Author Archives: Kenneth Ng

Studying Tips

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone

24 March 2015

MarketingTipsTricks1024x580

Studying is a chore that students always resent, but it need not be seen as so arduous a task. The Genesis Team has come up with 10 studying tips to make studying easier and more effective for you!

  1. Location

When going for study sessions, do plan and choose a suitable location before setting off. It would be better to find a spot closer to home, so that valuable time would not be wasted on travelling to and fro. It would also be beneficial to take into account of the proximity of toilets and eateries from the study spot that you choose.

  1. Environment

Experiment and find out which location suits you best before settling down and studying. Some people prefer the quietness and tranquility of the library, whereas some may find the silence discomforting. Those who belong in the latter category are often seen at fast-food joints studying with earpieces in their ears, but come peak hours they have to get up and find somewhere else to go. We would advise you to avoid fast food joints due to this inconvenience. Did you know that most community centres in Singapore have allocated air-conditioned study rooms for students? There is also the option of study corners at void decks. Do explore your options and find out more about them before deciding on your study area!

  1. Prioritize your time

We all have that friend that never stops asking you to join him for “just one game”, or a friend that keeps asking you to hangout at the void deck. This is all good and well during the holidays, but during school term and especially exam periods, do learn to say no. However, if you are confident and able to juggle your academics well enough, then go ahead and have fun, but never at the expense of your studies. Always ensure that you will have the time to do your assignments and read up on the next day’s lessons before you decide to go for play!

  1. Sleep early

This is often overlooked, especially when you study too much or play too much. Some people who realize they have spent too much time relaxing/playing then compensate by burning the midnight oil, cramming for a class test the next day or revising. This is not just unhealthy, but is also ineffective. There have been nights I drowned myself in coffee while cramming for an exam the next day, but during the exam I found myself too tired and could not focus on what I had learnt. On really bad days I even dozed off half way through the paper. Therefore never leave your work until the last minute to do, or at least make sure you have enough time to complete it without sacrificing too much sleep. Aim to have at least 7 hours a night, to remain fresh and energetic through the day!

  1. Eat healthy

Having snacks are a necessity for some when studying, but always know what is good to eat and what you should avoid. Nuts are a great snack to munch on while poring over your books, whereas chips are not the best choice. When eating chips your hands are bound to get oily and this will be a hindrance when you’re flipping pages or holding pens in your hands. During mealtimes do not eat too much, as you may fall into a food coma and get very drowsy after the meal. Consume just enough (70%) for you to feel comfortably full.

  1. Bring only what you need

When you go out for a study session, it’s handy to bring a jacket in case it gets uncomfortably cold. Of course, pack your notes and your stationery. However, do plan ahead, like what subjects or topics you plan to study that day so you can bring the notes necessary, and not carry your whole desk around. Do not bring gadgets like a Playstation Portable or your Nintendo as much as you are tempted to play them during breaks, as they will only serve as distractions and you may end up spending a bulk of your time on them instead of studying.

  1. Practice

For subjects like Mathematics, practice is necessary to grasp the skills and concepts. Do not be lazy, find as many questions as you can and do them so that you will be familiar with all the different ways you can tackle a question during an examination.

  1. Take breaks when needed

After sitting down bent over your notes for an hour, it might be time to stand up and stretch your legs, breathe some fresh air and even take a walk before continuing with your studies. If you happen to feeling drowsy, it would be good to take a power nap of 5-15 minutes before diving back into your work. Breaks when taken effectively would increase your attention span and help you focus more on your work!

  1. Use Acronyms

When memorizing facts and concepts, it would be helpful if you could come up with acronyms by using the first letter of each fact you have to memorise, they do not have to make sense; they just have to be easy to remember! For example: Naughty Elephant Shoot Water – North East South West.

  1. Write your own notes

Sometimes the notes that the schools provide are too wordy, and too many words may intimidate some people. Hence it would be better if you could write your own notes while studying concepts, as the notes would be tailored to your own preferences plus it would only hold the important concepts needed! Do not, however, copy word for word from the texts provided, as that would not serve any purpose and be counterproductive as your time spent writing, and the paper used would be for nothing.

We hope that these tips are helpful and we wish you all the best for your tests! Do let us know if you have any additional tips or feedback by commenting, and do share this with your peers!

 

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone

Foods For Your Kids! Chapter 1: Eggs

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone

 

19 March 2015

4678692453b621d4758b0fd445701994

Nutritious proteins like eggs not only help to keep your child full longer, but help with memory work and health! It is important, however, to eat a whole egg. There are important nutrients in both the egg yolk and the white, so if your child is not eating eggs regularly, it’s time to start!

Just one egg is filled with essential vitamins:

  • Vitamin A – For maintaining the immune system and good vision
  • Vitamin B12 – for producing red blood cells
  • Vitamin B2 – metabolism of fat molecules into useful energy
  • Vitamin E – fights off free radicals that can cause tissue and cellular damage.

