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How to MEMORISE Science Definitions?

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Who will agree with me that science definitions are a common trait in secondary school science tests and examinations?

I usually do not have problem getting students to learn definitions by heart. Thats what alot of us did and we make sure we “kill” all those definitions questions which aim to award those who take time to study and get these definitions in their head. We call these questions – “sure-kill” questions.

I always thought memorising is the basic and foundation step in different areas of our life.

Dont talk about solving addition, number operations or algebra when we do not even how to write numbers. Basically we just memorise how 1 to 10 are written. Thus, after years of memorising and using of the memorised knowledge, we now know (at the speed of lightning) that 2+3 is equal to a number written this way “5”.

Can you imagine if you go to a doctor and after his diagnosis, he is busy flipping through his medical notes or books, trying to find which medicine to give you. This is because he didnt memorise which medicine works for what illness.  * Gosh!! *

(By the way, this is just a illustration i want to put across how basic memorising stuff are! I DO NOT THINK the above-mentioned doctor will ever be able to get his medical degree NOMATTER how intelligent he is. )

Now, lets set things right once and for all! Yes, i will expect Hannahtuition students to memorise some Science definitions! 🙂

Lets get down to the HOW.

Basically, memorising is a very personal thing. If you learn best in the toilet, please do so. Hehe.

Basically, i memorise by repetition. I will break up a long definition in a few parts and say it OUT to myself. First time, i say out looking at the words then i will cover the words and TEST myself. After a few times, i get it and i move on to the next time. After studying the chapter, i will test myself on the few definitions again. In secondary school, there are only A FEW definitions for each topic. So chill!

Because i so love you (yes, you!… Hannahtuition students. hee), i take time to research on some of the memorising techniques.

In summary, below are some of the methods,

– Grouping

Break down a definition into a few portions. Group the similar objects together to memorise.

I.e , for the definition of isotopes, remember that there are neutron, electron and proton in the defination. These are sub-atomic particles in atoms. So isotopes are atoms.

– Visual affect

Change the way the material is presented so that it’s more funny and unique.

I.e, for the definition of isotopes, imagine 2 atom nucleus. Both atom have the same number of protons. But these 2 atoms have different neutrons! The same number of protons keep jumping up to wave at you! Since the 2 atoms have the same proton number, they are the same element!!

– Repetition

Keep on repeating the definition. Dont only do it in your head. Write it out. Say it out.

– Impact

Usually, we remember certain stuffs vividly when the stuffs relates to certain events that cost a imprint in our memories. Try to make the imaginative story as real as possible.

Usually, my students will remember certain definitions very well after i ask them to stand up and come to the front to lead the class in remembering those definations. hee.


Feel free to talk to me if you seriously want to improve your learning or remembering skills. We can explore together further.

Excuses for not memorising Science definitions will not be entertained. 🙂

Memorising acts on a certain muscle in our brain. 
Like any muscle, the more we use it, the stronger it become.

Feel like sharing some notes on Electricity

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Was browsing through my tuition notes folder and felt like sharing some physics notes.

I have read a lot of guidebooks with detail notes. In fact, there are a lot of pretty good ones. However, it takes a disciplined child to read them thoroughly and digest them.
Also, one of my student asked me “Wah teacher, so many points even in the guidebook, how to memorise ALL?”

Most of my students do not fancy their textbook materials as there are a lot of details.

Teaching some students on electricity now. So i compiled a few key points on this topic.
· V=IR (Main formula in this chapter)

· Identifying Series and parallel circuit

(If you do not know how to differentiate a series and parallel circuits, please PM me.)

Series Circuit

· Ammeter must always connected in series to show reading if not ZERO.

· Rtotal = R1+R2 (series)

· For series, everywhere you put the ammeter, current is the same ( NOT FOR PARALLEL).

Parallel Circuit

· 1/Rt = 1/R1+ 1/R2, It = I1+I2

· In parallel circuit, the more bulbs or resistors, R decrease, I increase.

Circuit symbols – Be familiar with these symbols


· Nichrome has higher R than Cu.

More heating effect.  I decreases, less bright if nichrome is used.

Resistance depends on

(a) length of conductor

(b) cross-sectional area of conductor

(c) temp of conductor

(d) type of conductor ( Please note that silver has better conductivity than copper and gold. But it is seldom used as conductors/wires because it oxidise easily. Although gold has a lower conductivity than copper, it is used extensively in semiconductor chips because its reactivity is very low.)

