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DS1 scored highly in yr 7 CAT. Now what?

(15 Posts)
WhatsGoingOnEh Thu 04-Dec-14 11:00:58

Sorry to ask, and apologies if I sound dense - this is all new to me.

My oldest son came home with a letter from school saying he'd scored 133 on the Non-Verbal Reasoning CAT recently. The letter went on to say that he'd be "watched" by his teachers from now till January, and if he showed any outstanding ability in any particular classes, he'd be put onto the G&T programme for that subject.

I don't know what his scores were on the Quantitative or Verbal Reasoning tests.

Is there anything I can do to help or support him..? And what exactly IS non-verbal reasoning - is it like those shape-based puzzles on an IQ test?

I knew he was bright, but he's not in the top group for Maths or English, so is this a sign that his actual cognitive powers are higher than the work he's producing in lessons? Can I help him in any way? Does a high score on this particular paper suggest he might be bright in computers or any subject in particular..?

Thanks! Any help at all would be lovely.

ReallyTired Thu 04-Dec-14 14:35:42

erm... I think its easy to get carried away just because your son has done well in one test.

Surely he would have already shown outstanding ablity in a subject at primary if he was actually gifted at a particular subject. I find the whole concept using CATs tests to identify giftness a bit suspect. I feel that care needs to be taken not to put undue pressure on a child.

I suppose it makes sense for the school to test him for dyslexia to see if any specific learning difficulty is holding him back.

Soveryupset Thu 04-Dec-14 14:44:48

he would have shown outstanding ability at primary

not necessarily - many primaries only do certain subjects very superficially, and even a child who shows great promise does not get a chance to show it. The focus in many primaries is on SATS, especially in the last few years (very sadly).

Even in Maths/English it isn't always the case that a child would have been flagged. My DD1 for example had a real talent for science and music and only ever got "average" in those subjects in primary. Makes me laugh when I think about it now - glad I ignored the school completely!!!!

WhatsGoingOnEh Thu 04-Dec-14 15:18:23

I agree it's easy to get carried away. And I probably am. But I'm excited, because this one wink test is the first official sign that he is as bright as I always thought he was.

I'm not saying he's going to be a genius, but what does non-verbal reasoning translate into, in terms of subjects? Is it a sign he'd be good at technical stuff, IT, anything in particular? I just want to help him. He hasn't found "his" thing yet.

Hakluyt Thu 04-Dec-14 15:26:06

I don't think it "translates" into subjects in that way at all. You just need to keep an eye on the work he's doing- make sure that the school gives him extension work if he needs it- make sure he's reading and keeping his brain busy.

var123 Thu 04-Dec-14 15:31:03

I think it means he's good at figuring things out in a krypton factor kind of way.
not sure if that helps...

Mistigri Thu 04-Dec-14 19:18:06

My son scores very highly in non-verbal reasoning and basically, it means he's very good at any tasks which require you to manipulate data or objects in space - he's always been a whizz at Lego (could put together big Lego technic models from a schematic unaided at 4/5), great hand-eye coordination (could fly a radio-controlled mini drone straight out of the box, believe me this is NOT easy), he's amazing at games and puzzles which require spatial reasoning.

I'm not sure how this relates to school subjects as DS is generally very strong at anything maths-related, but he is certainly very good at geometry and at the 3D design tasks they have done in technology class. It may be that your son is less able in other areas which may be "masking" his specific abilities - I do think that at school, children who have very strong language and verbal reasoning skills tend to do better across the board, simply because the system is biased in their favour.

Pelicangiraffe Mon 08-Dec-14 07:41:33

My DS scored 136 in one test too. We know children who scored in their 140's also. I think it helps the school work out if a child is under performing

Pelicangiraffe Mon 08-Dec-14 07:45:40

For example - if your child had scored only 90 in maths but was working above average in maths we would know the child was excelling beyond expected levels in the subject. However if a child had scored 130 but was scraping low level SATs, the cats would highlight a problem as the child would be underachieving.

Pelicangiraffe Mon 08-Dec-14 07:47:34

My friends son in a middle set achieved high sats and was soon after diagnosed with dyslexia

Tigercake Mon 08-Dec-14 07:51:14


Well done to him and good for you for being proud of him.

bruffin Mon 08-Dec-14 08:07:31

I dont think it would have been flagged in primary, as primary doesnt necessarily measure the type of things that your ds would be good at. DS had high NVR CATS and started to flourish in secondary school in science. He didnt even seem to be that good at maths in primary, but got an A at A level and won the schools math prize more than once, also got a gold in the senior maths challenge. He also won an engineering scholarship for 6th form for future leaders in engineering and design. DS is also an out of the box thinker. Unfortunately he is dyslexic as well which does affect his overall performance.

Coconutty Mon 08-Dec-14 08:18:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Blu Mon 08-Dec-14 08:25:57

Good for him!

DS flourished at secondary - I mean he did well a Primary but once he was in secondary the curriculum was more suited to his thinking and he had more scope to use his mind in ways that interested him. The SATS based Yr 6 curriculum is pretty narrow, IMO.

Encourage him in things he is interested on, maybe see if he is interested in strategic games like chess, subscribe to one of the science magazines? And just keep supporting his reading etc- still important in secondary that they read. Novels that happen to support other curriculum areas are good, like historical novels etc.

Enjoying learning is the best way to be good at it.

GeorgeHerbert Mon 08-Dec-14 17:32:33

As I understand NVR measures some forms of ability that isn't easily measured by more traditional academic testing - so ability to think outside the box, problem solve, data manipulation and spatial abilities. As others have said, it can flag up a child with potential that may not be showing in traditional ways. The sorts if careers that people with high NVR are attracted to are architecture, engineering.

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