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 Post subject: Where to start?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2014 9:16 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2014 9:10 pm
Posts: 6
Hello, I have just registered with this forum but have been reading posts for a few weeks now. Firstly I want to say hello and well done to everyone who had the results they were looking for today.

I am an early starter to the 11+ as my daughter is in yr 3 so I have a while to go but wondered if anyone had some handy tips as to where to start and what books I should start to look at ie bond etc.

Many thanks


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 Post subject: Re: Where to start?
PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2014 9:34 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:01 pm
Posts: 6695
Location: Herts
Where are you based and what schools are you applying for? Plenty of students start some gentle prep in Y3 but how much you do will depend on how many applicants sit for the schools you are interested in. DG


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 Post subject: Re: Where to start?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 5:51 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
Posts: 8228
Yes - you need to know that. But maybe also as schools change their 11 plus exam provider from time to time you need to work in things that are useful for all types of 11plus exam at this stage.

- activities which develop a broad vocabulary
- getting to a good level in maths for her age - particularly rapid mental arithmetic as part of word problem solving
- developing reading comprehension
- spelling, punctuation and grammar

If you are going to start 11plus type questions early I would start with verbal reasoning as there are a lot of possible question types.

I have found that my year 5 daughter does not know her alphabet well enough to quickly do questions which require you to know which letters come a certain number before or after other letters. It might be worth working on this in the same way that one does it with numbers - starting reciting at different points, doing alternate letters, groups of three, four etc, going backwards.

I also regret not developing her vocabulary more. Reading is not the only way.


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 Post subject: Re: Where to start?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:15 am 
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Joined: Thu May 16, 2013 4:02 pm
Posts: 2150
I know people do it but am still aghast that some start actually preparing in year 3... We used a tutor for an hour and a half a week in year 5 for both of ours (about a year before the exam). I think it's enough to give your child a fun, interesting childhood with lots and lots of reading, card and board games, plenty of stimulating conversation with adults and other children, lots of fresh air and exercise, and plenty of family visits to a wide range of museums, art galleries, theatre, sports events etc. We aimed to help ours develop an inquiring mind and a broad outlook on life whether or not they eventually went to grammar school. And to have fun with them too!


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 Post subject: Re: Where to start?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:52 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 1:47 pm
Posts: 2151
Location: Warwickshire
Tink, I have a son in year 3 but have no intention of doing any 11+ work until year 5. I agree with you, Peridot, I think dc should enjoy their childhood without thinking about the 11+. Tbh, I am shocked anyone is doing any work in year 3.

Ds2 is naturally very inquisitive so we just talk a lot, go places, make things. He enjoys football more than anything else. This morning I woke up to ds2 informing me Russia have invaded Ukraine - I was impressed ds2 watched the news, let alone took any of it in. He wants to know whether Ukraine is in Europe.

My older three seem to have grown up so quickly, I want him to enjoy his childhood. My older two are at a comp and both are happy and doing well there. Going to a gs is not the most important thing in life. I know we all have different approaches to the 11+ and Daogroupie is right about which schools you are applying for, I just would not push too much. I think ds2 would rebel if I tried to make him do any "proper" work.


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 Post subject: Re: Where to start?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 9:26 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
Posts: 8228
Peridot wrote:
I know people do it but am still aghast that some start actually preparing in year 3... We used a tutor for an hour and a half a week in year 5 for both of ours (about a year before the exam). I think it's enough to give your child a fun, interesting childhood with lots and lots of reading, card and board games, plenty of stimulating conversation with adults and other children, lots of fresh air and exercise, and plenty of family visits to a wide range of museums, art galleries, theatre, sports events etc. We aimed to help ours develop an inquiring mind and a broad outlook on life whether or not they eventually went to grammar school. And to have fun with them too!


I agree this is the ideal. But a lot of people, for lots of different reasons, can't do or offer those things. And if you can do them, they can still fall into the category of:

-activities which develop a broad vocabulary
- getting to a good level in maths for her age - particularly rapid mental arithmetic as part of word problem solving
- developing reading comprehension
- spelling, punctuation and grammar


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 Post subject: Re: Where to start?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 10:42 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 08, 2011 1:25 pm
Posts: 1360
I was assisting in a taekwon-do class the other day, and one of the mums sat on the side was doing CEM work with a lad, who I know to be not 8 yet.. In Gloucestershire. Older brother is a Pates.


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 Post subject: Re: Where to start?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 12:55 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2014 9:10 pm
Posts: 6
Thank you for all your replies. I think yr 3 is too early too and I wouldn't have started anything heavy just carry on what I was doing which is the odd bond book. Other parents have told me they are getting tutors so I was a little spooked!


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 Post subject: Re: Where to start?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:29 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:13 am
Posts: 452
Yes, Year 3 is early. I always suggest that Year 4 is the foundation year where you can develop things like handwriting, reading speed and fluency around mental calculation. These things then indirectly help speed up things when it comes to Year 5. A lot also depends on child's potential and what schools you have in your mind.


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 Post subject: Re: Where to start?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 2:32 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
Posts: 8228
Yes it is early if all is otherwise gong well. But if education was patchy at this point for some external reason it is a good time to move onwards without the stress of an exam goal in mind.


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