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 Post subject: Geting Started
PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 8:47 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 12:39 pm
Posts: 1
Hi
I am new to this website having stumbled upon it when doing my reasearch for the 11+. I have to say what an excellent and informative site!

I just wondered if anyone could give me any advice on the trafford exams and any tips on preparing my ten year old for the exams?

At present he has been seeing a tutor every Saturday since October but I feel that I should be doing more with him at home and in preparation I have just also bought the Bonds (third) assesment papers which have been recommended to me.

His verbal, non verbal reasoning and english seem to be ok but he is a bit unconfident when it comes to his maths.

Can anyone advise on any good maths books to do at home, or just some general overall advice?

I also wonder if anyone has an opinion on Urmston grammar which is one of the schools I am looking at?

Many thanks in advance!

:)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 11:26 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2007 2:29 pm
Posts: 593
Location: Trafford
Hi there. I have been through the system twice now with one daughter currently at Alty Girls and another one who will be going there next September. We are in the south of the borough so we have only done exams for as far north as Sale so I have no specific experience to offer on Urmston.

You sound very switched on already so I am sure you are already aware that since this year (entry for 2009) each of the grammars in Trafford now operate a separate exam. ie Urmston has its own exam, Stretford has its own exam, Sale has its own exam etc etc. You need to check carefully the requirements of each school, but as far as I am aware each tests VR, NVR and maths.

The maths is based on KS2 so you need to make sure that your son covers the whole of KS2 by next September ie he needs to have done all Yr 6 maths by the beginning of Yr 6. You can get a feel for the types of question asked from the NFER papers you can buy from shops and this website (at a discount). One good book I have used was "So You Really Want to Learn Maths Book 1 " by Serena Alexander which covers the whole syllabus in a very unthreatening way. You can dip in and out at will and it is great for stuff like early algebra and probability that are the kind of things not covered in primary schools until the end of Year 6. Bond also do maths books that are quite good, especially 10 minute tests which help with speed.

With VR I advise you to have a browse through the VR section of this forum plus the Bucks forum. There are many different types of VR question but NFER (who as far as I know set all the Trafford tests but don't take my word for it) test either on 15 known varieties or 21. I believe the Trafford tests are historically 15 type papers but my daughter came back from one of her Trafford tests this year saying there were two types of question that were unfamiliar to her so I wonder if they have, in fact, moved to 21 types.

The Bond VR books cover far more than the 21 types you need. Therefore, if you teach Bond you risk wasting time teaching stuff your son won't need. Try the downloadable VR from this site by The Tutors. It's an online program that covers each of the 21 types in detail and we have found it very useful.

With NVR I found the Bond books very useful. We started with 9-10 yr old books and moved upwards and that worked fine. The thing to note with NVR is that the schools don't tend to give one paper of, say, 45 minutes, but split it up into, say, 4 sections of 10 minutes each, each section to be completed before they whole cohort start on the next section.

Feel free to ask away. Trafford isn't a particularly popular sub-section of this wonderful site but I try to answer questions and I can certainly point you in the direction of other more knowledgeable people from other areas if you have subject specific questions.

Good luck!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 8:58 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 27, 2005 5:24 pm
Posts: 29
Location: Sale, Cheshire
Hi

Just a little extra to all the good information given to you by TraffordMum. There are some excellent books around on the market but, as a tutor, I use the Bond 'How to do .... 11+ Maths' book. This book covers all the areas your child is likely to need but you shouldn't need to cover all Y6 work for the exam. If you want to send me a private message, then I can give you more information on what topics you need to cover.

For NVR, Stephen Curran has now produced two excellent books (available from the shop on this website) which take you through all the necessary steps. I haven't found any other book to compare with this one in all the time I've been tutoring!

Regards, Ange


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2009 12:49 am 
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Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2007 2:29 pm
Posts: 593
Location: Trafford
How nice to see you here. I have seen your very helpful posts before on the Trafford forum but I don't think we have ever coincided in real time, so to speak!

I think I am right in saying that you are a tutor for the Trafford schools? If so, do you have a take on the Alty Girls/Boys exams this year and the types of questions tested? My confidence has been shaken a bit by DD2 coming back from the exams saying that there were question types there that she hadn't come across (we having stuck to the 15 type revision).


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2009 9:05 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 27, 2005 5:24 pm
Posts: 29
Location: Sale, Cheshire
Hi there

The Alty exams have not changed in any major way since the schools started doing their own entrance exams. I basically teach my pupils 19 different types of questions plus the different types of question on meanings of words. Did your daughter do the NFER/Letts practice papers in the run up to the exams? If so, you shouldn't have any worries about her preparation for the question types.

Wish your daughter luck in her future school career.


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