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 Post subject: How do you decide?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2006 1:31 pm 
My daughter has just moved into Year 4 and got 2 "4s" and a 4C in her Maths Year 3 Sats result.

I know it's very early days yet, and Sats are well Sats, with all the deficiencies etc of the system. So, she's clearly reasonably bright, but how on earth do you then decide whether to try your kids out for grammar school? Is quite bright, bright enough?

I live in Reading where there are 2 grammar schools serving a large area - grammars are not the norm, and just as elsewhere, competition is fierce.

It is not that we will be making our minds up for a while, but if we start thinking seriously about it, I will need to start introducing my daughter to the idea. Consequently, I'd like to know if there are any benchmarks available?

I don't want my daughter to try for something she has no chance of success in. I also do not like the idea of much more than familarity with the tests (and much nearer the time), as I would not want her to be coached to perform beyond her abilities and struggle from here on in.

Any suggestions?



 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2006 2:25 pm 
It is a tough decision more so given the high competition for places in Reading because of a lack of alternatives. I am coaching my year six boy and already learning and planning for year two boy and reception class girl !

You have plenty of time to start gently and see how things develop, find some lower age ability verbal reasoning and NVR from the shop on this website, photocopy pages and treat them as fun quiz sheets.

If you go down the whole path many positives can be achieved, a better bond between child and parent, transferable learning and study skills and hopefully a place at your chosen school.

If you don't try you will never know.

Good luck.


 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2006 2:49 pm 

Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8148
Location: Buckinghamshire
I agree with Steve - get the Bond VR and NVR papers for age 7/8 and let her do them as puzzle books. They are very user-friendly.

They don't truly resemble the 11+ in Bucks or probably in Berks, but they will give you a good idea of how she is likely to do from natural ability. Coaching would then help her decipher the more difficult question types and help her with tricks and timing.


 Post subject: How do you decide
PostPosted: Fri Oct 13, 2006 4:03 pm 

Joined: Thu Sep 14, 2006 7:32 pm
Posts: 410
Hi Katie

Just thought I would tell you that we never decided until my son was in year five although we did feel he was a bright kid. This was based on his sets at school(1a&1b) his reports that came home and just how we saw him and his approach to learning in general.

We didnt base it on the SATS as we didnt always get his results so wouldn't of been able to.

We hadn't been through the process before and didnt know anyone who had but when he got into year five our school gave the kids CATS test which was a test of verbal, non verbal and maths it was given in the Feb of year five and was done then so that it was supposed to reflect the childrens natural raw ability. It was marked like the real thing and then in the May we parents were given the results. Those children who scored above 111 were advised to sit the test those on border were told they could also give it a go but those scoring below were advised not to. We had already decided that if our son did score below then we would not consider Grammar school. Our son did well and so yes we went for it. My son also excelled at school in year 5, he had a particuarly good teacher who pushed him and that made the difference too.

I feel as parents we do know how capable our children are and sometimes we do have to give them the extra push they need. Whatever anyone tells you they do need coaching/tutoring for the test as it isn't anything they have done before.

My daughter is now in year 4. I have already taken some compund words off this site(Patricia's) and we have played games using them which she has enjoyed. I will gradually start introducing others things to her that I feel will help but I won't start tutoring her until end of year 4/5. I didnt start with my son until the spring of year 5 and I feel we then were under more pressure so with my daughter I will start earlier.

What I will do is give my daughter an actual NFER test and see how she does. I wont time her and it will be a very blase approach as I woudlnt want to panic hr but atleast it will gove me an idea of what work will be needed.

Hop ethis helps


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