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 Post subject: Is tutoring required ?
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 5:24 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jul 23, 2010 6:40 pm
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Am I being really naiive ? I live in OCC and my son's teacher has suggested that I put my son in for the eleven plus in October 2010 as he is exceptionally able in all subjects. I have received the familiarisation pack from Bucks CC. If I work through that, do I need to provide extra tutoring ? Slightly daunted from all the messages about tutors and home tutoring. It is not the end of the world if he doesn't get in (quite unlikely due to distance from catchment anyway) as we have reasonable local schools, but I don't want to set him up for a negative experience.

Any comments welcome !


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 5:36 pm 
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Location: East Kent
I'm not in the Bucks area, but there is alot of information available on this site about how to prepare for the exam.

i think some familiarisation is essential, but how you go about that is up to you. does your child work well with you? if so you then it is not a difficult job.

If you do not feel confident enough or for some other reason would prefer not to do it yourself then a tutor may be worth considering, ask around as the best way to find a good tutor is by recommendation.

If you have any questions just ask!


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 8:19 pm 
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Hi Joop. We were in a similar position to you with DS1.

The short answer, in my opinion, is that tutoring isn't required for a really bright child (and if they're not, do you want them going to grammar?), but that you really do need to do a bit more than the official familiarisation.

Living OOC, we didn't realise how much tutoring went on. I bought the IPS books from this website (don't buy generic 11+ or verbal reasoning books as they won't cover exactly the right things), including the Tips and Techniques one, and went through some papers with my son. Nothing too onerous. There are one or two types of questions where you really need to know the trick of doing it (hence the tips book), and other than that it was mainly a matter of getting up speed.

He passed comfortably, but not exceptionally, but that is all that's required.

With DS2, it was trickier because by then I realised how widespread intensive and prolonged tutoring is. However, it didn't seem fair to give him an advantage his brother hadn't had, so I did the same again, with a similar result.

Good luck.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 11:03 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 16, 2009 7:28 pm
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Location: Bucks
Iwould say heavy tutoring is not needed and you seem very confident that your son is very good all round which helps alot. My son only had 3 week's to practise and we did only a few practise paper's. What made this possible I guess was because he's an all rounder and has a very solid vocabulary, had alway's been a very avid reader, this with the few paper's was all that was needed.

I wouldn't recommend you leave it for only 3 week's though, but the IPS range would be good to go through over the Summer.

Good Luck :)

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 7:50 pm 
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In Bucks, 30% (or so) go to GS, so the child does not need to exceptional, but research has shown that (of those that took part in the study) over 80% of successful pupils had had some type of coaching prior to the test.

And the right type of tutoring does have other benefits.

One of my indie students spent two years with me preparing for the 11+. When he passed (136 - not bad at all), his parents announced that he wasn't going to go to AGS after all, but Berkhamsted Collegiate. When I asked why they had spent over £1500 sending him to me, they gave me his school report to read. Dreading that it said that he would not cope in GS, I read that he had gone from middle of his year group to top of the year group in Yr5.

He was now top of maths, English and science in his year group and in the top 5 for every other subject. He was more focussed, his time management was excellent and his concentration had improved considerably.

Yes he passed, but that's not the point.

To quote the songwriter, Frank Turner:

"If it's all about the destination, take a F****** plane",

It's the journey to the destination that makes the difference!


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2010 9:22 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2006 4:07 pm
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Dear Joop

Your child may be very bright, but can he tackle 80 questions in 50 minutes and score at least 72 out of 80?

The familiarisation sessions issued by County are easier than the real tests, because they are aimed at the whole class, taking into account all abilities. Test A is easier than the real test, tests 1 and 2 are of a similar difficulty.

I would go through these sessions and tests now and see what his scores and timings are like, then make a desision as to what is required.

Good Luck

Patricia


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2010 4:05 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:45 pm
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I would agree, my DS is also considered bright but when he attempted his first proper paper last summer he completed just over half the questions in 50 minutes, even though he had been practising the questions for months. By October he was completing them with time to spare and passed well, but there is no way he could have done it without coaching (and perhaps more importantly) practicing full papers. The most valuable lesson he learnt was not to waste time on difficult questions but to leave them and go back to them - he was getting bogged down on tricky ones.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 01, 2010 5:37 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 08, 2008 11:33 pm
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Location: Bucks
The official line on this is around p24 of the Guide for Parents*:
http://www.buckscc.gov.uk/assets/content/bcc/docs/schools/Secondary_Final_20090826.pdf
They end up directing to this link on the NFER website:
http://www.nfer.ac.uk/nfer/research/assessment/eleven-plus/#10
(it's worth reading to the end).

*This is from last year so the test dates etc are not relevant.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 01, 2010 7:11 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2008 7:04 pm
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Lets reiterate.

“the effects of familiarisation/practice did not produce a significant change in the means. Coaching for a period of 3 hours did produce a statistically significant shift in the means, though the individuals maintained their rank order. The effect of sustained coaching over a period of 9 months is shown to be substantial.”

(Bold, my emphasis).

And what does substantial mean? According to Bunting 30-40%.

Is tutoring required? As the Americans say, 'Do the Math'.


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