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 Post subject: KES exam
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 10:01 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:42 pm
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Location: Birmingham
Does anyone have any info on the type of work needed for the KES exam in January? What type of maths are we looking at: nfer style? Sats type? Or are they more problem solving like KEGS? What type of resources best suit this exam? My DS is not a scholarship candidate, but out of interest, what kind of questions are scholarship questions?

I know there is a writing exercise and reading for English. I guess practice in different topics and more descriptive writing is what is needed here. I am assuming that the VR is standard Nfer style but not sure.

How does it compare, in terms of difficulty, with the KEGS exams? Is the 'pass mark' higher?

Sorry, I know that is a lot of questions but any suggestions for any of the above would be greatly appreciated - despite DS's apparent 'confidence' whenever he comes out of an exam, he often misses the point under pressure and KES is probably our only hope.

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 Post subject: Re: KES exam
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:27 pm 
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Hi UmSusu

With regard to the maths, I think the bonds and GL assessement papers are quite safe practice resources as these were largely what we relied upon. The level of difficulty rises throughout the paper with several problem solving questions, but the time constraints are not as tough as KEGS. However, students are expected to show working out and failure to do so results in marks being deducted; conversley, a wrong answer may still be awarded the majority of marks if the working out process is sound. With regard to the scholarship questions, I have nothing concrete to offer (as my son is pretty hopeless at recollecting exam papers afterwards!) but they are very hard and it is expected only the gifted will be able to manage them. My son is actually very good at maths - he secured a place at Camp Hill - but said the last 5 questions on the paper were beyond him.

The English paper consists of a comprehension with lots of deductive/inference type questions and very few of the literal kind. For the writing activity, quality is definitely more important than quantity.Powerful description and pace/imagination is important. A few punctuation errors here and there will be overlooked if the substance of the writing is good. Children should seek to 'show' rather 'tell' , where possible.
The VR is fairly traditional I believe, although last year a lot of the children said there were lots of types they had never come across before, so vary resources as much as possible . The vr score is only looked at if the child is a 'borderline candidate'.

Generally, the test has a far less pressurised feel to it, and children are less likely to leave pages of unanswered questions than with kegs! So to that extent, children will often argue it is easier. But the standard are high and the child will have to demonstrate a very good all round standard of education.


Last edited by succeed on Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: KES exam
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:42 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 27, 2008 9:51 pm
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I would suggest that you also do some indie past papers, many indies have them on their web site. Last year when I asked fm's advice for maths practice for our daughter for the KEHS exam she suggested Perse girls, Dulwich, Habs boys and Manchester Grammar in that order (with firm instructions not to rush straight into MGS). But not all of those come with answers I don't think.

Mike


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 Post subject: Re: KES exam
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:45 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:42 pm
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Location: Birmingham
Thank you Succeed :D

That has cleared things up a lot. I am glad you told me about showing the working out for maths because that would be something he is likely to ignore in an exam. I guess we are probably on the right track although we will need to look for some more VR resources

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 Post subject: Re: KES exam
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:54 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:42 pm
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Location: Birmingham
mike1880 wrote:
I would suggest that you also do some indie past papers, many indies have them on their web site. Last year when I asked fm's advice for maths practice for our daughter for the KEHS exam she suggested Perse girls, Dulwich, Habs boys and Manchester Grammar in that order (with firm instructions not to rush straight into MGS). But not all of those come with answers I don't think. Mike


Thanks Mike,

The Indie papers sound like a good idea. I did try the MGS papers a couple of months ago but I think it was too early and it didn't go very well :cry: they are tough papers!

Do you have any idea what a respectable mark might be on them?

I think I will go back and start earlier in the list before I come back to them.

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UmSusu


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 Post subject: Re: KES exam
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 3:19 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2011 2:09 pm
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Location: Birmingham
Sorry to barge into this discussion but the topic also has interest to me as both my kids are due to sit for KES and I found this information very valuable. Also I wish to add if the same preparation is enough for other 'local' indies -Warwick Grammer for Boys and Solihull School?

Thanks


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 Post subject: Re: KES exam
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 11:34 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 12:06 pm
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Location: Birmingham
The Indie exams are not so much of a 'mystery' as the others.

Each school, incl. KES will send out a full sheet of explanation once you have registered.
Some even recommend practice papers.

I understand that the Chief Master said today at KES that VR scores are only really considered for borderline candidates - the school is really looking for candidates who are well-educated with strong Maths and English (including writing) skills.
They also take into account Primary/Prep school reports, and in certain cases, an interview with the child.

Edit - my ds1 forgot to add any paragraphs at all during his Solihull writing paper. Personally, I would have failed him :evil: but he was offered a place...


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