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PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 10:54 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2011 1:20 pm
Posts: 34
Hi. I've been reading the site (daily) for a while now, and have found it extremely helpful and informative, and this is the first time I have posted a question. My DD will be sitting for KE in Nov this year, and is getting some home 'input' from me. She is old for her year, a very able student at school, and enjoys rising to a challenge. However, I don't want to 'over do' the work at home.

To find out which Bond books to use, I asked a friend whose DD sat the exam in Nov 2010 and had a tutor. I was told '9-10'. Unfortunately her daughter was unsuccessful in gaining a place at grammar school. My DD is doing these books already and getting scores of 85-97% (English is the lowest). I had assumed from previous posts that we would need to get to the 11-12 level books prior to the exam.

I'm doing some Yr6 maths with her which she is enjoying and playing word games to boost her vocabulary etc. Can any one please give some advice as to what else I should be doing, and what level of Bond book (an easy reference guide) we should be working towards.

Many thanks.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2011 11:18 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 12:06 pm
Posts: 2093
Location: Birmingham
I assume you're talking about Bond Maths?
In which case you certainly would be best getting past 'Bond 5th papers' before the exam and should be way past 3rd papers already.

Whilst Bond English has some useful practice, particularly the '10 minute tests' fourth and fifth papers, it is generally not that relevant to the KE exam and you would be better working to raise her overall literacy level, vocabulary and comprehension. See other posts or the 'English' forum for more ideas.

Best wishes


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 10:52 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2011 1:20 pm
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Thank you um. Just ordered some new books! My DD will have a good go at anything new but like all kids gets frustrated when she can't do things.... she likes to get as close to 100% as possible! I wanted her to be confident with doing the workbooks before ramping up the levels to give her a bit of a stretch. It seems from your reply that we should already have done this..... so starts a new chapter in the process of trying to succeed in the 11+. She has older friends who have just had 11+ success and that has inspired her even more to work towards her goal of a place at KECHG. I think the timing is right now to move up a gear. Thanks for giving me the push I needed!


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 11:23 am 
If a child is scoring about 90% in tests, then they are probably learning nothing from doing them as they are merely tackling work they can already do. Arguably it may be making them slightly faster/more accurate but it is keeping them in their comfort zone.

Instead of using Bond Maths as tests, I use them as workbooks to identify gaps in the child's knowledge to then try to fill then. I don't record the score. I actually like the fact that some of the questions will be too challenging for some. It is better they get used to coping with challenging work in the home (and having the occasional meltdown) than they enter the KE exam thinking they will be able to do everything in it and having a meltdown when they discover they can't.

Rather than practise stuff they can already do or try to cover every minute detail of what might arise in the exam, you should encourage the child out of her comfort zone and give her variety.

Many of my pupils struggle their way through 10-11 maths but oddly enough make a better job of 11-12 because they have raised their game and are less inclined to give up when encountering something unfamiliar.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 11:28 am 
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Thank you fm. That's what I knew deep down but needed to hear from someone else! :)


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 1:38 pm 
our personal success lay with doing as many different type of papers as possible. Left Bond by end of July 2010 before the stratford exam in oct. Variety is key coupled with DC's attitude. Don't overdo it at all. Know when to back off if diy-ing.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 2:20 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 19, 2008 7:33 am
Posts: 125
Location: Sutton Coldfield
Hi Sasa,

It really is doing a variety of maths - different books, different papers (many 11+ entry papers available from other schools sites), different maths problems that require a little more thinking etc. You would be better prepared if you covered a broader range of questions.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2011 5:29 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2011 1:20 pm
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Thank you. We have been doing some work from a year 6 Target Maths book, and I have some IPS 11+ maths tests that we haven't tackled yet. I suppose doing those papers (and expecting to find big gaps in knowledge) would give a good starting point to the scope of work still to do. I think we'll try one over the weekend.....

She does VR lessons at school but is probably covering things that are not in the KE exams, so are probably of not much use to us except for general brain training! On the advice of a post I read somewhere on this site I have purchased Wordshark so she can try the various puzzles on there - with increasing complexity of the vocab used. Any other suggestions?

It's such a minefield - wanting to get up to speed on things, but not wanting to 'hot house'. I really want her to be prepared for what the exams entail, but feel that if she's to get into KE then it should be on her own merit, not because she's been pushed into it.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 10:48 am 
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Joined: Sun May 09, 2010 12:04 pm
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sasa wrote:
She does VR lessons at school but is probably covering things that are not in the KE exams, so are probably of not much use to us except for general brain training!


Hello sasa,

Please, may I know in which school your DD go to? A prep school? It is curious that they don't update to the content of the actual KE exam, though I begin to feel that pratice in traditional VR is still a kind of practice for close test, even though it is no in the right format... It is still playing with words and spelling, isn't it? (but unfortunately without the context).

I am asking this question because I am trying to understand more about private primary schools... for my grandchildren! :lol: My DS, at the moment in year 5 , missed the boat for private education at primary level :( .. But I have a DD at university... and the years are passing quickly, so I want to be well armed for my grand-DC!!! :lol: :lol:

In a nutshell, what is your feeling and retrospect of your child in a prep school? Is there still as many 'day of fun' as in state schools?... My DS is starting a DT week today... and no proper work will again be done this week :twisted: :twisted:

a frustrated mum! :oops:


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 9:38 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2011 1:20 pm
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JaneEyre

Yes my DD is at an indie school, where most of the children continue at the school into year 7 and beyond. The 11+ verbal reasoning prep done at school is therefore to prepare them for their own 11+ tests, and not for the KE exams.

Regarding your question about private education for primary aged children, I can only say that we have been very happy with the choices we have made….

We hadn’t really contemplated educating our two DDs privately as we have some excellent state school locally. However, we realised that our DD1 would miss out on starting school with her peers (they were summer babies, she was late and arrived in September), and decided to enrol her at the local indie to make the most of their excellent pre-school programme. It soon became clear that she was at least keeping up with her peers at school despite being part-time in a pre-school class. When the time came to decide what to do for full-time schooling, and having looked carefully at what else was on offer, we decided to keep her in the independent sector. We were worried that a bright but quiet child may be overlooked in a class of 30. Time moved on and naturally her sister joined her at the school too.

We now have DDs in years 5 and 3 and have been seriously thinking about where they will best be suited for their secondary education. It would be easy for DD1 to stay at the school she is in where I am sure she would do very well. However, we are very lucky in our region for our children to have the chance to attend some of the very best Grammar Schools in the country. We feel that the chance for our DD to be educated among 120 or so other girls of at least equal academic ability is something we cannot ignore. Obviously the chance to give up paying school fees is also very attractive! I can almost see me getting some new curtains! :D

Do I feel that DD1 has had a better education because she is at an indie? NO. But do I feel that each child in the class is allowed to work at the level they need to reach their potential, be that with extra learning support, or targeted work to stretch the more able students? YES. This is I am sure largely due to the smaller class sizes, and the reduced bureaucracy for teaching staff (we have many teachers at the who have got fed up with the paper-work getting in the way of teaching in the state sector).

Do I feel that the ultimate outcome of my DD1s endeavours to gain KE success will have been helped by her having attended an idie? Probably not. I think that parental support and the attitude of the child are key to the success of a child in primary education, whether your aim is to gain 11+ success, or finally getting the penny to drop in reading/maths etc.

None of us taking part in the experiment known as ‘bringing up children’ have the chance to see what would happen if we had had an identical child going through an alternative education system. Who is to say that our DD wouldn’t be as bright and motivated had she gone through the state education system? The only thing that is certain is that we’d have been financially better off!!

sasa


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