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 Post subject: Starting our 11+ journey
PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 7:36 pm 
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My DD (in year 5) and I are just starting out 11+ journey and I am already panicking! What I will be like this time next year, I shudder to think. It just seems like an awful lot of material to cover in a very short space of time. I also worry about whether I am putting too much pressure on dd and maybe she just can't do it and perhaps I should back off?

She has been in the top set at school since year two for both english and maths but last year's teacher assessment put her at a 4b for both english and maths and now she's not in the top set for maths in year 5 which is making me worry. I haven't spoken to her teacher to find out why the sudden change from last year to this year but I am am hoping to do so soon.

There isn't really much of a point to my post, I guess mostly I'd just like to know from others whether a child who only got 4bs at the end of year 4 has any chance at all of making it into a grammar school?

We are lucky that our catchment comprehensive school is a good school with very good results and there is another school in the next borough that is also a good school although we don't have a high chance of getting that school. DD has her heart set on a grammar school though and I am wondering whether I am doing her an injustice by allowing her to think she has a chance when she doesn't?


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 7:39 pm 
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
I have had a child who got 4a in a random school test at the beginning of yr6. she passed for cchs and was one of a few selected to take the junior maths challenge early in yr7.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 9:43 pm 
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Hi talea51
The way I looked at it was that if it wasn't going to stress my daughter out too much, then it was worth a shot. She likes tests so we went for it. She had a tutor once a fortnight for a year, who helped her with verbal reasoning, which is not taught in state schools, and brought on her maths, which was level 4b at the end of year 4 and she has just started at ColCHS and so, yes, I do think your daughter stands a chance. Also, if her English and VR are strong, she may not need to be top of the class at maths. You are lucky to have a good catchment school - your daughter will do fine, whatever the outcome of the 11+. Good luck, I think the whole process is often tougher on the parents. Our children are made of sterner stuff!


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 6:55 am 
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Joined: Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:10 pm
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Thank you for your replies. I fear I may be on here quite a lot over the next 12 months! I marked some of DDs homework yesterday and realised that she makes a lot of silly mistakes. I know she knows the answers because when I ask her to tell me what is wrong with what she did, she can see the error straight away and give the correct answer. She also is missing out questions. Yesterday she just skipped 3 questions and then told me that she hadn't seen them.

So my next question is how do we sort this out? Any ideas?

Thanks!


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:02 am 
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I have 2 at Colchester Grammar schools. Neither scored above a 4C in year 4 in any subject. They both had a set of 5's at the end of year 6 (no sub levels given).

Sadly KS levels are not as accurate as they sound. There is significant variation between schools in their grading. Our head is regularly complaining about children transferring in with what he considers to be far too high teacher assessed KS levels given in other schools.

Go with your gut instinct - if you think she stands a chance and she wants to do it then let her try.

Regarding the missed questions - One of mine still does this! but get her in the habit of always going back to the beginning and checking the work before handing in.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 11:05 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2007 12:42 pm
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
Just a comment regarding levels. There is a difference between being at the threshold of a level, i.e. just passing and being entirely secure in a level, which is in reality only fractionally below the next level.

The SATs are designed to give a threshold level. This is also true for the level 6 test. They are not an indication the children are secure within that level.

I don't want to reopen the SATs debate here, just to point out that the exam levels and classroom levels are for different purposes.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 12:28 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
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Location: Herts
Wanting to go there is worth at least one Sats Level! Preparing carefully for the specific exam is much more important than sats levels. Year after year I see very able children who are very highly rated by their primary school fail to get a place at the school of their choice. In my family we call it TTS, top table syndrome. If you prepare carefully using the right material you will increase your chances of getting a place. The top table children confident of their ability may not feel they need to prepare and may not fare so well. You have plenty of time and a child who wants to go there. These are mighty advantages. DG


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 1:22 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 6:27 pm
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Honestly, you will see such an improvement in your DD's scores over the coming months. With practice they get more familiar with questions and they do speed up. Please don't worry about scores at the moment as she needs to get familiar with it all. With practice, you will be surprised at how they really do come on. Good luck with it all! x


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:59 am 
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Thank you everyone for your replies. I have finally managed to speak to dd's teacher and it seems that she doesn't set the children by ability. She has them all as mixed ability and she tends to pair a child who is very good with one who is not so good. That was a relief as it means that dd has not actually moved down a set at all which is what she thought had happened. Also, the teacher said that she was very pleased with my dds performance thus far.

Moved, would it be alright if I pm'ed you with regard to what you were saying about SATS levels? I'd be very interested to hear what you have to say as I don't really understand how the whole SATS thing works.

Anyway, thank you all again. This is such a long road ahead of us and it seems like there is so much work to cover, it feels quite daunting.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:17 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2007 12:42 pm
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
Yes, but I'm not sure there is more t can say?


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