A complete guide to PSLE English from our tutors teaching English Tuition to help you score well!

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A Complete Guide to Primary School & PSLE English

With the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) being a student’s first National Examination, anxieties and worries might surface especially in parents. With the change in the PSLE syllabus as well as the new grading system set by the Ministry of Education (MOE), student may face challenges in keeping with the new syllabus and their peers. However, MindFlex has compiled the ultimate guide to the Primary School English syllabus and all the information you’ll need to know about the PSLE English, together with multiple free resources and recommendations for PSLE English Tuition in Singapore to help you and your child!


1. An Overview to PSLE English

English, an official language in Singapore is one of the languages used most frequently in schools for the majority of the subjects. As such, it is important for students to build up their foundation in English and do well in Primary School. In addition, by cultivating good English at a young age and cultivating good English learning habits, your child can gain a more fluent grasp of English and do well for his/her PSLE English. As a result, attaining a good score in his/her PSLE English, your child will gain confidence in their abilities, effectively motivating them to work towards even better grades in Secondary School and beyond.

Therefore, studying PSLE English is not just a last-minute thing. Instead, Primary English should be cultivated and slowly built upon as early as Primary 1 to allow students to have ample time to brush up on their foundational English skills. Besides, the ability for students to master their grammar and vocabulary within a few months is impossible. Hence, with consistent practice and learning, your child can gain confidence during his/her PSLE English and focus on studying other content-heavy subjects.

Therefore, at MindFlex, we have over 12,000 experienced PSLE English Tutors who hone your child’s English Language skills. Request for a PSLE English Tutor with MindFlex today!


2. Objectives of PSLE English

The key objective of PSLE English is to ensure that all Primary 6 students have sufficiently fulfilled several learning objectives set out by MOE. 

Paper 1 (Writing)

  1. Write to suit purpose, audience and context in a clear, effective manner
  2. Usage of appropriate tone
  3. Generate relevant ideas and express them coherently
  4. Use correct grammar, spelling and punctuation
  5. Use various vocabulary appropriately with clarity and precision 

Paper 2 (Language Use and Comprehension)

  1. Demonstrate understanding of texts 
  2. Show understanding of implied meaning and analyse text critically
  3. Show understanding of how contextual use of lexical and grammatical items shape meaning
  4. Illustrate appropriate use of grammar, spelling, punctuation and vocabulary

Paper 3 (Listening Comprehension)

  1. Demonstrate understanding of spoken texts
  2. Identify key messages, ideas and details in different settings
  3. Draw conclusions and critical inferences

Paper 4 (Oral Communication)

  1. Read clearly with good punctuation to convey ideas and feelings
  2. Read fluently and at a good pace
  3. Express personal opinions clearly and effectively
  4. Speak fluently with accurate grammar, vocabulary and sentence structures

Also, more information can be found under the SEAB Syllabus.


3. PSLE Exam Format

PSLE English consists of 4 components, namely the Writing (Paper 1), Language Use and Comprehension (Paper 2), Listening Comprehension (Paper 3) and Oral Communication (Paper 4) segments.

PSLE English Infographic

Here’s a summary of what you should expect during your PSLE English examination.

3.1. Paper 1 (Writing)

55 marks, 1 hour 10 mins

Part 1: Situational Writing (15 marks)

Students are tasked to write a short email, report or letter, ensuring that it answers the situation and is suited towards the purpose, audience and context. In this case, students are expected to come up with an answer that contains necessary information that fulfills the task given. Hence, the appropriate use of grammar, spelling and punctuation is also expected.

Part 2: Continuous Writing (40 marks)

In this section, students must write a composition (minimum 150 words) on a given topic. In addition, picture prompts will be provided, and students are expected to come up with their own interpretation to do well. Moreover, ideas are expected to be appropriate and interesting, with exemplary use of grammar, spelling and punctuation. A wide variety of vocabulary and sentence structures are also expected.


