For many children, entrance exams at 11+ are their first real foray into external testing. It can be a nerve-wracking time for both child and parent, so we're sharing our top tips on how to prepare your child for the best outcome.
- Check what will be tested with the schools you've applied to
Each school will use a different examination provider, so it's worth asking which papers your child will sit. Often the examination company will have practise test papers available on their website.
Most schools will test English, Maths and Verbal Reasoning.
- Familiarise your child with verbal reasoning papers
It's a great idea to help your child prepare with test papers so that they can familarise themselves with the test format. Many children have never had experience of verbal reasoning tests before, particularly from state sector primary schools, so practise will really help them feel more comfortable on the day.
If test papers are unavailable for the examination company used by your prospective school, the Bond series of books make an excellent start point. These are available to buy from Amazon.
- Consider tutoring if your child needs extra support
If you feel your child is struggling with a particular area, it might be worth considering using a tutor. Choose a local tutor with specific knowledge of 11+ preparation and crucially someone your child will feel happy and comfortable with. Many children thrive with the extra one-to-one support, which can provide a real confidence boost.
- Let the school know if you child has any special educational needs that may affect their performance
All schools will be able to help your child through the assessment process best if they know about special educational needs. Being open during the admissions process will allow you to assess the school's future ability to support your child.
- Prepare but don't over prepare
Preparation is a great idea but too much can push your child to burn out before the big day. Schools want to know the real ability of your child but not at the expense of their wellbeing.
- Rest and have fun before the big day
Give your child a week off test papers and preparation in advance of the assessments so that they're fresh and energised on the big day.
Good Luck from us all at Royal Hospital School!