The Best 8 Math Exam Tips For Students To Utilise
These Math Exam Tips May Help Your Child
Taking math exams can be a daunting experience, and due to its complexity, your child may need to dedicate a bit more time to brush up on the math concepts. Unfortunately, there is no way to avoid math, because it is one of the core subjects from primary school all the way to tertiary level. In this article, we are going to share the top 8 math exam tips which your child can utilise.
Unfortunately, sheer memorisation does not work on subjects like mathematics, because your child needs to apply the formulas to arrive at the correct answer. That is why many students find that studying for math exams can be an uphill battle.
However, it doesn’t have to be so, since there is a way to be more effective in preparing your child’s revision strategies and improving their performance. With that in mind, here are the top 8 Math exam tips your child can try to perform better in their math exams.
Before the Exam
1. Put Formulas into Practice
One thing math is known for is its long list of formulas. Moreover, due to the number of ways their formulas could be used, this subject is not about learning from textbooks. It is more focused on solving and understanding problems. This is one of the important math exam tips which is to put the formulas into practice, such as doing homework, rather than simply memorising it.
When applying them during practice questions, it’s important for your child to know the process behind a certain formula. This can be helpful for your child to remember them better, since formulas can change according to the question’s context.
Once your child knows why or how a certain math concept is used, it not only becomes easier to remember, but it also makes it simpler for them to apply the formulas and help in solving the problem. For tougher formulas, such as the sine rule, they may want to consider writing them down again and again to ensure they can remember them for longer periods of time.
Here are some materials to aid your child’s learning.
2. Identify Your Child’s Strengths and Weaknesses
For better preparation for any math test or exams, another important math exam tips is that your child should pinpoint where their strengths and weaknesses lie. For example, if your child has a test relating to trigonometry coming up, they should identify which parts they are good at and which need improvement.
Should your child be unsure, it will be a good idea for them to review their homework or use practice papers to simulate a mock exam to highlight the extent of their knowledge.
During this time, ensure that your child is under the exam conditions (no class materials, stationery and calculator only, nearby clock, etc.) and stick to the time limit as indicated in the paper. Time them to answer as many questions as possible and stop the exam once the time is up. You can use the accompanying answer sheet to mark the paper for them.
This good routine can help figure out which topics your child knows well, and what they need to give more focus on during revision. It is best to start early, because they may see improvements in the score over time. In turn, it will boost their confidence before the actual exams.
If you need some exam questions for your child to practice problems, you can access them here.
3. Encourage Your Child to Ask Questions
Aside from focusing on the lesson, taking notes, and doing homework, it will be best if you encourage your child to clarify with the subject teacher should they be confused at a certain point. This is because the teachers are there to help your child if they are stuck, so they are essentially a useful resource when it comes to the relevant information.
After all, not only do they teach your child what they need to know, but they can respond to any questions that they have. Encourage your child to raise their hands and ask for help. Reiterate to them that it’s better to make mistakes now than during exam time.
It’s understandable if your child is hesitant to interrupt the teacher during class. In this case, advise your child to save their questions until the end. Remind them to write it down so that they do not forget. Chances are, if your kid is confused, they are not alone.
Your kid should not wait for their peers to bring it up, because they may be waiting all day. They should be confident and raise their hands first. Otherwise, they may fall behind and make things harder for themselves.
4. Ensure Your Child is in Tip-Top Condition
Most importantly, your child should take a rest every now and then. They should not stress too much. Otherwise, this may hamper their performance on the test day itself, rendering the other tips useless. Let them enjoy some downtime and do whatever they need to do to take their mind off math concepts for a while.
When they come back to it, they’ll be likelier to focus on the problems with a clearer head, making it easier to register and retain their knowledge.
Also, ensure that your child gets a healthy diet. Eating “brain foods”, such as eggs, blueberries, salmon, etc. can boost their cognitive functionality. Moreover, they should drink plenty of water for hydration. After all, a healthy body is a healthy mind. Eating right also helps them to be in a better state of mind to revise effectively and perform well in any maths exam.
During the Exam
5. Use The Time Wisely
How your child structures their time in the math exam will vary according to the questions they have to answer and how they usually tackle them. Regardless, they should start by working out which questions carry the most marks, and how much time they would need to spend to get them before the time is up.
When they are calculating time, tell them to ensure that they have allocated some time at the beginning for planning, and at the end to double-check their answers. They should not spend too much time on a single question. Just get them to move on to the next question and get back to it if they have extra time.
After all, time management is crucial, since it can give your child enough time to source out any careless mistakes, such as writing an addition sign as a multiplication sign. It can also aid in correcting minor things that can cost marks at the last minute, such as decimal places.
6. Read the Math Exams’ Questions Carefully
Most Mathematics exams these days, be it MCQ or open-ended, you kids will have to give the final answer to get the last point. Before your child leaps in, advise them to take a deep breath and read every question carefully. They should never skim, for this can lead to misinterpretations and subsequently, careless mistakes.
The exam setters sometimes can phrase the question in such a way that even the simplest word problems can have a trick behind them. This is because misreading a question (especially those that come in parts) can result in your child losing the points that they deserve. While speed is important, accuracy is even more crucial.
Even if the working is amazing, if it answers the wrong question, it’ll probably be disastrous for their grades. Careful reading of the mathematics question helps your child figure out what they want, which can help them in answering the questions properly.
7. Use Graphs & Diagrams
If your kid comes face to face with the hardest questions in the math exam and is stumped, advise them to try and draw out a diagram or graph. This is because they are visual representations of math concepts and their relationships. These diagrams will give them a better chance to understand, communicate, and solve the other questions if words or symbols do not suffice.
By drawing it out, it helps your child’s mathematical reasoning. Not only can diagrams and graphs improve their intuition and creativity, but they can also simplify complex or abstract concepts. Moreover, it helps your child organise and summarise their current knowledge and verify their calculations.
Even if they cannot get to the final answer, what they draw may communicate their ideas to the marker, and they may gain some method marks. It is better than just writing down formulas they have memorised, but have no idea how to use it.
8. Show the Workings
Most importantly, your kid should show how they arrived at their answers. Most math tests or exams look for evidence that the answers given are not just memorised, but at how your child is able to use the method to obtain them. The answer itself only has one point; most of the other marks are actually focused on the working.
Showing the working out can earn your kid additional marks in exams and could be helpful in deciding the grade they get. If the thought process is correct, but the final answer is wrong, your child can still get partial credit for showing their knowledge.
Master Math Concepts with Jimmy Maths
By utilising these math exam tips, your kid will stand a much better chance of improving their performance. It is also essential not to leave studying to the last minute; cramming will not help, since knowledge is always built over time. After all, there is no secret formula or shortcut to success, and you cannot expect to be an instant expert after just one day of learning.
That is why homework is also necessary; it helps your child remember what is taught during the lesson. If your child puts in more effort, they can reap more rewards.
Should your child need more tips to excel in Mathematics, Jimmy Maths is here to put them into practice. As the founder of this tuition centre, Jimmy Ling aims to improve students’ problem-solving skills through online learning platforms. Moreover, he tests students’ critical-thinking skills through engaging and interactive lessons and is available at any time for any homework questions students have.
Sign up for his classes today via the links below: