Is working and revising IGCSE Math becoming tough and maybe the thought of sitting through the Math Exam seems even tougher? Let’s see how to make revising math and sitting for the actual exam less daunting. Maybe a little advice on how to enable yourself to make the most of your time, but always remember one size never fits all and you know what works best for you!!! Let’s look at specific tips and the general ones too!!!
While this sounds obvious, it is always surprising to see how often students don’t read a question. They just rush to begin working on the question. To avoid this mistake, it is a good idea to highlight or tick off each point in the question to ensure that you do not miss anything. Everything in the question is important.
Remember to check the answer once you finish a question to make sure that you have answered to the required degree of accuracy. Look for the specifics like 3 decimal places or 2 significant figures or first 5 numbers. Why lose any mark unnecessarily.
Don’t fall into this. When there are several steps to working a question and the answers end in long decimals, DO not round up. The rounded value used in another part of the question will cause the next answer to be out at a tangent.
Most questions under this category generally give us nice complete answers. They usually are integer values unless there are certain outliers. If you get horrible decimals values then may be its time to suspect your answer and check again. Get to the mistake and correct it.
In such question types you may have to calculate the original value before an increase or decrease. This can be tricky but if the answer is not a clean answer then it could be an indication of a mistake that needs to be looked into.
Check if the answer always lies between 1 and 1. 0 means the event never happened and 1 guarantees that the event happens. At times students arrive at an answer greater than 1. Similarly while calculating the mean from a set of data, remember that the answer will lie between the lowest and highest values. If it’s outside this range then it is wrong.
Do not waste time trying to solve a quadratic equation that has to give answers to 3 or several decimal places. Do not attempt to factorize, it doesn’t help. Use the quadratic formula.
Before you begin revising the Math, remember to get all your notes ready and make sure you have a list of all the topics you intend to cover. This helps you ease yourself into the revising process and makes things a lot more organized and easier to plan.
Don’t make plans to study out of the blue and decide to spend a whole day revising math. This doesn’t help you to get things done the way you planned them. Make a schedule with shorter and smaller timelines and then work around breaks after every hour and half of revision. Revising in smaller chunks helps make revision to be a lot more focused and effective. Short walk during a break definitely helps.
Giving yourself little tiny treats for doing things well is one way to make things interesting. But remember to appreciate and treat yourself only if you achieve your set goals and tasks that need to be done.
Revising math does not mean reading math but doing math. 20 minutes of doing math would probably equal 2 hours of reading math. The more questions you do yourself the more you will get them right. This helps build your confidence and enjoy revision. Once you do this, the better you will do on your exam.
At times, taking help from the internet helps to tackle certain topics and makes the really annoying topic make sense. There are websites that take you through the step by step process of solving a problem using fancy illustrations and animations. You can also choose to work on math games that help practice basics in a more fun way. Use the stuff that is available!!!
It is tempting to keep practicing what you know to do well and assume that things are working right for you. But remember this is not going to be the case on the exam. While it can be painful to work through the topics that you are struggling with, it’s much better to struggle with them at home rather than to struggle during the exam.
Remember on your exam you would be on your own. But while revising, if you are stuck with a topic or a question, it helps to reach out and ask for help. Ask your friends, teacher or someone at home or look on the internet where you can ask for math help. Don’t suffer alone!!!
Remember to practice under exam conditions. Pick up a set of questions and fix up a time and work them in silence. This will get you used to what it will be like during the exam and helps you understand your pacing and the right way to check how much you have understood a topic.
That’s what friends are for. You find most of the time that one of your friends understands a topic better than you, while the other is a bit of an expert on another. Explaining things to a friend increases understanding and you may also learn an easier way of thinking and understanding a topic.
Worrying a little about the exam is fine but if that becomes the main cause for a very stressful time then it does not help at all. Remember your brain needs to get time and chance to sort out all the information that has been pushed into it and make sense of all the information. Small tips help realize that the exam is not that painful after all.
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