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 Post subject: Trust
PostPosted: Sun Nov 26, 2006 12:29 pm 
My son took the Herts consortium test yesterday. Finally this phase of the process is over. Its been tough - very hard to make him practice at times. Lots of attitude. Lots of tears.

However I learnt something from all this which was that no matter how I prepared him ultimately would have to trust him to go into the exam hall and let him do his best in his own way.

For the last two weeks I have laid off the practice and accepted it when he said he was prepared. Yesterday he came out with a huge smile and told me he'd finished both papers (a first) and found it straightforward.

No guarantee he's done well but I know he's done his best and no matter what school he gets I'm very proud. I've also learnt that maybe its just best to let him get on with it.


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 Post subject: Trust
PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 6:50 pm 
I read your posting with interest. My son took the Salisbury 11+ on Saturday. We have been through every scenario together and tried to cover every type of question. The poor little chap had facts and figures thrown at him. What's a scalene triangle, how do you work out ratio, explain what the author means etc.etc. In the end NFER chucked some totally different questions, ones we had not covered and he just had to make his best guess.

It has been such a slog for us both that I almost don't care anymore about the result and feel quite fatalistic, what will be will be.

Having left him at the school gates to do the exam, I walked away in tears. The total relief of it being finished is almost liberating.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 11:48 pm 
Quite - its is how I felt to an extent. However I got to the point (before the test) where I realised it isn't everything and that if he misses out on the grammar then then the second and third choice schools are still very good. Consequently I relaxed and so did he - and I think performed better for it.

I've also read elsewhere on this forum that the wait for results after the test is worse than the prepartion period before. So far this is not true. I feel very relaxed knowing he did his best and am quite fatalistic like you say.

My child is now totally relaxed and the family atmosphere is so much better. He is a different child and I do wonder why I put him through it (oh yes because in Herts we have no choice).

All the best.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2006 10:43 am 
Having read both your posts I have to say I hope you both get the result and well done to you and both your children. I am glad you can relax as I remember oh too well what it was like after the test had finally been done(my son did it last year in Bucks). I can realte to the tears at the gate, I was exactly the same.

Call me soppy but when I went to school on Friday with my youngest I had a small a tear in my eye as I saw lots of our year six children coming out with leters in thier hands. I still cannot believe it's a year since my son and I went through it. Like you I was and still am enormously proud of him. I just hope that this site is still here in two years when my daughter does it.


Best of luck

Mel


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 12:01 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2006 11:06 am
Posts: 36
Location: Plymouth
I've just posted a query on 11+ Exams under general comments so I was relieved to read everyone's comments here - my daughter doesn't do her 11+ until January but I am struggling with her lack of motivation at the moment. I feel as if things are degenerating into a pitched battle with me on one side nagging and her on the other watching TV etc. etc. - basically anything except what she should be doing. I know I should not pressure her for fear of demotivating but to be honest we are passed all that and I just feel like 'oh what the ****' - do as you want and I just won't bother. Did any of you feel like that? I was heartened to hear that some of you have had tears and tantrums too.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 1:02 pm 
Hi Mad Mum

I've just responded to your question on the other posting.

And yes we all loose it at some point.

Goodness we are not trained teachers and yet suddenly we haveto become them.

It's a very trying time and if like me you are pretty mcuh doing it on your own(husbands bless them!!) then ofcourse you can be forgiven for pulling your hair out. I found a glass of vino helped(or two)!!

Mel
:lol:


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 Post subject: Trust
PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 2:11 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2006 10:53 pm
Posts: 139
Location: wolverhampton
You are right that it is a relief when the exam is over because then it's out of our hands and in the lap of the Gods.

I think as a parent here's always the feeling that you could have done a bit more, started earlier etc. But - unless you institute a truly draconian regime - you still have to fit in schoolwork, holidays, birthdays etc. I can't believe how quickly these tests have crept up on us.

I don't think though that the pressure of extra work at this age is a bad thing, though. After all they will have to go through periods of pressure like this at GCSE and university and in their working lives.

Just hope we get offered something in March!

Resmum


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 1:36 pm 
Mad Mum wrote:
I've just posted a query on 11+ Exams under general comments so I was relieved to read everyone's comments here - my daughter doesn't do her 11+ until January but I am struggling with her lack of motivation at the moment. I feel as if things are degenerating into a pitched battle with me on one side nagging and her on the other watching TV etc. etc. - basically anything except what she should be doing. I know I should not pressure her for fear of demotivating but to be honest we are passed all that and I just feel like 'oh what the ****' - do as you want and I just won't bother. Did any of you feel like that? I was heartened to hear that some of you have had tears and tantrums too.


First off Mel - I'm a husband and I've been the one spending time helping my son with his practise papers...

There have been plenty of tears along the way especially when faced with a hard test paper and when child is not in the mood. My son is quite highly strung and it doesn't take much to send him over the edge. He never accepted that he had to work hard on this - although he knew the reason why - and much preferred to watch telly. Oh if only they had a test on knowledge of the Simpsons I would never have worried.

He also struggled to complete the papers in time and so although I know he is bright and the school expected him to do well I had doubts. I'm sure there are many bright kids who don't do so well in a VR test.

I felt for a long time that given any individual question he knew how to answer it (didn't always want to - but knew). However he did not have experience of doing tests under pressure and so the key was to make him practise under test conditions. This was difficult because it is quite
a committment for both him and myself to take an hour out twice a week just to practise. The rarely went smoothly although he did show improvement in presentation and timing that reflected in his test scores.

In the last few of weeks before the test he had a couple of bad VR papers where he just didn't want to do the codes and other hard sections - and so didn't and just cried and said it was too hard. So in the two weeks leading up to the test I backed off and just gave him short sessions practising codes etc. This was hit and miss but did seem to relax him somewhat. I spent more time talking him through what to expect on the day and reassuring him that even if he didn't do well and didn't get his choice of school we still loved him and were proud of him (of course I was still thinking that he could have worked harder to prepare but I didn't tell him that!)

On the day he went in fairly relaxed and came out with a big beaming smile saying he'd finished both papers. (This was unexpected as the VR in Hertys is 100 questions in 45 mins and we'd only ever practised 80 in 50 mins.) I know that if he's finished them he's probably done OK. Whether it is good enough I don't know but I'm happy that he's done as well as I could expect.

Not sure this ramble will help you - however I guess the point is if you can relax a bit your child might and on the day they may well surprise you. That was the hard bit for me - letting the child do their way rather than me trying to over prepare him. God I'm glad its over!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 2:03 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 17, 2006 8:54 pm
Posts: 1770
Location: caversham
Stig,

Identical in our case.

Ended up doing small confidence building sections, I wanted to do more including a full test day with three 50 minute papers and an essay but it would have put son off exams forever.

We worked on exam technique and confidence, whatever school came next we had the skills to succeed so the exam was not make or break but a challenge. I still remember the joy I felt when son said VR and NVR were now enjoyable, a bit like a quiz.

On the day son was relaxed and confident and came out happy, I could not reasonably ask for more.

Sharing these experiences has helped me to cope, for those still travelling towards an exam I hope this helps.


Stevew 61


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2006 6:47 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 14, 2006 7:32 pm
Posts: 410
Hi Stig

I am sorry if I offended you and any other husbands!!.

Sounds like you have done a great job and I am sure your son has done his best.

Best of luck to you

Melx


Steve

Good luck to you and your son to


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