Wednesday, 24 August 2011

CA or No CA?

Children who have CA and SA tend to fare better cos they're more prepared for the big exams.

My kiddie's sch no CA as well. Then came SA1 straight away mid of the year.

Parents have no grounds to base their expectations on their children. Nor do they know whether their children are "really" prepared. For stay-home-parents, we can supplement their study time with relevant assessments and activities to ensure no SA stress when it comes. After school and before school care helps for working parents. For children cared for by grandparents, can ask children to do up a couple of assessments that parents will check and follow up with them.

Schools with CA has gradual progress for parents to observe what their children can do or needs improvement in,and since the small tests like CA has prepared the children and parents of the exam nature, when it comes to SA both parties are more prepared.

My kiddie's school though no CA, the form teacher hands out mock test papers for the children to do in school and at home. When in school, the form teacher practises the one and a half hour time frame (for example) for Maths Paper 2, simulating a real exam situation so that in a way helps a bit and we're grateful for. Parents can observe the exam format as well through this kinda effort.

When such mock test papers are given for homework, me and hubs reinforce the time frame observation too and gauge if kiddie can finish the paper on time.... AND must have time to check their answers. That's also important.

For Maths paper, always encourage working to be done. Even if answer is not exactly accurate, marks are given for workings and those little diagram drawings that the children do by the side.

As for P1 homework this is what school gave in the first month.

  • Spelling list for whole term English and Mother Tongue
  • One page homework from school activity books (commencing from third week onwards)
  • One page Mother Tongue worksheet homework (commencing from third week onwards)
  • One problem a day booklet for Maths
  • Colouring activities related to first term topics.

Just for sharing sake, i received many requests from parents after SA (like a stream of it!) for Phonics for their P1 kiddies after receiving results from their SA1 exam. They claimed they were informed or they just realised that their children cannot read. Or can read but not fluent enuf. Or can totally read but doesn't understand hence unable to do exam efficiently.

As usually classes for Reading Programme are for N2 K1 and K2, I usually acceed to one-to-one or two in a group if they're from same school or are siblings. These older children hardly benefit following a younger age-group class.

Once they're more efficient in their reading, i add in Creative Writing with their Reading programme to ensure they can cope with their P1 workload.

A handful of parents also complain that the child has not benefitted from project work or learn through play based curriculum, cause the child was weak in their subjects as it is. And if told to learn on their own, it is not helping child improve academically at all.

Opinions do vary. Agreed.

Whatever it is, parents MUST make effort to help provide gd foundation for their children to ensure they're prepared for Primary 1 education. In current academic context, there is no way any parent can leave it simply to the school to teach. Parents still have to monitor their children development from the first school their child attends. Cos some childcares only babysit and does not have curriculum to prepare for Primary 1. Hence, when pre-school shopping big question to ask is, by K2 what would my child have learnt in your centre, and would you be able to affirm that what has been taught will make my child ready to enter Primary 1, cos my purpose of sending to a child care centre is reali because both parents work full-time...

Just sharing my thoughts, k.


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