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Let's help each other through the eleven plus nightmare!

(53 Posts)
2009 Thu 03-Sep-09 11:49:26

Thought I would start a new thread for all of us whose year 6 dc are taking 11+ or selective entrance tests this term ( and who don't want to soend hours with the obsessives on the elevenplusforum wink )

My DS started Y6 yesterday and told me that many of his classmates are already talking non-stop about the exams and it made him nervous already sad

He will face a full battery of grammar and independent school tests starting from Sept through until Jan. I have bulk ordered the Gin and Tonics from Tescos already grin

CatherineofMumbles Thu 03-Sep-09 13:20:22

Lucky you not getting the non-stop talk till year 6 grin Ds is in year 5 and his mates have already been at it thru Year 4 shock, despite our desperate attempts to tell him to forget it till MUCH nearer the time...
Very best Of luck!

2009 Thu 03-Sep-09 14:05:34

I'm a bit shock at year 4!
They did talk a bit about it in Y5 but I guess it's front of mind now. Quite tricky to keep DS feeling calm, as I rapidly turn into a nervous wreck myself...

CatherineofMumbles Thu 03-Sep-09 14:41:52

without giving too much away - what part of the country are you and so you have a wide selection of selective and independents? We are in London which is obession central - would be interested to know if it is just a metropolitan thing.

foofi Thu 03-Sep-09 14:44:34

Hi 2009 - I tried to start a thread about this at the beginning of the holidays but no one replied! Two weeks to go here (we're in Kent) and I can't wait for it to be over!

2009 Thu 03-Sep-09 16:27:01

Hi Foofi - I am sure there are many other lurkers! Am quite jealous of the fact that yours will be over and done with in a couple of weeks.
The lack of any coordination between schools here (London/Herts) means ours will drag on and on and on until Jan sad

How is your DC bearing up? Is he/she doing practice tests or just a little work every day?

2009 Thu 03-Sep-09 16:34:25

CoM - we are on north London borders which is also obsession central. However, only a mninority from my DS's school will be trying for selective schools so we have managed to stay away from the 'may contain nuts' scenario for the most part.

Judging from the elevenplusforum website it is not just a london or metropolitan obsession though. Everywhere that has selective schools, independent or grammar, seems to have its share of obsessive parents. But that forum is wayyyy too extreme for me, which is why I wanted to get some mnetters feedback instead!

Doobydoo Thu 03-Sep-09 16:35:20

We are in Lincs.ds1 has verbal next friday and non verbal the friday after.Not too obsessive here but have only been here since April so fortunately don't know anyone to get obsessed with!smile

Doobydoo Thu 03-Sep-09 16:38:51

grinAt may contain nutsgrin

GrimmaTheNome Thu 03-Sep-09 16:46:51

The grammar school entrance is at the end of the month here (Lancs). As DD and most of her class are out of catchment for either of the two nearest grammars, they have to do exceptionally well to get a residual place. But she's come home from her first day back seemingly unstressed - the only comment pertaining to 11+ being that in their library lesson today the ones doing it were steered towards books with particularly good vocabulary (she's got a Michael Morpurgo).

2009 Thu 03-Sep-09 17:10:53

shock only verbal and non-verbal tests in Lincs?! No maths or english?

Doobydoo Thu 03-Sep-09 17:38:51

Nope.It is the standard version verbal and non vebal.The verbal standard is tricky,non verbal not so bad.
Ds1 was quite motivated for a while but went off it during summer hols.He will be doing approx 30 mins each evening up to tests,I think!

foofi Thu 03-Sep-09 18:42:52

Verbal, Non-verbal and Maths here in Kent, plus an English paper which only gets marked in the case of a dispute.

dd has been doing SOME work over the holidays, but certainly not every day.

PSCMUM Thu 03-Sep-09 21:35:27

o god this is so stressul isn't it!
I did some non verbal reasoning prep with ds1 tonight, for latymer exam in october.
i have no idea if he will get in or if it is worth the stress of putting him through it.

does anyone know what mark you need to get, or what mark is usually the mark eople need to get, in order to get to the next stage of this hell torture?

and does anyone know a decent comp near Islington that will put an end to our hell???

gin and tonic in bulk is essential.