Short circuit

A short circuit is an abnormal connection between two nodes of an electric circuit intended to be at different voltages. (Wikipedia)

This results in an excessive current, causing overheating, circuit damage, fire and maybe explosion.

***A common type of short circuit occurs when the positive and negative terminals of a battery are connected with a low-resistance conductor, like a wire. ***

***Often comes out in tests and exams***

Calculating Electrical Power

Electrical power(W) = Energy converted (J)/Time (s)

Electrical energy used = electrical power (kW) * Time (hr)

Cost = Electrical energy used (kWh) * Electricity rate

Woo hoo! Another testimony !!

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I received this image via watsapp yesterday. I am so happy for this girl and there was a sense of achievement all over me.

By the way, I only taught her Mathematics and Science. She did well in both.  🙂

She did well in her Home economics and English too. I believe its the positive attitude in her that leads to the manifestation of good grades. Besides good grades, I am very happy that she enjoys school, her cca, other school activities and has a lot of friends. *Reminds me of my secondary school days.**

I got her permission to post it in my blog.

Well done! Keep it up!

Another milestone. Badge recognition for students.

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My husband asked me if i also participated in Singapore Science Centre “Are you a young Scientist?” program in primary school.

I certainly did as i love Science. And i managed to collect a lot of badges too.





My husband was crazy about those badges too and our discussion brought back fond memories and prompted me to do something for my students.

I usually give tests to my students randomly, especially after teaching them a new topic to ascertain their understanding.

Woke up early this morning and did this for one of my girl.

Hope this ‘badge’ motivate her as much as the young scientist badges did for me. 🙂

I believe there will be revised versions of badges along my tuition journey. I want to document this down. One day i shall look back at this original version and see how far i have progressed..   🙂

MCQs on Sexual Reproduction in Human Beings

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Attention all hannahtuition Science students,

please attempt the following MCQs after you recieve my watsapp, sms, or any mobile message. 🙂

You may either write on piece of paper OR copy and paste these equations with your answers on the comment below.

We will go through this in the next lesson. Enjoy!


1. What is the purpose of reproduction?

(A) To produce new species

(B) To increase the numbers of organisms

(C) To ensure the continuation of the species

(D) To divide cells

2. Humans reproduce by .

(A) Sexual reproduction

(B) Bisexual reproduction

(C) In-vitro fertilization

(D) Simple cell division


3. During sexual reproduction, .

1: fertilization must occur

11: the offspring are not the same as the parents

111: a single parent cell divides into two new cells

IV: two specialized cells are involved

(A) l and IV only

(B) II and III only

(C) I, II, IV only

(D) all of the above



Questions 4 to 6 refer to the following options.


4. Which diagram shows a male sex cell

5. Which diagram shows a female sex cell?

6. Which diagram shows an organism that reproduces by simple cell division?

Questions 7 and 8 refer to the following options.

(A) Uterus (B) Testes (C) ovary (D) Oviduct

7. Where are human sperms produced?

8. Where are human eggs produced?

9. Which of the following cannot move across the placenta from the mother to the developing embryo?

(A) food (a) water (6) Carbon dioxide (D) Red blood cells

10. When a human sperm fuses with a human egg, how many chromosomes will the fertilized egg have?

(A) 23 single chromosomes

(B) 23 pairs of chromosomes

(C) 46 single chromosomes 

(D) 46 pairs of chromosomes

11. What is being developed if a single fertilized egg divides in two embryos?

(A) 2 boys (B) 2 girls (C) One boy and one girl (D) two identical boys or girls  

12. What substance causes physical changes In a boy during puberty?

(A) Sperm (B) Semen (C) Testosterone (D) Oestrogen

13. In a 28-day menstrual cycle, ovulation occurs at days _______

(A) l to 5 (B) 13 to 15 (c) 19 to 21 (D) 25 to 28

14. Human sex cells have 23 single chromosomes. How many chromosome(s) is/are involved in deciding the sex of the child

(A) 1 (B) 2 (C) 22 (D) 13

15. Human egg cells contain an X chromosome. Human sperm cells either have an X chromosome or a Y chromosome. What combination of X and Y chromosomes must be found in the normal cells of a adult female?

(A) XX (B) XY (C) YX (D) YY

16. Which part of the male reproductive system carries sperm and urine at different times?

(A) Scrotum

(B) Sex glands

(C ) Urethra

(d) Sperm duct


That’s all, folks. 🙂