Grammar is the backbone of any good conversation, writing or speech and this fact is universally applicable for any language. The grammatical usage of a person speaks volumes about his/her education, upbringing, social class etc. Then why take chances? Let us sharpen our Grammar skills to improve our verbal and written communication.

Like any other language, English too has its own grammar rules. What one should ideally do is identify the thumb rule of the particular context and stick to it, making note of the exceptions, if any. The only way to improve your grammatical strength is to make a conscious effort to work on your grammar literally, every day.

Let us begin by looking at some of the basic errors we commit in the usage of English Grammar.

1.AGREEMENT OF THE VERB WITH THE SUBJECT:

The subject of a sentence is a NOUN- meaning a person, place or thing.

The VERB is usually an ACTION word that follows the noun- it tells us what the subject is doing, has done or going to do.

For example- Peter ate his breakfast.

Here, ‘Peter’ is the SUBJECT and ‘ate’ is the verb in past tense.

Now the important THUMB RULE here is

THE VERB SHOULD AGREE WITH THE SUBJECT IN NUMBER.

Look at this simple table- it tells you how the verb has to agree with the subject.

Verb- to be        tense- present

Verb- to write         tense – present

Rule: SINGULAR SUBJECT TAKES ON A SINGULAR VERB.

PLURAL SUBJECT TAKES ON A PLURAL VERB.

Example: I am /You are/She is walking

They are walking.

  1. AGREEMENT OF THE VERB WITH SUBJECT FOR COLLECTIVE NOUNS

A collective noun is a term used to define a group of persons or objects as a single word.

Example: Crowd- a group of people

Some collective nouns are listed under:

Now the important THUMB RULE here is

ANY COLLECTIVE NOUN IS TAKEN AS A SINGULAR OBJECT AND MUST BE FOLLOWED BY A SINGULAR VERB.

For Example: An army of soldiers is passing by.

A bouquet is presented to every dignitary of the function.

  1. CONFUSION IN THE NUMBER OF THE SUBJECT WHILE USING “OF”

Generally, users of English make the common mistake of confusing themselves over whether the subject is singular or plural when “of” is used.

Example:

A shoal of fish looks colourful as it passes by.

Here “shoal” is a collective noun referring to a group of fish.

People often get confused becomes of the use of “of” after the subject. When the subject is followed by an “of”, learners assume the subject to become plural.

Now the important THUMB RULE here is

CHECK whether A COLLECTIVE NOUN appears BEFORE THE “OF”. Then it is SINGULAR.

Incorrect usage: A shoal of fish look colourful as they pass by.

Correct usage: A shoal of fish looks colourful as it passes by.

  1.  CORRECT VERB USAGE FOR 2 SINGULAR OBJECTS LINKED WITH

“EITHER/OR” & “NEITHER/NOR”

Sentences using “either/or” and “neither /nor” cause some confusion among learners. They are often unsure of how to use the following verb here.

Now the important THUMB RULE here is

WHEN 2 SINGULAR OBJECTS ARE LINKED USING “EITHER/OR” OR “NEITHER /NOR”, THE VERB WILL BE IN SINGULAR.

Incorrect usage:  Neither Sammy nor her mother are going to the party.

Correct usage: Neither Sammy nor her mother is going to the party.

Incorrect usage:  Either Philip or his dad are leaving today.

Correct Usage: Either Philip or his dad is leaving today.

  1. CORRECT VERB USAGE FOR 2 PLURAL OBJECTS LINKED WITH

“EITHER/OR” & “NEITHER/NOR”

When plural objects are used with “either/or” or” neither/nor”.

Now the important THUMB RULE here is

WHEN 2 PLURAL OBJECTS ARE LINKED USING “EITHER/OR” OR    “NEITHER /NOR”, THE VERB WILL AGREE WITH THE NOUN/PRONOUN THAT PRECEDES IT.

For example,

Neither the dogs nor the cat eats the food. – Here the verb “eats” is in agreement with the singular noun “the cat”.

