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PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 11:08 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2014 11:01 pm
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hi, experienced parents, please help!!

please can u advise me if any english speaking parent can teach eleven plus comprehension to their kid or a tutor is recommended. i am finding tutor hunting v difficult and tutors disappear without warning. so should parent be exceptionally good at english or degree educated in english subject to be able to teach or anyone with decent english can safely teach comprehension for 11+ exam to their kid? i do not want my kid to lose out and also i am from another country although studied english in school and did my degree and post graduate subjects in english medium. i read newspaper etc in english without any trouble whatsoever.

please advise as i do not want to make my son suffer and yet am tempted to teach myself. thanks a lot for your help in advance.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 1:00 am 
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Joined: Tue Feb 05, 2013 10:27 am
Posts: 46
I think the best judge of that is you.....how do you feel in your ability to teach your son?
I was born and educated here but I struggle with teaching my Dd esp comprehension.
A friend who teaches at primary showed me some great techniques to help my Dd.
Listen to him read a variety of material that will help a great deal. Ask questions to check understanding too.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 4:40 am 
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Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2012 6:08 pm
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Hello. It can be very difficult for parents to know what is required for specific examinations. Children do not always understand passages of text, very often missing meaning that is inferred. A very good reader will naturally fare better than those who do not explore text regularly.

Read different types of passages with your DC and ask a range of questions to ensure what has been understood and to what depth.

Another thing to remember is that the style of questioning on the 11 plus papers varies enormously and what is required for one school/ region is different from what is asked in another, so it is important to download any past papers if they exist so that you can see what is required. Comprehension questions can appear deceptively easy so it is important to ascertain what is being asked and the level of detail needed.

It is possible to DIY - just be sure that you know the style of questioning to expect. There are all sorts of materials sold or which can be viewed online.

If you post up some names of schools you will be considering, or enquire in your regional section you might find a bit of help that way. All the best.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 8:27 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
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Location: Herts
The problem with English as Kingfisher says is that the questions can look easy but you could be missing the point and not realise. Each school has its own style and both parents and tutors can not realise what type of response is required. You need somebody who is experienced with preparing students for the school you are interested in and actually had students win a place this year. Exams all over the country are changing and going in different directions and some tutors and parents don't even realise that formats have changed. All over London and the home counties right now boys will be studying NVR and VR for QE even though this is now the the third year since QE abandoned both and focused on English and Maths. There will also be lots of girls studying NVR for HBS even though this is the third year since HBS abandoned NVR for the Durham CEM test followed by English and Maths. Even if they have not changed subjects schools have upgraded content. DAO has released new papers and different topics like Algebra have appeared on the Maths paper. Last year I encountered lots of students still preparing from the old papers even though the new ones had been out for almost a year. So don't use tutors who are not specialists with strong current connections to the school you want to go to. Insist on speaking personally to a parent who has a Y6 student going to the school who worked with that tutor. In terms of doing it yourself, the VR and the Maths is no problem but you do really have to know what you are doing with the English. Which schools are you interesting in and what year is your dc in? DG


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 12:01 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2010 11:03 am
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There is a lot of diffrence between knowing/ speaking good english and teaching english comprehension. I was not satisfied with the tutor so I took tips from my mother (a language teacher but not in english).

Teach your DC to read fast once then read slowly in detail. Go through the answers and discuss why you think you got them wrong. We both did the bond comprehensions independently and discussed why we chose the answers we did.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 5:23 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:13 am
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modernista wrote:
There is a lot of diffrence between knowing/ speaking good english and teaching english comprehension. I was not satisfied with the tutor so I took tips from my mother (a language teacher but not in english).

Teach your DC to read fast once then read slowly in detail. Go through the answers and discuss why you think you got them wrong. We both did the bond comprehensions independently and discussed why we chose the answers we did.


Quiet agree with modernista. Depends on case by case basis. You can master it yourself if you have the patience, knowledge and understanding of key things to look out for. However, if the parents are themselves confused...it makes the child less confident then. All what you need is a good eye to skim/scan, good vocabulary, courage to read 2 pages of complex passages and ability to narrow down the option (which are usually very close to each other). Try the ones yourself in First Past The Post and you will see what I mean.


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