Spontaneous learning, not just hitting the books, is the key to earning high test scores in secondary school, award-winning students say.
Setting aside time for relaxation is also important, say this year’s winners of the IGCSE program’s Outstanding Cambridge Learner Awards.
Many of them are from the five secondary schools operated by the English Schools Foundation (ESF), Sky Post reported Thursday.
The 10 students who scored the highest marks globally in the International General Certificate of Secondary Education exams are from the ESF’s King George V School, Island School and Sha Tin College.
The IGCSE, developed by University of Cambridge International Examinations in the 1980s, is a specialized English-language curriculum for students aged between 14 and 16.
Julian Chow from King George V, who beat his peers worldwide in the world literature test, said he was surprised by his score.
He said the secret to his success was playing soccer and computer games besides regular after-school reviews.
His parents neither put pressure on him nor forced him to take part in any extracurricular classes, he said.
Another KGV student, Sampson Kwan, who scored the highest mark globally in additional mathematics, said he prefers spontaneous learning to the formal kind.
He likes to read, stroll and swim and makes sure he gets seven to eight hours of sleep every day.
ESF school development adviser Chris Durbin urged parents to help their children learn about the world even from trivial things to cultivate their interest in learning.
They should read with them and take them to visit museums, Durbin said.
Parents should find ways to encourage their children to study spontaneously instead of using monetary rewards or reprimands, he said.
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