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Here are 3 Top Tips That Will Help Pull up your GP Grades

Here are 3 Top Tips That Will Help Pull up your GP Grades

Hey Students!

As you are fully aware, GP is characterised by a multitude of essay questions, but the essay themes generally remain the same.

So what you can do, as your game plan, is to pre-select themes/topics that you feel strongly about in terms of your viewpoints, and do further readings on these.

Focus on:

  • Expressing your opinions clearly
  • Learning how to use the right evidence to back up your points

And the alternative ways to improve on both these points are to –

i) Read Voraciously  

One way to improve your English skills is through immersion in the language. 

Familiarise yourself with good writing – look for academic-grade articles, opinion pieces and argumentative essays.

But if this somehow feels more like a chore, you can always opt to read actual books. 

It’s important to keep in mind that you’re writing an argumentative essay, so it’s best to stick to non-fiction. 

Research has shown sizeable evidence that readers 

  • Experience greater success academically than their non-reading counterparts
  • Experience greater success in the workforce 

So GP Students, it’s time now to inculcate good reading habits! You’re setting yourself up for success in GP and your career.

ii) Listen to Podcasts/ Speeches and Debates

Reading is just one way to immerse yourself in well-written pieces of work or books.  

Listening to podcasts with an argumentative slant and breaking down how such arguments are formed, duly supported and justified, can give you invaluable insights when planning your essays. 

Podcasts are ideated and built around a structure intended to primarily keep audiences engaged, which can translate to added points when adopted in your own writing.

If you want to seriously improve your language skills and take it one step further, you can partake in “shadowing” – speaking along with what you’re listening to. This also helps you to process what you’re listening to. 

iii) Exposure To Hand-picked Topics in Different Mediums

Immerse yourself in and develop a wide exposure to hand-picked topics.

It’s important to note that it’s only natural not to fully absorb articles and news that you aren’t particularly interested in. 

This boils down to how essential it is in choosing the right topics that you’re passionate about to focus on.

If you’re really keen on a particular topic, you’d willingly seek out related knowledge or information. 

And where content is concerned, even though very targeted, is infinite when you surf the Internet. 

Also, keep yourself updated with:

Newspaper articles

 

News articles are generally informative and well-written, with a lot of attention spent on the way such writing is structured and presented, all to keep the audience interested and engaged.

As there’s never a shortage of content in the news, use them to build context when you are writing your GP essays.

YouTube Videos

As you know, most Youtube videos are developed around meaningless content, with the aim of keeping the audience mindlessly entertained.

But if you were to look at such videos from a much deeper level through making a bee-line  specifically for informative videos, these are generally well-designed to present facts in an appealing and well-scripted manner. 

There are indeed invaluable learning points related to the way messages are conveyed and, at the same time, delivering relevant context for your next essay. 

Documentaries:

While YouTube videos are effective when you want to quickly watch a couple of short informative clips, documentaries, on the other hand, delve deeply into a specific topic.

Many students may wrongly assume that documentaries are dead boring. But in fact, there is a mind-boggling array of documentaries which are eye-openers – covering wide-ranging topics from migrant worker issues globally, to unearthing never-before-seen discoveries from the distant past.

One important consideration is the distinctive yet interesting and refreshing structures that the documentary adopts to present its information, as well as the varied perspectives it takes on the issue. 

Watching documentaries widens your world-view as well as gives you indispensable insights into how you can cleverly present information clearly and creativity for your GP.

GP Students, some of you may already know these different ways to study. You’ve tried and tested them, but they don’t seem to work for you and time is fast running out… 

At EduEdge, we have the answer and a surefire way to help you up your GP score! 

You will learn a more effective and smarter formula-style way to help you ace GP. 

We’ll teach you to break down GP, step-by-step, and apply formulas (just like studying Math and Science) and powerful structures. 

Using our unique “Formula-Style” method of teaching and learning English, our Language Specialists have helped 82.7% OF OUR STUDENTS ACHIEVED A / B FOR THEIR A-LEVEL GP!

As General Paper is a skills-based subject, the earlier you receive GP tuition support, the quicker you can acquire and develop your core GP skills!  

Because of this, we’d like to invite you to our complimentary 60-minute Diagnostic Consult & Assessment (DCA) (worth $158.00) with our GP Specialist where:

You can receive an in-depth, detailed analysis of your latest General Paper school exam papers

OR 

Sit for our GP Diagnostic Test which is specially designed to analyse your strengths and weaknesses with pinpoint accuracy.

