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 Post subject: written exam
PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2009 12:16 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2009 12:44 pm
Posts: 51
My DS takes the 11plus in a couple of months and is doing well with his prep but we are having problems with the 30 minute written piece. At school his creative and other written work is really very good and he uses complex sentences and sophisticated punctuation perfectly happily.
But...
Under time pressure he seems to go to pieces and "cant think of anything".
Considering they only have thirty minutes to consider the title and genre and plan the piece and make sure it includes all the skills that need to be shown, it seems a big task to him.
We practice and he does badly and then gets demoralised. He can barely give me more than half a page of uninspired flat writing and spends a fair amount of time looking out of the window thinking.
He is starting to worry about this and I am running out of ideas to help him. I usually go back over what he's written and show him how things could have been written differently/better but I am beginning to think this might be unhelpful.
How many marks are given to the written piece and how can I help him to improve?
We are in Dorset and its GL nfer.
:?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2009 4:03 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:55 pm
Posts: 851
Location: Bexley
Ah, boys and writing ..... how much sleep have I lost over that!

Generally, I believe if something isn't working it's time to take a different approach. Instead of getting him to do more writing, what about just giving him a title/subject and getting him to talk to you about what he would put? Sounds as if he's good with the actual mechanics of writing but could do with coming up with the ideas more quickly and under pressure.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2009 4:31 pm 
My DS was very similar - too much thinking about it. It seemed that the more he thought, the more the ideas dried up or got discarded after several false starts.
It all changed after he started reading the Alex Rider books - then his pen couldnt keep up with the flow. Unfortunately his spelling has now gone to pot , but you cant have everything!
Try & find some exciting books for him to read & hopefully the ideas will start flowing again. Also point out the bits that are good - 'I like the way you did ...' etc
Good luck


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2009 4:43 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2006 1:29 pm
Posts: 1805
Location: Berkshire
I agree with rosered100.

Try to get him to read some inspiring books, which in turn will get the ideas flowing.

I purchased many sets from bookpeople, which stayed in thier boxes. As soon as DS2 read Artemis Fowl, that was the opening to him reading everything in sight. (We know when he's disappeared that he's got his head stuck in a book somewhere. )

Has immensely helped him with his ideas and vocab, but sadly not with his writing... still flying off the line instead of on it :roll:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2009 7:01 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2009 12:44 pm
Posts: 51
Thanks for your replies and good advice. I think talking about what we would write is a very good idea and I shall try that. I found a couple other threads here also which had good ideas like having pre prepared characters and scenarios to draw on.
Thank you so much. :)


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