As candidates enjoy their holidays, they will also be preparing to climb the next ladder in their academic journey. But for one to succeed, they should know that how they use this holiday could play a big role on the outcome of their final examinations.
Brian Ishimwe Ntwari, a S.3 student of New Life Christian High School in Kayonza District, says since the holiday is short and the final exams are knocking, he does not want to waste any time. He says this is the time candidates need to read extensively, but also spare sometime to relax.
Ntwari says the energy and time one invests in reading will be reflected in their performance.
He says he will use this holiday to associate more with his friends who perform better than him in class so that they help him in his weak areas.
For Anita Teta Uwase, a 17-year-old student, candidates should have a time table to guide them on what to read and at what time.
“This will enable them tackle all the subjects in a short time than randomly picking on any book to read without a timetable as they are likely to ignore some topics or subjects, especially the complicated one,” she says.
Uwase, however, says reading should not hinder candidates from doing house work and other home chores. They should balance revising their books with home duties because they are both important.
She urges candidates to read beyond what has been taught in class to position them to compete better.
Uwase advises that the best time for revising is early in the morning when the brain is still fresh and sober with not much destruction.
“I always make sure that I sacrifice two hours every day to read. During that time I switch my phone off and focus on reading,”she says.
Uwase explains that one revision style she employs is making summaries of her notes topic by topic.
“Other candidates and students should always summarise while reading because that is the only way they can read much in a short time. Also, summaries are easy to carry which makes it easier for someone to pass through even when they are doing something else or out of time to revise many notes,” she says.
“Holidays are the best time to focus more on the subjects one is weak at. I call upon fellow parents to provide a conducive environment for their children to read, and I encourage students to sacrifice some of the fun like watching movies and unnecessary visits so that they read more, especially the past papers since some questions are continuously set,” says Tony Mwesigwa, a father of two.
Mwesigwa also says that it is a parent’s responsibility to follow up what their children are revising and to also help them where necessary.
According to Allen Mwiiza, a resident of Remera, Kigali, discussion groups should be formed by candidates from different schools because it is easy to learn more while in a group than sitting alone and reading on your own since you can easily get bored and give up.
Mwiiza adds that for the discussion groups to be effective, each student should be given a chance to participate. For example, she says, everyone in the group should be given a topic to discuss so that they go do research about it in order to give their colleagues detailed facts.
She urges students to use this holiday for revision since there is all the time in the vacation where they will be able to do anything they wish.
Collins Odhiambo, a counselor and teacher at Green Hills Academy, Kigali, says this holiday is a time to reflect on teachers’ comments objectively.
He notes that as candidates, this is a period to reflect on one’s future career plans, saying they should use the holiday to improve in areas where they performed poorly.
“Candidates should choose their friends carefully this holiday as it can impact negatively on their performance in the forth coming exams,” Odhiambo states.
He says that it is never too late to make changes, so candidates should use this opportunity to think through their life and academics and make proper decisions that will help them excel.
“Candidates should use this short holiday to share with their peers objectively, and spend more time with friends who are working towards good performance,” says Odhiambo.