To ditch the idea of Grammar as DD isn't good at maths?

(237 Posts)
ICameOnTheJitney Sat 05-Oct-13 12:46:41

despite the fact that she's extremely good at literacy? She's in year 5 and one of the youngest but just flew through a test paper for verbal reasoning in literacy but the maths made her go confused

I COULD get a tutor couldn't I....she's "ok" in maths but finds it a struggle...her grade is as expected for her age....but she'd need a BIG leap in the coming year.

Considering we have excellent state secondarys here shall I just forget Grammar or put her through a year's worth of hothousing?

Nanny0gg Sat 05-Oct-13 15:04:16

From your last post, I would be questioning why you want her to go selective?

She sounds as though she might be near the top (in English at least) at the comp and pretty near the bottom at maths at the selective. And as she will be with very bright children, she may not be near the top at English either at the selective either.

What's her science like?

Send her where she will succeed and be happy.

IslaValargeone Sat 05-Oct-13 15:14:54

In that case listen to your instincts.
Does she want to try for the grammar?

ohforfoxsake Sat 05-Oct-13 15:15:00

I personally wouldn't put my DC into a grammar school if they were going to bump along the bottom for the next 5 years. If she will do well at the local high school her self-esteem will be kept intact.

Go and look at the schools, and see which ones you and she prefer. Maybe if someone can recommend a tutor she could have a session and they could assess her potential for the entrance exam?

The whole GS process is pretty horrible, and the children do get stressed out. I am in two minds about it all, even having been through the selection process twice.

My DSs were tutored to pass the exam, for technique more than anything, once a week.

kittens Sat 05-Oct-13 15:26:55

I agree with the other posters. You know your DD and her self esteem. If I could turn back time I would not have gone into the 11+ process as it was horrid and all it has done is destroyed my lovely confident DD. The comp is local full of local kids the Grammar is super selective so children can travel for upto 2 hours to get to school. Go and see the schools and look at the children there to decide if you can see your daughter fitting in - ask about extra curricular activities and see if the children showing you around do any..

Don't feel pressured into going down the 11+ route just because everyone else is - I think the reason I did was because of the other parents, one of my friends didn't and her DD is thriving in the accelerated streams at our local comp.

bimbabirba Sat 05-Oct-13 15:37:06

If you read back your posts you'll see that you have made up your mind already. I think as a parent you feel under obligation to consider Grammar but I think you've made up your mind already

JuliaScurr Sat 05-Oct-13 15:39:56

Dd is at grammar because it has the best pastoral care; she was a school refuser at 2 schools.
IME, the good comps can get better GCSE results for top streams than the grammars. Maybe grammars are better scores on average than comps, but just compare top stream comps with grammars - not mucg difference

Wannabestepfordwife Sat 05-Oct-13 15:40:13

Maths is not my strong point but I still got into a grammar without tuition.

It's maybe worth going through her maths books see where she's struggling and see if you can give her a more simplified explanation

kittens Sat 05-Oct-13 15:45:59

Wannabestepfordwife not sure how old you are, but grammar exams are so different now from what they used to be. When everyone sat the exams they didn't need the prep and you got in if you were bright.
Now for the superselective you will have people who travel for hours to get to school as there are no catchments and the prep for the exam is fierce, as is the competition for places - some children are tutored for 17hours a week (full days at the weekend) and 6 hours a day over the holidays.

Seeing the sheer number who attend the exam days is a real eye opener.

ImperialBlether Sat 05-Oct-13 15:46:01

My daughter was a mark or two off the top mark in her 11+ exam and only looked at two past papers. She went to the grammar school 12 miles away and did very, very well academically but didn't love going to school, though she respected and liked a lot of her teachers and she did have friends there. She didn't have a choice of local friends. She knows she did so well because of the school she was in, but doesn't really speak fondly of school. I'm not sure whether she would if she'd gone elsewhere as she found adolescence hard.

My son wasn't as academic and although I knew I could've got him tutored into passing the 11+ exam I didn't want him to be struggling in the bottom set in a lot of the subjects. He went to the local comp and absolutely loved it - he did well and has tons of local friends, who he still mixes with now. His main concern was having local friends and I could see his point.

You have to treat every child as an individual; what's right for one isn't right for another.

ImperialBlether Sat 05-Oct-13 15:46:54

Kittens, frankly, those students who need that much tutoring shouldn't be going to the grammar schools - they will struggle.