(This step is important to know why you are losing marks and what problems / challenges you are currently facing – else you will just keep repeating the same mistakes…)

From this session, you will also learn more about how we help students improve with our unique method of studying GP using Formulas and how we are different from the other GP tuition centres / GP tutors out there.

At the end of the day, whether you choose to engage our professional services or not, it is entirely up to you. 

Sounds fair?

Click on the button below to schedule the DCA session right now: 

Is Your Child Starting Their First Year Of Secondary School In 2023? Here Are 3 Super Tips To Help Your Child Transition Smoothly!

Is Your Child Starting Their First Year Of Secondary School In 2023? Here Are 3 Super Tips To Help Your Child Transition Smoothly!

Hey Parents!

Congrats to your child for progressing to the next stage of their education journey!

It’s been a tough year for you and your child, especially with all the stress from preparing for the PSLE national exams.

With Primary 6 finally over, some parents and students might feel they deserve a break from learning after working so hard.  

While a break is indeed needed, it will also be wise that it shouldn’t go beyond the start of Secondary 1. 

When your child embarks on their Secondary 1 journey, the right learning support will give them a strong head start. 

What you may not know is that most students suffer a sudden and drastic drop in their grades when they enter Secondary 1.

This is due to a number of reasons, such as:

1) Coping with more subjects (Now: 7 or 8 v.s. Previous: 4)

2) Different exam formats with more demanding marking requirements

3) New school environment

It just takes one or a combination of the above factors for students to witness a drastic drop in their grades from A to B or even C.

A relevant case study is that of student Chloe who scored an A* in her PSLE English but barely passed with a C6 when she was in Secondary 4!

While it’s very important to stem (stop) the free-fall of grades for all Secondary subjects, it’s doubly critical for English

Secondary English is an L1 compulsory subject – whatever English grade your child achieves for their GCEs, is computed in their overall L1R5 / L1B1 for eligibility into JC / Poly courses. 

A good (As / Bs) GCE English grade will equate to your child securing their desired JC / Poly choice so that they can then seamlessly progress and continue on the next phase of their education journey.    

Which is why we want to share 3 top tips to help your child seamlessly transition from Primary to Secondary.

1) Developing Independent Learning Skills

 

As your primary child progresses to Secondary School (and teenagehood), they’d need to take on greater responsibility for their own learning! 

With much longer hours spent in Secondary school, as well as a heavier workload, your child must come up with a game plan to effectively manage their own learning and efficiently handle the increased workload.  

Such skills are essential for all students – they help with developing your child’s independent learning competencies, so as to monitor, evaluate and reflect on their learning progress in school!

But we must be mindful that encouraging independent learning is not all about making your child do everything by themselves.

It’s instead about having your child understand and see where they are falling short or behind, what they need to start improving and reach out to available support structures, without delay. 

By doing so, it’ll help them speedily and successfully transition into Secondary school life.

2) Imparting time management strategies

Transitioning from Primary to Secondary school equates to an increased workload – be it from the added number of subjects (from 4 in Primary to almost double the number in Secondary) or the increased demands or unfamiliarity of the subject disciplines.

As time is limited to just 24 hours a day, your now Secondary school-going child needs to know how to effectively allocate their study, rest and play time. 

Your child will very soon realise that time management is a must if they don’t want to be lagging behind in their subjects. 

And that there’ll be negative consequences, if their homework is not submitted on time or if they fail to revise…  

Do start helping your child better manage their workload, rest and play time by encouraging them to start planning their own timetable and once it’s done, to stick to it.   

Time management skills are not just in helping your child better manage their school workload; such life skills are a must, to successfully self-manage all areas of their life, throughout their life.

3) Improving English Language competencies 

When your child starts Secondary school, the requirements and expectations for English change drastically! 

For one, Comprehension questions become much harder as they are less straightforward as compared to the Primary levels. All of a sudden, your child has to tackle many more Higher Order Thinking (HOT) Questions where meaning is indirect or hidden! 

Composition also requires your child to be much more exacting in their use of grammar, punctuation and language. 

And with the introduction of new formats and different essay types (Situational and Continuous Writing), it can prove to be really intimidating for most students.

To add on, the marking requirements have also changed.

This is why it is crucial for your child to keep up and not fall behind in English, as the gap may widen more and more, when your child moves from Lower to Upper Secondary.

Not to mention, there’s the inclusion of other new essay-based subjects, such as History, Geography, Social Studies and Literature – all of which will require your child to write long essay-type answers.

Without question, your child must be able to clearly express (grammar, punctuation and language) themselves in writing, in order to achieve high marks, not only in English essays.