2009 Thu 03-Sep-09 21:57:48

PSCmum welcome to the madness!
I have heard that latymer is one of the hardest to get into but not sure what sort of mark you need. if you go on the elevenplus forum site they will
probably say you need 90 percent. I think if your ds is regularly achieving 70 then it would be worth trying.
IMO nvr is tricky but definitely improves on practice. We have been using a book of 10 min tests and ds does quite well but I think I'll only give him
the longer papers about 2 weeks before the real thing.

I have heard good things about some comps near highbury end of islington but I guess it all comes down to distance from the school.
What part of islington? My friends ds is at mary magdalene which they are quite pleased with but you need to be COE.

BrigitBigKnickers Thu 03-Sep-09 22:10:32

Verbal reasoning (50%) Maths and English (both 25% each) here in Essex. The test for the Essex consortium is in the middle of November but we don't find out the results until 1/3/10 on School allocations day.

There is no pass mark- its all done on a ranking basis.

I don't hold out much hope for DD for her chosen school. There are only 120 places and a huge number of girls (over 1,000) entering, many from independent schools who do verbal reasoning from infant level and 11+ training as a matter of course. (Apparently 3/4 of the girls who get in are from the independent sector.)

It's something she really wants to try for but I am not getting too worked up about it so hopefully she won't be too stressed.

2009 Thu 03-Sep-09 22:26:42

BBK - yes it seems unfair that some schools seem to train their pupils up
for these exams and other schools (like my DS') are rather disapproving
and do nothing to help parents.

Ho hum.

BrigitBigKnickers Thu 03-Sep-09 22:39:08

I don't really expect DDs school to really help out with 11+ but the Grammar schools all say "Don't tutor, don't tutor..." but how can state school pupils really compete when independent schools do it as a matter of course?

PSCMUM Fri 04-Sep-09 09:35:49

i am starting to feel slightly dizzy thinking about this! Why can't we all just send our kids to the local school and be happy with it?!
(yes i know why, because they are largely rubbish - but still - isn't it a nice idea?!)

Does anyone know anything about Bridge Academy in HAckney? Its ofsted is rubbish, but i'd like an actual parents perspective before writing it off completely!

deaddei Fri 04-Sep-09 10:55:42

Oh the eleven plus forum!
It makes me want to post totally inappropriate outrageous things late at night, after a glass of wine.
Ds is yr 6 and sitting for 2 schools.
One is uber-academic and the other seems a bit more pastoral.
I hate the whole tutoring thing, but you have to do it to get them up to speed-some of the maths he hasn't covered at school yet, and English comprehension and essays do not seem to be on his KS2 curriculum!
Still. we are being relaxed about it- he knows he has as good a chance as anyone, but I don't give 2 hoots if he doesn't get in. He will go to the (improving) state secondary, and will be in the express stream.

2009 Fri 04-Sep-09 14:55:43

deaddei, I too have always been tempted to put in a post on the elevenplusforum about "my darling tarquin who has been getting 99% in all his practice papers, but this week has dropped to 98% and it is causing me deep concern". grin

Seriously tho', sounds like you are in a good place with a decent back-up comp. Only wish we had the same here.

deaddei Fri 04-Sep-09 16:01:58

Well 2009, from listening to some mums at ds's schhol, you would think it was virtually an approved school or Borstal. Granted, it has had it's problems in the past, but has now a great head, is a federation with successful girls' comp and I know lots of parents who are delighted with it.
Yes, there are some boys there who I hope ds will not be influenced by, but equally I think he'd enjoy it there.
!.(have a look at an earlier thread on here about my ds's essay.....)
Dare you to post something totally outrageous on 11 plus!!

Milliways Fri 04-Sep-09 19:55:22

Good luck to everyone!

I have been through this with mine twice (one successful and one not) so you have my sympathies

May your DCs all find a place where they can be happy.

2009 Sat 05-Sep-09 16:00:33

Thanks Milliways, everyone says that in the end it always works out ok, but it certainly doesn't feel like that at the moment.

DS is putting the work in, but he makes SOOO many silly mistakes that his marks are quite low. It's very frustrating sad

deaddei Sat 05-Sep-09 16:19:50

DS was making stupid mistakes at the beginning of the hols, but seems to be ok now in maths- got 98% yesterday!
He needs to concentrate on English, especially vocab/spellings.
Some of the comprehension is so dry and dull- Lorna Doone, Railways of 1854 and Black Beauty. Sorry, but people don't speak like that, or use words like that in 2010. Even I struggled- and I have an English honours degree!

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