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PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 2:12 pm 
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Anybody got any specific tips on preparing for the St Pauls exam? DD sat the computer test and found it "doable but tricky". On their website there are examples of specimen papers but I was wondering if there was anything in particular I could do. DD is academicaly sound but the papers do look difficult. I was going to use them during the holidays as practice. :)


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 6:13 pm 
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My daughter took the exams last year. From what I remember her saying, the maths portion of the computer test got progressively more difficult until it reached the limits of the girls' knowledge (algebra for the ones who did well, I think). There was some talk that in future only those girls who got above a certain level on the computer test would be invited to take the full exam, but I'm not sure about whether or not that's being applied this year. My daughter's school gave the girls sample 11-plus exams to do over the Christmas holiday, about a paper a day. Mostly, though, they were verbal/non-verbal reasoning tests rather than ones geared towards specific senior schools.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 7:10 pm 
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The SPGS website states that they invite girls to take the written tests based on the results of the online test. The same online test is also used by CLSG and can only be taken once.

For maths I prepared my DD's using practise papers but also taught them basic algebra to enable them to answer the trickier questions towards the end of the paper with accuracy and speed. I also asked them to explain their answers verbally to check that they fully understood how to work through problems. For english, my girls read some good old fashioned classics of the type I read as child, which helped them understand the language and sentence structure often found in the exam papers.

This was not done without a price and my 4 girls know all about bribery and corruption!


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 04, 2010 10:58 pm 
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It is not the same computer test as City. City sits a subset of the St Pauls Computer Test so if you are sitting both you have to sit at St Pauls as City does not do as many papers. Last year my dd applied for St Pauls and City and even though we really wanted to take the computer test at City as it is much much nearer to us, we couldn't because we would not have sat all the papers that St Pauls requires. As to the written exam my dd said that nobody in her room finished the science paper and that it was really hard. It was the 7th exam my dd took so she was well used to them by then and it was the only one she didn't finish. With hindsight, as it was the only one that had a science paper, we could have prepared much better, but we had a vr, maths and english the day before and the day after so it was hard to justify spending any time on science. If we had been really interested in St Pauls and it had been our first choice then we would have put a lot of focus on Science in the run up to the exam. I regret to say that my dd found the other candidates very very unfriendly on the day of the exam. She said there were huge groups of them from the same school and very few like her who did not know anybody. That was a very personal response and I am sure there are many lovely girls that go there but my dd did not seem to meet any on the exam day! Good luck to your dd and get some science revision guides out!


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 05, 2010 12:10 am 
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Daogroupie. Last year, my daughter and most of her friends from school sat the computer test for both St Pauls and City at City. I think that's changed this year. Someone I was talking to today said his daughter had to take the computer test at St Pauls to be considered for entry.

I doubt the girls meant to be unfriendly to your daughter. They mostly struck me as nervous and not quite in the frame of mind to meet new people, though they took comfort in seeing their classmates. The thing about St Pauls is that although you have a few feeder schools (about half a dozen go each year from my daughter's smallish primary), about half the annual entry are the only ones to be going from their primary school each year. And then once school starts, they divide the girls from the same school between five forms. Most of the schoolday interaction seems to be within forms. I think only Bute House routinely sends enough girls for there to be more than a couple in each form.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 06, 2010 8:27 pm 
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It is my understanding that the computer test is identical, so say both schools website and the test can still be taken at either school. Both schools have different exams in January as CLSG is part of the consortium.

I have happy friendly dd's at SPGS and CLSG, both schools offer a very similar education, using similar texts, studied to a similar standard. The main difference I have noticed so far, is dd1 at SPGS has more homework than dd2 at CLSG. The extra homework has not given dd1 the edge over dd2 as dd2 is completely on a par with dd1 but has about a third less homework to do each week. CLSG is broader socially and culturally than SPGS and dd2 receives lots of invitations to parties and bat mitvahs.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 06, 2010 11:20 pm 
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Ellie, that's interesting about the two schools. We've got another daughter coming up and I suspect SPGS won't suit her. I've heard from a mother who has daughters at both schools further up that the City girls are more lively and independent, though I find this hard to believe (only because the SPGS girls I've seen so far are so much of both).

You're right about the homework at SPGS. It seems rather much. Maybe they're just trying to build up habits from the start.

For what it's worth, I know a girl who finished City about 10 years ago now who made a hash of her time there--unsuitable boyfriends and spending too much time in London's social scene and too little on studies. But the parents were really impressed at how much effort school made on the girl's behalf. (She's doing rather well now, by the way).

Is your SPGS daughter in her first year by the way?


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