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 Post subject: Newbie - Advice please
PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 1:56 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2011 9:04 pm
Posts: 2
Hello!

I've been lurking for a while on this forum, i'd like to ask for advice about the 11 plus:

How bright do children have to be to get into grammar school ? Is it only be the top few in a class that should consider taking the exam or should anyone in the top half consider taking it ?

I'm considering starting tutoring in the next month or so ...is this the right time or is it too early (DD is Year 4)


We're in Sutton Coldfield so we'd be looking at sutton girls, queen marys and handsworth grammar. Anyone with children at these schools please could you inform me about what its like once their in .... is there a lot of pressure? do they set by ability?

I really appreciate opinions on this matter as i'm feeling a little lost as to where to start with it all !

Thanks


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 6:39 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 14, 2016 12:55 pm
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Hello and welcome!

I'm bumping this as there will be plenty of advice on here. I have boys so hoping somebody with experience of those schools will come along.

There are so many factors at play with the 11 plus and no gurantee of 'passing' even for top set, top table.

Personally year 4 feels too early. Although I wish mine had read more at that age.

Also, under the new proposals for Birmingham I'm not sure you'd be eligible for Handsworth would you?

Sorry it's not very detailed but I'm on the hop but wanted to say "hello".


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 11:02 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2014 1:47 pm
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Ricky74 wrote:
Hello and welcome!

I'm bumping this as there will be plenty of advice on here. I have boys so hoping somebody with experience of those schools will come along.

There are so many factors at play with the 11 plus and no gurantee of 'passing' even for top set, top table.

Personally year 4 feels too early. Although I wish mine had read more at that age.

Also, under the new proposals for Birmingham I'm not sure you'd be eligible for Handsworth would you?

Sorry it's not very detailed but I'm on the hop but wanted to say "hello".


I echo the welcome.Currently under the new proposals for the KE grammars and the existing admission rules for the other schools you would be eligible for all the schools you mention.

You are talking about a 1 year and 9 month lead time into the exams at the beginning of year 6.That's adequate time and many people do begin about two years before the exams.There is plenty of guidance available on materials and preparation on the links on this website.Just click the preparation link above next time as a place to start.

https://www.elevenplusexams.co.uk/prepa ... r-3-year-4

_________________
In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years.

Abraham Lincoln


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:20 am 
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Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2017 7:14 pm
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What ever your child's ability the most important thing they can do in year 3 and 4 is reading and more reading. This is where we fell down, our eldest does not enjoy reading and was not motivated to memorise word lists. The verbal reasoning and reading Comprehension are 60% of the marks. Throw in some worded maths problems as well and it quickly becomes apparent that reading is the most important skill to master first.

The "do they need to be on the top table?" is a subjective question, how academic is the class as a whole? Realistically your child needs to be looking at greater depth in the new Stats marking, a decent tutor can help move a child from expected standard to greater depth.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:37 am 
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Agree with lakings1900 - read, read and read some more. Neither of mine are into reading, so with DS2 I read to him every night when he was in the bath and we discussed any words he didn’t understand. We did start to write them down along with their meanings, but that only lasted a couple of months :roll:

Also, ensure that she knows her times tables inside out and back to front. Time is critical in the test, so they need to be instant in her head (both multiplication and division).

There are a lot of people who tutor from Year 4; personal choice, but I feel it is too early. I would do basics at home if you’re able to - a few 10 minute Bond tests, understanding NVR rotations, patterns etc. so they are not so alien, and then start with a tutor in Y5. Two years of tuition on top of school can be overwhelming for some children, but you know your daughter best.

I can’t advise on the schools you mention as I have 2 boys. However, they were not in sets until Y8 - in Y7 they were taught in their form groups, and these are mixed ability - they are at HGS so scores range from 205 - 240.

You will find a wealth of information on this forum, so good luck with your preparations.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:46 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2014 9:10 am
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I agree with the comments above about reading. Books like Harry Potter are good at this age. Good recall of times tables will help with the quarter of the 11 plus which is Maths.

I think year 4 is too early for tutoring - unless your primary school is bad and you need to fill the gaps. The main reason for tutoring at all is for exam technique, speed and the elements which aren’t in the national curriculum- NVR and some of the cloze stuff.

I’ve not seen any correlation between starting in year 4 and higher results among children I’ve known. And having DIY tutored I know the content well and I can’t see that you need more than a year to master the techniques - I reckon 6 months is enough.

Bear in mind too that the three schools you’re aiming for have lower entry scores - and even if the new rules come in you’ll only need 220 for KE Handsworth. You won’t need a Camp Hill/Five Ways score!

I also think other types of challenge are more valuable at this age eg learning an instrument. Reading music is a new type of challenge that stretches the brain - and is hopefully enjoyable!

How high up in the class they need to be is entirely dependent on the ability of the cohort at your school. My dd went to a school in a fairly deprived area - 3 out of 45 got GS places and they were probably the top three (one other ‘top table’ boy didn’t get in and one didn’t take it). However I heard of a primary in Harborne where about 17 out of 30 got GS places - of course Harborne is quite a different sort of place, lots of the parents would be highly educated professionals etc. A school in Sutton Coldfield May be similar?


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 11:43 am 
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I would also add that, if you have the time and inclination (and ability), there is no need to "hire" a tutor. It is perfectly possible to diy your child - be careful, regrettably, there are a number of shoddy tutors/tutor companies in your area who see the 11+ as a licence to print money.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 11:57 am 
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Joined: Sat Sep 27, 2008 9:51 pm
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Reading: A Series of Unfortunate Events (the Netflix series is absolutely beautiful, but read the books first!)


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 3:02 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 11, 2012 7:05 pm
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Hi,

Welcome to this forum, there's an amazing amount of wisdom within it's threads. A successful local tutor said to me that he believes 10% of children will pass whatever, and 10% won't pass whatever they do. The remaining 80% can pass if they work hard. I not sure I 100% agree with the percentages, but am a great believer that with the right support and work that majority of children in the Midlands stand a good chance of passing. My belief is too many parents outsource the responsibility and then are surprised when the results are out.

Two years before the exam is a good time to start, so you're inquiring at the right time. One of my kids was sent to a local tutor and the other one home tutored. Both passed, but in hindsight it's worth getting external help as I underestimated how little ds would listen to me. Like anything in life foundation is key, teach your daughter time tables, and start going through the word lists on this site. Get her to read some of the recommended books, you may be surprised that there are a number of popular books on the lists.

Also at this stage concentrate on learning the methodology and basics, and don't worry too much about timing - That's something you can introduce at a later stage. At this stage it's better your daughter can get high marks, even if she significantly runs over the time. Once both of you are confident that she understands each topic, she can then speed up.

Good luck!


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