Eggs keep you full for a longer period of time, which means that your child will less likely be tempted to take snacks or oily treats!

Eggs are also packed with important minerals: iron, zinc and phosphorus. Iron carries oxygen from our lungs throughout our bodies, and helps our muscles store and use oxygen. Zinc is needed for the immune system to work well, and plays a role in the healing of wounds and growing of cells. Phosphorus is needed for the body to make protein for the growth, maintenance and repair of cells and tissues. It also helps the body to make a molecule that the body uses to store energy.

Eggs contain choline, which aids brain function. Choline is used to maintain the structure of cell membranes, and is also the key ingredient in creating neurotransmitters, allowing the brain cells to communicate well with each other and the muscle cells.

Get your child to fall in love with scrambled eggs for breakfast, starting tomorrow!

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone

Does Your Child Need A Private Tutor?

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone

9 March 2015

To give their child an edge in Singapore’s competitive education scene, parents are hunting for the service of tutors, spending up to even $250 per hour on private tuition. This article highlights the pros and cons of hiring a private tutor, and aims to help you decide whether you really need a private tutor.

Pros:

Location

Hiring a private tutor provides the convenience behind having the freedom to choose the location of the classes, for example having the classes held at home. This saves the time spent travelling to tuition centers or to the tutor’s place. There have been some cases where the students even choose to have their classes at a fast-food restaurant, where they can munch on their favorite snacks while paying attention to the tutor!

One-to-One Attention

This is one major consideration in seeking private tuition. As students we have all experienced a moment when we felt we could not understand a concept being taught at school but everyone else could, and did not want to disrupt the class and/or look a fool. This could be due to not having paid enough attention, or perhaps a lack in foundation in the basics of a topic. Private tuition provides an alternate channel through which the student could clarify his/her doubts freely and request for the tutor to go through a concept again to have a deeper understanding.

Study Skills

A good private tutor will not only provide students with concepts regarding the subject, but will also bequeath students with vital studying skills such as time management and summarising contents.

Flexibility

Unlike at school where classes are rigidly scheduled, private tuition brings along the flexibility of being able to choose the time and day for the lessons. At school, students have to undergo a rigorous schedule of having back-to-back lessons where overwhelming loads of content and concepts are being fed to them. Having little or no breaks in between, this could cause a lack in attentiveness or interest in school. Having private tuition lets the student choose a day and time for the lessons when it best suits them, meaning that they can fit studying into an all-rounded schedule, where they have time to rest and pursue their hobbies and interests.

An Alternate Learning Style

In a large class where learning is restricted to a teacher’s single teaching style, one may find problems in understanding lessons. For example, if a student is a visual learner relying on pictures and maps, but the teacher at school relies mainly on texts and heavy reading to teach, or vice versa, this would definitely be an issue. A good private tutor would design the lessons to cater to the student’s learning style and ensure he/she learns comfortably.

Academic Supervision

Adults who have studying children are generally aged 25-59, and statistics from the 2014 report on the labor force in Singapore by the Ministry of Manpower state that 78.9% of those in this age group have full-time jobs (Manpower, 2014). This means that in most families both parents are working, leaving little or no time to supervise their child in their schoolwork. Time may not even be the issue, if you factor in the changes in syllabuses and advances in technologies. Parents may no longer be able to coach their children in their studies. This is where a private tutor may be necessary in making sure the tutees are keeping up with their studies or even just to ensure that they do their homework and their readings.

Elimination of Peer Pressure

Not every student can thrive in a classroom environment, surrounded by their friends who may pose as distractions. In a private tutoring setting, the tutee can get comfortable and solely focus on addressing shortcomings with regards to the academics at his/her own pace.

An Edge in Academics

A good private tutor will not only ensure that your child keeps up with class, but may even teach ahead of the school’s teaching. This means that your child will have a competitive edge over his peers at school by learning ahead of them.

 

Cons:

Expensive

Private tuition may be costly, depending on the type of tutor you as a parent may consider hiring. The rates the tutor charges depends on the qualifications and experience in tutoring. However, it is important to note that high rates do not necessarily mean that the tutor can teach, in the same way tutors that charge low rates are not necessarily lousy teachers.

Less Time for other activities (Rest, Reflection)

Having private tuition means that your child may not have enough time for rest and reflection. In Singapore, students have to stay in school for at least 7 hours, and this is excluding remedial and supplementary classes and Co-Curricular Activities (CCAs). With an addition of private tuition, a student may not be able to cope with the hours of studying and this may lead to more stress being placed upon the student, and a dreading of studying and disinterest in learning may start to grow. Furthermore, students may not have the time to socialize and have fun with their friends. This would lead to a lack in sociability, and a shortage in opportunities to hone his/her social skills.

