3 Biggest Changes in the Educational Landscape 2019-2021: Part 2

Secondary

2020: Full Subject Based Banding

In 2020, a few secondary schools will introduce full subject-based banding to replace streaming. This is probably the most substantive change announced in the last few years for secondary school students. Instead of students joining the usual Normal (Technical) (N(T)), Normal (Academic) (N(A)) or Express streams, they would be assigned subjects at three different levels (G1, G2 and G3). G1 is roughly pegged to Normal (Technical) standard while G3 is equivalent to the old Express standard. This allows students who are good at certain subjects to study that subject at a higher level and vice versa. Students will take a common examination at the end of the four years and the three streams would be phased out.

secondary school pathway

Credits: MOE

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PSLE Oral Reading Aloud Tips

By Mrs Elaine Loh

It’s the June school holiday and from here on, things will be moving pretty quickly for pupils sitting for the PSLE. Today, I will be giving you tips for the reading aloud component of the PSLE Oral exam which is applicable for children in the other levels as well.

The reading aloud component is the most overlooked component in the PSLE oral exam. Many parents encourage their children to practise the Stimulus-based Oral component more than the reading one since the reading aloud component carries just a third of the total oral grade. This wrong view can prove costly because the reading aloud component is the one where a child can hope to score the full mark easily if he knows what the examiner is looking out for. So what exactly are the examiners looking out for?

Put simply, the examiner is looking out for the following things:

  1. Well-paced and fluent reading. This means reading the passage smoothly and clearly.
  2. Accurate pronunciation and good intonation when reading in order to convey the right information, ideas and feelings in the passage.

So, before you get your child to practise reading aloud to you, here are some tips on how you can help him achieve what the examiner will be looking out for.

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Argumentative Writing: The Counter Argument

By Ms Thanam Muthusamy

When it comes to argumentative writing, many students in RGC moan and groan.  To some, argumentative writing is an unthinkable task.  Some of them have told me that they have been discouraged to attempt argumentative writing because “it is a difficult genre” and were under the impression that if one is not good in writing, it is best not to attempt it.

They do not know where to start nor what to write about. How does one structure the essay? Are argumentative essays only for the better students?

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3 Biggest Changes in the Educational Landscape 2019-2021: Part 1

Secondary

by Richard Leong

I have not written anything regarding the educational landscape for some time. I would like to take this opportunity to address the three biggest changes in the educational landscape from this year (2019) to 2021.

2019: Cutting Down on School Examinations and Removal of Grading from Report Cards

In September 2018, the Ministry of Education (MOE) announced that they were cutting down on school examinations. All students from Primary 3 to Secondary 4 or 5 would also NOT have more than one graded assessment per subject per school term.

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PSLE Oral Tips: Stimulus-Based Conversation

PSLE Oral

by Mrs Elaine Loh

The PSLE Oral Examination is the first language component your child will be tested on as part of the English Language paper. Hence, I have written this article to help you guide your child as he prepares for it. The PSLE Oral component has two parts: the reading component and the Stimulus Based Oral (SBO) conversation component. This is the part of the examination that most children find daunting for one or more of the following reasons:

PSLE Oral
  •  Speaking to a complete stranger about something is not a natural thing your child does
  • Sharing his opinion and ideas is not something your introverted child enjoys doing
  • Organising his thought process is something your child is having difficulty with
  • The open-ended nature of the stimulus based oral conversation creates anxiety in your child because he does not know what to expect
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How to Ace Your Editing: Part 4

Editing - Connectors

Welcome back to Part 4 of the ‘How to Ace Your Editing’ blogs. In our previous blogs, we covered three different common errors: Tenses, Word Forms and Pronouns. Today, we will be covering how to detect and correct the ‘Connector’ error. 

WHAT IS A CONNECTOR?

Let’s get a basic understanding what a connector is. A connector is not recognised as one of the parts of speech; rather, it describes the function of two different parts of speech that play the role of connecting ideas or words: conjunctions and prepositions. 

As connectors connect ideas in the passage, it is important that students read the entire passage and understand how one idea connects to another, or he / she would have difficulty spotting the connector error. 

The tip presented here revolves around understanding the different relationships that ideas or words can have with each other in order to facilitate spotting the incorrect connector and replacing it with the correct one.

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Write with Might

by Mrs Elaine Loh

Everyone loves a good story. Everyone loves telling stories. Telling stories is what makes us human. As a child, I loved writing and I still do. As a teacher, I believe every child can be nurtured into a future writer even if writing isn’t exactly your child’s forte. There are no shortcuts to writing a good story but there are writing techniques that when applied effectively, help make for a truly outstanding story, one that will be remembered long after it is read.

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