Tips on how to do well for Maths Exams for Upper Primary Level

Time Management is of utmost importance

In Maths , speed and accuracy is of paramount importance . This is a rough guideline to help you manage your time efficiently and wisely . This approach can help you to improve your total score and to avoid the situation where you have no time left to answer any part of the paper.

Planning Your Time

  • To determine how much time you need to devote to each question, convert the maximum marks awarded for the question into minutes by using percentage
  • The total time allocated for the paper is 2 hours 30 mins ( 150 minutes ) You may want to set aside about 20 mins to check your work after completing the paper.

So , in that case you may have 130 mins to work on the whole paper

100 marks. – 130 minutes

1 mark = 130/100 =1.3 min. 1 min 18 s
2 marks = 2 mins 36 secs
3 marks = 3 mins 54 secs
4 marks = 5 mins 12 secs
5 marks = 6 mins 30 secs

  • place your watch on the table throughout the examinations so that you are always aware of the time .
  • Do not go beyond the time you have allocated . If you have allocated 2 mins for a question, try not to go beyond that timing .Going beyond the time allocated means you have deprived yourself of sufficient time for the rest of the paper.
  •  If you are unable to solve any question, leave it and move quickly to the next question after you have finished the rest of the paper.

Tips and techniques for answering multiple choice questions (MCQ)

  1. 1. Read the questions and the answer options carefully.
  2. Highlight the keywords in the question
  3. Take note of negative keywords in the question or answer options, such as “not”, “incorrect” or “odd one out.”
  4. Do not just shade the OAS when the first option seems correct. Read every option before you pick the best answer.
  5. Do your calculation and working neatly and legibly in the spaces provided around the question and options. This will ensure easy checking after you have finished the paper. You will not waste time trying to figure which working is for which question.
  6. Even if you do not know the correct answer to the question, do not leave it blank. Before you move on to the next question, try these techniques to help you derive the best answer.
    i. Eliminate the impossible answers
    ii. With the remaining two options, pick the one you think is the best answer.
    iii. Substitute the options into the questions to find out if it works.

If you should decide to skip the question and come back to it later, do remember to circle the question number or put a question mark next to it . Make sure you skip shading the answer for this question. Move on to the next question and shade the answer for the next question.

• Remember to erase the circle or the question mark after you have answered the question.

Tips and Techniques for answering open-ended questions and Word Problems.

  1. Read the questions carefully.
  2. Highlight the keywords or key phrases.
  3. Draw inferences or more information from these keywords or key phrases
  4. If the question involves geometery or measurations, mark all given information on the given diagram. This will give you tremendous help while you continue to work out the solution for the rest of the question.
  5. Recall all concepts learnt . Apply them carefully.
  6. Always plan and organise your solutions.
  7. Some questions may require you to draw a diagram, draw a part-whole model, work backwards, guess and check or use before and after concepts. All these are strategies or skills you have learnt and which you can apply.
  8. Make sure all your working is carefully, clearly, neatly and systematically presented.
  9. Be sure to add , substract, multiply and divide carefully. Otherwise, you will lose marks unnecessarily along the way.
  10. Make sure you ‘transfer’ your answer from one step to another step very carefully.
  11. Do work backwards or substitute your final answer to the question itself to check that it is the correct answer.
  12. Circle or mark the question you are unable to solve and move on to work on the rest of the paper. Return to the question again after you have completed the rest of the paper.
  13. Remember to write the correct answer in the answer column or space provided.
  14.  Answers given in fractions must always be in their lowest term. Check what is required of you when answers are given in decimals ( whether you are expected to round off to 1,2 or 3 decimals places)
  15. Check that all your answers are given in the units required.
  16. Finally, Check especially, to ensure that each MCQ answer
    Oval is shaded in the OAS and this corresponds to the
    Correct question answer.