Risk

Good tutors are hard to find, and they definitely should not be seen as a guarantee of good results. Marketing stunts such as guaranteeing a jump in grades should never be the main focus, as these statistics are often selective and should be taken with a pinch of salt. Even if the tutor has spectacular qualifications and certificates, this does not mean that his/her teaching style matches your child’s learning style. As such, by hiring a private tutor you will be undertaking a risk that naught will come out of the tuition classes. This however, can be bettered by getting to know the private tutor and seeing how he would interact with your child and assess whether he or she is the right tutor for you.

 

Ultimately, private tuition should be seen as a channel to broaden the minds of students and encourage them to strive higher. Being able to learn at a comfortable pace and understand the lessons well also will be a major stress reliever. This depends on whether the child is ready and available for private tuition or not. Does your child really need a private tutor? Ask him first!

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone

What Makes a Great Tutor?

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone

9 March 2015

With Singapore’s education system becoming more competitive, more parents are turning to private tutors for additional help in their children’s schoolwork. To accommodate this surge in demand, and also to make ends meet, more people are taking part-time or full-time private tutoring jobs.

This article highlights the characteristics of a great tutor based on our very own experiences and the reviews of parents. Firstly we need to know that there is a vast difference between having the accolades and certificates to show that you can study, and having the ability and skills to impart the knowledge to students.

  • Proficiency in Subject Matter

Great tutors display a deep foundation in the subjects they are teaching, and even continue learning to keep up with the ever-advancing world. They are able to serve content and concepts with enthusiasm and inculcate in their students a lust for learning.

  • Expectations, Clear Objectives

Great teachers and tutors believe that learning depends on the effort put in by both the student and the teacher and that the ability of the student is not a major factor. Therefore effective tutors will set high yet realistic expectations for their students to achieve. This is done by setting concise and detailed objectives for the students to clear for each lesson, making every lesson fruitful and meaningful.

  • Interesting & Engaging

Having great interest or love for the subject matter is very important as whatever sentiments towards the content being taught during the lessons will more often than not be passed down to the tutee. Passion can always be felt when it is right in your face, and so can disinterest.

Effective tutors use interesting and/or fun facts to excite their students, and by asking open-ended questions, students can explore possibilities with their minds and this also makes sure they are following the lesson.

  • Inspire

Great tutors are able to inspire their students with their teachings, be it academic or practical teachings. They impart lessons not just regarding the subject matter, but also their own experiences in life.

  • Organized

Great tutors are well prepared for every lesson, arriving early and ready to teach. Their lessons are delivered in a clear and structured way, and they are not easily distracted during class.

  • Relationships

Great teachers are warm, generous and charismatic. They form strong relationships with their tutees and parents, letting them know they care about them. They never hesitate to pick up a phone to call or receive calls from parents or students to answer concerns regarding lessons. Having empathy for their students also means that they understand the troubles the tutee may be going through and either they give him time to get through it, or they may even provide aid by giving advice or helping him out.

  • Patient

As the saying goes: “patience is key”. This is especially important for a tutor. They are not quick to anger; neither do they easily run out of patience. They accept that everyone learns at different speeds, and they are willing to put in the effort to slowly go through the thicker concepts with students who face difficulties understanding.

  • Flexible

Great tutors are able to bend their lessons in a way that lets students look at issues from a different point of view, a different perspective. They do not always just enforce their styles of teaching on their students and expect them to understand. For example, if a tutee is having trouble understanding a complex mathematical or scientific concept, a good tutor is able to explain it in layman terms or even teach it using simple blocks or visualized images to aid the tutee’s understanding.

 

The best educators know how important it is to be a lifelong learner. Even professional teachers are constantly looking for ways to improve themselves. Ultimately what we want to do is to groom the next generation of learners and inspirers, and this begins with education. Happy tutoring to all!

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone

Choosing A Private Tutor For Your Child

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone

March 4 2015

What is a private tutor? A tutor can improve your child’s academics, but also help boost your child’s confidence at school (and further on in life).

Tutors are a spring of knowledge and experience; they have went through what their students are going through, they have lived what their students might undergo and are perfect for handing down lessons – not exclusive to academics, but on life as well.

These all sound splendid, but there is a catch! First, you must find the right tutor whom is in tune with your child’s character and learning approach. The Genesis Team has come up with four points to consider when picking a private tutor.

147606_4707

  1. Availability

As part of a holistic education in Singapore, your child will have to balance schoolwork and his/her Co-Curricular Activities (CCAs). Knowing this, you need to determine if your child will be able to juggle schoolwork, CCA and the additional work the tutor may hand down. It would be counterproductive if your child dreads the tuition classes and turns up with a closed and tired mind.

