7 Best Practices to Prepare for Math Exams: How to Study Smart and Score High


Many students find math exams a source of stress. They may struggle to grasp complex mathematical concepts or find it difficult to apply them in exams. 

Additionally, time constraints during exams can further worsen these difficulties, leading to errors and incomplete answers. There’s also the fear of failure that can create a barrier to effective studying, causing students to procrastinate or avoid practising altogether.

Here are 7 best practices that students can implement to approach math exams more easily and score better.

1. Understand the basics

Imagine building a towering LEGO castle without laying a strong foundation. You can’t – exactly how you can’t olve complex math problems without mastering the basics.

The first step is to get a solid understanding of the fundamental concepts such as arithmetic operations, fractions, decimals, percentages and more.

Students should start by breaking down each concept into smaller, manageable parts. They must take the time to review and practice fundamental math skills regularly, ensuring comprehension before moving on to more complex topics.

2. Consistent practice

The key to excel lies in consistent practice. With regular practice, they reinforce their math muscles and gain confidence in their abilities.

Encourage them to set aside a specific time each day to solve math problems. 

Provide a variety of math exercises, covering different topics and difficulty levels. This helps them reinforce what they’ve learned and build confidence.

It’s also a good idea to track progress by keeping a record of completed exercises and reviewing incorrect answers. This way, you can easily identify areas that need extra practice and work on it.

3. Solve past math exam papers

Encourage your child to review and solve math exam papers from previous years. These papers provide insight into the types of questions, formats, and difficulty levels commonly encountered in exams.

Urge them to tackle the questions independently first, before comparing their answers with the provided solutions. This strengthens concepts and enhances problem-solving skills.

Make sure you emphasise understanding the reasoning behind each answer, rather than just memorising solutions. This way, they can reflect on their mistakes and learn from them.

Consider timing your child as they attempt past exam papers to simulate exam conditions. This improves time management skills and reduces anxiety during actual exams.

4. Seek help when needed

If your child is stuck and you’re unsure of how to help, consider enrolling them in math tuition

Math tuition provides personalised support and guidance tailored to your child’s specific learning needs. Additionally, participating in study groups organised by the tuition classes can foster peer-to-peer learning and collaboration. 

We at Oodles Learning are the only certified Math tuition partner of onSponge, delivering the official onSponge learning programs across our 13 centres in Singapore since 2010. 

Our coaches are carefully selected, extensively trained, and regularly assessed to ensure the highest quality education for our students.

Despite students typically starting with math scores ranging from 40 to 80 marks, our dedicated team has a proven track record of consistently helping 80% of our Oodles Learning students achieve AL1 to AL3 for PSLE Math.

5. Create flashcards with formulas

Another effective way to prepare for math exams is by creating flashcards with important formulas and equations. Encourage your child to write down key formulas on index cards, along with any relevant notes or explanations.

These flashcards serve as handy study aids that your child can review regularly to reinforce their understanding of important mathematical concepts. They provide a quick and easy way to memorise formulas and recall them during exams.

To make flashcards even more effective, you can consider organising them by topic or theme. This helps your child focus on specific areas that require extra practice and ensures comprehensive coverage of all relevant formulas.

6. Provide guidance and encouragement

Math can be tough, but as a parent, you can make a big difference.

Make sure your child has a quiet place to study without distractions. Together, set achievable goals and celebrate every step they take forward.

Show them you’re proud of their hard work, even when things get tricky. Remind them that mistakes are okay –– they’re a chance to learn and grow.

Be there when they need someone to talk to or help with a tough problem. Your belief in them and support will give them the courage to face math exams head-on.

7. Get adequate rest

Encourage your child to establish a regular sleep schedule leading up to the exam. Ensure they get at least 8 hours of sleep each night to feel refreshed and alert on exam day.

Avoid late-night cramming sessions, as they can lead to fatigue and decreased cognitive function. Instead, encourage your child to review their notes early and then relax before bedtime.

On the morning of the exam, ensure your child eats a nutritious breakfast and stays hydrated. Remind them to take deep breaths and stay calm to reduce exam anxiety.

By prioritising rest before the exam, your child will be better equipped to tackle math problems with a clear mind and focused attention.


Preparing for math exams doesn’t have to be daunting. By using these tips and supporting your child, you can help them succeed not only in exams but also in their overall math skills.

If you’re looking for additional support, consider Oodles Learning. Our programmes are designed to supplement primary and secondary Mathematics in Singapore.

What sets us apart? 

We maintain a low coach-to-student ratio, ensuring personalised attention and support. With class sizes limited to 10 students, our coaches actively engage in “Coach Walkabouts” during classwork sessions to address individual needs and provide immediate feedback on progress. 

Book a free consultation today.

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