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to go for the grammar?

(56 Posts)
parakeet Tue 25-Nov-14 13:55:59

I am really torn. Reading, spelling, she's brighter than average I reckon (all parents think that, I know). Maths, she's currently in the middle set (out of three). She's in Y4, and we haven't done any tutoring yet but I'm thinking we should probably start around now if we're going to.

Our nearest comp is quite decent, so she would probably be fine if she goes there. But I feel she would probably fit in better at a grammar - she's fairly studious, not very street-wise, in fact a bit of a goodie-goodie, god bless her. I could imagine her being happier there.

On the other hand the last thing I want is for her to feel anxious and stressed for the entire remaining years of her school-life, because she is always behind at maths.

ClawHandsIfYouBelieveInFreaks Tue 25-Nov-14 14:00:31

Yes, start tutoring now as she'll need to be higher than middle set for maths.

I have a similar DD and decided in the end to go for the good local comp as my DD has a tendency towards stress......and I didn't want that for her.

MillionToOneChances Tue 25-Nov-14 14:00:33

Visit the grammar, see what you think. My DS and I hated the grammar school option and are sticking to the comp. He's very able.

Daydreamersea Tue 25-Nov-14 14:07:31

My DS is in yr4 and he is top of the year for maths, is in a super maths class every week at school with 5 other students from the whole year and has extra difficult questions thrown towards him in class to keep up his interest. His literacy and maths are the level of a child in year 7. He is sporty and street wise, sociable and a team player.
I will be lucky if he passes a grammar school test but I know it would definitely suit him.

My DD year 3 is also bright and in the middle set for everything, they are worlds aparts academically, he hunts and feeds off knowledge, whereas she is very creative but would I doubt pass a grammar entrance exam or want to. She would feel out of place at a grammar school IMHO and would not want to be there and would def feel anxious and stresses as she does already around her DS who has a mind like a sponge.

Daydreamersea Tue 25-Nov-14 14:09:04

I really should preview message I write super fast before posting. I do hope it makes sense hmm

RhubarbAndMustard Tue 25-Nov-14 14:13:23

Visit the grammar and speak with them. I went to a grammar and it sounds like your DD would be suited there. I don't thing you have to excel in every subject. I certainly didn't with Maths and it was definitely the right school for me.

meerschweinchen Tue 25-Nov-14 14:16:02

I think it depends on the type of grammar. Are there lots in your area? In which case, go for it. If not and it's super selective, then probably not.

parakeet Tue 25-Nov-14 14:22:06

Thanks for the replies so far. This is going to sound weird but the grammar seems to be half super-selective, half not (ie half the places are for the girls who come top in its exam, can live anywhere, the other half are for girls within a catchment area).

Thing is, I am thinking of getting her maths tutoring anyway. So it would seem to make sense to get a tutor who can cram her towards this grammar's exam in the process.

Yes, I will visit the school - and bring her along too. We will only go down this route if she is up for it. She may be a goodie-goodie at school but she ain't at home, and I can't face battling with her over this for the next two years!

CastlesInTheSand Tue 25-Nov-14 14:24:41

Middle set out of 3 does not sound good enough for a grammar.

Especially in maths.

I wouldn't bother with all the stress.

CastlesInTheSand Tue 25-Nov-14 14:27:17

If it's only half selective, then it's likely to be very competitive for those places.

I don't think she'll get in from wheat you've said.

AlphaBravoHenryFoxtons Tue 25-Nov-14 14:31:06

Middle set of three is meaningless as it depends on the calibre of the cohort.

Do you want her to go to grammar school?

parakeet Tue 25-Nov-14 14:31:18

Oh sorry I wasn't clear, I meant it's half super-selective, half ordinary-selective, if you get what I mean. So yes, still very competitive.

Thanks for all the replies, I can see her chances of getting in are probably pretty low.

AlphaBravoHenryFoxtons Tue 25-Nov-14 14:32:16

Can you please name the school?

