Need advice regarding son's poor science results

This query comes from a parent:

My son is in Tao Nan Pri, & will be taking the PSLE next year. He excels in his languages including HCL, but it's a different story when it comes to science. He hasn't exactly been doing well since the beginning of this year, always scoring in the 70-80 mark band.

He is currently attending group tuition at one of the more established centres, though I am pondering over whether to switch him to 1-1 tutoring instead. Would that actually help? Are there any ways I can explore to get him more interested in learning about science? He finds the subject boring and complains it doesn't make sense. Therefore, he always gets rather restless when he is made to do assessment books.

Hope to hear from you soon, thanks in advance.

The Response:


You are a parent who is forward-looking with regard to your child's academic development.

Raw scores are convenient for discussion, but not always accurate to ascertain a student's mastery in a subject or topic. The PSLE and higher levels of examination boards may not mark nor award marks the same way some institutions do. Therefore scoring well in school’s internal assessments do not necessarily translate to the student doing similarly well even if the exact same answers are marked by the examination board. Unfortunately, some students may discover this too late—only after they have received their results transcripts.

Thus, ascertain with the school how consistent the marking scheme used in your son's evaluations are compared to the PSLE Examination board.

Whether one-to-one or at group level, a good science educator can make a very significant difference when it comes to enjoying and scoring well in science subjects. A good science educator can enthrall a student with meaningful and fascinating facts surrounding him, and engage him in thinking tasks to hone his analytical abilities in exams.

In choosing a good educator, you can see: as a reference on QUESTIONS TO ASK (AND NOT ASK) A PROSPECTIVE EDUCATOR.

Duncan Ang

(Senior Councilor: May 2013-Present)

Answered On 20 December 2013