### Study Habits for Sec 3 A Maths. How to get A1 for the examinations?

Parents telling you to keep on practicing A Math to get A1? Sit there, and do as much sums as possible? Add Math is easy if you keep practicing? Well, they aren’t wrong. But, I can probably say there’s more to it than just practice and plenty of hard work. So let’s have a good look at how to study Additional Mathematics and get some A1’s along the way.

Study Habits, It is often a misunderstood topic. As school is designed to be quite close to a microcosm of the real world, it also tries to mimic the working world to prepare students for their careers. So studying habits are pretty much identical to great working habits too. So ask an adult how they clear their work and do well at workplace. Organise, aim, plan and allocate time to complete the work well. Of course doing well in school helps to get you to the next level of education. If we can visualise the dots from Kindergarten to Pri/Sec School to University to our Career, we will be able to connect them and make an ascending graph to plot the skills we have to acquire by the time we are adults. Right, so let’s go.

Sec 3 Additional Mathematics, is the first year for Additional Mathematics and it is the jump that requires students to put in a lot more effort as compared to their Sec 2 E Math syllabus. So, we shall break it down into its components.

**H.E.A.R**

**Hours**. We have to start calculating hours. Breakdown your hours to contact time with teachers, contact time with tutors, time to understand, time to memorise, time to practice and time to prepare for the exams. Take note, we did not put in the component of time for revision. The reason being, if you memorize, you don’t need to revise.

**Evaluating.** So what weaknesses can you identify from your work? Not too good at Indices? Why? What is causing the weakness? Straight off, start making the effort to clear your weaknesses. There is no better way to get better marks than to identify weaknesses and get stronger. Weaknesses can come from lots of places. It could be not understanding teachers, or tutors. It could be from lack of time put into studying and practicing. It could be exam stress and phobia causing loss of performance. It could also be forgetfulness. Identify where you are lacking, correct it and gain strength in it.

**Allocating. **Next start allocating. Let’s start with the amount of hours we need to put into those components above. Don’t worry, it is not an exact science but as we clear SA1, we can start thinking of fine tuning all these hours to improve your scores. Usually allocate more time to Understanding, Memorising and Practicing. Start early and make sure you are ahead of the curve. Give weekly evaluation of your performance. When you start floundering in that topic, start allocating more hours. When you feel confident, you can scale back and take a breather.

**Rescue.** Making too much silly mistakes in the exams. We need to rescue those sums. This requires a change of habits. getting rid of the bad habits and installing good habits in place of it. There’s a few ways students make silly mistakes, one is thinking the sum is asking for another thing, in which a slower and deliberate read of the question will solve the problem. The next is to calculate something wrongly. That, is where a lot of practice and checking your answers will help you to pick where you make a lot of calculation errors. Get used to your calculator, don’t change it for your whole Add Math career.

Find ways to enjoy Additional Mathematics. When I was doing Add Math in my Secondary School, I used to think how fun it is that whatever I learn has some kind of use to calculate the world I am in. Given, I always had this fascination of how things worked, so when Add Math was taught, I saw some of my questions answered. Which was fun. But if can be a lot of other reasons to enjoy A Math. Feeling smarter is one. Getting into a good Uni, that makes me study just that much more. Mostly, do enjoy the learning process. Because you can lead a horse to the water, but… you know… the rest is up to the horse.So, have fun!