Pippioddstocking Tue 25-Nov-14 14:33:52

In year 4 my dd was doing year 7 maths . When she went to tutoring for grammar the children were all on that level and the tutor works them towards year 8 maths .
The grammar maths is almost 1st year GCSE level stuff .

HamishBamish Tue 25-Nov-14 14:34:17

I'm from Scotland, so no personal experience of Grammars, but why not work towards it and see how she gets on? If it's too much or not the best option for her you can always decide against it. A bit of extra tutoring surely won't do any harm in the meantime will it?

SlightlyJadedJack Tue 25-Nov-14 14:34:59

You say you're thinking of getting her a tutor anyway just to help with her maths, do that, see how she gets on and then re assess whether Grammar is for her at the start of yr 6 when she'll sit the 11+. Any help you give her won't be wasted even if she doesn't get into grammar.

I would say that in a super selective grammar the environment is going to be very pressured and the maths abilities of those other children likely to be very high. We are in a non SS grammar area and the standards of maths and English the children who passed this year are high and all were top sets in Yr5 I believe.

Hakluyt Tue 25-Nov-14 14:39:38

Depends on the grammar, obviously- but I don't know if a single I that expects year 8 maths as an entry requirement. There is, however, a very lucrative tutoring industry and a lot of urban mythology.

arethereanyleftatall Tue 25-Nov-14 14:40:32

It all depends where you live.
Where I grew up, Kent, above average would get you into a grammar school.
Where I live now, herts, my dc will need to be top of the class, and tutored, to get in, as they need to cross counties.

parakeet Tue 25-Nov-14 14:49:40

As someone has asked, the school is Nonsuch High, for girls. And if anyone can recommend a tutor...

Thank you for your thoughts everyone.

Daydreamersea Tue 25-Nov-14 14:50:12

Looks like I will need a tutor for my DD then to see what she is capable of as she is above average in maths but not top of the class but she deserves a chance. Could be my DS is putting her off in certain areas. Although I wouldn't want her in a class of my DS's as they would eat her alive. Might even get a tutor now for my DS after reading all the posts. Or sit back and let fate take its course.

OpalQuartz Tue 25-Nov-14 14:50:54

That sounds like wallington girls or possibly nonsuch? if so, some girls in my dd's year who live in the catchment had tutoring and took the exams and only a girl who was gifted at maths got in in the last two years. Obviously that's just based on a small sample, but I think it's harder to get into south london grammars than it is to some grammars elsewhere

BramwellBrown Tue 25-Nov-14 14:55:03

The girls grammar near my mum's (Tonbridge) has the same set up as the one you are saying about Parakeet, if your DD is middle set maths you will have to tutor her really hard even to get into ordinary selective, if you are out of catchment she will need to start tutoring now and do pretty much nothing else between now and 11+, even then she will likely struggle to keep up with the maths, I know a few girls who have been tutored that hard to get in and most have then needed tutoring to keep up.

parakeet Tue 25-Nov-14 15:04:49

Hmm, well we are in the catchment. But that's quite off-putting Bramwell. Thanks.

TeddyBee Tue 25-Nov-14 16:54:26

She could just be a late bloomer with maths? I missed some basic stuff in primary and it took going to a decent independent school to improve my understanding enough for it to click. I was top of the top set by GCSE (in fourth form) without being particularly naturally gifted at maths, just sort of all round bright. I still need a calculator for basic sums though blush

BramwellBrown Tue 25-Nov-14 20:14:56

Sorry, it wasn't meant to be off-putting, just bluntly honest, too many of my sisters' friends have been miserable coz so many people round here don't think past passing 11+ I had also missed your post about considering maths tutoring anyway, which is much better than just tutoring to the exam.

If you are in catchment that's going to make it easier to get her in which relieves some of the stress. In which case it might be worth starting with tutoring for maths and see if it suddenly clicks for her once she's recapped the basics, then deciding if you think she'll cope before you start preparing her for 11+, if its just she'd missed a bit of basics and maths suddenly improves then she'll probably be absolutely fine, if its she isn't particular mathematically minded it would be really hard for her.

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