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 Post subject: When to give up?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 5:25 pm 
Despite regular practise of Verbal and Non Verbal tests my daughter's marks seem to hover between 55% and 85% depending on the section, on average she scores about 70% per paper. She makes a lot of careless mistakes but despite going through the "How to do questions" books, she doesn't seem able to improve any more. As these marks do not seem high enough to get through, I just wondered if it is time to call it a day rather than put pressure on her? Just wondered if other parents are in the same position?


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 Post subject: time to give up?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 6:16 pm 
Hi guilty mum,
ithink we all feel guilty when the children do not appar to be hitting the mark.How does your daughter feel?Does she really want to do it? If so,I will say persevere- even if she doesn't want to do it and you as aparent feel that is the best thing for her keep on keeping on ,don't give up.look at other ways of getting there ie the CD by tutors, there has been good reviews so far and the kids seem to see it as fun and not work! although it gets the message across. also try using words and flashcards as they need the vocabulary to get on.
I think children as individuals respond differently to teaching methods,what might suite one child may not neccessary suite another.
How is her diet and sleeping patterns?That may need looking into as well!
I feel it is worth a try.
all the best.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 6:20 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 01, 2006 3:36 am
Posts: 141
Dear Guilty....please dont feel that way.
Some days I feel that we too, have 2 steps forward and 1 back. A paper I marked yesterday was one of my son's worst since we started. I do not know why. I have put it to one side and will now have a rest from revision. It is not fun for us parents to watch our children go thru this whole charade, knowing all we can do is go thru the papers with them and keep fingers crossed on the day. All you can do is keep practising. When is your test? If it is Sept/Oct then keep on slogging. If you have a little longer, maybe you can take a little time off now and come back to it a little more refreshed? Are you trying too late on in the day....would 1st thing in the morning be better? Dont give up....I bet she will get thru in the end....and good luck
USA


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 10:44 am 
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Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2006 1:20 pm
Posts: 75
Location: Lincolnshire
I had a conversation with an ex headmaster of some 25 years, a while ago. He explained that the qualities needed to be suitable for a grammer school education, including a thirst for learning, perseverance, enjoying things such as reading and writing and expressing themselves in an academic way, these things are not always tested by the 11plus.
However as this is the only way to secure a place we must do everything we can to give our children the be shot.
You know your child, if you think they are suited to this kind of education, it is worth carrying on. you don't have to push too hard. I find little and often is working well. My son does around 10 practice questions each day. This is familiarizing him with all of the question types so that when he attempts a timed test his mark and time is improving.

Are you able to find out your mark before making a decision on the school you select? If so you have nothing to loose. Just as long as you reassure your child that as long as they try their best they have succeeded in your eyes.

Also dont forget that at home children have other things on their minds. (It is the summer holidays after all) You may find they rise to the challenge on the day.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 10:44 am 
Hi Guilty Mum

Are you marking papers within a time limit?

Is your daughter completing the papers or is she missing questions out. There is a difference between getting a question wrong and not knowing how to complete a question.

Is she getting more vocabulary questions wrong?

I would suggest that you stop using full papers and start looking at question types.

Have a look at the free demo on the CDs page let her have two or three tries with it, then give her an untimed paper, then you should be able to see where most practice is required.

If on average she is completing 70% of the question types accurately then there is a 30% issue which, because of connections between some question types, should be easy to resolve.

If however, after reviewing the question types, she is getting 70% of each question type correct then the issues could well be timing and anxiety.

For 80 question papers completed in 50 minutes the average time for each question is approximately 37 seconds. Get her to sit quietly and do nothing for 37 seconds, she will see how long this is. For each question completed within 37 seconds she is accumulating time to spend on longer questions.

Another technique for assessing ability when completing full papers is to instruct her to miss out the last question in each section. This will allow her to get to the last sections where she could very well pick up more points.

The above applies to verbal reasoning.

Hope it helps

Regards

MIke


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 3:36 pm 
Thank you all for your replies and suggestions. She is keen to carry on. She appears to be clever and motivated to go to grammer school and so would benefit from a grammer school education, the test is in November so she still has time to improve.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 4:41 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2006 4:07 pm
Posts: 2660
Dear Mike

Have to disagree with the recommendation of leaving out the last question of each type....approx 12 sections, 12 marks lost, odd ones lost over the rest of the test.....failed. As tests are set out randomly, the child does not whether the last questions are easier and of course, should not waste time looking through the test to find preferred types.

I say to all my students........All questions should be attempted, if unsure, put a ring round the question number, mark an educated guess on the answer sheet and move on...if time allows, go back to all questions with a ring.

RE approx 37 seconds per question I agree with your comments re accumulating seconds for harder questions.......I constantly time my students giving them times 'according' to type eg. codes, type C 45 seconds, all maths [ Bucks related] 25 seconds, finding the letter that fits all 4 words, 8 seconds etc etc

Patricia


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 4:49 pm 
Hi Patricia

My advice was based on preparing the child for the test, not for the child sitting a test.

In my experience few children are able to complete a paper within a given time early on in preparation.

They may be capable of accumulating marks at the end of the paper, but not be able to get there because of time constraints.

By missing out one question from each section they are able to get towards the end of the paper reasonably comfortably.

The parent/tutor is then able to assess more accurately where the problem areas are and address them.

In the instance of the daughter of "guilty mum" this is a technique that has worked in the past with a number of our students who are experiencing similar problems.

I would suggest that in the event of all other approaches not working then an alternative approach is worth trying.

Regards

Mike


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 8:59 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2006 4:07 pm
Posts: 2660
Dear Mike

Point taken!

Patricia


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 29, 2006 4:08 pm 
A little late but I thought I would reply. My older daughter sat an entrance test about 4 years ago and a week before the proper test, she got a score of about 60% in VR. I didn't tell her, but I felt awful about it and wondered if we were doing the right thing by putting her in for the test. We tried not to put any pressure on at all and said to go and do her best and if she didn't get in, then it was of no consequence, but it was worth a try.

She was very relaxed on the day and went in and told me afterwards that she definitely hadn't got into the school as she did so badly and missed out half of the questions. How wrong she was - as she then got in and is doing very well at the school.

So my advice is just to go for it and tell her to do her best, but not to worry if it is really hard. I am sure you have a contingency plan if all doesn't go well, but there really is no harm in trying.

Also, I have 2 children who have passed the 11+ now and I have never muddled their heads with exam "technique". I felt that at 10 years of age, it was a bit too much for them to think about.

Good luck.


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