Over the past week, we have received a number of inquiries from parents asking us about how their children should approach 11+ revision during the upcoming Christmas holidays. Therefore, we thought it would be useful to offer you a few guidelines to make the 11+ revision process more efficient and effective.

Take a break from 11 plus revision
Tired children do not learn and will not perform to their full potential. They have finished a long, hard term at school and they should spend the first week of the holiday resting, relaxing, rejuvenating and enjoying the run-up to Christmas. 11+ revision will be so much more fruitful if the books have been closed for a few days and when those young minds are fresh and refocused.

No cramming
From the 28th December onwards, gently start re-opening the books. Of course, this depends partly on when your school holiday actually begins. For those that break for the holiday around 19-20 December, it is best to have a complete break until around 28-29th. For those that break for the holiday around 12-15th December, we would certainly advise that a few days off should be taken, but 1-3 days of revision before Christmas should certainly be considered. Either way, there should be no cramming. There is no point working hours on end. It is totally counter-productive. Instead, break 11+ revision into manageable chunks, interspersed with breaks. Getting into a routine is also very valuable. One suggested routine is:-

9:30-10:15 11+ English (either comprehension or writing)
10:15-10:45 break
10:45-11:30 11+ Maths
Lunch / break / go outside
14:00-14:45 11+ Maths

Focus on revising past exam questions under timed conditions
Going through past 11+ exam papers, taking down notes, understanding how various Maths problems are solved and paying attention to the various ways that questions can be worded are what students should be focusing on as they do their 11+ revision. Time should also be spent practicing past 11+ exam papers in English and Maths under timed conditions. Content and application is the order of the day. Revise the core content with past exam papers next to you so that you can see how the topics are examined.

Encourage and Reward
Whether you are a university student or sitting the 11+, regular encouragement helps everyone, and “rewarding” some revision with a trip to the park, a film or a lovely dinner (on top of all the usual Christmas treats) provides a meaningful target for children to aim for. Reinforce the idea that in a few weeks time the exams will all be over, and that there are just a few weeks to go.

For further guidance and/or assistance on 11+ exam preparation, please contact [email protected]