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 Post subject: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 10:10 am 
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Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 9:44 am
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Hi I'm new to this forum, so appologise in advance if i have posted in the wrong area.

My son is satrting Year 3 in sept and I am keen to start him on the right track to prepare him for the 11+ exam. I am not suggesting he starts doing question papers for 11+ but I do want to try to get a head start.

Can anyone suggest what I should be doing now to make it easier for him later?

A bit of background:
His year 2 teacher has identified him as being a very bright child and he appears to be doing exceptionally well at school so far. However, the reason I want to take these additional steps is that he is about to start Year 3 and after talking to the teachers for year 3 to year 6, I am not confident that the teachers will get the maximum potential out of him. So far we have been very lucky with the teachers he has had and they have all helped develop his potential, but that may not be the case from next sept until 11+. Hence my above question.

I am getting very woried so your advice will be really appreciated.


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 Post subject: Re: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 12:26 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 10:07 pm
Posts: 501
Hi
At the start of Y3, the best preparation for 11+ is to read every day with your child - proper books appropriate for his age and discuss the vocabulary. Malorie Blackman and Michael Morpurgo are good authors to start with, but not all their books are appropriate for a 7 yr old. Dahl of course is excellent.
My children also enjoyed playing board games, such as boggle, scrabble and countdown number games, and a game called nubble. There are loads of number game available on the internet, but I like to play with the board or using pencil and paper.
With reference to the KS2 teachers getting the best out of him, if he is on the G&T register they will have to ensure they are meeting his particular needs.


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 Post subject: Re: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 1:58 pm 
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Hi wonderwoman,

Can you tell me what G+T is. My son goes to an independent school.


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 Post subject: Re: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:19 pm 
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wonderwoman wrote:
Hi
At the start of Y3, the best preparation for 11+ is to read every day with your child - proper books appropriate for his age and discuss the vocabulary. .


i agree here, also getting him to start learning his times tables. Not rote but so he knows a table inside out eg. if you fire a 6x4 at him he can have instant recall with the answer. :)

G & T is gifted and talented - some schools dont have a register for this.


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 Post subject: Re: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 4:06 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 10:59 am
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This child is what - 7? Has it really come to this?

Quote:
I am getting very woried so your advice will be really appreciated.


Please, please just let him be! Time enough to get 'really worried' when he is 10, if you must.


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 Post subject: Re: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 8:53 pm 
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Could you say in what way you are worried?


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 Post subject: Re: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 8:55 pm 
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Oh and Malorie Blackamn and Michaell Morpurgo are both mostly unsuitable for this age group. Be very careful.


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 Post subject: Re: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 7:24 am 
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If the childis bright and performing well generally, then don't stress. Basically read regualarly, make sure tables are done well etc but not much more than that. You don't have to do extra preparation now. Get the basics in now, and worry about the rest in year 5.


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 Post subject: Re: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 4:05 am 
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If I understand the OP correctly, the mother is worried that from now on her son is not going to get a great grounding in the basics at this particular school, so she is worried that although bright her son may not make it into the top 25% (or less even if it is a superselective) by the time of the 11+ if she doesn't try and do a little extra at home. We don't know the exact reasons for her worries, but maybe it's a school that is great in the infant section, but dubious during KS2 -- and there are quite a few schools like this.

As well as some useful answers, the poor woman has just received disparaging answers from the "uh? what are you worried about, don't worry about it til the night before" brigade; so probably now she is worried about the school, worried about the 11+, and worried she is worried.

This website was set up for people preparing for the 11+, by someone whose son was preparing for the 11+. Good job no-one kept on writing in to them saying "how ridiculous, what are you bothered about, if he's bright he'll pass, hope you waited until year 5, hope you are doing nothing in the holidays, and not more than a couple of minutes of something jolly good fun after school".

If this were me (oh no!) I would find out what the 11+ tests that my child will have to sit consists of, and where relative to the rest of the population my child has to be to pass for the particular schools I'm interested in (e.g. top 25%, top 5% etc).