Therefore, your Secondary-going child’s English competency will directly affect their understanding of other subjects, especially the language-based subjects, and how well they perform in these subjects.

You’ve come full circle in realising and acknowledging why Secondary English is ever so important and thus, given the recognition as an L1 subject. 

Your child has to build a super solid foundation and achieve language competency in order to do really well in English and their other language-based subjects. 

Parents, now that you’ve a heads-up on how English is a game changer and enabler, you’ll fully agree that it’s so important your child needs to get the right English support.

As English is a skills-based subject, the earlier your child starts English learning support, the quicker they can acquire and develop their core language skills!  

Because of this, we’d like to invite you and your child to our complimentary 60-minute Diagnostic Consult & Assessment (DCA) (worth $158.00) with our Language Specialist.

That is the first crucial step because our Teachers will need to know your child’s strengths and weaknesses before they can formulate a game plan for your child to improve in English.

From this session, you will also learn more about how we help students improve with our unique method of studying English using Formulas and how we are different from the other English tuition centres / English tutors out there.

At the end of the day, whether you choose to engage our professional services or not, it is entirely up to you. 

Sounds fair?

Click on the button below to schedule the DCA session for you and your child right now:

As the stakes are very high, you’d want to take immediate action and give your child a head start in English (and their language-based subjects) to avoid a huge drop in grades!   

The New PSLE Achievement Level (AL) System: What Does It Mean For Your Child?

The New PSLE Achievement Level (AL) System: What Does It Mean For Your Child?

Hey Parents! 

As you know by now, there are new changes to the PSLE scoring system.

How PSLE Score will be calculated from 2021
Source: Ministry of Education
Achievement Level Reference Raw Mark Range
1 >90
2 85-89
3 80-84
4 75-79
5 65-74
6 45-64
7 20-44
8 <20
Best Overall Score:4 Lowest Overall Score:32

 

The PSLE T-score system that was used in calculating students’ results since 1960, is no more and is now replaced with a brand new scoring system – the Achievement Level (AL) scoring System.

Starting 2021, Primary School students will be assigned Achievement Level scores – ranging from Achievement Level 1 (the best) up to Achievement Level 8, for each subject – based on their PSLE examination results.

So What Does This Change In The Scoring System Mean For Your Child?

  1. Foundation Level Subjects
Grades for Foundation Foundation Mark Range Standard Level AL Equivalent
A 75-100 6
B 30-74 7
C <30 8

For Primary School students who are taking Foundation subjects, your child will be graded from AL A to AL C. This will be factored into their overall AL score, with:

– AL A being an AL equivalent of 6

– AL B being an AL equivalent of 7

– AL C being an AL equivalent of 8

The main objectives behind the changes in the PSLE scoring system are to instil confidence in your child, as well as help them strengthen their subject content mastery.

Students who are taking subjects at the Foundation level will still be able to qualify for Express or N(A) courses, even if they are taking one or more Foundation subjects, as long as they can meet the placement criteria.

2. Your Child’s Eligibility For Higher Mother Tongue Language (HMTL)

Do note the new criteria for HMTL. 

For your child to be eligible for HMTL in Secondary School, they have –

(i) To score an overall PSLE score of 8 or better; OR

(iI) An overall PSLE Score of 9 to 14 (inclusive); and attain

  • AL 1 / AL 2 in MTL or
  • Distinction / Merit in HMTL

These new eligibility criteria are meant to measure your child’s ability to cope with the increase in academic workload for Secondary.

Schools will have the flexibility to offer HMTL to your child, even if they have not met the above criteria. Your child’s ability and interest in the Mother Tongue Language and their ability to manage HMTL, without hindering their academic performance in other subjects, are some important considerations.

3. More PSLE Students Will Have The Same AL Score

Your child’s score is no longer calculated based on how well they perform in relation to other students in the cohort.

Therefore, the new AL scoring System is intended to significantly lessen your child’s examination stress, by doing away with pitting their performance against their peers.

The broader score bands of AL5 to AL8 also encourage and help struggling students to learn at their own pace.

However, the key defining difference must not be overlooked. In the previous PSLE T-score system, there used to be 200+ different variations (wider range of scores) that your child could achieve. 

With the new AL scoring System, the variance has been greatly cut down to just 29 different possible scores. 

What this means is that the score your child receives will be the same as many many other students too! Again, this is due to a much narrower range of scores.

What about your child then, who is going to sit for their PSLE? Your child’s game plan now is to minus every single unwanted point they can, from their PSLE Report Card, in order to secure their seat in the Secondary school of their choice.

