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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2011 5:47 pm 
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Has anyone had experience of putting their kids in for mock 11+ exams? I've read a thread on here somewhere about a tuition centre in Edgbaston who did them, but weren't recommended very highly. There is also a group who hold their mocks in Shirley and I was wondering about putting my Yr5 daughter in for one. She's very distractable (dyslexia) and I thought that being in a big group taking an exam might be a useful exercise for her. I realise that it's unlikely that they will be able to anticipate the tests fully because of the Durham approach. Has anyone found it useful for their child to take one or heard of others with experience of mocks?


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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2011 7:18 pm 
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Location: Birmingham
Yes my ds1 (now in CH) and ds2 (in Yr 5) have taken mocks. Whilst the analysis is interesting, it didn't, in all honesty, tell me anything 'new' about their strengths and weaknesses.
But in the case of ds1, the low score he received in one area did motivate him to try harder.
Ultimately I think the experience of an exam setting was/is very useful for them.

It is also very useful for DIY parents as an independent analysis of their child's progress compared with other children the same age, and for home-schoolers whose children may not have experienced a group/class setting.


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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2011 9:51 pm 
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Thanks for the reply um. My daughter is Yr5 and I was thinking of a July mock. When did your Yr5 son take his?


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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2011 10:26 pm 
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Location: Birmingham
Last week!


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PostPosted: Thu May 26, 2011 10:40 pm 
Best piece of advice I can pass on is that if you have your heart set on a particular grammar(or indie school) that is based on an entrance exam, make sure that school's test is not the first one your dc sits. Get used to pressure, atmosphere, disturbance, cd, somewhere else first.


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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 12:15 pm 
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Location: Not in a hole in the ground but in a land where once they dwelt-the Beormingas
Out of interest, are there any entrance exams that are CEM assessment and take place before B'ham KEGS that you can apply to?



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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 1:22 pm 
stratford upon avon for girls and boys...check catchment area, I think you have to be around 17miles, ring Warwickshire LEA for further information. This is done in October, nearly a month before KE brum exams.


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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 1:24 pm 
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Warwickshire is the month before KE. You don't have to be within the 17 mile circle to take it. But you WILL have to be quite on the ball to register (the forms come out at the beginning of July and have to be back within a few days) and you won't get results until March (which is at least one step better than KE!). I put our daughter in for it last year as familiarisation. She would say it was helpful, I would say I doubt it made much (if any) difference. But I have too much on my plate at the moment to argue the point with the Foundation about being given her KE results so I can't say for certain. (By the way - if you do put your child in for Warks, bear in mind that the invigilator may engage him/her in small talk after the exam and ask about things like school choices which can be quite an awkward moment for them :oops: )

There are imho a few things you have to think about when considering this kind of thing:

1) Mock exams, familiarisation, etc., are often about the parent's needs, not the child's (guilty :oops: ).

2) If the mock exam experience is challenging (which a CEM test might be) how will your child react to doing it all again a few weeks later? For some it can be helpful (i.e. the motivation aspect um talks about) but for others it can undermine confidence - and for our eldest, for example, performance in any situation is 80% about confidence and 20% about ability (0% about effort because there never is any).

3) Adrenaline can be helpful.

Saying all that, I put our son in for the BV exam (we did end up putting it on our form but we didn't intend to originally) and our daughter in for Warks. While they do mock SATS at school, so are used to taking tests to some extent, I don't think that adequately reflects the conditions of going somewhere you've never been before, taking a test of a type you've never seen before, surrounded by strangers.

Mike


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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 1:40 pm 
its seems such a long time ago now...we entered DS in for the stratford purely for him to get used to the pressure pot of the exam room and all the things that go with it. It also gave us a chance of a nice cream tea nearby.

Despite being told otherwise, our DS came out of the exam and said he found the stratford exam easy, and was also offered a place. The general advice being offered by a few this time last year was that if a child found these exams easy then they would not pass and vice versa.

I think with all things it is very much horses for courses.

Good luck. I think there are 75 places offered for the boys stratford school.

If you live within the catchment area and gain the automatic qualifying mark, then you are offered a place.


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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2011 2:52 pm 
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no_ball wrote:
Despite being told otherwise, our DS came out of the exam and said he found the stratford exam easy, and was also offered a place.


Strictly speaking, I think you mean "would have been offered a place" - but you had an offer from a higher preference. Pedantic - me?

Mike


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