for PSLE where classes end in the middle of P6.

Welcome back to primary school :D

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Re: Primary 1 Preparations

Postby jedamum » Tue Mar 04, 2008 11:19 am

ChiefKiasu wrote:If your kid is well prepared for P1, then he/she will not need to spend much time to complete all the schoolwork, which means you can use the extra time to enrich him/her further each week with more challenging things. Keep in mind the Ministry of Education's view of primary school:
Lower Primary - P1 & P2
Upper Primary - P3 & P4
PSLE - P5 & P6

So the kids are really sitting in a 2 year course, NOT a single year course. P2 is the 2nd half of P1. In fact, P5 is the start of the training for PSLE where classes end in the middle of P6.

Welcome back to primary school :D

:shock:
was thinking when can convert back to FTWM/PTWM with ease...seems like not in another million years. :shock:

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Re: Primary 1 Preparations

Postby jedamum » Tue Mar 04, 2008 11:25 am

ChiefKiasu wrote:
1. Mental Preparation
- Your kid needs to learn to listen and record instructions from teachers. Normally, the teacher will get the kid to write down homework or instructions to their parents in a Parents-Teacher booklet which YOU need to check religiously everyday.
Check! Current kindergarten has similar system except that the teachers wrote the instructions. Son will usually remember what to bring if not recorded in the book.

- If your kid goes to school in the morning, it is necessary to condition him/her for at least 3 months before school starts. Sleep no later than 9pm and wake up at 6:30am.
3months!!!! i was thinking 2 weeks!!

- Train your kid to operate a regular schedule with specific timing. Wake up, brush teeth, eat breakfast, exercise, and then lessons. If your child is already in a PCF or similar kindergarten, you have your job cut up for you. But make sure you follow up on the teachers' comments on homework and stuff.
Check! Son on regular schedule now...wake up, brush teeth, eat breakfast, do homework, play, lunch, school

- Train your kid to be self reliant, confident and independent from a young age. This is the TRUE key to success and it will save you a lot of heart ache and stress later. I'm not just talking about teaching your child to order his/her own food. A child that is self-driven will accomplish much more than one with very high IQ. You should attend parenting courses yourself to learn how to do so. Mindchamps comes to mind.
Noted. :)

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