Good morning and happy National Day! Here is how Ace Chemistry works.

August 9, 2013 Study Technique 0

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Hi, here is how Ace Chemistry works.

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Attached below is the full transcript of the video.

Being a student, to score A in O?level Chemistry in 12 weeks seems like an impossible task to be achieved. However, with the positive mindset & effort put in by the student, and under the correct guidance of a trained tutor & a comprehensive program, it can be achieved.

Let me start off by sharing with you a success story of a student who has made this possible. Sharne Leong, a student from a girl-school located in the central of Singapore was sitting for her Olevel exam last year. I still remember that she, together with her mother, came to Ace Scorers Enrichment Centre in the middle of July, looking for tuition help in Pure Chemistry. Sharne has been failing Chemistry since Secondary 3, getting F9s which is below 40% most of the tests & exams. She had also been advised by her school teacher to drop the Chemistry subject. This definitely hurt her confidence level in doing well for Chemistry & Olevel exam. She did not wish to drop the Chemistry subject as she knew that it is an important subject to be studied in order to move on to the course she wanted in tertiary education. She also knew that to push up her grade from fail to A is not going to be an easy task & she needs to put in great amount of effort. Though feeling low in morale, she was still determined to do well in this subject but needed professional help in bringing back her self-confidence & guiding her to achieve her objective, especially when the Olevel exam was going to start in less than 3 months.

During this period of time, Sharne?s mother, Mrs Leong, had also been very encouraging to her even though she knew that it was going to be tough for Sharne, but she hung onto the faith that her daughter can do it. Before Sharne started the Chemistry course in Ace Scorers, Mrs Leong had spoken to me about Sharne?s determination to score well in Chemistry as she wanted to prove that she can succeed with an A even though she was left with 3 months to do so. Hearing from a parent?s wish & seeing the determination in the student affirmed me & my team of teachers that we must put in the effort to help Sharne to achieve her dream.

In preparing Sharne, AceChemistry Program had provided her the relevant help that is needed to relearn the subject effectively within 12 weeks. The teachers also explained the concepts of every chapter in the syllabus, making sure that the basic understanding of the topics is achieved before preparing Sharne to work on the questions. At the same time, Sharne also work hard with the teachers. She was disciplined to finish up the practice questions given by the teacher. She would also often stay back after each session to clarify her doubts & ensure that she understood every concepts & remember the methods used in answering the different kind of questions.

After 3months of hardwork from the teachers & student, Sharne had finally achieved her objective, scoring an A2 in Pure chemistry.

So how does AceChemistry Program work & help the student to score well within 12 months?

In this program, there are 3 parts to it. Firstly,

1.)? It is very important that the student must have the basic understanding of concepts in every topics (About 2 lessons,4-6hrs)

  1. As time is crucial & the student needs to relearn all the topics within 12 weeks, it is essential to have a trained teacher to summarise the topics into key points so as to help the student to understand every topics quickly & effectively J
  2. In this section, the trained teacher will also explain clearly the important concepts & key points in every topic to make sure that the student understands the implication of these concepts. While going through the concepts, the teacher will also highlight the commonly asked questions in the examination & the techniques on how to answer these questions.

 

2.)? Secondly, we will teach the students to do mind-mapping based on the concepts that they have learnt.

Mind-mapping (About 2 lessons, 4-6hrs)

  1. This is a very powerful tool in helping the student to recap the concepts by penning down the conceptual key words in mind map. It also reinforces the student memory & understanding of the concepts in every topic.
  2. At the same time, it also allows student to link the various concepts from different topics. This will help them to realise that every topic in the Chemistry subject is related to one another & they cannot study these topics separately. As such, it also helps them to handle the examination questions better as each question asked is usually testing the student a few concepts from different topics. For example, a question can be asked in testing the student on the concept of extraction of metals & of using mole calculation to calculate how much metal has been extracted from the reaction.
  3. Let me give u an example of how we can create a mind map. For instance in the chapter of Acids, Bases & Salts, we can break down the chapter into 3 categories which are Acids, Bases & Salts. In the 1st two categories of acids & bases, besides knowing the definition, chemical & physical properties of acids & bases, it is very important to remember the reactions involved in acids & bases. This is because we need to use these reactions to prepare the required salts which we are looking into the 3rd category later.