Neither the cat nor the dogs eat the food – Here the verb “eat” is in agreement with the plural noun “the dogs”.

Keep these thumb rules in mind while you use nouns and verbs and surely, you will never go wrong.

English Grammar is like Algebraic Theorems- there are rules like theorems with exceptions like corollaries.

Just master the rules of English Grammar by memorizing them and use them wherever necessary. Like Math, you will always get it right.

Let’s Practise has a lot of study sheets and exam papers to help your child with their grammar. We assist students from 1st to 9th standard and have worksheets for CBSE, SSC, IGCSE, and ICSE Boards. You can check out the information about ICSE Board here.

It is very difficult to make today’s generation listen to you. It is essential for students to understand the concepts and not treat subjects as mere topics for passing the examination.  To make this happen teachers should make their class fun and exciting for students. Especially if it is a science class, then teachers can easily evoke the natural curiosity of children through lively classes and digital learning.

Experts at Lets Practise share five tips to make the science class interesting and make students love science.

 

  1. Get them engaged

Engaging students in some activities is a great way to get the science class started. This will refresh the young minds and keep them excited for the rest of the class. Students should be encouraged to prepare and stick colourful charts related to their lessons on the classroom walls.  The teacher can use them to demonstrate science concepts and also involve students in discussions. End each class with a great question that students can solve in the next class.  

 

  1. Evaluate student’s understanding

It is very important for teachers to know how deep students understand their lessons. Every student’s level of understanding is different. So you can evaluate your students by having surprise class tests, checking their lab reports or by asking one of them to conduct a small science experiment in the class and explain the results.

 

  1. Explain difficult concepts

Some students are hesitant to clarify their doubts in class for fear of being embarrassed. Teachers should welcome questions even illogical ones and then bifurcate them as easy and tough science concepts as perceived by students. Teachers should then elaborate on these topics and try to make them simple.

Example: They can explain the process of growth of plants by sowing seeds in their class windows, etc.

 

  1. Assign  science projects to groups

Projects are a great way to enrich the child’s experience. Teachers can divide students into groups and assign one project for each group. This way student will get time to explore science concepts and also learn together. Group projects will also encourage students to coordinate with each other. The teacher can also gift certificates and awards for the best team project. Teachers can suggest topics like the best use of renewable energy sources, solar energy projects, the life cycle of a butterfly, etc.

     

  1. Use technology

Teachers can use digital technologies to empower children.  It is proven that visuals are much powerful than words. Teachers can project complicated science concepts or chemistry experiments on a digital blackboard for ease of understanding. This can also be used to study the generation of electricity, rain cycle, etc which cannot be visualized in class otherwise.

 

Students will face many situations in life where they can apply different science concepts. Though some science concepts are boring, a teacher can make them fun and interesting for students. Those were five tips from our experts to make your class interesting. If you have any suggestions or personal experience that can help science students, please share them with us at  http://www.letspractise.com/contactUs                                                  

                                                            

 

Is it your child’s first field trip? If so, we understand how difficult it would be for you to leave your child alone especially if the trip demands an overnight stay. Learning from a child’s experience is as necessary as learning from his books. These kinds of excursions will help emotional and intellectual development in her.

So, if parents are hesitant to send their small ones on the trip, they can clarify all their doubts regarding the excursion with the teacher.  The following are some questions that you can ask her teacher or the in charge of the trip:

  •    What is the medium and route of travel?
  •    Who is responsible for the safety of the kids?
  •    What are the do’s and don’ts for the trip?

Experts at Lets Practise share five useful tips for parents to help the child prepare for a field trip:

  1. Plan ahead

To prevent your child from getting nervous at the last minute, parents should plan everything in advance. If it is a two or three-day trip, neatly iron and packs her clothes and other essentials for the trip. Also, let her know where you have placed them. Most of the schools ask their children to come in a particular colour for the trip. So check her school dairy if any such information. Keep her dress, shoes and socks, bags, et cetera ready the previous night itself.

