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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2008 1:07 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 12:14 pm
Posts: 19
Hi

I am starting to prepare my child for the herts consortium test. I am going down the DIY route. I may sound naive, but I am not sure how much preparation is needed for the test. Am I too early to start preparation or am I too late. I have friends who are sending their children to tutors. I feel I am lagging behind.
I know basically that there is a maths and a vr paper. Are there any particular books which I should start with. I have the IPS books, but I am not sure if it is suited to the Hertfordshire exams.
Any help would be most appreciated.


Thanks


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2008 3:52 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 7:58 pm
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This years tests were stanard format with children saying vr was harder than expected.

Have heard bond books are good for herts, but maybe check with those using tutors. will they tell you which books tutors have recommended for their children?

I dont think its ever too early to start as long as its ok with your child.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2008 8:28 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:32 am
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Location: Herts
It is easy to feel intimidated by the numbers of parents who get their child tutored, but we went down the DIY route too, and got the NFER packs from WH Smith.

My daughter managed to get in to the school of our choice, but right to the last minute I was worried about whether we should have had her tutored or not, and I think the presure gets worse year on year.

Presumably your child is currently in year 5?


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2008 9:53 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 12:14 pm
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Hi
Thanks for the replies, watmum and Blanca. Thats really good that you got the school of your choice.
Yes my child is in year 5. I think DIY is the best option for us, but I am worried that maybe I am missing something important out and . Also where to do the working out, are they allowed to write on the paper or on scrap paper.
Also Blanca mentioned that
Quote:
This years tests were stanard format with children saying vr was harder than expected.




does this mean that the format of the exams vary year after year. If so by when do they announce the format for the next year


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2008 11:30 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2008 8:26 am
Posts: 1326
Location: Watford, Herts
hertsmum wrote:
I think DIY is the best option for us, but I am worried that maybe I am missing something important out and . Also where to do the working out, are they allowed to write on the paper or on scrap paper.
Also Blanca mentioned that
Quote:
This years tests were stanard format with children saying vr was harder than expected.
does this mean that the format of the exams vary year after year. If so by when do they announce the format for the next year

They have been standard format for as long as anyone can remember. When my son took the tests in 2006, working was done on the test paper.

The maths papers have been supplied by NFER for some time; there is no reason to expect this to change. It's essentially KS2 maths, tested in a different format.

The VR paper changed a few years ago. Reports (e.g. from the 11plus forumadmin) are that the 2007 paper was supplied by Moray House. However there are a limited number of Moray House papers, which used to be available for general sale, and some have stockpiled them. This is reported to be the reason that St. Michael's in Barnet cancelled and reset their VR and English papers last year. If the consortium schools have any sense, they will switch to a different supplier to avoid a similar debacle. So it might be wise to practice a wide variety of types to avoid being taken by surprise.

They do not announce the format. Admissions secretaries will answer the question, but there have been reports of misleading answers regarding VR. They will also say that all applicants will be sent practice papers, but in the past these have been next to useless, a single sheet with a few maths and VR questions.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2008 8:38 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 12:14 pm
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Thanks WP for your reply. I will as suggested by you use a variety of papers for VR. I suppose with the reduction in selection numbers they have to make the entry tougher than before.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:58 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:48 pm
Posts: 40
I think it is fine to prepare your kids yourself if you are comfortable with that and have the time. Some find it hard to teach their own kids - it depends upon your relationship with them. But don't think tutors are necessarily better - your child may progress better with you.

They will need to practice for the test - and that is not just answering the questions but doing them in the time allocated. (the latter is often the hardest part.)

I think the consortium still use a Standard Format test (you can ask the admission ssecretary of one of the schools - I found Queens to be very helpful). Standard Format means the child is given a test sheet which also forms the answer sheet and they will need to write ansers in the correct place. Multiple choice is as it says but is often answered on a separate sheet.

For my son I use NFER Standard Format tests (available in WH Smiths, Waterstone's etc) for Maths & VR. (Although Athey and Bond are good too.)

Be sure to practise using the correct format tests. Also I'd start off quite easy and gently build up. Don't let them get bored or demoralised. It is very easy to pass all your tension to the child and make them very stressed which is the last thing you want.

Some of these schools are very hard to get into and you don't want them to feel a failure when they may easily just have had a bad day.

Good luck!


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