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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 12:07 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2009 2:21 pm
Posts: 316
Hello,

Just looking for some advice from the English experts!

DS will be sitting for 2/3 selectives in September this year. Our two favourite schools require DS to be up to speed in VR, NVR and English comprehension/grammar (multiple choice format) by mid September. Only if DS is successful in the first round of one of the tests will he be required to sit a second round of exams (in November) which will involve him writing an essay of some sort (school haven't published details of how long he will have to write the essay.) He will also have to sit a mathematics paper at that time.

So, my question is do you think it's reasonable to focus on all of the other disciplines now and leave the actual practice of timed essay writing until nearer the time - for example we will have two clear months between the end of the September tests and the November test (if he is lucky enough to pass) to practice just maths and essay writing.

DS has good vocabulary and we are currently working on grammar and spelling for the first round exam. He also reads alot (with a bit of prodding :D .)We will, however, have to do some serious work on different writing styles (persuasive, report writing etc) as his school only looks at these relatively briefly and also will have to practice the timing aspects.

Is it really risky to leave this until after the summer? There are so many different disciplines to get under our belt now and my feeling is that if he doesn't pass the first round, he won't need to worry anyway :?

I would really appreciate hearing people's views (and I know it depends in significant part on the child but generalisations always welcome :D ).


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 3:20 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
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Location: Herts
Don't wait. Start now. English takes the longest to cook so you do not want to run out of time. Just do a litle bit at a time. Maths can wait but essay writing cannot. DG


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 6:29 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 04, 2010 2:51 pm
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I agree with DG English especially story writing can take some time to develop. Having to write a coherent and interesting story with lots of good vocal in 25-30 mins takes practice. My son went from it taking nearly 2 hours to writing a not very interesting story to writing something which I actually wanted to read in under 30 mins, took months. So use all the time you can on this.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 7:03 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 26, 2011 8:37 pm
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Yes, I agree with the above. It takes them a long time to write a good essay or story as there are so many components: the narrative line; vocabulary; sensory detail and descriptive prose; the structure of the story or essay; thinking on their feet; characterisation and dialogue; punctuation and spelling; grammar; verb tenses; first or third person etc. You want to cover all of these several times over for a child to feel confident on the day at tackling an essay well.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2012 11:49 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2009 2:21 pm
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Thanks for all your replies everyone. Obviously ignorance is bliss but now I know better, we'd better get cracking :D


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 02, 2013 10:43 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 02, 2013 9:48 pm
Posts: 1
Hi,
I am just wondering where to find a list of Essay Topics to use for preparation.
Thanks.
ilona


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