As you will know too, posting to Secondary schools is dependent on several factors namely, Choice Ranking, Citizenship and Computer Balloting as tie-breakers. 

The big BUT is that you can’t lose sight of the fact that it is still MERIT-BASED – first and foremost. Your child’s AL Score remains the very first cut.

Which also means that all subjects – whether it is English, Math, Science or Mother Tongue – are equally important! 

While both (old and new) scoring systems use the grades for the same 4 subjects, the marked difference is that the old PSLE T-score system does not count the subject weighting equally.

In the old PSLE T-score system, if your child scored A* in their Math and Science subjects but scored worse for English and Mother Tongue,  they would still end up with a good T-score as the weighting for the subjects are different.

But with the new AL scoring System, every single subject point will be added into your child’s final PSLE score!

Which is why helping your child to improve and master every subject is the only way to reach the top with the new AL scoring System! 

Therefore, the mindset shift and new game plan for parents and students is to adopt an all-rounded approach – being tops in all subjects!   

4. Every Point Counts For Secondary School Admission
Did you also know that, under the old PSLE T-score system, more than 50% of students normally scored As for their PSLE cohorts in previous years? (Based on MOE’s statistics)

To fine-tune the above, the new AL scoring System has introduced AL Bands. The AL Bands ensure that students’ performances are finely differentiated at the higher levels of subject mastery!

With reference to the table below, it’s out with the old PSLE T-score system, where the A* / A grade is just 2 bands. But now, it’s in with the new AL scoring System, where there are 4 AL Bands (AL 1 to AL 4). 

The current T-score system with grades A”, A.B. C D and E, will be replaced by scoring bands known as ALS AL scores will be added up with the highest score being 4, and the lowest, 32 Achievement level (AL) Marks
1 90 and above
2 85-89
3 80-84
4 75-79
5 65-74
6 45-64
7 20-44
8 Below 20

 

Do refer to the next table below, on the required AL Band ranges for the different Secondary programmes offered, when your child embarks on the next stage of their education journey

Indicative achievement level (AL) cut-off point (COP) ranges for different school types
  Indicative AL COP range for 2019 PSLE
Course Government and Government-aided schools Autonomous schools Autonomous schools
Express [Integrated Programme [(IP)] 7-9 7-9 6-8
Express (0-level) 8-22 8-16 8-10
Normal (Academic) 22-25 22-25 NA
Normal (Technical) 26-30 26-29 NA
Table STRAITS TIMES GRAPHICS Source- MINISTRY OF EDUCATION

 

As you can see, with the new AL scoring System for 2021, there are new changes to embrace.

At EduEdge, we believe that the new AL scoring System is a clearer indication of every child’s true learning progress for every subject. 

As supportive parents for your child, it’s natural that you would feel anxious and want to give your child that competitive edge under the new AL scoring system.

Under this new system, English has become more important than ever as an examinable subject.

5. Help Your Child Excel In English To Improve Their AL Score

Here at EduEdge,

Our dedicated and professional English Language Specialists have an in-depth knowledge of the PSLE English curriculum and mastery of how English should be taught so that your child can improve.

Using our structured and unique “Formula-Style” method of teaching English, our Language Specialists have helped over 2,500 students, all over Singapore, learn English and jump at least 1-2 grades! 

Our methodology holds true too for students (and parents) who wrongly thought that they couldn’t study for English.

Parents, it’s only natural that you’d surely want to see your child improve and do really well in their PSLE English too, with the new AL scoring System!  

Because of this, we’d like to invite you and your child to our complimentary 60-minute Diagnostic Consult & Assessment (DCA) (worth $158.00) with our Language Specialist.

That is the first crucial step because our Teachers will need to know your child’s strengths and weaknesses before they can formulate a game plan for your child to improve in English.

From this session, you will also learn more about how we help students improve with our unique method of studying English using Formulas and how we are different from the other English tuition centres / English tutors out there.

At the end of the day, whether you choose to engage our professional services or not, it is entirely up to you. 

Sounds fair?

Click on the button below to schedule the DCA session for you and your child right now:

Ace The PSLE English Exam: Here’s How Your Child Can Add Another 5 to 10 Marks With These Proven Strategies

Ace The PSLE English Exam: Here’s How Your Child Can Add Another 5 to 10 Marks With These Proven Strategies

With a mere two weeks left, exam anxiety is at fever pitch. 

It doesn’t matter that your child has prepped all four core subjects and you’ve given all the necessary support since Day One of Primary School. 

There remains this nagging doubt as to whether your P6 child is indeed ready for the PSLE.