Then I'd find some way of knowing how my child is doing in the relevant areas of the school curriculum, so for a school or area with a maths test I'd keep a careful eye on his maths and english, in areas without I'd just keep an eye on english (unless I was bothered about the maths for other reasons). In areas where there isn't a written English test (most areas?) but just a verbal reasoning paper I'd be less concerned about how he writes (unless I was bothered about this for other reasons).

Find out what annual / termly assessment tests your school carries out and when, when you can have the results (ask under Data Protection Act for his school file if necessary from time to time), get his teacher assessment in National Curriculum sub-levels for maths and english, and block by block so you can see which elements he is above average in, which not.

For maths "boosting", go browsing in bookshops and on the web and on this website for stuff that looks good and interesting that backs up KS2 stuff. If you want to improve his speed and accuracy in mental maths try the books and games etc on "Power of 2" website, or more general coverage in Carol Vorderman books and maths website, or Maths Whizz. Hope this doesn't all get scrubbed by mods as they are commercial (just like Kumon!!)

For English, and especially reading, lots of fab ideas on this website, you can search it. Reading to your child, and unabridged books on CD great. Son can hear more complex language this way than he can read himself, and it does soak in while he's doing something else quiet he enjoys e.g. lego, meccano etc.

Then closer to the time focus your extras on materials more relevant to the actual 11+ papers in your area / school. e.g. try the Bond Assessment Papers as you can him on a level of difficulty specific to his age group and then move up or down as necessary.

Greatest returns will be from doing a little extra over a long, long period of time, than doing a big bash at the end. Also the former approach is less risky as even if some kind of major family disaster strikes in the short term before the exam he is well grounded early. Also you are less likely to meet resistance from child as the habit of doing a little school relevant work with you each day / week has been set early.

Try other websites on helping your child's education

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Good luck.


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 Post subject: Re: Y3 best way forward
PostPosted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 9:04 am 
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Posts: 5923
Quote:
As well as some useful answers, the poor woman has just received disparaging answers from the "uh? what are you worried about, don't worry about it til the night before" brigade; so probably now she is worried about the school, worried about the 11+, and worried she is worried.

This website was set up for people preparing for the 11+, by someone whose son was preparing for the 11+. Good job no-one kept on writing in to them saying "how ridiculous, what are you bothered about, if he's bright he'll pass, hope you waited until year 5, hope you are doing nothing in the holidays, and not more than a couple of minutes of something jolly good fun after school".


Well, guilty as charged, m'lud. I take your point that the website was set up originally to help those putting their children through the 11+. However, it has evolved to something much more and one thing it seems rightly tolerant of is the disparate views of its posters. As someone whose career was for many years built around early years education, and who is currently editing a PhD thesis on it, I do feel just ever so slightly qualified to comment on whether it is a good idea to be stressing about a child who has been out of the infants for about one week getting through an academic exam in 4 years' time. I come from the view that most children on the planet would not even have started school at 6. I am not judging the parents of children who are put under pressure at a young age: I just feel genuinely and deeply sorry for young children who have their childhood eaten into by such concerns. I also can't help wondering, in this particular case, why the child is at an independent school which is no doubt costing lots of money but about whom the mother has serious doubts.

When one posts a question on this forum, one is inviting others to comment and offer their views. If all the views were the same, there would be little point in doing it in the first place. I do think that as long as everyone shows respect to their fellow posters (and I apologise if I didn't - I was just a bit incredulous and tried to portray that without being disparaging - maybe unsuccessfully) then it ought to be OK. You are right that I believe in play above all else for young children, and I also believe my own children are a testament to this kind of upbringing, though you have only my own word for that: I will spare you the comments from their most recent school reports which would bear it out. There is more than one way to skin a cat (yuk!) as they say, and listening to a wide range of views, kindly meant, should only help to form and refine one's own.


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