How to Easily Tackle 11 Plus Exam Revision with Your Child in 2024

How to Easily Tackle 11 Plus Exam Revision with Your Child in 2024

If your child is in Year 6, you’re likely already considering their transition to secondary education. If you are contemplating grammar schools or selective independent schools among your options, your child will probably need to sit for an entrance examination like the 11 plus exam in autumn 2024 (or early spring 2025 for certain independent schools) to qualify for admission.

The 11-plus exam for grammar schools and the entrance exams for independent schools are intentionally demanding.

They aim to pinpoint students whose academic capabilities position them in the upper quartile of their peers (or even the upper 10% for some exceptionally high-performing institutions).

Therefore, parents must support their kids in getting ready for the test and making sure they can do their best on it. Effective revision is one of the main strategies for achieving this.

This article includes all you should know about efficiently tackling the 11 plus exam revisions you’re your child in 2024. Keep reading!

What are 11 Plus Exams and Why are They Important?

The 11 Plus exams, also known as the 11+ exams or the Eleven Plus exams, are standardized tests taken by primary school students in the United Kingdom, typically in the last year of primary education (Year 6).

These exams are part of the admissions process for selective secondary schools, including grammar schools and some independent schools.

The primary purpose of the 11 Plus exams is to assess a student’s academic abilities and aptitude to determine their suitability for admission to certain types of secondary schools that offer a higher level of education and are known for their challenging curriculum.

The exams are usually taken in subjects like English, mathematics, verbal reasoning, and non-verbal reasoning. The format and content of the exams can vary depending on the school or region.

The importance of the 11 Plus exams is that they play a crucial role in determining the educational path a student will take.

Students who perform well on the exams may have the opportunity to attend prestigious grammar schools or selective independent schools.

These schools are often known for providing a solid academic foundation and rigorous education, which can potentially open doors to better educational and career opportunities in the future.

You should read: What Percentage of Pupils Pass the 11 Plus Exams Yearly

How to Easily Tackle 11 Plus Exam Revision with Your Child in 2024

Getting ready for the 11 Plus exam with your child doesn’t have to be tough! You will have to plan ahead, practice regularly, and stay positive. Here’s a guide to help you and your child tackle 11 Plus revision together in 2024

1. Start Early, Plan Wisely

Begin the revision process well in advance. Create a study schedule that outlines the topics to be covered each week. This prevents last-minute cramming and provides a structured approach to cover all necessary subjects.

2. Break It Down

The 11 Plus exam covers various subjects, including English, mathematics, verbal reasoning, and non-verbal reasoning. Break down the syllabus into smaller, manageable sections. Focusing on one topic at a time can prevent overwhelm and enhance understanding.

3. Active Learning Techniques

Encourage your child to engage with the material actively. Instead of passive reading, practice through solving problems, discussing concepts, and teaching back what they’ve learned. This active approach reinforces their understanding and retention.

4. Practice Papers and Mock Exams

Incorporate practice papers and mock exams into the revision routine. These simulate the actual exam environment and help your child become familiar with the format and time constraints. Regular mock exams also provide an opportunity to track progress.

5. Set Achievable Goals

Set realistic goals for each study session. Accomplishing smaller objectives provides a sense of accomplishment, boosting your child’s confidence and motivation. Celebrate their achievements to keep the momentum going.

6. Variety in Study Methods

Utilize various study methods to keep the revision process engaging. Use flashcards, mind maps, educational apps, and online resources to reinforce learning. This approach caters to different learning styles and prevents monotony.

7. Maintain a Healthy Routine

A well-balanced routine contributes to effective revision. Ensure your child gets enough sleep, eats nutritious meals, and engages in physical activity. A healthy body and mind are better equipped to handle the demands of exam preparation.

8. Regular Breaks

Short, frequent breaks during study sessions can improve focus and retention. Encourage your child to take breaks and engage in relaxing activities such as stretching, deep breathing, or a quick walk.

9. Open Communication

Keep communication channels open. Please encourage your child to express their concerns and challenges. Providing emotional support and reassurance fosters a positive attitude towards revision.

10. Reward System

Implement a simple reward system to motivate your child. After completing a study session or achieving a specific goal, offer small incentives such as a favorite snack or a fun activity.