 

Let us look at the reactions before we branch out to the other categories in the mindmap. For acids, the reactions include the

Acid reacting with alkali or base to give salt & water, acid reacting with carbonate to give salt, carbon dioxide & water & acid reacting with reactive metals to give salt & hydrogen gas.

For bases, besides the reaction of base with acid which we had seen earlier on, alkalis which are soluble bases react with ammonium compounds to form salt, water & ammonia gas.

 

After penning down the important points of acids & bases in the mind map, we can now look at the 3rd category, Salts. In this category, we can sub-divided into 3 sub-points ? Solubility of Salts, Preparation of Salts & Identification of Salts.

In the solubility of salts, the student will be given a table which states the solubility nature of various salts such as nitrates, carbonates, sulfates & chlorides. For example,?.list down all the solubilties nature. It is important to memorise this solubility table as it helps us to determine the correct method to be used in preparing the required salt.

Next, we shall then move on to the Preparation of salts. There are 3 methods in preparing salts which are Precipitation, Adding one of the reactants in excess & lastly the Titration method.

For Precipitation method, it is only used in preparing insoluble salts such as AgCl, BaSO4,CaSO4, jus to name a few examples. To make this method work, the starting materials used in the reactions must also be soluble substances and they must contain the cation & anion needed for the salt to be formed. For example, in preparing AgCl, we can react AgNO3 & HCl or AgNO3 with NaCl since both sets of reactants are soluble salts & they contain the cation Ag+ & anion Cl- which are needed to form AgCl. After the reaction, white ppt of AgCl will then be obtained which can be removed from the resultant solution by filtration. Next wash the ppt with distilled water & dry them between filter papers.

We have look at Precipitation is a useful method in making? insoluble salt, so how do we prepare soluble salts? We can prepare soluble salts either by the method of adding one of the reactants in excess or by titration method. The difference in these 2 methods is the solubility nature of the reactants. If the reactants used in making the soluble salt are soluble, then we have to use the titration method. However, if one of the reactants used in making the soluble salt is insoluble, then we have to use the method of adding the insoluble reactant in excess to react with the other reactant. For instance, to prepare CuCl2 salt by using the reactants of CuO & HCl acid, we have to add CuO in excess to HCl since CuO is an insoluble base. After the reaction, filter the mixture to remove the excess CuO & crystallise the CuCl2 solution. On the other hand, to prepare soluble NaCl by using NaOH & HCl solution, titration method can be used to carry out the neutralisation reaction, since both NaOH & HCl are soluble substances.

All these concepts have been taught to the students during the 1st part of the course & these key points mentioned above can be written down in the mind map, according to the different categories that I have shared earlier on.

  1. Once a mind-map is done up, it will give the student a clearer pict of the concepts in each chapter. Student will also feel more confident in handling the subject after seeing that he/she had remembered so much information by penning down their understanding in the mindmap.

 

  1. If you need an example of the mindmap, you can refer & download our mind-maps in website www.127.0.0.1/acechemistry

 

3.)? Doing Practice Questions (Remaining 8-10 lessons, 24-30hrs)

  1. Exposure to different variations of questions in every topic will allow the student to be better equipped in answering the questions.
  2. Students will also be taught how to recognize the concepts tested in every Multiple choice question. Recall these concepts & apply it in the questions asked.
  3. When answering the structured questions, students will need to know what are the key conceptual words to be used so that the key points will not be left out in their answers.
  4. Essential to have a trained tutor to go through the questions & highlight the key points to the student.

 

4.)? Positive Mindset in both tutor & student

  1. Being the tutor, we have to believe that the student is able to score well in the subject.
  2. Be sensitive to their needs & be helpful in answering to their queries. We need to guide them in understanding the concepts & using the correct techniques in answering the questions.
  3. Being the student, great amount of hard work has to be put in in order to see results in 12 weeks. No pain, no gain. Only with the positive mindset & attitude will then allow the student to achieve a good score in the Chemistry subject.