Now that your exams are around the corner (click here to see the 2021 GCE O-Level Examinations Time Table), you may feel the pressure to study harder for your O Level A Maths exam. However, MindWorks’ Founder, Tutor Young, believes you can still work smart to reach your academic goals.
Here is some guidance for how to study wisely for your O-Level Additional Mathematics examinations from a full-time tutor of over six years:
As mentioned in our Time Management for Students 101 Guide, we must start with the end in mind. This is why let us first explore:
Why Study Maths?
Take a moment to close your eyes and breathe deeply. Now, think about your future life. What do you see yourself doing? What career will make you happy to get out of bed every morning? What other aspirations do you have?
There are many reasons why studying maths is vital. For example, if you wish to take maths in junior college or university, O-level mathematics classes build the foundation you need to excel later. In addition, studying O level maths in GCE is important because lessons about differentiation, integration, and trigonometry are the building blocks for future studies and careers in STEM fields.
High scores in your additional maths examinations reflect a thorough understanding of core principles you will need for future educational and career opportunities. However, if you wish to study humanities or art subjects that do not require mathematics, then you may focus your attention on those subjects rather than aiming to score high grades in O level maths. This way, you will be studying strategically for specific goals that you have previously set.
If you decide that studying math is important for your future career, set a specific goal of how good a grade you wish to attain.
Set a SMART goal
You may have come across the concept of smart goals before. Each goal should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based.
This means that when you think about your upcoming exam, you want to set a specific goal for the specific grade you wish to attend based on your current level of proficiency, the length of the syllabus, and the number of hours you will need to study. Make sure that the goal you set is realistically achievable in the given time.
Moreover, when we align this goal to our future dreams, we ensure that the goal is relevant to us, which is an important factor in building an intrinsic source of motivation.
What to study?
A subject like maths requires us to understand concepts of each topic to be able to know how to solve problems. Therefore, take a moment to assess what resources will you need to achieve your goal. You should have access to many past papers to understand the kinds of questions that may be tested. You can also buy various math textbooks designed to help you excel in your O-Level A Maths examination.
Each of these textbooks contains many different practice questions that can help you understand all important concepts from your syllabus.
Click here to access the syllabus of O-level Additional Maths.
Then, begin to test your understanding by solving practice questions. If you find yourself unable to reach the correct answers, you will be able to identify gaps in your understanding. In this case, it is best to approach school teachers or engage private tutors for help.
One-on-one home tuition is highly effective because a highly qualified Additional Maths tutor will not only find ways to make the material engaging and ensure thorough understanding but also he/she will be able to provide in-depth personalised feedback that can help you chart your unique course to your goals. If you are looking to find the right tutor, click here and fill out MindWorks Tuition's form to request a tutor now!
Make use of Online Resources.
Today, lifelong learning has become very easy with a myriad of open educational resources available online. For instance, MindWorks offers some past paper questions that you may access by clicking here. Similarly, online learning platforms like Khan Academy may be very beneficial as they contain explanations of many important mathematical concepts.
You may also choose to watch Tutor Young explaining Additional Mathematics for O Level on his YouTube channel by clicking below:
These videos offer a comprehensive guide to understand all important concepts for A Maths.
There are also many other YouTube channels dedicated to teaching math in interesting ways:
Check out their videos or look for specific topics on YouTube to find even more online resources to help you in your learning.
It is also possible to subscribe to online learning platforms such as Brilliant that offer interactive games and guided lessons to learn Math, Science, and Computer Science courses for many different age levels. If you find yourself easily getting bored, perhaps such an online tool might make studying math more engaging.
Find out if kinesthetic (interactive) learning is right for you: Read MindWorks' blog post "What Is My Learning Style? Maximise Your Learning with these Simple Study Habits" by clicking here.
Allocate Your Time Wisely!
Study strategically by spending more time on inter-related topics. For example, different elements of calculus are usually grouped together to solve complex questions. However, other questions may be centred around an isolated topic such as binomials.
If you have limited time, start with spending more effort to understand the inter-related topics. These will not only help you gain more marks during the exams, but they will also help you see connections between topics, enabling you to have an in-depth understanding of math.
It is also important to know how much allocation marks are usually given for each topic based on past year papers. If you are weak in certain topics that are usually given higher allocation marks, you may want to put more effort towards them to make sure you don't lose those marks in your exams.
You must also remember that most questions in your O level A-Math examinations will be thinking based, that is, they cannot be solved completely by just understanding or remembering a particular formula. This is why you must understand how different concepts connect with each other to help you effectively solve problems.
Since you are graded not just on your answers but also on your working, you must make sure to be systematic in your approach to solving questions. This is where a personal private tutor can make a big difference in your life: A qualified A Maths tutor can offer guidance based on your current skill levels and help you manage your time in the best way possible by focusing on the right kinds of questions.
MindWorks Tuition can help you find the tutor that best matches your needs quickly and easily! Click here to fill out a form, and request a tutor now.
Have the Right Mindset: Are You Committed to Your Goal?
As you advance in your studies, the math you will be required to learn will be increasingly complicated. However, what is most important is having the right attitude to keep learning.
Start with a curiosity to understand and master every topic. Then, with enough practice, you won’t have to depend on memory to remember formulas. Instead, you may go into your exam room without stress and solve the problems perfectly.
However, to achieve this, you must be willing to commit time and effort. Daily work is crucial. To make learning more fun, you may study with a tutor or with your friends, but remember to do at least a little bit of practice every single day.
Remember that everyone makes mistakes, and this is the best way to learn. Start by testing yourself with problems to gauge how much you already understand. If something feels difficult, take small breaks but persevere!
Your bright future awaits you at the finishing line, so all the best!
More about Tutor Young
Tutor Young is the founder of MindWorks Tuition and a humanistic educator with over six years of full-time tutoring experience in math and science subjects for secondary school, IP, IGCSE, and JC students. A graduate of Singapore Management University, he has extensive knowledge about the Singapore education system, students’ tutoring needs, and tutoring best practices. Under his guidance and expertise, MindWorks has become the most reliable and trustworthy tuition agency in Singapore, which consistently provides high-quality service by finding the perfect tutors for all students. As a futuristic thinker and an empathetic leader, Tutor Young specialises in peoples’ development to provide meaningful services to both the students and his team at MindWorks.
Begin learning with him now by subscribing to his YouTube Channel!