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Forest School East London - entry tests for yr 2

(17 Posts)
natmelt Mon 14-May-12 23:19:47

hi we have had our daughter down for a place at Forest School in Snaresbrook and she has been asked to go in for her tests next week for yr 2 entry. Does anyone know what these might consist of and what their expectations would be for entry? Would be great to know if anyone has children their and thoughts on what it is like as a school? Thanks

Blossom8 Tue 15-May-12 11:10:31

Hi, my daughter will be assessed for 4+ entry in October so I don't know much about the tests for 7+. Their websites says:

Preparatory School

•performance in a written test in English, Mathematics and Reasoning, plus a reading test at 7+;
•a written confidential report from the present school.

I guess if they have a reasonable grasp of reading, maths and their times table, she should be fine. Do you know much of the school, would be interested to hear what the reviews are?

BlueberryPancake Tue 15-May-12 11:42:15

Err.. They take one in ten applicants at 7+, so just having a reasonable grasp is not sufficient. I know children that have received private tuitions for months before the exam, and still didn't get it. The entry criteria is a mistery...

It's much easier to get the child in at 4+ than at 7+.

I don't know much about the school, apart from the fact that they have doubled the entry of 4+ two years ago, and the rumour is that it's not as good as it was. But still Hugely competitive.

Good luck

Blossom8 Tue 15-May-12 11:54:39

that's interesting BlueberryPancake. "not as good as it was" - is that just hearsay? Not good academically or other areas as I would be interested in the event my daughter does get in at 4+ and I have to shell out loads of money in fees. Their interim ISI report was rated excellent so it's difficult to judge when you read reviews otherwise.

I know of a child in my daughter's current nursery who got in at 7+ so I will see if I can get some information for you Natmelt. Is she on a wait list as I thought the 7+ assessment were concluded?

BlueberryPancake Tue 15-May-12 13:51:44

Don't get me wrong, it's a fantastic school, amazing results and great facilities, but I think that they have doubled the number of entries at 4+ so in real terms this is stretching their facilities more than before. For example, parents were promised two swimming lessons a week, now the children get only one because there are more children at the school. Other shared facilities are a bit more stretched such as library - thats what I've heard, I don't have children there. And yes it is hearsay from a friend who as a child went there herself, and now is sending her daughter there! Academically not as pushy as before, and facilities a bit more stretched.

Also, one of my other friends has two boys there, and their methods of teaching looked a bit old fashion to me. My husband is a primary school teacher and head of maths for his school said that the way they are teaching phonics, writing (writing in joined up letters straight away, at 5 years old) and maths (lots of worksheets) are a bit old school.

In my opinion, the area has many excellent state primary schools and I would save to send private at secondary, but that's just my opinion!

natmelt Tue 15-May-12 23:15:55

thanks for all the info - we had her down for entry at 7 but a place has come up for yr 2 (we were on waiting list for a place) so its hard to get a sense of a) competition for the place and b) what level of ability they will expect at this stage. Just trying to think about the best way to prepare her without her getting too worked up about the tests.

natmelt Tue 15-May-12 23:25:44

Blossom8 - have you already been to have a look around? We met the headteacher of the primary school and were very impressed by her approach and attitude. Facilities are amazing, obvs, and I think it is the variety of opportunity is what our eldest would benefit from. To be honest we are kicking ourselves that we didn't put her down for a place at 4, although I'm having a fair few sleepless nights worrying how on earth we are going to pay for it if she does get a place...

Blossom8 Wed 16-May-12 10:14:36

Blueberry Pancake - thanks for your input. What excellent state primaries would you recommend in the area? We are based in Leytonstone and Gwyn Jones (mixed reviews) is our catchment primary but we may look into Barclays Primary as I like the school's ethos.

Natmelt - yes we went to the general open day last year, a tour by the Ms Garner in March and we have the 4+plus open day this Saturday. I could ask them about the 7+ assessment and let you know.

I'm in that dilemma at the moment as to whether to pay for private primary or secondary so it will be a tough decision if she does pass the 4+.

BlueberryPancake Wed 16-May-12 10:52:24

Faith schools: both the Wanstead Church School (where my children go) and Lady of Lourdes Catholic School are very good.