Viviennemary Sat 05-Oct-13 15:52:05

I had a tutor for my DC's and I certainly don't regret it. I think it is a separate issue from the grammar/comprehensive question. If she needs a bit of help with her maths then she should have it if you can afford it. If your state comprehensive's are good then personally I would choose the comprehensive. But I agree with go and see both and see what you think is best for your DD

Wannabestepfordwife Sat 05-Oct-13 15:57:48

kittens I'm 26 so 16 years since I took the test (summer baby) god I feel old now! I'm guessing it is alot more competetive now

IslaValargeone Sat 05-Oct-13 16:11:25

Interesting what JuliaScurrhas said about the pastoral care.
My dc is 4 weeks into year 7 at a grammar school after having issues with school refusal previously. She has also had some medical issues start since she began there.
I have been blown away so far at the care she has been shown.
My dc was physically bullied at a previous primary, they didn't give a s**t.

LucilleBluth Sat 05-Oct-13 16:55:20

My DS got maximum points in his 11 plus and started at a grammar in September.

He is loving it and I must say that the school is wonderful. I could go on and on about pros and cons and tutoring etc etc but if I were you I would go for it, get her a tutor and see how she goes with her maths, she will be pulled up at a grammar rather than dragged down at a lesser school iykwim.

Blu Sat 05-Oct-13 20:45:16

The Value Added effect at DS's comp is higher than some of our 'within reach' selectives. In what way does a good comp with well run setting drag anyone down?

curlew Sat 05-Oct-13 20:47:52

A lot of grammar schools have pretty poor Value Added.

curlew Sat 05-Oct-13 20:49:03

"she will be pulled up at a grammar rather than dragged down at a lesser school iykwim."

Sorry- that is such bullshit!

nameimadeupjustnow Sat 05-Oct-13 20:53:20

I think you should tutor just to help her feel confident and successful in maths, which is a Good Thing and opens many doors for her academically, whether she goes to grammar or non-selective.

Sparklymommy Sat 05-Oct-13 21:04:23

My dd has just sat the 11+ and we are now breathing a sigh of relief as its all over!

She was the opposite, very hot at maths but I bit lazy when it came to English. She was/is capable but doesn't always do enough with the English iykwim. We got a tutor. A family friend who had her for 1 hour a week and set her homework. Dd asked to do the 11+, but OFTEN changed her mind whilst doing the homework for her tutor!

The first exam day she got up in tears, panicking that she wasn't "clever" enough and I seriously questioned my sanity and reasoning in sending her. However when she came out she was all smiles and had really enjoyed it. The second week (the maths paper) she positively skipped off to the exam!

I was worried. And then I went and saw her school teachers who said that since returning in September my dd was so much more focused, more mature and more than capable of passing the exam.

Now we are waiting for the results and at the end of the day if she hasn't passed then we will look at our other options.

As for the poster who eluded to children taking the 11+ not getting comp places, that's no longer right. It used to be that if you sat the 11+ whether you passed or failed you were "opting out" of the comp system and you would not be entitled to opt back in. Now that has changed.

SatinSandals Sat 05-Oct-13 21:24:57

I think that you should suit the child to the right school and not pick the school and fit your child. If they can't do it without a tutor then they are not suited. I wish they could do a tutor proof test, but it appears to be impossible.

StainlessSteelBegonia Sat 05-Oct-13 21:37:08

From everything you've written, I'd decouple the maths tutoring from the grammar entry and just get her the tutoring anyway. She may not be "naturally" maths-y, but there's no harm in supporting her in the subject she's weakest in.

SatinSandals Sat 05-Oct-13 22:35:16

Nothing wrong in tutoring if she is weak in maths but I can't see the point in doing it to get a school place.

LaQueenForADay Mon 07-Oct-13 13:37:57

"At a good comp in a non grammar area the top sets are in effect the grammar set anyway."

This isn't strictly true.

A grammar school creams off the top 20% and then streams that top 20% into 5 more sets. The top set in maths will have (approx.) the top 5% of pupils based on ability. Maths ability in the top set will be nothing less than exceptionally good.

A comprehensive has to take all comers, regardless of ability. And then has to stream these all comers into 5 sets. The top set will have roughly the top 20% based on ability. Maths ability will range from exceptionally good...to just pretty good.

So, the top set in a comprehensive isn't quite comparable to the top set in a grammar.

curlew Mon 07-Oct-13 13:58:36

And we can't have the exceptionally good mixing with the pretty good, can we?

Blu Mon 07-Oct-13 14:05:10

Ah, but I didn't say the top set in a comp is in effect the top set at a grammar, did I?

But it will contain those who would have been at a top set in a grammar. As well as those who would have been in other sets at grammars.

In the minutiae it all depends on whether the comp is banded for admissions, has a local demography of geniuses or otherwise, sets or streams...

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