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 Post subject: Indie comprehension help
PostPosted: Mon Sep 12, 2016 9:21 am 
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My DD will be sitting Indie exams in January - mostly consortium (SHHS, Channing, FH). Her maths is sound and creative writing is good, but she is totally struggling with comprehension. Yesterday she did the 2011 consortium paper (Arlington Park) and I would be surprised if she got above 20%. Although her continuation really captured the feel of the story, her comprehension answers were really superficial and completely missed the point of the story. She is at a state primary and this sort of inference just isn't daughter there.

Any help appreciated, I'm starting to panic, which I know isn't helpful!


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:58 pm 
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You have 3 months which is enough time. We started indie prep after state selection tests were over. Also from state primary that didn't scratch the surface on technique.

It may help to follow the PEE process for each comprehension question:

P - state the relevant point
E - cite the example from the text
E - explain in her own words how point relates to example to show she understands the question.

Another thing is to understand the differences in the question types to know how to answer. 'In your own words' means rephrase using different words, 'find the text' often involves quoting, and so on.

Can also try to tailor depth and length of response to the indicated number of matks.

All/any of this might help her start to structure her responses.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2016 11:52 am 
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My son had similar problems with comprehension when preparing for last year's 11+. I'd suggest practising verbally with any material your daughter might be interested in - fiction, magazine articles, websites, etc, and asking questions/having a discussion that tests her understanding of the text and ability to pick out key facts, themes and inferences. I also did this when we were listening to radio programmes in the car, or watching TV - not just news programmes but anything, whether Horrible Histories or Bake Off! It's definitely worth doing test papers, but also something that can be practised in everyday life.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 15, 2016 5:47 am 
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Are there any books that teach literary analysis at this level or the way of answering various types of comprehension questions, showing what is expected in different types of questions, pointing in the right direction?


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 15, 2016 6:13 am 
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Location: Herts
Arlington Park is a perfect example of how different preparing for an advanced standard format comprehension paper is to preparing for multiple choice Comprehension like QE and CEM.

I would love to know just how many of the North London Consortium applicants in 2011 were actually able to grasp the very adult concepts in this passage. It is a great example of how what appears to be a straightforward passage on the surface is really about something quite different and if you do not understand the passage you will also not be able to write the correct composition from the passage,

Any student who managed to even partly understand it and convey that understanding would have certainly made it to interview. DG


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 15, 2016 1:46 pm 
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Can anyone point me to a link please for the Arlington Park comprehension. I can't seem to find it.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2016 2:27 pm 
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Arlington Park was NLC Group II 2011 - http://www.godolphinandlatymer.com/_fil ... sh2011.pdf

When DD tried it, most of the questions just flew over her head, however when she did the composition, she captured the atmosphere perfectly (bangs head). I wonder what the pass mark was that year.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2016 3:59 pm 
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But how would she have grasped the alienation aspect in the composition if she did not first recognise it in the text? DG


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2016 4:30 pm 
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Honestly, I do not know. I just checked and the last line of her composition was "I had to face through another day of misery, loneliness and isolation," which I thinks sums up the atmosphere perfectly.

However, her answers to the comprehension were really superficial e.g. that the shops gave the impression that Arlington Park was part of a city, but not adding anything on atmosphere or how the main character felt.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2016 12:48 pm 
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Thank you Ibbotson, that is a very difficult comp for a 10 year old.


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