11+ angst. 3 weeks to go

(10 Posts)
fruitstick Mon 22-Aug-16 09:58:32

DS is taking his 11+ in a couple of weeks. It's a grammar area rather than super selective so takes top 20%.

He's done no work all summer holiday. He's had a tutor for 45 mins a week in term time so has covered the basics of technique etc.

I'm now nervous that he won't be up to speed after just 5 days of school.

He refuses to do anything because 'it's the holidays'. He's read a couple of pages of a library book in the last 4 weeks.

I agree with him but feel I'm letting him down in some way. Part of me feels that if he can't be arsed to even read a book then maybe grammar school isn't for him anyway.

All of his friends are doing daily past papers etc.

So - do I force the issue and make him do them? Or just leave it up to him and accept the fact that he might not pass.

Or will the last 3 weeks make no difference whatsoever.

Dixiechickonhols Mon 22-Aug-16 12:40:56

Have you bought the past papers? I'd encourage him to do some timed if he wants to sit the exam. If you are going to do it better to be prepared.

DD is now at the stage of just doing mock papers (each takes max 50 mins) but certainly not every day. She saw her best friend at weekend and that helped a lot as her friend is also in the same boat and had done 2 more than her - DD is competitive.

Autumnsky Mon 22-Aug-16 13:30:43

My DS1 refused to do anything during Christmas, his exam was in Jan. I agreed at last, as he had done lots of mock papers and was well prepared. DS1 did really well in the exam. So I think if you DS has done enough, and was doing well in mock exam, then you can relax. Maybe ask him to do 1 mock paper for each subject just before the exam to get him into the exam mode.

If you are not so confident, then maybe use a reward system, to get him do half an hour session each day. My DS2 doesn't like doing any extra, but he is happy to do it if there is a reward. We use a star for 1 piece of work(around 10 minutes), for 10 stars, he can have an extra game turn. This works well with him.

fruitstick Mon 22-Aug-16 13:46:04

He doesn't respond well to rewards etc.

He's not competitive at all.

He's a stubborn so and so.

oompaloompaland Mon 22-Aug-16 16:56:01

I have heard, from several sources, that the format of the 11+ has completely changed this year, and is no longer the type of exam that you can practice for. It is no longer a case of simply learning for the test, but is a pure test of intelligence. Therefore passed papers etc are of limited help, as is any type of tutoring.

We are not doing the 11+, and I don't know whether this is just in our area, but if that is the case, and your son is reasonably academic, then hopefully he will be fine. I wish him and you the best of luck.

fruitstick Mon 22-Aug-16 17:04:33

I hope so.

We have the test which is supposedly 'untutorable' but it hasn't stopped the preparation madness.

fruitstick Wed 24-Aug-16 13:25:24

I made the mistake of looking at the 11+ forum.

That has sent me into a blind panic about how much effort parents have put in.

Toomuchthinking Thu 25-Aug-16 20:23:22

We were In your position last year, we were also out of catchment! For Dd to have any chance she would have to be top 180 for one of the tests and score very highly in the other, I didn't really rate her chances.
The tests she did at home varied so much from good to not a chance, (but she was excellent at time management in tests). Reading about the practice and tutoring others seem to have had on the 11+ forum made me question whether there was any point putting her in.
She did exceptionally well in both, meaning she was guaranteed her first preferences. We did practice over the holidays but not for the 2 weeks before the test, she was not tutored, by a tutor but we worked through the bond and cgp books from the beginning of year 5 together. She has got a good work ethic (for the most part) so a Grammar environment is right for her, she thrives on challenge (at the moment)
Be light hearted with it, make a fuss of him before and after the tests, so the result doesn't seem so important to him, just make sure that he is positive and he goes in thinking he can do the best he can, and that's fine with you...
I think that if he is in top 10% at primary, then you will be both be fine.

BellsaRinging Thu 25-Aug-16 20:34:16

He sounds exactly the same as ds last year. We managed to get him to do 3 papers total in the holidays. He was also a borderline candidate at best. Super relaxed on the day...and squeaked in by the skin of his teeth! So it can be done. On the day there were some kids waiting who were obviously under massive pressure. I tend to think it's probably better not to do too much prep. I know a few children who were tutored within an inch of their lives and did brilliantly in the test, but found the school was not for them and they really struggled.
Our area says that they have tried to tutor proof the test...they may not totally have succeeded (I think some things like time management and familiarity with the kind of questions that will be asked) but I think they have had a good go.
Good luck to you and ds!

fruitstick Fri 26-Aug-16 09:33:38

Thank you.

I'm feeling a bit calmer.

He's out of practice with maths in particular and has agreed to do a bit of work on that for the rest of the holidays.

He's not a confident sort so I don't want to startle him too much.

I'm not convinced grammar is for him - more due to laziness than ability. He likes to scrape through with minimal effort and is not competitive in the slightest.

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