3.1.1. Challenges Faced in PSLE English Paper 1

Due to the open-ended nature of the situational and continuous writing, students often find difficulty brainstorming or expressing ideas coherently, with relevant vocabulary and good grammar, punctuation and sentence structure. Furthermore, for students to set themselves apart from the rest, they are also required to develop unique ideas that can capture the examiners’ attention, which is also a challenge faced by many PSLE English students.


3.1.2. How To Score Well for PSLE English Paper 1

Students are encouraged to read extensively to facilitate the generation of relevant ideas during the examination. Furthermore, generating good ideas must be built up over long durations of practice and diligence in studying and reading extensively. Hence it is recommended that students start their preparation for the PSLE English early. Hence, here at MindFlex, our PSLE English Tutors are experienced and will guide students in brainstorming ideas for various common topics.


3.2. Paper 2 (Language Use and Comprehension)

95 marks, 1 hour 50 mins

The PSLE Paper 2 tests students’ ability to grasp fundamental Grammar, Vocabulary and Critical Thinking skills. In addition, it contains a mixture of open-ended questions and multiple-choice questions (MCQs). Subsequently, students are expected to analyse the different vocabulary and comprehension texts and demonstrate their understanding and analytical skills through various Editing, Synthesis & Transformation and Open-Ended sections.


3.2.1. Challenges Faced in PSLE English Paper 2

In Paper 2, Time Management has been proven to be something that many PSLE English students struggle with as there are many different sections with questions of varying lengths. When faced with challenging questions, many students tend to get stuck and spend a long duration trying to figure out the answers. Hence, this usually leaves them with little to no time to complete the later sections of the paper, including open-ended questions with heavier weightage.

3.2.1. How To Score Well for PSLE English Paper 2

Constant practice is required for students to score well in the PSLE English Paper 2. This ensures that the students are well-versed in the various sections and can critically analyse and make meaning of the various question types. In addition, students should attempt past-year papers in timed conditions to simulate real-life examination conditions as practice. As a result, this will allow students to identify and work on their weak areas/sections. 


3.3. Paper 3 (Listening Comprehension)

20 marks, 35 mins

Paper 3 consists of 20 MCQs, which aim to test students‘ ability to understand spoken English well. The examination consists of spoken recordings that examiners will play out loud for students. Furthermore, these recordings may include news items, announcements, advertisements etc., and students are expected to answer all 20 MCQs questions in response to the recording.


3.3.1. Challenges Faced in PSLE English Paper 3

The Listening Comprehension segment is most often overlooked by PSLE students and parents alike, thinking that it is an easy section that requires no attention. However, to excel in PSLE English, students need to ensure that they are confident in securing full marks for the Listening Comprehension section. Since the MCQs often contain similar answer options, students often face difficulties choosing the most suitable answer as they are unable to identify key differences.


3.3.2. How To Score Well For PSLE English Paper 3

However, there might not be as many past-year or practice papers for Listening Comprehension. Thus, students can instead work on their critical analysis skills. As such, this will help ensure students can identify the subtle differences between the different MCQ options, which will then give them an edge over the rest.


3.4. Paper 4 (Oral Communication)

30 marks, 30 mins

The Oral Communication segment is a verbal assessment that requires students to read a passage aloud and engage in a conversation with the examiners. Firstly, in the reading section, the examiner will assess the students on their fluency, pronunciation, articulation and expression. Secondly, for the conversation section, the examiners will provide the students with a picture along with three prompts. In this section, they will assess the students on their usage of proper grammar and vocabulary when the students are expressing their opinions and explanations.


3.4.1. Challenges Faced in PSLE English Paper 4

Most of the time, students feel overly stressed out as the Oral Communication Exam nears. Even though this is common, if students are unable to cope with their anxiety before the exam, they might find themselves struggling to do well. As such, students also often face difficulties generating ideas for the conversation segment and are unable to synthesise fluent and substantive replies.


