If you, as a parent or student, have contemplated the possibility of a competitive exam in the future, then starting preparation from the right time is of paramount importance.
Now setting a foundation will mean different things. It could mean that you start JEE foundation courses in class IX or X. It could mean you amp up your GK by reading a lot of Britannica encyclopedias. It could mean you sharpen your analytical skills by solving riddles. It could mean you solve higher-grade mathematics questions.
Depending on your goal, your foundation will differ. But here is why we think it’s essential to lay one before class XI:
Plenty of time
If you begin form IXth grade, you have 2 full years to get ahead of the pack and be ready when the real preparation time dawns. In this time, you can study a lot of related and unrelated material which will help you to get familiar with the domain.
You might have to give up one hour of playing every day. Or you can carve out a dedicated time slot every weekend.
Pressure tending to zero
Before class XI, students generally have it easy and the only concern is Board exams. They are pressurized by no one w.r.t their studies.
But upon entering class XI, the pressure goes up several notches. All at once, the student has to deal with tuitions, the expectations of parents, competition with peers, and preparation of 2 exams of equal importance. It can be a lot to take in.
Which is why, we believe, students should have a good foundation before they step into class XI. You can take it easy but also reap value. By the time the pressure does begin to build, you’ll have sufficient ground covered to not get all panicky.
Preparation for senior secondary
When you go from class X to XI, you’ll be hit in the face by the difference in syllabi. Both the amount and the type change. What you thought was too much in Xth, will only be one chapter in XIth and XIIth. To top it off, you’ll have tuitions to manage.
So, which one do you think is better? Slowly and gradually coming to study the syllabus? Or being drowned in it all at once?
It might not seem like much right now, but you’ll see the effects of your preparation down the road when your friends would be collapsing under pressure but you’ll be sufficiently prepared.
However, just because it is advisable to prepare for competitive exams beforehand, doesn’t mean one should rush the decision. Some students know which stream they’ll pursue after Xth and some don’t. As a parent or as a student, don’t rush and make a hasty decision only to regret it one or two years later. When you are sure of your choice and your dedication to it, start building the foundation by joining the right courses. If you don’t want to join additional tuitions or coaching classes, you can opt for online courses for class IX and X to create a strong foundation at the right time.
If you need time to decide what to pursue, take your time. It is an investment of your energy, time, and money. Most of all, it is an investment in your life. Make sure it’s a good one.