11. Stay Calm and Positive

Your attitude has a significant impact on your child’s mindset. Maintain a calm and positive demeanor throughout the revision process. Avoid undue pressure and emphasize the importance of trying their best.

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How to Prepare for 11 Plus Exam Day?

On the day of your exam, follow the following tips to make your exam a success.

1. Review and Revise

In the days leading up to the exam, review key concepts and topics. However, avoid cramming or introducing new material at this stage. Focus on reinforcing what has been learned. Make sure you spend long time to revise for your exams.

2. Stay Positive

Please encourage your child with positive affirmations and remind them of their achievements throughout their preparation journey. A positive mindset can boost confidence.

3. Sleep Well

Ensure your child gets a good night’s sleep before the exam. A well-rested mind performs better. Stick to their regular sleep routine to avoid disruption.

4. Arrive Early

Plan to arrive at the exam center well ahead of time to avoid any stress due to traffic or unexpected delays. Being early can help your child settle in and calm any nerves.

5. Bring Supplies

Pack all necessary supplies the night before, including identification, exam admission letter, stationery (pens, pencils, erasers), and any allowed reference materials.

6. Dress Comfortably

Choose comfortable clothing for your child to wear on the exam day. This helps them feel at ease and focused.

7. Mindful Breathing

Teach your child simple deep breathing exercises to help manage anxiety. Deep breaths can help relax the body and mind.

8. Positive Visualization

Please encourage your child to visualize themselves calmly and confidently taking the exam. This technique can help reduce stress and enhance self-assurance.

9. Leave Time for Travel

Factor in enough time for travel to the exam center. Consider any potential traffic or route changes.

10. Post-Exam Plans

Have a plan for after the exam. Whether it’s going out for a treat, enjoying a favorite activity, or just relaxing at home, having something positive to look forward to can help alleviate post-exam stress.

11. Celebrate Effort

Regardless of the outcome, celebrate your child’s hard work and dedication throughout the preparation period. The result of the exam does not solely define success.

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When Should I Prepare for 11+?

The ideal timing for starting 11 Plus exam preparation can vary based on several factors, including your child’s learning pace, their current academic level, and the specific requirements of the schools you’re targeting. However, a general guideline is to start preparing at least a year in advance.

Here are a few considerations to help you determine when to begin the preparation process:

1. School Deadlines

Research the admission deadlines for the schools you’re interested in. Some schools might have registration deadlines well in advance of the actual exam date, so starting early can ensure you meet these deadlines.

2. Learning Pace

Consider your child’s learning style and pace. Some children may need more time to grasp certain concepts, while others might progress more quickly. Starting early allows for a gradual and thorough understanding of the material.

3. Subject Mastery

Evaluate your child’s proficiency in the subjects covered by the 11 Plus exam. If they need additional support in certain areas, starting early can provide ample time for improvement.

4. Practice and Familiarization

Familiarity with the exam format and types of questions is important. Starting early allows your child to practice gradually and become comfortable with different question styles.

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5. Avoiding Last-Minute Pressure

Beginning preparation well in advance helps prevent the stress of last-minute cramming. A steady and consistent study routine is more effective than cramming.

6. Balancing with School Work

Starting early gives your child the flexibility to balance 11 Plus preparation with their regular school work and other activities. It avoids overwhelming them with too much to do in a short span.

7. Mock Exam Performance

If your child takes mock exams and practice papers, you’ll have a better idea of their strengths and weaknesses. This information can guide your preparation timeline.

8. Minimize Stress

Beginning early can help reduce the stress and pressure associated with last-minute preparation. It promotes a more relaxed and confident approach to the exam.

Also check out this content: When Do 11 Plus Results Come Out 2024?

What Do You Need to Know for the 11 Plus Exam?

The content and subjects covered in the 11 Plus exam can vary depending on the school, region, and exam board. However, here are the typical subjects and areas of knowledge that are often assessed in the 11 Plus exam:

1. Mathematics

The mathematics section tests a range of mathematical concepts and skills. Topics might include number operations, fractions, decimals, percentages, ratios, algebraic reasoning, geometry, measurement, and problem-solving.

2. English

The English section evaluates language skills, comprehension, and writing abilities. Areas covered might include reading comprehension, vocabulary, grammar, punctuation, spelling, and creative writing.

