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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 11:44 am 
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Location: RBK
Has anyone had the experience of sending an older child to GS, but having a younger child who wouldn't suit GS?

How did you handle the situation without making the younger one feel 'less clever' or in some way disadvantaged?

How did you assess whether or not to put them in for the 11+? And do you think it's better to put them in for it even if they probably won't pass, so that they don't think you think they're not as clever as their sibling, or is it better not set them up for failure?

My DC2 is in Y2 now, and by that age it was obvious that we'd be putting DC1 in for the 11+ but I'm much less sure about DC2. I'd welcome any thoughts/advice!

Thanks!
Sherwood.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 12:38 pm 
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I would say that it is far too early to worry about the 11+ in Y2.

Children change and learn at different paces. You don't even know where you will be and what choices will be available for your DC by the time he reaches Y6.

I would just try and push any worries to the back of your mind for the time being and enjoy the time with your child.

Also don't forget that in most countries children your sons age would not have even started at school yet, so even though it might have been obvious at this age that DS1 was bright, it does not mean that DS2 is any less bright.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 1:11 pm 
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Absolutely right. And as most of us soon realise, boys are an utterly different proposition from girls (I remember watching the reception class coming into assembly when Miss 1880 started school - troop of little girls trotting in and sitting down neatly, then gaggle of boys stumbling in falling over their own feet, other peoples' feet, heading off in random wrong directions and bumping into each other, before finally crashing down in so many untidy heaps...). Personally, I have absolutely no idea whether our son is brighter than our daughter or vice versa - I just know they're both very bright, but they're so totally different that there's absolutely no way to compare them (assuming I wanted to, which I don't!).

I'd put it out of your mind until about mid-Y4, and even then only to think about preparation - to be honest I wouldn't make a firm decision on it until the last possible minute of Y5/6 (how long you've got depends where you are), boys can be so erratic.

Meanwhile, keep an open mind.

Mike


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 1:30 pm 
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Location: Rochester
Absolutely agree - year 2 is way too early to start worrying. I do however have this dilemma with a clever (hopefully) year 5 child doing 11+ in Sept, and a year 4 child coming up behind - also 'bright' but not in the traditional demonstrable sense ;) :-]
Have decided not to put DD1 into the more demanding grammar (if she passes) in the hope DD2 does scrape through...trying to decide on Plan B is a problem though, thinking of ringing indie to see how the land lies with places available for year 7 entry at the last minute...
Both go to a tutor (not one to one) and I might put DD2 into the year 4 assessment just to see how she comes out of that...

*sigh*


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 2:23 pm 
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Hi Sherwood, I agree with others that it’s a bit too early to worry about this, but FWIW we have a DS at a highly academic GS and a DD at the local secondary modern. She did take the 11+ but didn’t get it and didn’t get in on appeal either. (We think she is just as academically capable as her brother, but she does have health issues which restrict her attendance somewhat and a chronic medical condition which is exacerbated by stress so tends to do better in class work than exams.)

We have found the main difference to be (and obviously this is only our experience) that the GS pushes hard whereas at the secondary modern that drive has to come from the children themselves, or their parents. The DCs probably get equal amounts of homework, for example, but while not doing it results in a sanction at the GS it does not at DD’s school. I guess what I’m saying is that a bright motivated DC can do well at either school, but DD has to want to do well, whereas DS is probably going to do well whether he wants to or not :) Does that make any sense at all?


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 3:05 pm 
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Thanks all for your replies - and yes, it is too early to start worrying really! ;) I guess that I'm just interested in others experiences in this regard. My son is also bright, but I have a feeling he might be happier at the comp because he'd enjoy being the big fish in a small pond. My daughter is the opposite and has hated being top of the class the whole time she's been at school (no danger of that at GS I think)!

But mainly I want to avoid my son feeling like he's 'not as good' as my daughter - obviously I don't think so, and it's horses for courses in regard for schools. But how do you get that across to a child? Here I confess that I was the sibling who went to the comp, while my brother went to GS, and although I gained better results at O and A level, and undergrad and postgrad level, I still felt like the stupid one well into adulthood. I want to avoid that with my son, but I don't know how to do it!


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 3:23 pm 
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Sherwood, you could be talking about myself & my middle sister :( I was bookish & academic, whilst she was less academic but was popular & had the gift of the gab. We have both done pretty 'well' for ourselves, but the competition of 2 same sex siblings close in age has meant we never have really had a good relationship; I don't want history to repeat itself with my girls :(


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 3:52 pm 
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I think you just have to keep reiterating that they are individuals and will both be good in different areas. This doesn't make one of them better/cleverer than the other.

You also don't have to be clever to succeed or have a happy life.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 6:53 pm 
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rubyhettybetty wrote:
Have decided not to put DD1 into the more demanding grammar (if she passes) in the hope DD2 does scrape through...

Obviously, I don't know your children but please only do this if it is right for DD1 to go to the less demanding grammar.
My younger boy has got into a more super super selective than his bro (in Glos we have no catchment, no sibling, just first past the post but there is one which requires higher marks to get in to should that school be your choice). People went a bit sniffy with me for not sending DS2 to DS1's school thinking DS1 might be upset. My thinking was that each school was right for each boy and, anyway, had DS2 not managed either grammar, what should I have done? pulled DS1 out of his GS and put him in the comprehensive so that DS2 wasn't upset??


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2010 8:36 pm 
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Sherwood wrote:
Here I confess that I was the sibling who went to the comp, while my brother went to GS, and although I gained better results at O and A level, and undergrad and postgrad level, I still felt like the stupid one well into adulthood. I want to avoid that with my son, but I don't know how to do it!


Maybe you tried harder than your brother to prove you were just as clever even though you were not at grammar?

My dd1 was also set for grammar from infants! some are.

dd2 will be going to grammar in sept. She was not considered "grammar material" until mid way through year 5. So dont worry - enjoy the time where you dont need to worry about all that. :)


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