3.4.2. How To Score Well for PSLE English Paper 4

To combat anxiety issues, students should prepare sufficiently beforehand through simulated Oral practices with family members, schoolmates or tutors. As a result, this will allow them to build up their confidence, ensuring that they can tackle Oral Communication on their examination day. In addition, repeated practice is also beneficial to ensure that students hone their ability to generate ideas within short periods, which will allow them to create substantive and meaningful ideas during the oral assessment effectively.

4. PSLE English Tips and Resources

The sheer amount of content mastery required for PSLE English is definitely a lot for students. Therefore, here at MindFlex, we have compiled a list of key study tips and free resources, perfect for giving your child the head start he/she needs to ace the PSLE English.


4.1. PSLE English Tips

4.1.1. Make a Study Plan

Many students are not able to do well due to the increased number of distractions surrounding them. Hence, if students are aiming to score well in the PSLE English Exam, it is essential for the students to maintain focus and have a goal in mind. As parents, you can help by helping your child plan a study schedule that is feasible and agreeable for both parties. For example, it is unfeasible to arrange a program that requires your child to study for 12 hours a day, with only 2 hours of playtime. Similarly, it is also illogical to plan one that requires them to study for only 4 hours a day yet get 10 hours of free time.

Hence, both parent and child need to sit down together and plan a schedule that considers the child’s well-being, rest, and extracurricular activities or family time.

Therefore, get started with the study schedule by downloading these free printables!

4.1.2. Read Extensively

Students should strive to be well-read and be exposed to different types of English content to boost his/her creativity. Hence, MindFlex recommends that students read at least 3-4 books per month, which will allow them to be exposed to ample amounts of new vocabulary, sentence structures and grammar – which will come in handy for their PSLE English.

If buying/borrowing physical books isn’t feasible, there are many ebook resources online – such as NLB’s eBook App or Storytel to make reading more convenient.

4.1.3. Exam Practice

A lot of practice is needed for students to grasp the content and be familiarised with the different question types – which is why MindFlex has compiled a list of free downloadable PSLE English exam papers. Being exposed to more question types has proven beneficial for PSLE English students in ensuring that they are more equipped with skills to tackle all kinds of questions with increased confidence during the PSLE English examination.

In addition, exam practices should also be taken under exam settings to allow students to simulate the time pressure, allowing them to be familiarised with the speed and accuracy required to do well for their PSLE English. Hence, we recommend students engage in at least 1 mock exam before their PSLE English examination. 

4.1.4. Getting Extra Help

Trying to include all the tips above can be taxing, especially for busy parents. Hence, another valuable PSLE English tip and resource is MindFlex! Engaging our Top PSLE English Tutors means additional help that is tailored and customised to your child! Our PSLE English Tutors are equipped with years of experience and will personalise your child’s learning schedule to suit their needs and weaknesses.

In addition, our PSLE English Tutors will also make sure that the student’s learning goes beyond just textbooks and worksheets – they will ensure that students are exposed to real-life application and enrichment material, such as recommending certain storybooks. As a result, this helps enrich your child’s mind, incorporates English into daily life, and aids your child in becoming more well-read.

Lastly, here at MindFlex, our PSLE English Tutors have their pool of resources of content and notes that can aid your child in learning better. Furthermore, they also have access to different schools’ past-year papers and assessment books, thus providing sufficient practice for students. Our PSLE English Tutors will also administer mock tests before every English exam to familiarise themselves with the examination conditions, effectively ensuring that students become more confident during the PSLE English examination.


4.2. PSLE English Resources

Here, we have compiled our top 10 resources for your child to aid him/her in their PSLE English preparation.

1. Complete Practice Book for Grammar, Vocabulary & Comprehension

The assessment book is perfect for all-in-one practice and summary as it includes most of the tested components for the Paper 2 examination, with mock papers included. Moreover, it allows for complete and intensive practice to aid students in building up a strong foundation which is crucial to do well for their PSLE English.

PSLE English Assessment Book

This assessment book is perfect for all-in-one practice.

