Matriculant with 97% average shares her secrets

Christine with her head master, Mr Mellet. [Photo:]
Christine with her head master, Mr Mellet. [Photo:]

Scoring a neat 97% aggregate in the final matric exams placed Christine, who just graduated from Hoërskool De Kuilen in Kuilsrivier, Cape Town, in the second position in South Africa (quintile 5) for matric 2016. 

Let's first pore over her marks: 

  • English Home Language: 99%
  • Afrikaans Huistaal: 96%
  • Mathematics: 98%
  • Information technology: 98%
  • Life sciences: 96%
  • Physical sciences: 95%
  • Life orientation: 99%

No surprise then that she was invited to the prestigious prize-giving event at Vodacom World where minister Angie Motshekga announced the matric results for 2016. We asked Christine a few questions:

What were your favourite subjects?

CV: I love maths and took AdMaths (an advanced mathematics programme) after school too. I find biology particularly interesting, and then I also enjoy the practical aspect of IT.

Did you do any extracurricular activities?

I did fencing at the Tygerberg Fencing club. I also play piano and the drums.

What advice can you give students?

1. Hard word from day one, definitely.

You've got to have endurance and discipline, every single day. Don't fall behind with your homework and assignments, and study hard for each and every class test and exam – that way the final exam isn't so bad at all.

2. It's also important that you find a study method that works for YOU.

For instance, I don't use summaries at all, I need to move around while I'm studying. I often studied on the trampoline or walked around with my text books! 

3. Try to achieve top marks for yourself...

Not for the sake of your teachers or parents. Self-motivation works best.

4. Finally, it's very important to keep your dreams top of mind.

If you keep reminding yourself of your ultimate goal, it will motivate you to excel so you can one day reach your goal.

Any advice for parents?

Support your child without placing any unnecessary pressure on them. There's nothing worse than when a parent or teacher keeps hammering you about your marks. Let your child know that you expect nothing more from them than just giving their best. 

Matric is already generally a stressful year – with driver's licences, exams, study options and career decisions. Ensure that you're always there for your child – with a chocolate, hug or smile.

What are you doing this year?

I'm going to medical school at the University of Stellenbosch. Fortunately the application process went smoothly and I've been accepted.

Apart from being a clever clogs, what do you attribute your excellent matric results to?

Since Grade 7 I've had a small, green froggie pencil top. This little creature has sat on my pen through every single test, assignment and exam... I've always considered it my lucky charm. I suppose he's coming to university too!

Do you have any advice for high school learners, and matrics in particular? Send them to us at and we may publish them.

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