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Class 10 CBSE toppers say that their families and teachers helped them cope with stress

“Solve at least 20-30 mock papers per subject before the Boards,” advises Apeejay School, Panchsheel Park topper



The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) declared the Board exam results for classes X and XII on May 12, 2023. The overall pass percentage for the class X result this year is 93.12 percent, which is a dip from last year. This year, girls have performed better than boys by 1.98 per cent.

Mehul Jain, who ranked No 1 with 98.2 per cent at Apeejay School, Panchsheel Park, has opted for PCM and plans to pursue engineering. He also aspires to take the Civil Services exam. Jain said, “The result came out of the blue. We were in school and had no way to know the marks. I came back home and checked: I was thrilled with my marks. I had worked hard, and I was happy it paid off.”

He scored 99 in Math and Social Science, 97 in Science and French, and 96 in English. Jain asserted, “Math is all about daily practice. Students also need to consult other books as well. We must solve mock papers too. I used to try and create an environment where I felt I was sitting in the exam center; I would put a timer on for three hours. The Triangles chapter questions take longer to solve. One has to attempt the other questions faster to do these. This comes with daily practice.”

Tanush Gupta, who scored an aggregate of 97.6 per cent and ranked No 2, is pursuing PCM in class XI. “While I am happy with the result, I feel that I could have done better. This is because there is always scope for improvement,” Gupta said.

Neil Virmani, who ranked No 3 with an aggregate of 96.4 per cent, is happy and satisfied with his result as he knew he had made some mistakes in the exam paper and thus was expecting to lose some marks. “I got 98 in English, 92 in Math, 95 in Science, 91 in French, and 97 in Social Science. Besides this, I had opted for Artificial Intelligence and scored a 100,” Virmani said, who has opted for PCM with Computer Science as he added, “I want to pursue engineering after class XII.”

Tied with Virmani is Rik Roy Chowdhury with an aggregate of 96.4 per cent. “I scored 95 in Science and French, 97 in Social Science, 96 in Math, and 99 in English. I have now opted for Science (non-medical) with Economics. I want to do engineering, but I also want to keep my options open for now,” Chowdhury said.

Success mantra

Gupta said that he owes his great result to the support he got from his family, teachers, and friends. “I am so grateful for their support all through. So much so, I feel extremely obliged to take this opportunity to express my gratitude here. They haven’t just helped me achieve marks but also learn more about life. A really big thanks to all of them,” Gupta shared.

Virmani’s success mantra was sheer hard work and regularity. “The main key to my good score was reading NCERT thoroughly for theory subjects as our teachers used to tell us that NCERT is the Bible for us during Board exams,” he said and shared that for the numerical portion, he studied from NCERT followed by some help books. “Before the Board exams, I also solved sample papers to complete my exam preparation,” he stated.

Study plan

Jain asserted that self-study is the best way to move ahead. “It must be part of a student’s routine. I didn’t take any tuition. But my teachers came through and helped me clear my doubts. From day one, I would study two to three hours. In December, I increased this time to five to six hours a day. From February, it was seven to eight hours, and most of it was spent on revision,” Jain stated. He also solved 20-30 mock papers per subject before the Boards began.

Everyone tells you that if you are taking the Boards – class X or XII – there must be a study plan in place. This will ensure that the student knows where and what to study. Gupta too had a strategy. “I read the NCERT books as many times as I could from page 1 to the last page without leaving even a single word unread. I did this thoroughly,” Gupta said.

Virmani followed a simple plan. “I tried to finish my syllabus of all subjects by mid-January, and after that, I solved sample papers. My teachers and parents also motivated me and provided me with all the necessary guidance whenever I needed it,” Virmani said.

Chowdhury, unlike his topper peers, only got serious about the exams after the first pre-Boards. “To begin with, I used to study for five to six hours. And later, I increased this study pattern,” he said.

Tackling stress

Yes, there was stress, Jain said, as this was the first time taking this kind of test. “The anxiety was more related to how the question papers would be and how tough they would be. My teachers really helped a lot. Sangeeta ma’am used to send us Math mock papers which I diligently did. The same was provided by the SST teacher,” Jain shared and added that his family was supportive as well. “They tried to provide the best possible environment in which I could study,” Jain said.

Chowdhury, like his peers, was stressed about the Boards. But he dealt with it in a unique manner. He loves to play the flute and piano. “These two instruments really came to my aid if I got anxious. I also took small breaks in between studies,” Chowdhury voiced and advised those taking the exam in 2024 should not be stressed. “Just take one step at a time and get your concepts clarified. This can be done by watching some videos to understand what the book was trying to say,” Chowdhury disclosed.

Shalini is an Executive Editor with Apeejay Newsroom. With a PG Diploma in Business Management and Industrial Administration and an MA in Mass Communication, she was a former Associate Editor with News9live. She has worked on varied topics - from news-based to feature articles.