Therefore the frequency and duration of the lessons must be considered, with your child’s welfare as priority, but also simultaneously ensuring that the lesson durations will be sufficient for your child to absorb the content of each lesson.

Private tutors may have many students and need to rush around to their students’ houses for classes. This is also a factor to be considered, if the tutor you are considering is able to make the time for your child comfortably. It just would not do if the tutor arrives late and out of breath half the time.

What you need is a tutor who can afford the time to travel and reach the designated venue calmly and with composure to start each class on the right note.

3DSYRW_2012

  1. Ability

Often we judge a teacher’s ability to teach by his qualifications and certificates, as we want to ensure that he/she has a level of professionalism and/or that the tutor knows what he/she is teaching and has been tested for it. However, we often forget that the ability to study and score well for examinations does not necessarily embody the ability to teach. Something to look out for is if the tutor is able to make learning fun and engaging!

Each tutor has his/her own strengths and may or may not be able to connect with your child, and we have categorized some generic traits according to the main four types of tutors for easy viewing:

  • Diploma/A-Level/Undergraduates

The experience of what your child is currently going through is still fresh in these tutors’ minds (and they may even be currently undergoing the same stresses), and this allows them to better relate to your child’s stresses and conditions at school. The rates for these tutors are relatively lower, which means that if the tutor were good and experienced, the tuition would be cost-efficient. However, there is a possibility that the tutor is inexperienced and lacks the necessary teaching skill-sets.

Parents that choose a private tutor from this category hence bear a higher risk as compared to choosing a tutor from other categories.

*Point to note: Tutors that are still studying may encounter problems accommodating your child’s available timeslots during their own examination periods or due to internships.

  • Part-Time Tutors

These tutors have finished their education and hold Full-Time jobs in various industries and fields, and are often only available for classes only in the weekday evenings or on the weekends. Part-Time tutors are able to offer “real-world” experiences to their students while teaching them, preparing your child for what there is to come in the future. The rates for Part-Time tutors vary according to the number of years they have been tutoring and also the qualifications that they hold. At times, they may encounter the need to cancel or postpone lessons due to the demands of their full-time jobs, but make-up lessons can be arranged.

  • Full-Time Tutors

Full-Time Tutors are experienced and focused during lessons, and are able to identify the problems your child faces in his/her studies. Having tutoring as their full-time job, they are well versed in the syllabus and teaching methods and will be able to convey learning points efficiently and understandably. Full-Time Tutors usually have many students and need to rush around for tutoring, and hence flexibility of lesson scheduling may be an issue.

  • MOE Certified (Current/Ex Teachers)

MOE teachers are the most sought after, due to their involvement with the changing trends in education in Singapore. Both current and ex teachers have graduated from the National Institute of Education (NIE), ensuring an elite level of teaching and communication skills when compared to the other categories of tutors. However, due to the high demand of MOE Certified tutors, their rates are the highest among all the tutors. Another issue that you may face as a parent is that they may have to reschedule lessons if MOE requires them to invigilate national exams or attend retraining.

shutterstock_153389036

  1. Approachability

A very important thing to look out for is if your child is comfortable with the tutor and how they will interact during tuition classes. Factors may include the gender of the tutor, and the tutor’s style of teaching. For example, there are students who cannot learn well under stress from strict and impatient tutors, and they only learn what is needed to avoid the wrath of their teachers. In some cases, the students form a connection between the feelings of misery and the subject itself. If this is the case, you will need to find a tutor that is able to ease the fears in your child and renew his/her interest in the topic or subject.

The tutor must be able to learn and understand your child’s learning style, and adapt accordingly in order for your child to learn in an optimal environment. Things that you as a parent could look out for during the first lesson would be if your child faces any difficulty understanding what the tutor is saying (perhaps if the tutor has a thick accent), and if the tutor is distracted and restless (for example fiddling with his/her mobile phone).

PH00385

 

  1. Affordability

Every parent wants the best for his/her child, and is willing to give whatever it takes for the child to excel in whatever he/she does, including academics. In the highly competitive education scene of Singapore, it would not do for a child to lag behind in his/her studies, and parents would want the child to have tuition lessons to help with academics. However, it would be better to ensure that the rates of the tutor you consider hiring is within your budget.

It is important to note that having a tutor that charges low rates does not necessarily mean that the tutor cannot teach, and in the same way having a tutor that charges high rates does not guarantee that your child will connect with him/her well.

  1. Conclusion

But the most critical point, more important than the tutor’s credentials and certificates, is to discuss your child’s concerns regarding private tuition. Find out what problems your child may be facing and what kind of teaching styles your tutor must have. Identify the subjects and topics that your child is weak in so that the tutor can prepare materials beforehand.

Ultimately we believe educating a child is not solely dependent on the teachers around him, but it takes a whole village to raise a child.

 

Share:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Email this to someone