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Anyone else got a year 5 starting tuition for grammar school?

(19 Posts)
pinkmamma Thu 08-Sep-11 19:56:49

Just posted re problems with homework! We are also starting tutoring for grammar school - 1 hour a week with homework - about 20/30mins a week. Its going to be a tough year but getting into grammar will greatly enhance his academic life compared to other local schools.

Anyone else starting tutoring/prep for grammar?

Lonnie Thu 08-Sep-11 19:59:47

yes we are for our son also year 5.. However tutor is one we have now had for a year so he will be familiar with her as she saw his sister last year.

Doodlez Thu 08-Sep-11 20:03:05

Pink - just answered your other thread <stalker alert!>

DS goes to local grammar junior school so not tutoring as school work them towards the entrance exam BUT if tutoring doesn't work for your DS (ir, he struggles with it), get some of the BOND papers in English, Maths, verbal and non-verbal reasoning. Basically, they do a little set of 10 minute papers and if your DS just does one or two of those a few times per week, he'll be good to go!

pinkmamma Thu 08-Sep-11 20:09:55

Hi both!

Didn't know there was such a thing as grammar junior - lucky you. DS has been in private school for 2 years now to improve chances with the 11+ but I want to give him every opportunity to pass. Will have a look for the BOND papers now.. thanks smile

forehead Thu 08-Sep-11 20:52:24

I have a dd starting tuition next week with an excellent tutor. My husband and i have been tutoring her for about a year and therefore she has covered all the most important areas.

maree1 Thu 08-Sep-11 22:20:54

Half of tutors are above average. The rest...

Always work around practice entrance or test papers. Why not just ask your school or a teacher for extra help? And if you must use a tutor always ask in writing for success rates into your target schools. Names of parents with whom you might wish to have a chat are a 'must' also.

Happy studying.

BagdadCafe Thu 08-Sep-11 22:27:14

Very fond of Bond papers and got a lot of mileage out of them. IPS verbal and non-verbal reasoning were spot-on especially for the tricky sequencing methods

rabbitstew Fri 09-Sep-11 09:59:03

As a matter of interest, what on earth do 11 plus tutors teach? Having taken the 11 plus myself, many years ago, I don't really see what a tutor can do that a few practices of verbal and non-verbal reasoning papers from a few months before the exam itself, can't????? Do many state grammar schools expect children to do formal maths and English written papers? (Where I grew up, I don't remember anything more than one exam paper for entry to any of the local grammar schools, sat by the entire class in our primary school hall and I'm 100% certain that no-one in my class ever had tuition for the exam beyond the more concerned parents buying a VR and NVR book from WHSmiths). Do some grammar schools ask highly complex maths questions, way beyond the sort of thing the child will have been taught at primary school???? Or are tutors really a method of forcing a child to practice and gain confidence in something they would otherwise refuse to do without a lot of parental kicking up the backside???

dreadbacktoschool Fri 09-Sep-11 13:17:29

In some areas the 11 plus has changed from years ago. Years ago it was just an IQ test and I passed without any tutoring and from a very poor school just based on a good vocab from reading adult books.

Now I believe in some areas 50% of the marks are for maths and english and only 50% for the IQ test. As I understand it many state schools will not have taught the necessary maths and english to ensure a pass in areas where only top 1% get a place.

eicosapentaenoic Fri 09-Sep-11 15:52:28

Careful, guys. If you have a DC taking grammar or private school entrance exams, check out exactly what is on the papers, and what the pass marks currently are, before you do anything else. Seen a few major disasters on this.

rabbitstew Fri 09-Sep-11 17:46:07

What's the justification for doing English and Maths tests on top of SATs????? I can see the point of a VR/NVR test, because that's about the closest anyone seems to have got to an intelligence test, but not the extra maths/English. Surely the point of grammar school is that you pick the children with the most potential, not those who have already met their potential through intensive tuition in exam technique and going to a good primary/prep school that covers the work asked in the entrance exams????? Do grammar schools make absolutely no pretence any more that they are doing anything other than actively chasing the privately educated, upper middle class children whose parents want to save a bit of cash?

mumteacher Sat 10-Sep-11 23:52:54

Rabbitstew - that's a whole other thread!!!

Speed and accuracy (I think I've mentioned this on another thread) are also very important. Try also do keep logically thought processing skills practical by doing hands on activities. There are some great resources available now.

Mazes, puzzles 3d puzzles. So can have fun doing.

Good luck Hope it works out for your family.

racingheart Sun 11-Sep-11 22:10:29


Yes! I have twins just going into Yr 5 also starting to prepare for grammar. There's only super-selectives in our area so it's a long shot but they're bright enough to try at least. I haven't had the DTs tutored yet, and maybe won't at all... We have a tutor booked for 6 months but have heard mixed reviews of her, so will see how we're doing alone nearer the time.

Grammars round here all have different exams, so we're doing the lot: comprehension, essay, Eng & Maths MC and non-MC, NVR, VR.
Bit daunting to list it all.

DTs are bright but at a very laid back school with very laid back parents until now. They didn't even know their 3x table by the end of yr 4 but were more than capable of learning all their tables and have been doing them over the summer. So we're going back to basics and making sure they're solid in those, as well as doing a few Bond papers.

Do you have a plan of action?

Noorhan Tue 13-Sep-11 22:10:52


Hearing alot about Bond papers. Where do you get them from and are they for free or to buy?
Also seems like alot of people only start paying for private tutor in year 5 to prepare for the grammer exams. Is it a good idea to start earlier, maybe year 3,4?

What is the best way to find a good private tutor in your local area?


Snowybird Tue 13-Sep-11 23:25:28

It's possibly worth bearing in mind that if your child has to study that hard to pass the eleven plus, then grammar school is not the place for them. Teachers at grammar schools have plenty of experience of children who were coached for the initial exam, but were unable to thrive in the grammar environment. Just a thought...

racingheart Tue 13-Sep-11 23:53:19

Snowy - depends on the primary school. My DC are bright but go to a school which is strong in lots of ways but sets very little store by the basics and SATS, so they know lots and think very creatively but can't do times tables by rote quickly, though they can work them out accurately in their heads. They need tutoring to fill in the gaps.

FootballFriend Wed 14-Sep-11 00:02:19

Noorhan - Bond papers from WH Smith or Amazon. They cost about £7 each, so times that by VR/NVR/English/Maths and various combinations, £100 or perhaps more. Well worth the money. We did those at home with DS, no external tutoring. Started Easter time yr 5 for one exam and September of yr 6 (!) for another one (he changed his mind regarding school and needed Maths as well).

koalalou Wed 14-Sep-11 15:13:08

Hi, can anyone tell me whether it is better to do the Bonds assessment papers or the 10-minute tests?

Bought the 9-10yr tests for DD who did well in maths but struggled a bit with English and VR, and even I couldn't do the NVR tests (and I'm an engineer...) Will be trying them at the 8-9yr level but wondering if we should do the assessment papers instead.

Will be buying the 'how to' book for NVR...

FootballFriend Wed 14-Sep-11 21:07:10

It can get a bit addictive, I think we bought pretty much all the books around. Still comes out cheaper and far less hassle than a tutor (we just couldn't have fitted that in due to our schedules). The 'how to' explanations are v useful. BTW I'd hate to have to sit the tests (I don't perform well under pressure). Poor kids.

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