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Primary 5


At Primary 5, students are off to a good start with the introduction of Subject-Based Banding (SBB) that help them prepare for PSLE. Before the year begins, students are offered a combination of subjects at the standard and foundation level based on how well they performed in the Primary 4 examinations. This allows students to learn at their own pace as they prepare for PSLE and progression to Secondary School. While this may raise understandable concerns with some parents, it’s important to note that students taking subjects at the foundation level are not at a disadvantage. In fact, doing so helps them to build up their understanding of subjects they find challenging while stretching their potential in those in which they excel.


The Primary 5 syllabus expands on familiar concepts while tossing a few new ones into the mix: modal verbs, possessive pronouns, interrogative words, and so on. In addition, students are introduced to literary devices that can be woven into the writing process to spruce up their composition essays. On top of that, students can also expect a change in format and increased difficulty in exam questions. From trickier questions in the vocab and grammar cloze sections to new concepts of synthesis such as direct and indirect speech, students are tested on a more rigorous level to ensure they are well-prepared for PSLE.


The Primary 5 Mathematics syllabus can be broadly divided into 3 categories: Numbers and Algebra, Measurements and Geometry, and Statistics. Students can expect to work with a wider range of numbers (up to 10 million) and more advanced concepts as the syllabus expands on a few familiar topics to include the properties of parallelogram, isosceles triangle, and so on. Topics such as Percentage, Ratio, Rate, Average, and Volume Of Cube & Cuboid are also introduced at this stage of the learning journey.

In an effort to prepare students for PSLE, the increased demands of the Mathematics syllabus makes the jump from Primary 4 to 5 feel like a giant leap. Questions are often presented in a less straightforward manner designed to assess one’s understanding. Therefore, students are encouraged to go beyond the surface to gain a firm grasp of every topic and concept. By having to examine and analyse each problem more closely, students get the opportunity to sharpen their critical thinking skills paramount to their learning journey through the upper primary level and beyond.


Moving on to the upper block of the syllabus, Primary 5 narrows its focus on four of the five original themes: Cycles, Systems, Interactions, and Energy. For cycles, students learn about the reproduction processes by which living things propagate themselves to ensure the continuity of their kind. They also move beyond comprehending the three basic states of matter to understanding how water changes from one state to another. Under systems, students build on their knowledge of the human body to understand how the digestive, respiratory, and circulatory systems work together to carry out processes needed to sustain life. On top of that, they’re also introduced to the microscopic world of cells and the anatomy of an electrical circuit. When it comes to interaction, students learn to identify factors that affect the survival of an organism. Last but not least, beyond learning to differentiate light from heat, students are taught the different ways by which plants and animals obtain energy.

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