How to tackle Comprehension OE

As we approach the final lap of the SA2 examinations, most students have completed their Oral and Paper 1 components. Next week my P3-P5 students will be busy revising for the components in Paper 2.

In today’s post I will focus on Comprehension Open-ended. This is one of the components where students can lose a lot of marks for a number of reasons.

Lack of comprehension of the text given

In P5 and P6, texts become more complex and are based on subjects that students may not be familiar with, such as adrift at sea, world war 2 and mountain climbing. Students may miscomprehend the text and thus answer the questions inaccurately.

Not fully understanding the questions asked

Students may not be familiar with question types. They may also miss out on certain key words in the questions. Thus, questions are answered inaccurately.

Incomplete answers

This reason occurs more often than you would think. Sometimes, students may understand the text and the questions but when writing out the answer, miss out a whole part of it, even if it is a continuation of the sentence.

Grammatical mistakes

With the change of format for English, marks were not supposed to be subtracted for grammatical mistakes in Comprehension OE. This, however, is not always true for certain schools. Students can lose half to one mark for tenses and spelling mistakes.

So, what should students remember when tackling the Comprehension OE questions?

Understanding your text

Read to understand your text

At the side of each paragraph, jot down simple notes to help you understand a complex text

Question types

Identify your question types & remember the ways to tackle different question types

  • Factual
  • Inference
  • Reference
  • Sequencing
  • True or False
  • Cause and Effect
  • Vocabulary in Context

Highlight & circle key words in your questions

Every question has key word(s) to help you answer accurately.

Highlight the key words and take note of your tenses and spelling

Highlight the key words/phrases or clues in your passage. Then number according to the question number

This will allow you to re-check your answers more easily at the end.

This will also allow you to be sure that you have not missed out on any parts of the answer

Check your answers

Have you answered your questions accurately?

Are your answers complete?

Did you make any grammar or spelling mistake?

*Remember, it is accuracy and not speed that will help you score well for your Comprehension OE component!

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Primary 5 English tuition class schedule

DayStart timeEnd time
Thursday5.00 pm7.00 pm
Friday4.00 pm6.00 pm
Friday - Zoom Class4.30 pm6.30 pm
Saturday2.00 pm4.00 pm