Summer Holidays and 11 Plus Revision

July 11, 2014 § Leave a comment

Your 10 year old thinks: “Yay, 6 weeks off school!”

You think: “Oh no, 6 weeks without school – what if they forget everything?!”

It’s that time of year again when parents and children are working hard towards their 11+ exams . . . and many students have to sit the exam almost immediately after a long holiday from school.

The 11 plus is, of course, a very important exam. But, we mustn’t forget that they are only 10 year olds and they have been working hard at school all year. Relaxation time is vital, otherwise they will suffer “burn out” before they get to the test. So here is a handy 11 plus revision timetable for the summer to make it an efficient and enjoyable (or as enjoyable as schoolwork can be!) experience.

11 Plus Revision Timetable

Even if you are away on holiday, take some books away with you. Your child will feel more relaxed on holiday, so may be more inclined to do some work.

The timetable is just a guideline, each child is different. 11+ revision should be varied with each child’s personality and work ethic. Try our 11+ revision worksheets to help in preparing your child. But most of all, enjoy your summer holidays!

The 11 Plus Fear Factor!

April 13, 2014 § Leave a comment

The Eleven Plus – a term that strikes fear into the hearts of parents across the country! In the business I am in, every day is made up of phone calls from parents looking for guidance, advice and reassurance that they are doing the right thing.


At the end of the day, there is no single “right way” of doing things; every child is different and requires a different approach to learning. Some children pick it all up “just like that”, while others need a slow and gradual approach to make sure it all sinks in. So, having a parent call, reel off their entire 11 plus revision schedule for the past year and ask you if they are doing the right thing, having only spoken to them once and never having actually met their child, is easier said than done!

But, of course, having seen hundreds of parents go through this every year has given some insight into the “krypton factor” of 11 plus success. And the keys, really, are:

  • Start revision early enough to avoid panic, but not so early that they get fed up with it!
  • Practice makes perfect, so make sure they get plenty of practice in all the subject areas covered in the exams you are entering for. But, don’t overload them – they are only 9 or 10, after all.
  • Don’t push your children to be something they are not. If they are not cut out for grammar school, it is not fair to push them into it. Even if they pass, this is no guarantee of success in the high-pressure world of grammar school.
  • Don’t let other parents worry you! The phrase “I’ve just found out Mrs So-and-So’s little boy has had a tutor since he was 8” is an all-too-common one! That is their choice, but it doesn’t mean to say that would have been the best option for your child.

Despite the efforts of the education authorities to make 11 plus exams “tutor-proof”, I do believe that tutoring still has a place in the 11 plus preparation process. The 11 plus exams have become more and more difficult and often contain topics that students may not have even learnt at school yet. Tutoring has the benefit of being able to cover all the elements required in an environment where they can get the support that they need from people who know the current methods of teaching.

I recently spoke to a parent who said that they had been going through the work at home, but had now got to the stage where they could no longer help with the questions. So, they decided to get a bit of help from a tuition company. I thought this was a very balanced way of dealing with things. Just because you haven’t had a tutor the whole time doesn’t mean that your child is going to fail! If they are bright enough and get the right help (whether it be from you or from someone else), they are on the right track.

I guess the point I am trying to get across is that the key to success is to find the balance. You’ve got to put the work in, but don’t let it take over your life!

11 Plus Essex Tests

November 15, 2010 § Leave a comment

The Essex tests are fast approaching and students and parents are getting nervous! Like all grammar schools, the grammars in Essex are very sought-after and many parents would love for their child to go to school like King Edward Grammar (KEGS) and Colchester Grammar. This means it is important for children to be as well-prepared as possible for the tests in order to stand up to the large amount of “test-takers”.

The Essex tests are made up of the following elements:
 – Standard Format Mathematics
 – Multiple Choice Verbal Reasoning
 – Comprehension-style English

It is very difficult to find Essex 11 plus practice papers, especially for the distinctive English tests. Why not try our practice papers page. And don’t forget our eleven plus maths site: where you can find helpful maths revision worksheets.

And, of course, we wish everyone taking the Essex entrance exams the best of luck! Do your best and make sure you CHECK THOROUGHLY!!

11 Plus Mathematics Practice Paper

October 27, 2010 § 1 Comment

Practicing papers is one of the most effective ways of preparing for the 11 plus exams. There are lots of suggestions out there about how best to use practice papers as a revision tool, but at the end of the day it comes down to each individual. Everyone has a different way of learning, so it’s best to judge according to your own child. Some children will be able to complete whole papers in one go, whereas for other children it is easier to do the papers in sections.

Whatever way of learning you choose, though, it is essential to make sure your child is comfortable working within the time constraints. Remember that many of the 11+ maths exams allow 1 minute per question, so this is what you are aiming towards. In some 11+ verbal reasoning and 11+ non verbal reasoning tests, only 45 seconds per question is allocated – no small task for a 10-11 year old! That’s why it is a good idea to make sure your child is prepared. You do not want the 11 plus exam to be a stressful ordeal.

There are many practice papers that you can buy from various bookshops, but why not try our free downloadable 11+ maths practice paper. It is 30 questions long and can be used either as a standard or a multiple choice format paper.

11+ Maths Practice Paper

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