Nightingale has the best reputation locally and their latest Ofsted report was Outstanding. They are a top school, with amazing sports facilities (no pool), the best in the area.

Snaresbrook had a very good reportation but the current head is not liked very much. It is a very good school with again brilliant sports grounds.

All those schools are in Wanstead and the most oversubscribed is Nightingale.

Blossom8 Wed 16-May-12 10:58:56

thanks BlueberryPancake, I know both faith schools are excellent but we are not religious so very much doubt my daughter will get in either. I also read that Nightingale is good but out of my catchment. So looks we are stuck in Waltham Forest or hope a place becomes available at Forest or Snaresbrook College prep should we decide to go down the private route. Alternatives are St Aubyn's or Bancroft but they are both further afield for us.

alittlebitshy Wed 16-May-12 14:35:44

My dd did the 7+ at Bancroft's and from what i recall there was a maths test, a comprehension thingy and a group discussion. i can't believe i can't remember - it seemed so important at the time. She didn't sit for Forest (it was all her choice to go for Bacroft's so had no tutoring (I have heard crazy stories about the amount of tutoring some had- at age 6 ffs)- thus we were not at all clued up on past papers etc -) but I think they are all much of a muchness.

However - they are learning kind of a year ahead of themselves (so dd is now in yr 4 and doing yr 5 maths iyswim) so i guess the tests will be a little further on than what she is doing at the moment. Am i making any sense?!

There is such competition for the places - a friend of dd needed to move from her school (dd's old school - won't mention names but is in s woodford) because of bullying and sat for a single place in yr 4 - apparently the room was packed with applicants!! Scary! In the end she didn't get a place so wet to Avon House in woodford (very very lovely school).

natmelt Wed 16-May-12 16:56:47

yes alttlebitshy - you are - I think my worry is that at Forest they will have already started to pull ahead in the curriculum from where she currently is and we certainly have not coached her for this - I wasnt expecting a place to come up for this year. I guess it will really depend on how many are competing for the one place and to what extent they are looking for academic ability (can you really determine that by testing a 5yo?! or all round behaviour/confidence/aptitude etc. I feel very underprepared!
Are you happy with Bancroft? We discounted it because it is even further away - we are in Stratford...

alittlebitshy Thu 17-May-12 13:21:46

tbh I think you are being realistic! I think that is far healthier than preparing/tutoring a small child to within an inch of their life and then have to leave them to get on with it solo once they have the place.

I suspect that the lower down the school you go, the less academic the "interviewing process" as, as you say, how can you tell what a 5yo- or a 3 yo being tested for a place in reception even more so - will be like in a year or tow and even more's time!!!

I think the chat time they get with the staff will say a lot at this stage - ie if they are confident (as much as you can be when you are being talked at by strange teachers!!), can talk easily on a range of topics and show imagination it will be a big help!!

We are incredibly happy with Bancroft's. Dd was in a one form entry school previously and by the time she made the move we could see she needed to wider range of children to play with (3 forms of 22) as well as the academic and extra curricular stimulation they provide! Obviously the school is packed to the rafters with clever kids so it can be a shock not to be top dog as they might have been in previous schools but other children i know have commented on how lovely it is to find friends "like them" - which a friend's ds stated after discovering there were other bookworm boys and he was not the only one not to want to play footie every break (incidentally he seems to have gone very sporty now - so 2 years and good sports coaching and opportunities can clearly change things a lot!)

We are out away from Woodford in the other direction - north Ilford. Actually dd has a classmate in Stratford. i think they do it on public transport.

Blossom8 Sun 27-May-12 20:42:19

Hi Natmelt, how did you daughter get on with her test at Forest? Well I hope.

sebamam Fri 07-Dec-12 17:19:35

Hello - I really intersted in this thread - can you advise on Forest school?
Can someone say a bit more about Bancroft's and Avon? I was also looking at Lyceum but as they dont have any playground at school and are really small i have crossed it off.

claireopi Fri 20-Mar-15 00:32:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

emmaforestschools1 Mon 29-Feb-16 15:50:39

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

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