Whether you’re tutoring your child, or they have an 11plus tutor in preparation for taking their 11plus exams in Walsall or Birmingham, then this post is for you! Today I want to talk about timings.
Maybe your child needs to speed up, answer more questions or learn how much time they can allow for each question on a test paper. All of these issues are key to their success in this highly competitive examination and will need adequate focus alongside the knowledge required.
As an 11plus tutor I constantly look for innovative and effective ways to keep my student’s pace up, as well as ensuring their answers are consistently correct. In any teaching environment fun is always the key starting point, as children love a challenge and a game. They don’t however respond well to being timed whilst put under imposing pressure, shouted at or given negative feedback. So once a child is enjoying their learning and they understand the topic material they will begin to improve their timings as a natural consequence.
Here are some of my other top tips for success in 11plus exams in Walsall and Birmingham-
Never spend too long on any particular question. Children are often compelled to want to get to the end of certain questions and forget that they have been on the same question for over five minutes, when they can only allow one minute per question! At Maze we teach our students a range of techniques, to prevent this practise, maximising on their own strengths to gain the highest amount of marks.
Make sure your child understands how to manage their own timing skills. Ask them to complete, as many timed activities, as possible- Bond’s ‘Ten Minute Tests’ are the most widely used materials for this skill and are very effective. Ten minutes is a manageable time period for children to maintain focus, as I know it can be hard to convince some children to do extra study at home!
Parents also love the idea of ten-minute activities, as they find it much more convenient to fit short activities into busy family schedules. Alongside siblings, clubs, parties and hobbies we understand that time can be short so this can be perfect to fit into your day.
Try talking to your child about timed activities, for example if you have fifteen minutes to spend answering thirty questions, how long should you spend on each question? If your child has adequate level of mental maths skills required to do well with these exams; they should be able to compute such calculations easily.
Practise timings questions in a range of situations where the learning is less explicit too, e.g. when you’re out shopping- ‘If we have two hours parking available and we need to visit Tesco, Greggs, Game, Boots and H&M, how long should we spend in each shop?’ Children not only learn really well in real life settings but it’s also such an important skill to help them to use their maths in these useful ways! Kids also love to solve puzzles and help parents with ‘sticky situations’ so combining these natural two propensities whilst not explicitly saying the word ‘maths’ is a fab way to use their skills.
I hope you have found this post useful. Please like and share with other parents of children receiving 11 plus tuition in Walsall and Wolverhampton who might benefit from this information.