  1. Talk to them

Parents should talk to their children about the field trip, especially if it is her first time. Ask her what she is expecting from the field trip. Explain to her everything that she may come across in the journey. Make her understand the way she should behave in the trip. Mentally prepared children are less likely to suffer homesickness. Keep some over the counter (a cough, cold, headache) medicine handy and inform the teacher about the same.

  1. Know how much cash is appropriate for the trip

We know that you take care of every need of your child. You would have a surely packed couple of snacks, clothes and other essentials, but there are times when your child wishes to buy something from the field trip. Giving too much money is not safe for the child at the same time a very little amount can also leave your child in an embarrassing situation. So, you can ask her teacher to suggest the amount that you can give her.

  1. Place contact details at right places

Though this point seems too much, you cannot ignore this while preparing for the trip. Every school makes sure that their children are safe but to be safer parents can keep the contact information in the child’s pockets, bag, water bottle, etc. this will help the child to get back to her group even if she gets away from them.

  1. Safety Precaution

This is the last but most important tip for parents to prepare their child for her field trip. When it comes to your child, her safety would always be your first priority.  To ensure that your child is safe even when she is away from you, you need to take the following actions:

  •    If your child needs personal attention at certain times, please inform her teacher or the trip in charge in advance.  Example: vomiting sensation during the bus journey.
  •    If your child is allergic to anything, it is very important to let her teacher know that.
  •   If your child is taking medicines for anything, you can give the medication for the appropriate number of days.

 

Try these tips in next first field trip and if she had already been on a trip then let us know about her experience. Was she able to relate it to her curriculum? If you have any valuable tips for other parents please share them with us here.

Just like the real world, the internet has some unsafe places. However, it is even easier to come upon this unsafe place by accident. On the web, there are no clear lines between what is okay and what isn’t. You have to rely on tools and communication so your child can surf the net in a safe manner. Here are eight tips for keeping your child safe online.  

Awareness

Pay attention to what your child sees and does on the internet. Not everything has to be physical to influence your child so you cannot afford to neglect the virtual realm. There are certain risks you take while being online, and children are more susceptible to these risks.  

The first thing that you should do as a parent acknowledges that the internet is not a very safe space for your child and that there are certain dangers that lurk in the shadowy corners. You have to be on alert and vigilant when it comes to child safety online.

Unfortunately, there are people who will try to exploit the innocence of your child, so be wary. The dark side of the internet is a pathway to many things some consider to be unnatural. Cybercrime, cyber bullying, and damaging online reputation are just some of these.

Research

You must get involved with your child’s cyber world. There’s just no way around it. Ignoring the problem or acting indifferent to it will not make the problem go away. In fact, things will only get worse. If you are knowledgeable of what your child sees, you can identify a conflict quicker. You can then step in quickly before the situation escalates.

Some websites may look child-friendly, using attractive colours and designs to lure kids in. Upon closer examination, you may find that the site is actually dangerous.  

Keep the computer in a location where it is easy to see. If it is hidden, you will not be able to monitor them easily or worse, they could be tempted to visit bad websites because of the secrecy. We do not want to scare you to the point where you outright ban the internet. We are just telling you to be aware of what is on the world wide web.

Create Rules

There should be set rules in your household regarding internet viewing. They don’t have to be a rigid schedule, but you should have limits, for example, one hour every weekday and two hours on weekends. You can even have a list of sites that they are allowed / not allowed to visit, to clear up any confusion.

Many children spend far too much time on their computer, which is not healthy. There is a whole world for your child to explore. Encourage them to go outside rather than stay cooped up inside with the computer. Enforcing these rules will go a long way in preventing internet addiction.

Educate Them

This isn’t just about you controlling what they see. They have to understand why you are doing this.

Teach them important online lessons, as given below:

  • Never reveal your name, address, school, picture, or phone number online.
  • Avoid opening email, attachments or messages from anyone you don’t know.
  • Do not respond to any inappropriate messages directed at you.
  • Never get together with adults you met online.

