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 Post subject: Motivation!
PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 1:04 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2011 1:41 pm
Posts: 3
Hello All

I have been reading the forum with great interest for a few months now, and have taken the plunge and decided to ask you wise people for some advice – please help!

My DS is in year 5, and says that he would like to go to Grammar School. His teacher says he is bright and capable of doing well but that he doesn’t always put in 100% effort. It seems to me that he does the minimum work he can to get through.

We have 8 months before the exams. When I have discussed the extra work needed with DS, he claims that he is willing to put the effort in.

I have been trying to break him in gently with some short exercises, but most nights he moans and protests even though it only takes 10 minutes. I am conscious that we need to progress soon to trying to work through some papers, which I would imagine take 30/40 mins per paper. Does anyone have any tips on motivating a child like this?? I really don’t want it to become a battleground.

Any advice will be much appreciated. Many thanks.

LancsMum.


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 Post subject: Re: Motivation!
PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 1:55 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
Posts: 6966
Location: East Kent
bribery works well in my experience :wink:


also try and make it fun ,


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 Post subject: Re: Motivation!
PostPosted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 2:08 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2007 9:57 pm
Posts: 1167
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Last edited by Belinda on Thu Nov 01, 2012 9:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Motivation!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 1:37 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2011 1:41 pm
Posts: 3
Belinda / yoyo
Thanks very much for your replies, some good advice there.
I will try to appear as though I am completely calm and relaxed (even though I may well not be!)
Many thanks
LancsMum


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 11:26 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:05 pm
Posts: 660
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Last edited by Glos_Mum on Fri Aug 21, 2015 10:29 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Motivation!
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 10:43 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 12:28 pm
Posts: 417
Hi Lancsmum

You have got a decent amount of time to prepare which is great. With my DD1 I only found out about 11+ 4 months before so it was quite a rush and I helped my DD because it was a bit late to look for a tutor. Motivation was not always easy so I sympathise!
Do you know exactly what your intended grammar school tests - verbal reasoning, NVR, maths, english? Make sure you know exactly what will be expected - here there are 2 tests 45 & 50 mins multi choice and only VR but it varies on area. I remember bying nvr papers before I realised there were no nvr papers used in our tests!! So don't waste time on the wrong things although doing standard rather than multi choice to start with is ok. Well I've been happy to use some standard papers I have got before doing multi choice.

I have friends who use a tutor because their DCs work better for someone else than for their parents so that might help. I agree it is good to have a set day or time when you do your 11+ work, your DS will know what to expect - how long it will take etc. and not worry about you hauling him away from a fave tv programme or game! My DS is y5 and he is doing 2 papers a week at the moment but with help when he needs it and not with time pressure. 1 at weekend, 1 during the week. He is happy to do them but as he is our third DC taking 11+ he knows the score and just gets on with it.

Have a grown up chat about how 11+ is hard work and you need to put the effort in- after all, the other DCs sitting the test will be doing that preparation too. If he wants to go for it you can support him but you don't want to nag (too much) you might agree some treats & rewards too. Have you visited the grammar school together?

He might get fed up by the time the test comes round (most do) but hopefully he will be ready by then.
The other thing is (not every time of course) do things in the car on the school run etc times tables, opposites & similar meaning, word games and play wordy/puzzley type of board games such as boggle then you are learning and having fun and try "free rice" website for word meanings and tables.

Are any of his friends aiming to take 11+? Some people do team up for work although there are pros and cons to this.
good luck! :D


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 Post subject: Re: Motivation!
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 3:54 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2009 9:28 pm
Posts: 2439
Two of the best things that worked for us was to banish my other DS (He gained alot of computer/playstation time as a result!), and to work at a regular time. It was difficult as first, but eventually a routine was established which everyone got used to.


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 Post subject: Re: Motivation!
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 4:00 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2007 2:29 pm
Posts: 593
Location: Trafford
Bribery is my key technique, be it computer time, TV time, a new book, sweets or the current favourite of a squirt of whipped cream. :roll:


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 Post subject: Re: Motivation!
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 7:30 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2010 8:13 pm
Posts: 118
The first time my DS moaned about doing the extra work I told him that was fine, he didn't have to do the exam, we would forget the whole thing and I wouldn't waste any more of my time or money on it. He made the decision to do the exams and never moaned again.

However, all the bright children in DS' school were desperate to get into what they classed a 'good' school. It might be a risky strategy if your DS is not that bothered.

Once he was committed, I also used bribery. No computer time unless he had done his work. As he often made silly mistakes, if he scored over a certain mark he got extra computer time. As he had to do Maths, English, VR and NVR for the exams the mark varied depending on his average score for each type of paper. He needed 95% or more for VR, which he is naturally good at, but a much lower % for NVR which has always been his weakest area.

Good luck.


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 Post subject: Re: Motivation!
PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:20 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 1:52 pm
Posts: 737
I really wouldn't advocate bribery or witholding treats to acheive results unless that's what you plan to do after he gets into secondary school as well! Some parents do and good luck to them but I taught Japanese post grads for a while and found that, for the most part, they were impossible to motivate because they had never needed to 'self-start' before.

DD took 11 plus last term and she amazed me with how hard she worked. Yes, it helped that there were a few other children in her class taking the test but they were all doing different amounts of preparation and getting different amounts of help so it wouldn't have kept her on track if she had been in the mood to shirk. What did work (and I accept that every child is different) is that I told her regularly how much I appreciated how hard she was working, insisted that the rest of the family respected that - be quiet while she works, reschedule activities so she didn't miss out etc - and (so cruelly) made sure that little brother didn't get to do anything too enjoyable while she was busy working - one child sitting in front of tv while the other sweats over their books can easily put a child off education.

I also made a point of reminding DD how useful all this extra work was irrespective of where she ended up at school - and I think this must hae rubbed off because, although she has doubts about whether she has done well enough in the exam to get into grammar, she assures me she is very glad that she took the test.


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