The Western Cape Education Department has created a matric support portal which helps pupils to access exam study tips and more. File picture
Cape Town - Matric mock exams are in progress at schools across the province in preparation for the final exams in November.

The pressure to put down your phone and pick up textbooks has increased, but learners may be able to hold on to their screens and access tools to help them ace exams online.

The Western Cape Education Department has created a matric support portal which helps pupils to access exam study tips, blank study timetables and documents with lists of the main concepts that learners need to know for each subject.

If online platforms aren’t your thing, you can follow the advice of education experts and principals who are using the strategies below to prepare learners.

Progressive Principals Association president and Sans Souci Girls’ High principal Rushda O’Shea said the school was focused on showing appreciation and support to their matriculants to ensure hey did not feel too pressured, to the detriment of their mental health.

“Last week we gave each of the girls a chocolate to say we’re thinking about them and they could have it for energy when studying. We also had a picnic in the quad, to let them relax and feel special We put them under a lot of pressure. All that’s coming at them is that they should be studying, and no one really understands what they’re feeling. We have a psychologist at school and we encourage the girls to speak to her if they’re feeling pressured,” she added.

O’Shea said that apart from additional classes offered to pupils, speakers from various institutions come to speak to them, to motivate and excite them about the prospect of tertiary education.

Cedars High school principal David Charles said the school did the same, encouraging learners about their future.

“Our mock exams start on Thursday. We are encouraging them to apply to tertiary institutions because they need to have something to look forward to. Absenteeism is a big hiccup. They come with sick notes, but we don’t want them absent at this time because it’s crucial.”

Education lecturer at the University of Pretoria and a co-founder of the literacy coalition Literacy in Our Lifetime, Athambile Masola, said parents’ support was crucial and the best advice she could give parents of matriculants was to give their children time off chores to focus on their studies.

Masola’s advice for teenagers with no support at home is that they should “find other people to support you, and be as prepared as possible by using past papers to study”.

“In terms of mental health, they need to sleep well. Also, exercise, even if it’s walking.” 

To access online resources to aid your studies, visit


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Cape Argus