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PostPosted: Fri Dec 11, 2009 5:39 pm 
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I have a friend who has moved to the UK from China with her son. They have been here for nearly two years now and her sons English is pretty good. He has achieved a level 2C. She is concerned that the school is not pushing him enough as she expects him to go to the local grammar school. I think she has just realised that the primary school is not very interested in getting kids into the grammar - only in getting the kids to their targets.
I can advise her on the process of preparing her son for grammar school exam as I have just done that for my eldest DS, but I am not sure how to advise on bringing his English up to a higher standard. Does the exam process take account of English as a second language? He is in yr 4 now.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 14, 2009 8:20 pm 
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bumblebee wrote:
I have a friend who has moved to the UK from China with her son. They have been here for nearly two years now and her sons English is pretty good. He has achieved a level 2C.
I suspect that 2C is at end of year 3 and from my limited experience, you should be looking at level 3 at the end of year 3, KS1 SAT. No doubt others will disagree.

She is concerned that the school is not pushing him enough as she expects him to go to the local grammar school. I think she has just realised that the primary school is not very interested in getting kids into the grammar - only in getting the kids to their targets.
She may be right as most schools focus on their SAT results as that is what they are measured on. Also, I am very aware that many chinese place a very high regard on education and are well noted for their high levels of commitment to good schooling. I think it may be a cultural thing that we could learn from in this country.

I can advise her on the process of preparing her son for grammar school exam as I have just done that for my eldest DS, but I am not sure how to advise on bringing his English up to a higher standard.
Show them this website and let them take the lead themselves. English will be the biggest hurdle as Maths and NVR probably translate relatively easily. Try working through the Bond English books, starting at Third level probably and progressing to Fourth papers when possible.

Does the exam process take account of English as a second language?
I have never heard of any 11 plus exam taking account of English as a second language. Maybe they should?

He is in yr 4 now.
Plenty of time to get the English sorted. Good luck and I hope it goes well. Hopefully others can add to my notes and clarify some issues for you.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 5:06 pm 
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Thank You for taking time to reply Dark Energy. I will certainly guide her to this site; it has been invaluable to me.
I think you are right about the cultural difference in attitude towards education. I think it has been a shock to her how low the target of attainment is in our primary school.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 24, 2009 8:29 am 
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I agree with what has been written above. One thing I would add is that you should ask your friend to encourage her DS to read as wodely as possible. This would increase his vocabulary, grammar and creative writing.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 31, 2009 10:42 am 
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Well I am totally agree with bromley. vocabulary and grammar is most important part to learn the English language.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2010 7:13 am 
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My ex wife is Chinese speaking. Her English (learnt at school from early years) has always been faulty and barely improved in twenty years. I don't think that is a cultural thing since some of my Chinese friends have "perfect" English, more the individual who seldom reads good English and who's taste in television programmes is LCD.

The point I want to make is that our daughters are brilliant at languages and their English is above average. It has been unfashionable to concentrate on grammar, punctuation or indeed syntax in teaching for many years and I have not heard of English literature as a subject in its own right. Using the language correctly only really comes through using it properly under good guidance and familiarity with literary works.


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