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How do I help DD prepare to write a personal statement?

(5 Posts)
DarkBlueEyes Sun 02-Nov-14 14:50:25

I've just read the guidance for Surbiton High School year 7 applications and I see that DD will have to write a personal statement as part of the entrance exam. Would be so grateful for any guidance on what they might be looking for or any top tips. Thanks in advance.

ohtobeanonymous Sun 02-Nov-14 15:16:17

This is what the website says:

Girls are given 20 minutes to write a short personal statement highlighting their successes, co-curricular activities, contributions they make to their school and community and their plans for the future.

- See more at:

I think they would appreciate something which is obviously honest and in the girl's own words, rather than something written or dictated by an adult! Given there is also an English exam, I'm sure they would notice any disparity on style... Your DD will obviously need to have in mind what strengths, achievements and contributions she wishes to inform them about.

ohtobeanonymous Sun 02-Nov-14 15:24:01

* in style!

DarkBlueEyes Sun 02-Nov-14 18:09:42

Thanks for that. Gosh. What a lot to ask a non super achiever 10 year old!

Theas18 Sun 02-Nov-14 18:27:27

What a lovely topic to chat about. My strategy would be a good long chat in the car ( we do all our best talking in the car, so non confrontational) . Start out with what she loves doing etc. Point out her extra curricular stuff and what strengths that shows etc . Let her imagination run riot on future plans. They are hardly going to hold her to them!

When trying a write up ( clearly some sort of rough draft is expected) if she can't manage it I might try a bit of cod psychology. (People are bad about talking up their good points. It's a very british trait and also saves you from being criticised). If she can't think of what she's good at or her successes try " what would grandma say about you to her best friend" or some similar person who would take pride in the child's achievements.

It might look like a hard task but it isn't really. Actually we have heard year 7s give this sort of thing as a spoken presentation at the open evening a few weeks into school term - starts with a wee retrospective of " at primary I liked x y and z subjects and played the violin etc and moves on to I love my new school because a b and c happens now in class and I do e and f at lunchtimes. Maybe a comment on how they are finding the work load, and ending with I dream of being an astrophysicist and I can see how this school is helping me on the way"

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