Hi guys, this is Bryan and I teach students on the Gold Coast. Your Cambridge course is almost finished and the countdown to the big test day has started ticking. In fact, it may even seem that it is sooner than you were expecting. I can imagine what you’ve been thinking. Have I studied hard enough to pass Cambridge exam? Do I remember all those grammar rules, not to mention the mountain of words and expressions my teacher told me to learn? Even if the answer to these questions is yes, is it time to panic? Well the answer is a big NO! Here are some tips to help you getting ready for the Cambridge exam.
1. Don’t Panic! Plan!
Sounds simple, eh? And, actually, it is. With a study plan for the week before, you can take each day step-by-step. So, get out your pen and paper and decide on a schedule. Plan in advance when you will study and for how long. And stick to it! Don’t agree to meet friends when your schedule shows you should be studying. By putting your plans on paper, you have already started focussing your mind on the study. And make sure that you use that study time on just that, study.
Your teacher will have already told you what you need to work on but you are smart enough to know your own weak areas. If you did well in the listening tests, don’t waste your time trying to improve even more. Remember, it is easier to increase your score from 55% to 65% than it is from 80% to 90%. Go back and review all of those exercises and mock tests that you have done and see where you went wrong. These are the things you may need to know for the test. If you had difficulty with collocations, go back and learn them. If you’re still having trouble with grammar, go back and read through your notes from class to help you understand them better.
3. Pens Down!
Of course, tests must be done under a set time. If you have difficulty managing that time in a test, do some practice tests. Many ESL websites have these so make sure you set yourself the required time limits to practice them. This will definitely help you on the day because, as a teacher, there is nothing more disheartening to see a student lose points on a test on unanswered questions. As a student, you don’t want it either!
This is extremely important! On the night before the test, DON’T STUDY! This is a time where you should allow yourself (and your brain) a chance to let all of that information you have learned to settle down. Chances are that if you do study the night before, all of that information will get all mixed up and could even confuse you more. So, have a nice meal, sit back and watch some TV or a movie and relax. And go to bed early enough so you can get a full night’s sleep.
5. Hug a Tree!
Don’t laugh! This works if you suffer from nerves. On the day of the test, get to the test centre early and look for a nice tree, not too big, not too small but just thick enough to be able to wrap your arms around it nice and comfortably and hug it! It’s amazing how much stress and tension will be relieved by doing something as simple as this. But don’t hug a person as this sometimes has the opposite effect and does tend to excite some people.
Well, these are just a few things that you can do to help you prepare for the test. I hope they are of help. Remember, you have got this far with all of your hard work so good luck and go get ‘em!