It is great that my DD scored okay on the Walsall exam, but I thought this might share / provide some useful context / actual evidence of progression along the way, if your starting your Journey for next years 11 plus.
For those of you familiar with the bond materials you will know they do a placement test (free).
We carried out this test at home in an initial assessment style (not timed for Oct 14). The test was broken down into 4 areas and four levels 1-4. I assessed DD in October 2014 and then again using exactly the same test April 15 (she had forgotten she had done the assessment paper by this point. At the time October 14 I guess it must have been well into the first term of Yr5. The Oct paper was done without time pressure, whereas the same paper done in Apr 15 was done under strict home exam conditions.
I think this shows several things. My articulation of bond papers was that we were stuck at around the 80 - 85%, right up to the 1 July, could be a bit crude as this was just an average. Also I have said in recent posts that Math was her strongest suite, but look what the actual historic evidence shows. I had even forgot that we embarked on a Maths rectification programme at the start of year 5.
My general view is that it is the level 3 and 4 questions that are the difficulty level she will have encountered in the real exam, with some Lvl4 being above potentially. The bond placement test is public domain so you can have a look at the questions by level at your leisure.
other observations are
- she is better in some areas than others and it is well worth doing these placements as pointers for where you are, to help you focus effort on - particularly if your at start of year 5 now.
- you can see the impact of regular tuition between Oct 14 and Apr 15 particularly on the Lvl3 / 4 scores for harder type questions. Also the focus on maths rectification over those six months.
- DD school had a poor Ofsted report hanging over its head and was specifically hammered for its maths teaching. Look at how DD's maths scores fall off a cliff at bond level 3 at the beginning of year 5, Oct 14. Even after working on maths the Lvl 4 scores don't improve massively but the level 3 does (which is probably what matters)
- We embarked on a maths rectification programme which targeted specific areas as a result (these were area and volume, conversion, scales, negative numbers, fractions, and interchange between %, fraction, decimal 75%/ 3 quarters / 0.75)
- teacher said she would be bored in class if we carried on with the maths programme (and yep she was duly bored senseless), but the teacher was a good inspirational role model and she really helped with speed training within the constraints of the National curriculum.
I said I thought a hybridised approach to supporting 11+ was essential and I think this post had made me think that is right even more. I hope some current year 5 will find some comfort in this, if they are able to do the placement test and compare their DC assessed levels with the final outcome we have managed to achieve. I genuinely believe doing it this way is better than Bond books in the backs of a car on Upper Forster street on the day of the test.
Sorry for the rather long post. We have weekly data feedback sheets from tuition showing % each week, so I will dig out as many of those as possible analyse the data and see if that is broadly consistent, with what these two placement tests show.
BTW all of this was done at home with me getting up at 5am for a two hour commute to work for most of this period, so I do believe it is possible to find the time and you don't need to pay for tuition. If your motivated just put aside one Saturday and it will probably motivate you and help focus your support.
Hope it proves useful to someone
Final outcome (Walsall 350+)
October 14 score(Lvl) April 15 scores (Lvl)
Lvl1 - 70% (Oct 14 score) 100% (apr 15 score)
Lvl2 - 90% 80%
Lvl3 - 80% 90%
Lvl4 - 30% 70%
Lvl1 - 90% 100%
Lvl2 - 80% 70%
Lvl3 - 30% 80%
Lvl4 - 10% 30%
Lvl1 - 90% 100%
Lvl2 - 70% 90%
Lvl3 - 70% 70%
Lvl4 - 40% 80%
Lvl1 - 70% 100%
Lvl2 - 70% 100%
Lvl3 - 70% 90%
Lvl4 - 70% 90%
Last edited by Petitpois on Sun Sep 27, 2015 11:57 am, edited 1 time in total.