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 Post subject: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 9:52 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:42 pm
Posts: 820
Hi

My ds will sit yr 6 SATs this May. We are in Bucks and he has qualified for grammar. I am confident that he will get level 5's in his SATs (he got all level 5s in the optional yr 5 papers) and there is discussion about whether he should be entered for level 6 papers (I know a few of them did a level 6 maths practice paper at school the other day).

BUT I'm really in two minds about whether I want him to do Level 6 papers. I am incredibly proud of his 11+ result and he has achieved fantastically at primary so I don't really know what the point is of him doing the Level 6 papers.

I'd really love to hear the opinions of others as I'm just hoping round in circles with this!

Thank you


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 Post subject: Re: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 10:00 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 1:47 pm
Posts: 2151
Location: Warwickshire
I don't know whether they are worth it. My dd2 (now in year 7 at gs) spent months doing practice papers with everyone else, but also level 6's.

Whilst her 11+ results weren't "brilliant", they weren't bad, she passed and had a place at gs.

She was devastated when all her friends got 6's and she didn't.

What upset me was how upset she was not to get 6's. She is flying now and on level 6's when those girls who were on 6's in May, are now on 5's. I don't understand.

I wouldn't put her in for level 6's again, given that she had got a place at a gs, and was so upset not to achieve 6's. Extra pressure for nothing, in her case.

I'm sure dc who get a level 6 feel good.


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 Post subject: Re: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 10:27 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 6685
Location: Herts
It is over four months since he sat his 11 plus, that is one third of a year. Surely you would want him to continue to progress and challenge himself and not plateau? I know students who sat state 11 plus in September, got a great mark but carried on working for privates in January, did really well and now are busy beavering away on Level 6 Maths and English papers. If you stand still everyone else will overtake you. I can't see why you would not want him to try for them. I know a student last year who was good at Maths but not so good at English, his mother had to really push to get him entered for Level 6 English. He worked hard to prove her right and was the only person in his year to get Level 6 English overtaking the "Gifted and Talented" English students in the year. Time and time again I have seen "average" students overtake "able" ones. It is a question of work ethic. Does he want to do them or doesn't he really care? DG


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 Post subject: Re: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 11:13 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:42 pm
Posts: 820
Thanks for the comments.

As to whether he wants to take them I would say that he's not massively bothered - he's not competitive in any way, he was quite chuffed that he was one of the children asked to do the level 6 practice paper earlier in the week.

Of course I want his learning to progress but I don't necessarily feel that this is best achieved by attaining various fairly arbitrary levels iykwim. Maybe it's best served by deepening existing knowledge / exploring non curriculum areas? Whilst I admire the work ethics of students who study / prepare for multiple exams it's not something which sits easily with me - I feel there is plenty of time for slogging away or exams in Kate ks3/4 and that now is the time to be a child? I think my issue is I can't see what he will have actually gained by leaving primary with Level 6's.


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 Post subject: Re: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 12:21 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2011 8:34 pm
Posts: 930
My Dd was not entered for level 6 SATs but was doing the work but I think it was the first year the school put any children in for it and so only put in 1 child for the maths sat - they were sure would get it. DD was assessed as L6b in maths when she arrived at Yr7 in her GS. So for her it has not made a difference but she did pass the GS test.

DS just managed to fail the GS test but did level 6 reading and maths papers. He passed the maths papers but failed the reading. DS and I had discussed with his teacher that ds was very unlikely to pass the reading test as so few do and he was not mature enough to grasp a lot of what was being asked. His teacher still felt it was worth him trying as he was in the extention group. The fact that he was doing the papers probably helped at his appeal as he is now in a grammar school thanks to the appeal and is doing well. - Apparently doing a maths challenge tomorrow :shock:


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 Post subject: Re: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 6:25 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2010 11:39 pm
Posts: 2080
I don't think many primary school teachers have the knowledge to teach level six, especially English. I saw the way it was done at DD's primary school and, frankly, it was a waste of time. It's not the teachers' fault. They're simply obeying orders (and adding to their stress levels).


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 Post subject: Re: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:10 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 2:50 pm
Posts: 533
Personally I am not a big fan. My DS did 3 level 6 papers and got 2, but he was given a hard time by his stressed year 6 teacher, had a pretty miserable year 6. When he got to secondary school and pointed out that he already had a 6 to his maths teacher after being given the same target for the end of year 7 he was told that they take no notice of sats and the levels aren't the same as the secondary school ones anyway. The school used their own tests at the start of term to assess the children's levels. IMO they are purely useful for the school to get their points up. I think it is a shame that a child will feel disappointed that they have not got a 6 when a 5 shows exceptional performance as someone mentioned in this thread. However when they are offered and other children are taking them it is difficult to say no. With my current year 5 child if it comes up I will explain the situation and let her choose.


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 Post subject: Re: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:22 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
Posts: 11936
As a secondary maths teacher in Bucks I would avoid it. The papers are not level 6 they are just hard level 5 and it means sitting 3 papers in a day.

If the school wants to challenge them they should have entered the Primary maths challenge. Many children who joined Bucks GS under the old 11+ were only level 4 in maths ...


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 Post subject: Re: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:34 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 31, 2013 4:03 pm
Posts: 1379
Nobody at school has ever asked me whether DS should sit the L6 papers or not! It's just been a natural progression. Once they are scoring really highly on the L3-5 papers (only dropping 1 or 2 points or none!) surely they need something 'more' in order to challenge them??? DS certainly does ...

JD


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 Post subject: Re: Level 6 papers
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:41 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 1:21 pm
Posts: 11936
Then do some using and applying or NRICH questions ... or teach the rest of level 5 that is not in the Primary Framework.

I have had to reteach a number of topics which have been taught incorrectly - what's the point of that!

If the questions were really level 6 then there might be a reason ...


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