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 Post subject: St Olaves
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 9:11 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:24 am
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Hi,

My son will be sitting for the exam at St Olaves next month. I've heard their exams are mega hard! but how difficult are they? What particular subjects they emphasis on more than the others? (English? Maths? VR?)
Is anyone who has experienced this?

Any advice will be appreciated!

Tks
tomtom


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 9:26 am 
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If you visited the Open Morning you will have been given papers with sample questions, so I'm assuming you haven't visited the school. But if you follow this link you can download the sample questions:

http://www.saintolaves.net/?p=admissions/year7/sample

As you can see, there is a Maths paper and an English paper. The English paper consists of comprehension (multiple choice answers) and a guided [persuasive] writing task. It isn't particularly difficult in comparison to 11 plus but it obviously has a more freeform section (the writing) counting for half the marks. As the introduction to the sample paper says, the format is well designed to be anti-cramming. Your son just has to have become good at reading and writing over the last couple of years.

The Maths paper has 30 questions "of increasing difficulty" to be done in an hour. They don't go beyond the normal primary school level in terms of syllabus at this stage BUT they are phrased in ways that require a bit more logical deduction and interpretation than most of the 11 plus Maths questions. I think it would be pretty hard to finish the paper in the time available for all but the brightest kids.

So I wouldn't say that the exams themselves are "mega hard" but the problem is that your son will be competing against many very clever boys from across South London as well as from Kent and even Sussex.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 12:35 pm 
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Hi Tomtom

I agree with Tired dad, my eldest son is at St Olaves (after taking the test in 2006) and am putting youngest son in for it in November. The marks are out of 200, 100 for English and 100 for maths. If there is a tie on the last child then the maths paper is taken into consideration.

Test day can be a bit of a bun fight!! Loads of boys and loads of parents. Prepare your son for that as it can be overwhelming. Having said that my son thought the Kent test that year was harder than St Olaves - just goes to show!!! The good thing is there is no non verbal reasoning!! It is a hard school to get into simply because so many boys take the test and there are only 116 places.

Good luck to your son.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 1:07 pm 
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Thanks for the link Tired Dad 2008, but when I open the Maths PDF and/or print it some of the questions come out incomplete. Any ideas how I rectify this?

Thanks


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 3:46 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:24 am
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Yes I noticed that when I printed them out. The paper versions given to us on the Open Day were correct, so you could ask the school to send you the correct versions. Some of the questions on the pdf are printed on top of some of the other questions.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 7:43 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:24 am
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Hi, Tired_dad

Thank you for all your inf. In fact, my boy went to the open day and got a sample papers, but I just wanted to know more details.

I've got something I would like to ask you. What is "guided [persuasive] writing task"? Could you explain it to me more?

I really appreciate any help.
Thank you very much.
tomtom



tired_dad_2008 wrote:
If you visited the Open Morning you will have been given papers with sample questions, so I'm assuming you haven't visited the school. But if you follow this link you can download the sample questions:

http://www.saintolaves.net/?p=admissions/year7/sample

As you can see, there is a Maths paper and an English paper. The English paper consists of comprehension (multiple choice answers) and a guided [persuasive] writing task. It isn't particularly difficult in comparison to 11 plus but it obviously has a more freeform section (the writing) counting for half the marks. As the introduction to the sample paper says, the format is well designed to be anti-cramming. Your son just has to have become good at reading and writing over the last couple of years.

The Maths paper has 30 questions "of increasing difficulty" to be done in an hour. They don't go beyond the normal primary school level in terms of syllabus at this stage BUT they are phrased in ways that require a bit more logical deduction and interpretation than most of the 11 plus Maths questions. I think it would be pretty hard to finish the paper in the time available for all but the brightest kids.

So I wouldn't say that the exams themselves are "mega hard" but the problem is that your son will be competing against many very clever boys from across South London as well as from Kent and even Sussex.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 8:48 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2008 8:24 am
Posts: 96
It's in the sample papers. In the sample (not necessarily the same in the actual test) it takes the form of a letter you have to write to your (imaginary) Head Teacher to suggest where Year 6 should go for a school trip. It is "guided" because it gives you a list of topics/points you should include in the letter. They will look for good presentation, punctuation, syntax, handwriting etc. It's the sort of writing task that kids do at school for their SATS tests, so it shouldn't be too strange for your son.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 8:55 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2008 11:24 am
Posts: 19
Hi, tired_dad

Thank you for your quick reply. I get general idea and I might see how he is with this kind of question. He likes writing stories but not sure how good he is at letters and factual writing.

Anyway, thank you for your good advice!
tomtom

tired_dad_2008 wrote:
It's in the sample papers. In the sample (not necessarily the same in the actual test) it takes the form of a letter you have to write to your (imaginary) Head Teacher to suggest where Year 6 should go for a school trip. It is "guided" because it gives you a list of topics/points you should include in the letter. They will look for good presentation, punctuation, syntax, handwriting etc. It's the sort of writing task that kids do at school for their SATS tests, so it shouldn't be too strange for your son.


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