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 Post subject: VR in Bexley
PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2008 12:43 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:55 pm
Posts: 851
Location: Bexley
I'm rather ashamed to ask this question having been through the 11+ twice in the last 3 years but ......

I keep reading on other sites about 21 or 15 types of questions for VR tests. I've previously just used one or two randomly-bought practice papers and then focused on the NFER papers in the run up to the tests. We've just missed out questions like nets of cubes which don't seem to appear on NFER papers and trusted to luck that we've covered all the question types.

However, now that VR will account for 50% of the 11+ score, I feel I ought to get a better handle on it! My question is, does anyone know if there is a list of VR question types which Bexley has used in the past and which I might therefore (naively perhaps) assume will be used again in the future?

My son is only in year 4 so I won't be doing any real practice with him until next year. However, I have bought the Bond 9-10 VR book which I thought we might dip into from time to time. I'm still in 11+ mode from No 2 son, so I started wondering if, when the time comes for No. 3, I ought to have a checklist to hand to make sure we've covered all the different types.

Also, the Bexley site has been SO quiet, I felt the urge to post something! :wink:


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PostPosted: Mon May 05, 2008 1:51 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:22 pm
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Hi

My son is also yr 4 so looks like we're in the same boat! Do you mind me asking when you were planning to start 11+ work with him - I was thinking of starting this summer to give him a slow ease into it. Also, do you think the Bond books are good ? (I really like CGP for covering the stuff they do in class).

Also, are your older children both boys and if they are both at Grammar how did you find the whole process of getting them there?! The reason I ask is that I have a very able but quite lazy son and I feel he may not put in the effort needed and therefore waste the opportunity of attending one of the really good Grammar schools we have in this borough.

Sorry for the interrogation!!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 06, 2008 11:04 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:55 pm
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Location: Bexley
Bex Mum - I sent you a pm.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2008 1:30 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2007 9:28 am
Posts: 1123
Location: Bexley
Hey, a post on the Bexley section!!!

BM2, I asked our dear council about the conrtent of the VR papers as from this Sept. I particularly asked whether it's type 15 or 21. The official either couldn't or wouldn't tell me but said examples of the types or questions will be made available to yr5 parents in June. Apart from that he said just go to WHSmiths and look at the Nfer papers!

But, type 21 includes maths style questions and as we have retained a maths paper, to include the extra 6 question types would make the test heavily biased towards maths. So in theory we should just have the 15 types.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2008 8:12 pm 
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Location: Bexley
Tracy - I was just wondering whether we'd had 15 or 21 in the past (never managed to work that out), but of course you're right, they may want to reduce the maths emphasis in the new version.

Bex Mum - sorry not to have replied sooner. I don't think the pm I wrote actually got to you - can't find a trace of it now so I must have hit the delete button or something by mistake.

Re starting work with my year 4 son - I'll probably start practising properly around Easter next year. I was just thinking of doing the very occasional bit of Bond age-related VR at the moment (which set me off wondering about the different types and how relevant the Bond books would be!)

The process of getting children to grammar school is like having children - the first time you don't know how bad it's going to be; the second time you think it can't be that bad again; the third time you know exactly how awful it will be. Awful in the sense that it's hugely stressful - trying to get the right balance between preparing your children but not pressurising them or making them a bag of nerves on test day.

My eldest son, in year 8 is rather lazy (though he's getting better) and has always taken a very minimalist approach to school work. I shudder when I think of the hours I spent agonising over his 50% marks in 11+ practice papers and wish I'd accepted his much-repeated comment, "but it's only practice mum, when it comes to the real thing I'll try harder" (he did).

No. 2 son is a real grafter, but unfortunately No. 3 son is, as his teacher puts it, only prepared to put in as much effort as he needs to keep her happy.

What sort of levels is your son working at now and which schools are you thinking about? I noticed when we did the school rounds last autumn there were quite a few year 5 parents looking as well rather than wait until year 6 and have to do the school visits, 11+ and CAF within a few weeks. You might want to think about doing the same? I doubt very much if we'll even look at schools with No. 3 - he's done them all twice within the last 3 years and knows them all really well!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 07, 2008 10:17 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:22 pm
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have sent a pm (hopefully!)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 7:22 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
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Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi All

If the papers are NFER (as the official suggested) then Bond will not be the best preparation.

If someone can ring back and ask which company is setting the papers then we can advise you on relevant practice materials.

If necessary, an emailed request "under the Freedom of Information Act" should get the answer out of them. :wink:

Sally-Anne


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 9:10 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:55 pm
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Location: Bexley
Sally-Anne - Bexley has always used NFER and I know the Council has been in discussion with them regarding the new format for Bexley, so I guess they're sticking with them.

I don't know if you are aware but we have always had Maths, English, VR and NVR in Bexley. From this September we will just have VR and Maths. The Council wanted VR and NVR, parents wanted maths and english - this is what's known as a compromise I guess! We're not sure if the VR paper will be as before or if it will have a greater emphasis on english and less on maths (given that 50% of the test will now be maths).

The reason I was wondering about Bond is because they do age-related practice papers whereas NFER don't (or I've never seen any). I did dip into Bond with my other two (both of whom passed) and just skipped questions that didn't look like the type that would appear on an NFER paper.

Fortunately for me (but not for year 5 parents) my son is only in year 4 so by next year I will have a better idea of what to expect. I don't want to start him on proper practice papers yet, but, given that VR will be 50% of the test, I wondered how best to start gently building up his skill in this area. He reads a great deal (not fiction - I've almost given up the struggle) so I'm hoping that will boost his vocab - I'd just quite like to have a go at some of the VR type questions with him now and again.

All suggestions gratefully received!


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 Post subject: NVR
PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 6:39 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:22 pm
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Hi Bexley Mum 2

I sent a PM yesterday, not sure if it worked though - if you didn't receive it I will try again!

Thanks
Bex mum


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu May 08, 2008 7:45 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:55 pm
Posts: 851
Location: Bexley
Yes I did, and I replied but technology is clearly not my forte as I can't find my reply sitting in my outbox or sentbox! I've sent a test which seems to have worked so will have another go.


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