SINGAPORE – The Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) is in August. Students are feeling the heat and parents may be wondering what they can do to help them cope with their anxiety.
Here are six ways parents can help, according to experts:
1. Make sure your child is familiar with basic math skills
Math expert Yeap Ban Har is aware that some parents are concerned about the difficult and novel questions in the math test.
He said: “These are questions that you cannot practice to be able to do on the exam because they are new. There will be no previous examples of problems like this. But it is always in the program and the concepts and data of these problems have But how the problem was constructed is somewhat unknown.”
Dr Yeap advised parents to assess and help hone their child’s basic skills such as addition and multiplication. This will better help them to get a good score, especially in other sections. They can even reach about two-thirds of the available notes.
Parental anxiety occurs when the child cannot answer more difficult and complex questions. But he thinks parents should change that mindset.
“We (as parents) think if they can’t do these questions, it means their math is terrible. It doesn’t mean that. It just means they’re not ready for that level of challenge. “, he added.
2. Train your child to be independent to avoid careless mistakes
Parents may want to help their children, but it may be a bit overkill, leading them to be completely dependent.
Dr Yeap said: “A child who is not independent will often make careless mistakes because the mind is so used to being guided and told what to do.
“When they get it right, we say great. When they get it wrong, we tell them they’re wrong. In other words, they don’t have enough practice to catch mistakes on their own.”
According to Dr. Yeap, parents should allow children to answer questions as they are and only ask them if they are unsure about something.
He added: “Whether right or wrong, don’t assert that they are right or wrong. Instead, ask a question, such as ‘is it true? “, we often ask the question “is it true? only when they are wrong. We never ask questions like “is it true?” when they are right. In other words, the child is now using external cues to know he is making mistakes.”