Playground chatter about tutoring can be overwhelming. Don’t let it get to you – and step away from those dreadful Bond books.
The whole 11+ curriculum for the Kent Test is teachable within one year and anyone who has got going with verbal or non-verbal reasoning before year 5 is wasting their child’s precious time. It is a mixture of fear and lack of knowledge that drives parents to those miserable Bond books, so read on for a definitive guide to what those of us in the know are doing with our own children…
- Whatever your child’s age, if there is a problem at school you need to address it immediately. It might be a behaviour issue, a specific learning difficulty or a problem with writing. Book a meeting with your child’s teacher and sort it out. And if it isn’t sorted out after that one meeting, book another one and keep on going.
- Presuming your child is getting on well at school, then the Kent Test should be in the back of your mind as Year 4 begins to loom. That’s not because your child needs tutoring then. If all is on track you can sit back for another year. But if a weakness has developed in maths or English, their reading programme hasn’t taken off, or you are generally worried that their work needs tidying up – that’s when to book into one of our Year 4 Maths & English Booster clubs. We only run a couple though so you will need to get in touch right away.
- Year 5 is your moment. To get through the full maths curriculum (which includes content that wouldn’t look out of place in a year 7 or year 8 lesson) you need to begin a whole year before the exam. The Reasoning curriculum needs to be introduced at this stage too, as it is one of those subjects where a little-and-often approach does the job. English confidence leans heavily on your child’s reading ability so in year 5 we give reading a big push at the beginning if we notice anything amiss.
- And why do we recommend the club format and shy away from offering ourselves out as 1-2-1 tutors? Because the clubs have a buzz about them that you just can’t recreate in a silent room at your house with a clock-ticking in the background. The children are easily given the attention they need with only 5 others there. It may surprise you to find that they get excited about coming along to the clubs; there is a positive vibe and a gentle competitive spirit that boosts their independence and takes the pressure off you as a parent.