The brain – dubbed the most complex object in the known universe by some scientists – is the last biological frontier of the human body. Weighing only a few pounds, this soft mass of proteins and fat is responsible for producing every action, feeling, thought and memory of a person. A greater understanding of how our brains work will serve us well, be it in our decision-making processes or solving complicated problems in our lives. For students working hard to excel in the PSLE, perhaps the most useful information is how to maximise their brain functions to remember difficult concepts and solve challenging exam questions in P6 test papers. This article will explore the fundamental principle of human memory and provide tips on how to avoid studying the wrong way and therefore wasting precious time.
Focus On Recalling, Not Recognising
The most conventional method of revision is simply by reading through content. Prior to tests and examinations, many students sit at their desks and spend hours poring over their materials, reading their notes and looking through recommended solutions to exam problems. The only problem with this method is that the human ability to recognise something does not equate to the ability to recall it. Recognition and recall are entirely different operations when it comes to brain functions. Recognition is a simpler task – one merely has to look at something and then generate a sense of familiarity. However, a student does not score in exams for questions that look familiar to them. Instead, marks are scored when a student possesses the ability to recall relevant content and then use it to answer questions. This holds true especially for the subject of Science. A student can reap full benefits from practising on a PSLE Science Paper by retrieving information from memory and then applying the relevant concepts.
Focus On Spacing, Not Cramming
Spacing revision out over a few sessions is undeniably more effective than cramming it into a single session. Many students prefer to cram practices – it may feel gratifying to finish a full study session. However, memories tend to be more fragile in this way. On the other hand, spacing out practices may not offer the same satisfaction, but it results in longer-term memories that are likely to be valuable as examination dates approach. Primary 6 students can start their revision using Singapore free test papers for Primary 5, in which questions are abundant. The key point is to revise the topics over a longer period of time, with regularly-spaced sessions rather than cramming all the content into a few days just prior to the examination.
Focus On Effort, Not Flow
A renowned psychologist and expertise expert, K. Anders Ericsson, asserts that no one reaches the acme of skills level in anything without putting in at least 10,000 hours of deliberate training or preparation. By the same logic, when a student revises, he or she has to focus on the things that have not yet been mastered well, and put in time and effort to thoroughly understand them. It is an error to go with the flow of revision to cover as many topics as possible and skip those that are difficult. For example, to ensure a comprehensive revision session in Mathematics, it is ideal for Primary 6 students to attempt Primary 6 Math questions Singapore after going through the concepts in the textbooks. While working through the questions, there must be a deliberate effort to identify areas which have not been fully mastered. Only when doubts are cleared can the student progress to subsequent topics.