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PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2009 10:44 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 6684
Location: Herts
My dd is sitting these tests this Sunday. I used to work in Sutton for Wordstar!!! many years ago but I just can't remember much about the town itself! I seem to remember that the railway station was at the top of the High Street and you walked down to the shops. We will be coming by train. How reliable is the Sunday service? Is it an easy walk from the station to the school? How much time should we leave? Will we be queueing outside or will there be a waiting area inside? What is the format? Is maths one paper and then a break and then VR and Non Vr. Do they stay in their seats for the break or do they get to walk around? At the end will they be sent out or will we go in and get them? Are the papers standard or multiple choice? Do they write in pen or pencil or is there a choice?

Thanks for any answers.


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 Post subject: Mock Tests
PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2009 11:57 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2009 11:51 am
Posts: 18
Hi there Daogroupie,

My daughter did a mock test in June and found it very useful. I work in Sutton so know the area fairly well. You remember the environment correctly! The school is perhaps 10-15 minutes away from the station (I am always cautious and an early bird so would add some!) I'm not so sure about the trains so it's probably best to use the journey planner on South West trains (or similar) website (that normally tells you exactly how long the journey will take with walking time too). The school is across a road called Throwley Way (right at Wilkinsons as you walk down the high street from the station). As you can tell I'm not the best at giving directions!

The weather was fine when we went and the hoards waited in the playground outside, then we lined up and my DD was registered at the door and we said our goodbyes. She took a pencil and rubber and I think that was all she needed - I'm pretty sure it was all multi-choice. I'm not certain but I think they had a short break after each and certainly left their desks for that. She did say that a good explanation was given before they started.

They then come out to all the anxious mummies and daddies back into the playground where we dropped up. It was very good practice and my daughter learnt several important lessons. Though the results do appear to be a bit random and unfathomable, she learnt the importance of timing and said herself she will be less anxious when it comes to the real thing. I hope your DD finds benefit from it too. Definately not one to stress over!! :)


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2009 6:59 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 7:40 pm
Posts: 226
Location: surrey
Dear Daogroupie,
I have helped out at these tests on a couple of occasions and yes, they get a toilet break after the first test.
Two of the tests are multiple choice (they use a separate answer sheet) and the other they can write on the paper.
All that is needed is a pencil, rubber, perhaps a drink in a bottle and tissues are a good idea in case of nervous tears.

The invigilator gives a very thorough and precise set of instructions beforehand and everything is explained clearly, as long as your child listens, there should be no problems. Learning how to fill in the multiple answer sheet usually gives the most problems - mainly by those who have not listened. They learn to listen!!

It is all held very seriously and this is for good reason, as silly mistakes made in the mocks will hopefully save them being made in the actual exams.

At the end the children are sent out to meet their parents.
One important point is don't be late as the timing is very strict and if you miss your allocated date you won't get another.

Hope I have been of some help. Good luck on Sunday and hope your child enjoys the experience.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 10:00 am 
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Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 8:31 pm
Posts: 1192
Can't comment on trains but there are plenty of coffee etc places to lose time if you are early.

The process is very easy and stress free. Drop them off at the appointed time, which is not too manic as the numbers are not huge, and pick them up later.

During the mock test they are well looked after and provided with breaks etc as necessary.

Enjoy... it's only a mock!

Regards
SVE

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 9:12 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 6684
Location: Herts
This is now my dd typing as she has something she wants to ask.


What sorts of clothes do people wear at the mocks?
Do they just wear jeans or do they dress up to look smart?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 10:11 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2009 11:51 am
Posts: 18
Definately just wear what you are comfortable in - there were plenty of jeans and t-shirts when my DD did the test.

Hope you find the test reassuring. :D


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 06, 2009 7:55 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2009 11:51 am
Posts: 18
Daogroupie,

Come on then, give us the followup? Hope it went well and you found the place as described by us all....


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 06, 2009 9:18 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 6684
Location: Herts
Hello helpful people, We only just got back as we live out in Hertfordshire and we went for a bit of retail therapy afterwards in Sutton town centre. We loved the polish violinist outside M&S, we even bought two of his cds as one of them had my dd's grade 4 viola piece on, Ava Maria. We had lunch in Mama Dumpling which was really excellent but because it did not open until 12, it was 12.40 by the time we started for the school. Directions were brilliant as far as Throwley Way, we turned right at Wilkinsons and crossed Throwley but then could not see it at all. We asked three people who all shrugged, one woman even directed us the opposite direction to the Holiday Inn. Finally we asked a teenage boy at the bus stop who was just right, very precise directions and we got there about 12.50. We were very surprised by how many Asian children there were. Definately outnumbered the white children. Yet when me and younger dd spent the next two hours in Manor Park a few hundred yards away we did not see any Asian families at all. The organisation was top rate, very low key but supportive. Lots of families just trying to give names instead of numbers. Lovely moment when organiser looked down her glasses at one family and calmly pointed out she had several candidates with the same name. Dd definately came out having benefited enormously from the experience. she thinks it was 55 vr in 30 mins , and then the maths and then 30 nvr in 30 mins, this sounds far too low to me as we are used to 100 vr in 45 mins. There was only one question in Vr that she definitely got wrong because it was a term she did not know, better not mention it as I know there are three more weekends to go. DD found it difficult not to be able to do working out on the Vr paper, they were told not to as they are obviously reused, dd said that there were lots of dots on the alphabets! It was eleven hours and an entire sunday out of our life as we left at 9am this morning and did not get back until after 8pm , but it was probably the best thing we have done in our preparation. I did thank the staff today but will prob write as well with a few recommendations. DD said there were 120 and the desk were absolutely crammed in, some on the stage and she said in the front they were right against the wall. She said three did not turn up but two of the desk were changed over for new folk. She said there was a constant noise of people dropping their pencils and they checked people's pencils on the way in and those with new pencils had to have the tips broken off. Dd felt that the vr had gone best but mostly because she had waited so long to finally get to do something that I think whichever she had done first would have felt good to be finally there. She has only been doing NVR for a few weeks as our first choice (DAO of course!) does not do NVR, only VR, maths and english. So NVR was her least favourite. We only spoke to one other family who had come from Epsom. People's body language seemed quite clear that they did not want to talk. I tried smiling at a few people but of course they dont know thay we are really not their competition. The whole experience has been a real milestone for us and I only found out about through this website so many thanks to those who posted out it back in June which was when I found out about it and to you three who helped me so much in getting there and knowing what it was going to be like. Now we wait for the results, anyone know when we will get them?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 07, 2009 6:41 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 7:40 pm
Posts: 226
Location: surrey
Glad it all went smoothly.

The results are posted out and posted on the website. There are a few more weekends to go so it may be after those are done and dusted - not certain how quickly the marking takes place.

Good luck with your future tests and hope you get the school you prefer.

One small question: where is Mama Dumplings?? Is this a chinese??
Always good idea to get food recommendations!! :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 07, 2009 7:35 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2008 9:26 pm
Posts: 553
melinda wrote:
Glad it all went smoothly.

The results are posted out and posted on the website. There are a few more weekends to go so it may be after those are done and dusted - not certain how quickly the marking takes place.

Good luck with your future tests and hope you get the school you prefer.

One small question: where is Mama Dumplings?? Is this a chinese??
Always good idea to get food recommendations!! :lol:


Think it's the chinese just a few doors up from Zizzis on the way to the station. Also owned by the people who run the fabulous Emperor in Stonecot Hill.


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