How can my child improve the speed of their writing for the PSLE English Composition?

The Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) is an essential milestone in the educational journey of every student in Singapore. Among the diverse subjects tested, English composition has a special significance because it allows students to showcase their creativity, comprehension skills, and command over the English language. However, the task of writing an effective composition within a time limit can be daunting for many. So, how can your child improve the speed of their writing for the PSLE English Composition? Let’s delve into some strategies and techniques.

Understanding the Writing Process:

Understanding the writing process is the first step towards improving the speed of writing. The writing process is typically divided into several stages: brainstorming, planning, writing, and editing. Each stage has its significance and requires a dedicated time frame. Teach your child to brainstorm effectively by drawing a mind map of ideas related to the topic. They can then use this mind map to plan the flow of the composition. By following these steps, they will have a clear idea of what they want to write before they start, making the actual writing faster and more efficient.


Just as with any other skill, practice is key when it comes to writing. Encourage your child to write regularly. They can start with short stories or diary entries and gradually work up to longer essays. The more they write, the faster and better they will get. Make sure they practice under time constraints to get a real feel for the PSLE conditions. Start with a generous time limit and then gradually reduce it as they become more proficient.

Vocabulary Building:

A rich vocabulary allows a child to express their thoughts more fluently and quickly. Encourage your child to read widely and learn new words. Make this a fun process by using flashcards or vocabulary games. Knowing a broad range of synonyms can also speed up the writing process as your child won’t have to pause and search for words.

Use of Language Structures:

Using a variety of sentence structures can make writing more fluid. Teach your child different ways to begin sentences and how to use conjunctions to link ideas. Mastery of complex sentences can help speed up the writing process as it allows more information to be packed into each sentence.

Timed Outlining:

Outlining before diving into writing can make a significant difference in speed. Train your child to spend a few minutes jotting down the main ideas for each paragraph. This outline can then act as a guide, enabling them to write faster as they will have a clear direction for their composition. With consistent practice, they will be able to create outlines swiftly and efficiently.

Self-editing Techniques:

Editing is a crucial part of the writing process, but it can be time-consuming. Teach your child self-editing techniques to make this process quicker. These could include checking for common grammar mistakes they tend to make or reading the composition aloud to spot awkward sentences. Encourage them to leave a few minutes at the end of their writing time for this self-editing process.

Physical Writing Speed:

Finally, the physical act of writing can be a limiting factor in speed. If your child struggles with writing quickly, consider activities that can improve their fine motor skills. These could include fun tasks like tracing shapes, painting, or playing with clay.

In conclusion, improving the speed of writing for the PSLE English Composition is a multi-faceted process that involves understanding the writing process, regular practice, vocabulary building, mastering language structures, quick outlining, effective self-editing, and enhancing physical writing speed. It’s important to remember that speed should not come at the expense of quality. The goal is to enable your child to express their ideas clearly and effectively within the given time. With patience, persistence, and consistent practice, your child can undoubtedly enhance their writing speed while retaining the quality of their compositions. Happy practicing!

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