You can also add any other lessons as you see fit. Tell them that it is for their own safety, not because you want to spy on them or police them. Once they understand and accept that, they will be more open.

Also, tell them to logout of the computer and shut it down once they finish their internet session.  

Beware of Social Media

Social networking websites such as Facebook have content only suitable for those 13 and older. However, some children will lie about their age and register to create an account anyway. This could lead to harmful consequences. The anonymity of the internet provides a platform for people to threaten, intimidate, and harass without having their true identity outed.  

On websites such as Reddit and Tumblr, people create their own persona and are free to  They could be exposed to indecent images or comments. The internet is such a place where your child might stumble upon violence, hate speech, and other vulgar material unknowingly. Such forums should be closely monitored or avoided.

Block Harmful Sites

Parental controls offer you the ability to block websites. There are ways to block a website. That is not too difficult. If you feel a site is unsafe for your child and you don’t want them to view it, you can blacklist it on your computer.

There are plugins and software apps that you can download when it comes to blocking or restricting websites. Any website that explicitly states that the material contained is for 18+  should be blocked.   

Turning on ‘Safe Search’ in Google filters out offensive and inappropriate material. It’s not just the computer, but the tablets, and the mobile phones too. The internet never forgets, and once you post something online, even if you delete it, its presence will linger.

Protect Your Privacy

Privacy is of utmost concern. Your child may reveal identifying information about themselves without even realising it. This is obviously not their intention, but you should be extra careful about this.  

Your email is especially important as someone with access to your email can just click ‘forgot my password’ to gain access to your other accounts.

No matter how hard you try, some inappropriate things might still pop up. As such, tell them to come to you whenever they see something uncomfortable. You can then take appropriate action. Assure them that it is not their fault if they viewed something by accident so they won’t fear to get into trouble.

There is a staggering amount of information on the web, some great and some horrible. Even us adults need to be careful and mindful of what we put out there for public viewing with suspicious characters lurking about.

The bottom line is that who kids are on the internet is not who they are in the real world. However, you want them to be careful.

The Internet for Learning

The internet can be a great tool as long as you use it correctly. It doesn’t just have to be for fun and games.  Your child can use the information for help with homework and tests, or if they are curious about something. There are many educational sites as well that can help your child learn. One such website is Let’s Practise.

With Let’s Practise, you can get sample papers, worksheets, and tests for children from 3rd to 9th standard. You can find informational material for children studying in CBSE, ICSE, and SSC Boards.

To take advantage of all these educational information and more, write to us, call us, or let us reach you. Whatever you do, contact us now. We are the safest place on the internet!

Math is one subject that causes frustration for some students, yet others breeze through it. Being bad at math doesn’t necessarily mean that the child is poor at studies, but just that math is tough. This leaves many parents flummoxed and scratching their heads.

Why do children suffer from math anxiety? To answer this question, we should first discuss how math is different from other subjects.

How is Math Different?

We should start off by saying that math is not as difficult as some make it out to be. It just has to be learnt in a manner unique from the other subjects.

To solve a math problem, students need to have a good understanding of the logic involved behind the problem. This takes patience, persistence, and openness.   

For subjects like science and social studies, students can get away with memorising  facts, names, and dates to pass. They don’t even need to pick up a pen while learning. Not so with mathematics. Mathematics has a different cognitive process and learning by rote is next to impossible. One simply cannot memorise the answers to every sum.

While other subjects are just questions and answers (A and B), math requires you to explain how you derived the answer. Therefore, the student must also show the process of going from A to B and why they arrived at B.

Math is also foundation based, meaning that the higher standards build upon what was taught in the lower levels. The formulas and operations learnt at the beginning will be expanded upon in future standards. This makes math cumulative. While this isn’t that much of an issue with other subjects, it is crucial to math. If your child did not pay attention or do well in the lower levels, things will only get tougher and they will have a difficult time.