But then your fears are not unfounded. As a loving parent, you constantly worry

Particularly at this critical juncture, you are beside yourself wondering if you’ve done enough to fully prepare your child. 

(Did I miss anything or can anything else be done to further boost my child’s PSLE grade?) 

Time is inching ever closer and nobody can blame you for wanting your child to do much better in the PSLE (compared to the recent Prelims) and hopefully, settle in their first choice Secondary school… 

Well, you know what? It is possible, especially for the English Language Paper!

While it’s a tall order to expect your child to sky-rocket several grades, adding another 5 to 10 marks to your child’s PSLE English exams is really realistic and achievable! 

(Once your child has the right revision strategies, of course!)

And the faster your child starts applying these powerful strategies, the greater are the chances of securing even more marks. 

Some Sure-fire Revision Strategies for your child to blaze ahead of the competition are:

Paper 1

  • By now, your child will have amassed a treasure trove of marked English assignment essays. These compositions are actually a gold mine for learning and contain knowledge nuggets waiting to be uncovered!
  • Guide your child to perform an ERROR ANALYSIS on their P6 and Prelim essays. For each essay:
    • Draw a table with three columns on foolscap paper. 
    • Column 1 heading: How it was written
    • Column 2 heading: How it should have been written
    • Column 3 heading: What I have learnt
  • Guide your child to:
    • Write down the sentences containing errors from his essay in column 1
    • Rewrite the sentences correctly in column 2
    • Write down the learning point in column 3  

Here’s an example:

How it was written How it should have been written What I have learnt
I was wondering who was this guy and if I know him. I was wondering who this guy was and if I knew him.

Statement: Who this guy was.

Question: Who was this guy?

Tense consistency: “know” should be “knew”

 

Have a go! You will be surprised that this simple task can reveal new insights for your child and they’ll learn to spot patterns of common language errors. 

Paper 2

A Distinction (AL1-3) is within reach if your child does well in the Comprehension component, which is a whopping 43 Comprehension marks out of a total of 95 or close to 45% (half) of Paper 2 marks. 

Just like Paper 1, the secret lies in learning from their previous mistakes. 

Guide your child to go through their marked P6 and Prelim Comprehensions and pay careful attention to the errors they’ve committed. 

Your child must then ask “Why did I lose the mark?” and remind themselves to avoid repeating similar errors.  

Common Comprehension mistakes include:

  • Careless Mistake 1: Failing to understand what the question wants. When reading the questions, students have a tendency to jump to their own conclusions or think they know what the question requirements are. 

  • Careless Mistake 2: Giving Vague Answers. Many students often give unclear or non-specific answers.

  • Careless Mistake 3: Thinking that all comprehension question answers can be found in the text. There are, in fact, two distinct types of questions: 
  1. Literal Level Questions: answers are found in the passage.
  2. Inferential Level Questions: clues are found in the passage but not the actual answer itself. The answer has to be inferred from contextual clues. In other words, the answer will come from the students’ inferential thinking. 

Cultivate a Growth Mindset

No one should resort to labelling children such as: “She’s a B student” or “He’s a C student”. Such labels are injurious to their self-esteem and serve little but to perpetuate a fixed mindset. Children end up feeling that their self-worth is tagged to their academic grades. 

Instead, a growth mindset will envision every assessment as a new opportunity for children to improve by working on their past failures and building upon their past successes.

Students who sit for the PSLE with a defeatist mindset (telling themselves that they are only capable of a certain grade) would have already surrendered and lost the academic battle. 

It’s ever so crucial, even though it’s the eleventh hour, for parents to show their love and support by: 

  • Positively affirming your child
  • Reminding your child on their key strengths and be mindful of their areas for improvement
  • Complimenting them for their effort
  • Reassuring them that it is fine to make mistakes so long as they learn from it

Your encouragement for your child works wonders in boosting your child’s confidence levels so that they can give their very best for the demanding PSLE.

      

About the Author

Teacher Edwin

During his time as a student, Edwin struggled with the English Language, and was often told by his teachers that he had to “feel the language” or “practise more”… even though he was already ploughing through tons of English Assessment books!

Which is why, more than anybody else, he understands the uphill challenges and frustrations your child feels when trying to master English!

This is what motivated him to develop the <Formula-Style> method of learning English to help students learn English in an easier and more effective way, just like solving Math or Science questions!

Together with the EduEdge Team of Language Specialists, this unique and proven method has successfully transformed the grades of more than 2,500+ students from over 150 schools across Singapore to date, with a 94.5% improvement rate and 72.1% achieving Bs and As for the Primary, Secondary and Junior College Levels!