Your child does not need a tutor to pass the 11 plus

Friday 1st April

11 plus preparation

...but maybe you do! I regularly tutor the children of qualified teachers (often primary school teachers) so why are they paying a tutor to teach their children when they undoubtedly have the skills to do it themselves? One important consideration is time, not just the time spent tutoring, but the time spent gathering materials and preparing the lesson too. Engaging a tutor means that a set time each week is programmed into a busy schedule. In addition, parents with more than one child often use the tuition time to do some work with another child.

Another important consideration is that a tutor has specialist knowledge, built up through years of researching and tutoring the eleven plus. Although there is a wealth of 11 plus tutoring material available in the shops a large amount of it is unsuitable or only partially suitable. The 11 plus varies around the country and most shops do not take the trouble to ensure that the 11 plus materials they stock are relevant to that area. Another important consideration is that some of the materials available are very old-fashioned and boring. Isn't it enough to make your child do a couple of hours (or more) of extra work a week, without making them study the most boring material imaginable?  A good tutor will have a range of relevant and interesting material which will ensure maximum learning by the children he or she tutors.

However, the biggest reason not to tutor your child yourself is the stress and arguments that will almost certainly occur when you attempt to do this. I should know, I tutored all three of my children for the 11 plus. It's not easy to cope when your child seems unable to grasp simple concepts, goes missing when you call them for tutoring, argues with you over whether an answer or technique is right or wrong and refuses point blank to do their homework. Then of course you have your own schedule and it may be difficult to set aside a regular time for tuition.

If you do decide to tutor your child yourself (or become a "DIY-er") the first thing to do is to find out as much as you can about the format of the 11 plus. The 11 plus varies between different areas of the country and even between different schools in the area. An example is Essex County Council and Southend Borough Council who formed a consortium to set the 11 plus, only for Chelmsford County High School for Girls to break away and use a different test (the CEM test). Once you have found out the test format you then need to find the right materials. It is worth spending time looking at a range of paper-based and online materials and not just sticking to one publisher or provider.

Please contact Roots 2 Success if you would like to know more about tutoring your child yourself.