Why Students Dislike Math

Now, to get to the crux of the problem of why students hate math. There are many reasons for this, and for your child, it could be one of the below or a combination.

Some students consider math to be a boring subject because there are no tangibles and no context. You aren’t learning about animals, countries, or revolutions. You aren’t even studying actual people or places, so why bother?

Another factor is technology. Calculators and mobile phones have made calculations so easy that people are either too lazy or apathetic about doing math on paper. They are probably wondering when they will use these problems in real life and therefore develop an indifferent attitude. Children aren’t able to comprehend why math is important and it is not until they’re older that they finally realize the relevance.

The third problem is the amount of effort required to excel at math. You can’t master a concept by doing just one sum. It takes more time to master math than other subjects, and in this fast-paced world, students don’t want to spend that much time to learning. A child has to write down page after page after page to understand the material, and this is off-putting for many. This is because math has a different learning style than other subjects.

Math’s Learning Style

Math needs to be worked out. There is simply no way for a person to learn and improve in math than to write the problems out and solve them. Math demands application of your knowledge to come up with a solution.  The only portion of math worth memorizing is the formulas, which are useless unless you know when and where to apply them.

Some students tend to focus on getting the right solution that they neglect the process and calculations. It should be the inverse, as a correctly worked out problem should lead to the right answer. Even if they get it wrong, they still know how to approach the problem.

For subjects like math, visual videos will help. By watching other people solving problems of a similar stature, your child can learn how the process. Mathematics is a methodical process and requires more interactivity from the student. Visual stimuli will really help them learn.  

Advantages of Math

Your child may assume that they don’t need math since they will not pursue a degree for math in the future. However, math is intertwined with many other subjects. Economics, physics, accounting, engineering, statistics, computer science, and medical science all require mathematical knowledge. Learning the basics will give your child a platform in their search for a degree, no matter what it is.

Math is great for helping people solve problems in real life. It helps you be more methodical and plan better. To solve a math problem, as in real life, you have to analyse the situation, figure out the possible ways to approach it, work out the problem, and arrive at the solution.

Nearly everything in this world revolves around mathematics and numbers. Banks, hospitals, shopping malls, and automobile stores are just a handful of the places where people use math. Your child should be able to perform at least basic math as the one of the two most important parts of this civilised society – currency, requires mathematical knowledge to use.

The second important part, time is also measured in a mathematical basis. You have to make calculations in both regular time (12 hour clock) and military time (24 hour clock). It is even more important when figuring out the time in another country as the time zone changes. Buses, trains, planes, events, and offices all operate on a timed basis.

Overcoming Math Anxiety

So, you should now know why children find math difficult, but what’s the solution?

Math anxiety is more of a mental block than anything – the child believes that math is tough or irrelevant and therefore avoids it or does poorly in it.

You should abolish these thoughts from your child’s mind by spending time to tackle math problems. Fear of math can be reduced by parents taking a more active interest in their child’s education. Especially for something like math, parents should sit down with the child and help them write down problems and the solutions.

Start with simple sums to slowly build your child’s confidence and move on to bigger numbers and tougher problems. Try making sums relevant to your child. For example, if a sum says ‘Janani bought 12 apples’, replace ‘Janani’ with the name of your own child. Adding relevancy makes math more enjoyable because they now have real people to relate to.

You should change the way your child studies other subjects as well, placing more emphasis on learning rather than memorizing. If all they do is recall and recollect, they are no different than a robot. Make sure they are grasping the core concepts of the material, be it science, history, geography, or literature. This way, math won’t feel as strange to them. The essence of the subject matter is what will stay with them for life, not the dates and names.  

We have prepared revision sheets and question papers for students from 3rd to 9th standard. Our database has papers for CBSE, ICSE, and SSC. You can learn more about our involvement with math for SSC Board students here.

These question papers will be especially beneficial in math which requires children to write out solutions. Let’s Practise can help your child understand mathematical concepts and score well in it. Contact us now.