2. Conquer Synthesis & Transformation

This Synthesis & Transformation assessment book is perfect for students who struggle with this Paper 2 Component. Furthermore, as Synthesis & Transformation is increasingly essential, it is now necessary for students to do well to maximise their PSLE English marks. Additionally, Conquer Synthesis & Transformation also comes with full access to a free Yoobook, which is perfect for students.

PSLE English Assessment Book

Given the increased difficulty levels for Synthesis & Transformation, this handy assessment book will help students improve in it.

3. A Comprehensive Guide to PSLE English Oral Examination

PSLE English Oral might be extremely challenging for some students as they are often unable to think of substantive answers on the spot, resulting in increased anxieties and low confidence. Therefore, a Comprehensive Guide to PSLE English Oral Examination includes 20 reading passages and 20 stimulus-based conversation exercises with model answers. Together with additional vocabulary notes, it aids students in building up their vocabulary and conversation ideas. 

PSLE English Assessment Book

Ace your PSLE English Oral with this helpful guidebook.

4. Yoobook

Yoobook is an online mobile app with education e-workbooks all available in digital format. With interactive features and a self-marking system, students are now able to study on-the-go! Yoobook is available on both the Apple App Store and Google Play.

Enjoy educational e-workbooks, on-the-go!

5. Vocab 6

Vocab 6 is an effective PSLE English Vocabulary app with over 1,000 MOE syllabus compliant MCQs. It’s easy to use, convenient and allows your child to busy themselves with something productive during pockets of free time! Vocab 6 is available on the Apple App Store

In addition, the developers also have other apps targeted at Grammar, or for Primary 5 students.

Enjoy convenient and easy-to-access Vocabulary practice with Vocab 6.

6. Quizlet

Quizlet is an online learning flashcard tool that aims to help make learning more engaging and interactive. Apart from utilising flashcard sets already on the app, users can create their own sets, allowing them to be more personalised and catered to their needs. Thus, with Quizlet, parents can help make flashcards for their child, who can then go through the flashcards at their own pace and convenience. 

Additionally, Quizlet is available on both the Apple App Store and Google Play

Easy-to-use flashcards for convenient learning.

7. Singapore PSLE English Grammar & Vocab MCQ 2019

Practice is crucial in ensuring that your child achieves the best results in their PSLE English. With this app, students can now access over a hundred PSLE questions with detailed explanations and answers – targeted at allowing students to practice for their PSLE at a touch of their fingertips.

However, the app is currently only available on Google Play

PSLE English App

With this app, students can now access over a hundred PSLE questions with detailed explanations and answers.

8. Free PSLE English Exam Papers

We know how expensive extra exam resources can be. Thus, here at MindFlex, we have provided you with a link to a list of free PSLE English exam papers that are downloadable, perfect for extra practise or revision for your child.

Download the PSLE English papers here.

9. PSLE English Tuition

Nothing beats an extra pair of hands to guide your child in their learning. PSLE English Tuition is  highly popular in Singapore, with many parents opting to engage tutors for their child in order to guide them in their studies.

10. MindFlex English Home Tutors

If tuition centres aren’t your cup of tea, why not try out MindFlex Home Tutoring? With over 12,000 experienced tutors, MindFlex holds one of the largest selections of PSLE English Home Tutors who can guide your child in their PSLE English preparation. So enjoy quality education at the comforts of your own home with MindFlex, and witness exemplary grade improvements!


5. Conclusion

We understand how stressful preparing for the PSLE English examination can be for both parent and child. But, ultimately, it is important to realise that the PSLE is an important stepping stone for your child’s future, and academic achievements aside, it is more important to build a stable and robust foundation for further studies in the future.

Therefore, at MindFlex, our PSLE English Tutors emphasise the importance of holistic education with real-life application. Furthermore, this helps students gain a genuine interest in the language and simultaneously helps students improve on their foundation and language skills.

Thus, kickstart your English Language education journey with MindFlex today! 

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