I am a tutor/tuition agent/undergrad. I came across this site and this particular forum intrigues me much as i am a maths lover. Just wanted to share my experience as a student and tutor.
I was part of the batch when during PSLE, there were a question which required us to add 1 + 2 + 3..... all the way to + 100 and there was a public outcry there after. Thankfully, I scored my distinction still. (:
Maths in Singapore has changed much since. A question which i used to do in Primary 6 is now found in an assessment book for Primary 2. Kindergarten children doing figure patterns. Primary 3 kids learning problem solving heuristics. Then how are kids going to tackle PSLE you must be thinking? No wonder parents are worried.
Anyhow, as a tutor myself now. I teach my students the fundamentals of maths. Maths should be easy, like ABC. Just some pointers which i want to share.
By primary 1 or 2, your child should be able to mental calculate numbers up to 20.
By primary 3 or 4, your child should be able to mental calculate multiplications and division up to 15.
By primary 5 or 6, know how to tackle key concepts questions. (schools repeat the concept at each level but add new things they learn like percentage and ratio etc)
The rest is all about understanding concepts.
Please focus on the models concept that our system is teaching, all other enrichment unless focusing on mental calculate (which aids speed) or on models itself is more or less redundant.
Your children needs to know the questions which will be out for exams. Get a tutor to practice with them models. The models approach to maths can solve almost every question in an exam (unless trial and error/guess and check questions) Your child will just have to practice key concept questions that will be out for exams/PSLE. If they do the key concept questions again and again, there is no reason why they do not score A.
Using the models approach, i scored 793 out of a possible 800 for the US college entrance exams SAT1 maths.
This is just what i want to share. (:
Good luck to all parents. (: You may PM or contact me if you have any queries.