The Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) is a (w)rite of passage for many Singaporean students studying at the Primary Six level. It is almost every primary school student’s biggest fear or their worst nightmare.

Why? Well, candidates are terrified of disappointing themselves, not getting into their dream secondary school, or failing the PSLE altogether. Parents in Singapore pump thousands of dollars into in-person and/or online small group tuition classes and can usually be found ferrying their children from one PSLE crash course to another every weekend.

Imagine a twelve year old’s worry if they are scraping through in language subjects like English. The thought alone is a harbinger of intense stress and examination anxiety. But not every child is enrolled in a creative writing class or attends PSLE English tuition online. So when is it too late to send your child for Primary Six tuition?

PSLE Preparation Timeline

For language subjects, candidates typically have to sit for multiple papers which test them on multiple components. In English, students are tested on:

- Oral communications skills

- Composition writing which comprises of situational based writing and continuous or creative writing

- Listening comprehension

- Grammar, vocabulary, spelling and punctuation, visual text comprehension, synthesis and transformation, editing, comprehension cloze, open-ended comprehension

Looking at the lengthy list, it is no surprise that many parents would whip out colourful calendars filled with motivational quotes and bombard every available date with tuition and enrichment classes.

At Write Edge, parents often harbour a strong sense of concern. Like many other tuition centres, it is no surprise that parents often request regular updates on their children’s progress.

All your child needs for quick revision:

- Past year examination papers

- Sample papers (e.g. Oral communications package)

- A list of commonly misspelled words and phrases

- Exam reminders to prevent careless mistakes

Online English Revision Apps for Primary Six Students

Not every child enjoys attending extra lessons on top of their own school curriculum. Some find it difficult or “pointless” to sit still for two hours, absorbing extra content to regurgitate in examinations. Considering the more frequent use of technology in MOE classrooms, more students now prefer using digital software to revise their curriculum.

Although we may be used to the traditional method of using pen and paper to do our homework, we must adapt to these digital times in order to make learning digestible and fun for our young ones.

Using online games like Kahoot!, Quizlet or Kerpoof, may help to engage your child in revising English creative writing more.

These applications are popular software available on both mobile sites and websites. Kahoot allows users to create competitive multiple-choice based questions for players, according to questions and answers created by the gamemaster. At Write Edge’s virtual branch, we use this software to help our students recap the lesson.

However, Quizlet and Kerpoof offer different functions such as online cue cards and comic strip writing. These methods of getting your child to brainstorm new writing ideas is a great way to engage them in educational activities.

Another way to keep your child meaningfully occupied is by encouraging them to read and write stories using creative writing prompts from websites like Write the World and Writer's Digest. Daily writing prompts inculcate the habit of writing regularly and may make children feel less afraid of approaching composition writing in a classroom setting.

Since primary six students are technologically savvy, using online software shortens the time taken to physically write down notes. Subfolders can be created quickly and renamed anytime in such apps, ensuring that last minute cram notes will not go missing. Some softwares also enable students to share notes with one another and offer higher-level vocabulary, phrases, or related content which supplements your child’s learning.

Join a Mid-Year Creative Writing Course

Many great writers will tell you the same thing: You cannot improve your writing abilities through just reading alone. Lots of creative writing classes and PSLE writing crash courses tend to offer complimentary sample essays. These essays are packed with figurative language and exciting storylines which engage your child, but may not necessarily impart the accurate meanings of the terms and when to use them.

Every year, Write Edge offers English and Writing classes during June for 4 weeks during the school holidays. The classes are suited for all primary and secondary students. Pick up strategies and techniques to tackle the different segments in the English paper during your child’s June Holidays.

If your child has yet to be enrolled in a creative writing class, why not get a taster of what a weekly creative writing class is like?

Joining a Creative Writing Class Early

By the time your child reaches Primary Six, you might have a clear sensing of how you’re your child typically fares in English examinations. To ease both of your concerns and worries

before the daunting PSLE, joining a creative writing class at the start of the academic year could help your child master these skills by June:

- Brainstorming storylines independently

- Identifying key skills which can be used in every paragraph of their composition writing

- Writing independently

- Using appropriate grammar, basic vocabulary, synonyms, punctuation and spelling

The above list is not exhaustive but are the foundation skills needed to score fairly decently for their creative writing assessments. Most tuition and enrichment centres help students to hone in on these skills through a variety of assessments.

At Write Edge, our English Enrichment curriculum focuses on:

- Paper 1: Composition and Situational Writing

- Paper 2: Language Use and Comprehension

- Paper 4: Oral Communication

The focus on each paper is split up equally into different weeks and teachers offer personalised feedback for every student. What’s more is that our class sizes are limited to six students per class, allowing teachers to mark every student’s work before the end of each lesson.

As the saying goes, “early bird catches the worm”, be sure to enrol your child in a creative writing class as early as possible to avoid scrambling for help at the very last minute. But ultimately, the most important step in your child’s preparation is them knowing that they have your support and love before they face the big giant.