The new schooling year is almost upon us once more! For many parents, it also symbolises a new milestone as their kids graduate from secondary school and embark on a new journey in junior college!
The transition from secondary school to junior college is not necessarily the easiest to cope with – with significant changes like a totally new school environment, new classmates from different secondary schools, teachers with new teaching styles, and most dauntingly, a syllabus that is on many levels more demanding and challenging than anything they have experienced before. And this is especially so for a complex topic like Chemistry! At H2 and even H1 levels, most adults would find themselves stumped by the questions.
And for many students, this mismatch in expectation and reality is what results in them turning to tuition as a last-minute resort to doing well for their examinations – which can be sometimes a little too late!
So how can parents identify early on if your kid actually needs JC chemistry tuition and get them the help they need pre-emptively? Here are 5 simple signs you can look out for:
This is one of the most obvious indicators! The O’Level Chemistry examinations are essentially an objective benchmark to gauge student’s understanding of the concepts learnt. If your kid did not manage to do well for the paper, it is an indication that they have weak fundamentals of the subject.
With the JC Chemistry topics building on top and above those fundamentals, it is likely they will struggle to comprehend the new concepts taught in school.
Doing well for the O’ Levels, however does not necessarily give students a free pass in junior college! As shared in our previous article “Preparing for A-Level H2 Chemistry in 2021”, there are huge differences in the O and A level syllabus – namely almost double the number of topics to cover in half the amount of time.
Many new complex topics like Acid-base equilibrium, Reaction Kinetics, Organic Chemistry (Synthesis and Elucidation) tend to give H2 chemistry students plenty of headaches. So, do not be surprised if your child who did well in secondary school starts to struggle with this subject in JC.
In a way, this is linked to the previous sign. If they struggle to keep up with the new topics, it will inevitably lead to poor results in assessments.
Whether they have the wrong understanding of the concepts or are finding it tough to apply the concepts learnt to questions, by the time it reaches this stage, it is a clear sign that external help is required.
The lack of confidence in a subject can usually manifest in unusual ways – for example procrastinating or avoiding studying for the subject even though it is something your kid may be weak in.
Why? Revising for something they cannot wrap their head around even though they may spend hours on it is hardly motivating, isn’t it? That is why proper guidance on how to tackle the subject and rebuilding that lost confidence is essential.
In JC Chemistry, there are 3 levels of difficulty:
If at any point, your kid asks to drop their H2 to H1 for chemistry, that is a massive call for help! While we try to avoid getting to this stage by looking out proactively for signs in the early stages, parents may not always manage to catch all the signs.
Before making such a huge decision to drop to H1 (given the importance of H2 for many university courses), consider enrolling them in crash courses or workshops that could help unravel the many complex concepts for them and give them back their confidence.
At the New Dawn Learning Studio, our approach to JC Chemistry tuition is to help our students:
Want to get your kid the head start they need to ace chemistry in JC? Our specialized H2 Chemistry tutor, Mr. Joseph Lee, is the invited author GCE A ‘Level H2 Chemistry Ten Years Series (both topical & yearly editions), with a fantastic track record and glowing testimonials from his students.