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One of the key factors that concern both student and parent during the lead-up to PSLE is the uncertainty of what would come up in the papers. So, what better way to get prepared than to boost your child’s PSLE immune system?

Here is a suggested list of supplements that you can arm your child to muscle up their performance during the PSLE:



  1. Antidote against Grammar MCQ: Finding hints in the questions

To inject the antidote:

Identify the difference between causative and sensory verbs. If a sensory verb (use the 5 senses) occurs, the resulting verb choice will be in infinitive or continuous form. That means there shouldn’t be any “-s” or “-ed”. For example: My father helped me paint the picture or My mother saw me studying hard.

If it is a causative verb (making something happen), the corresponding verb should only be in infinitive form. That means no “-s”, no “-ed” and no “-ing”. For example: The doctor made me eat my medicine.


  1. Vocabulary Vitamins: The Elimination Method for Vocab MCQ

Take your VITAMINS in 4 STEPS.

Step 1: Begin with the words you are familiar with.

Step 2: Fit it into the question to see if it makes sense

Step 3: If it doesn’t. Eliminate them

Step 4: Eliminate till you get the best suited answer


  1. Cloze Calories:  Discover Contextual Clues

Search for your clues in the areas around the cloze passage.

  • Label the passage with a title/theme. Identify is it a verb, noun, pronoun or adjective.
  • Circle words around the blanks that will give you clues to the word
  • Use the clues to help you make sense of what word is required
  • Brainstorm possible answers and fit the best possible answer

For example,

Synonym/Associative Word Clues

  • My friend was so smart. He has so much _______ about the history of Singapore When you identify the contextual clue “smart”, you can think of words associated with “smart” and probably get answers such as “knowledge” or “wisdom”

Antonym/Associative Word Clues

  • The two brothers are so opposite of each other. While Jayden is always joking around, Jay is always very ___________. The clue “opposite” suggests that a comparison is being made. So, when you think of opposite words to “joking around”, you get answers such as “serious”.

Explanation Clue

  • Having access to the Internet will _________ the skills of the children. The clue “having access to the Internet” is an explanation for the answer “develop”



  1. Spatial Visualisation Probiotics: Confused by Areas and Perimeters?

Turn your child into a shape-shifter!

Look at the figure you are given and break down the complex shape into smaller pieces. Use your pencil to draw lines. As a guide, use triangles- because they are smallest basic shapes that can form an area- with only 3 lines. See if you can find identical triangles within the shape to break that big nasty shape into smaller more manageable basic shapes so you can easily identify and calculate their areas.



  1. Keyword Calcium: Strengthen your case for an A star

To shoot for the stars, do a keyword CSI. The Booklet B Open-Ended Questions (OBET) in the Science Paper is one of the easiest sections for your child to score full marks by using the STAR method.

S – Skim through key questions words and circle them

T – Thought process – infer the underlying hidden information or concept behind these key words

A – Associate these with relevant topics and jot down possible scientific keywords or phrases related to these topics

R – Reorganize the points and elaborate on the answer


  1. Reality Bites: The Questions are All Around Us

Let the wonder of the things around us consume your child’s curiosity.

With the removal of common last topics in the latest PSLE syllabus, this increases the chance of examiners setting higher order thinking questions. So, take a look around you and make a link between everyday happenings to your child’s subject content. Let’s start with a few:

  • Why does an air-filled balloon that is released move in a zig-zag direction?
  • Why does the burger in the Styrofoam pack turn soggy?
  • Why is there a fan blowing out mist in a hawker centre?
  • Why is the design of a manhole round?


We hope that the above tips will give your child’s PSLE immune system a big boost! For more support to help students master exam techniques and build exam confidence, check out


This article was produced in partnership with YouthCast powered by Adam Khoo Learning Technologies Group