3. Verbal Reasoning

Verbal reasoning assesses a student’s ability to understand and manipulate language. It involves tasks such as identifying relationships between words, finding synonyms or antonyms, completing sentences, and solving word-based puzzles.

4. Non-Verbal Reasoning

Non-verbal reasoning focuses on visual and spatial reasoning skills. Questions involve patterns, sequences, analogies, and geometrical shapes. This section aims to assess problem-solving abilities without relying on language.

5. Interview or Creative Writing

Some schools include an interview or require creative writing samples as part of the assessment process. This can provide insights into a student’s personality, interests, and communication skills.

6. Practice Papers and Mock Exams

Familiarity with the format and types of questions in practice papers and mock exams are important. These papers help students become comfortable with the exam environment and build confidence.

7. Time Management

Students should practice managing their time effectively during the exam. Timed practice sessions can improve pacing and ensure that all sections are attempted within the allocated time.

8. Test-Taking Strategies

Learning test-taking strategies, such as how to approach multiple-choice questions, the process of elimination, and managing time wisely, can enhance performance.

9. Problem-Solving Skills

Developing critical thinking and problem-solving skills is crucial. Students should be comfortable analyzing and solving various types of problems.

10. Study Skills and Organization

Apart from subject knowledge, students should also cultivate effective study habits, note-taking skills, and organizational techniques to manage their preparation.

You should read: How is the 11 Plus Score Calculated? 11 Plus Score Explained

Where Can you Find Sample Exam Papers for the 11-Plus Exam?

You will find sample exam papers for the 11 plus exam from the following:

1. Educational Websites

Many educational websites offer free and paid resources for 11 Plus preparation. Websites like, Bond 11 Plus, and 11 Plus Guide provide a range of practice papers, sample questions, and other study materials.

2. Bookstores

Bookstores often carry study guides and practice books designed for the 11 Plus exam. Look for reputable publishers like Bond, CGP, and Letts that offer comprehensive study materials.

3. Online Marketplaces

Online marketplaces like Amazon have a wide selection of 11 Plus preparation books and practice papers. You can find both physical books and e-books.

4. Local Libraries

Many local libraries may have 11 Plus practice materials available for borrowing. Check with your local library to see if they offer any resources.

5. Tutoring Centers

Some tutoring centers or educational institutions specializing in 11 Plus preparation may offer sample papers and study materials as part of their programs.

6. Schools’ Websites

Some grammar schools and selective schools might have sample papers or information about the format of their own 11 Plus exams on their websites.

7. Education Forums and Communities

Online education forums, discussion boards, and social media groups dedicated to 11 Plus preparation can be a valuable resources. Members often share their experiences, advice, and sometimes even sample papers.

8. Official Exam Boards

If the schools you’re interested in have specific exam boards responsible for their 11 Plus exams, check those websites for official sample papers or information about the exam format.

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Preparing for the 11 Plus exam can be a transformative journey for you and your child. By following the strategies outlined in this article, you can create a smooth and effective revision process that leads to success in the exam and fosters valuable skills and character traits that will serve your child well beyond the test day.

Remember, the goal is not only to excel academically but also to instill confidence, discipline, and determination that will guide them through their educational journey and beyond.

Also, check out this content: How Do I Know if My Child is Suitable For Grammar School?

Frequently Asked Questions

When should I start preparing for the 11 Plus exam?

It is generally recommended that preparation start around a year before the exam. This timeline allows for thorough coverage of the material, gradual learning, and reduced stress.

How can I keep my child motivated during the revision process?

Setting achievable goals, using a reward system, and emphasizing their progress and efforts can help keep your child motivated throughout the revision period.

Are practice papers and mock exams vital?

Yes, practice papers and mock exams are essential. They familiarize your child with the exam format, time constraints, and types of questions, boosting their confidence and readiness.

What if my child struggles with a specific subject or topic?

If your child encounters difficulties, provide extra support, seek help from teachers or tutors, and offer ample time for targeted practice in those areas.

How can I manage my child’s stress and anxiety during exam preparation?

Encourage open communication, teach relaxation techniques like deep breathing, and emphasize the importance of a balanced routine that includes sleep, nutrition, and physical activity. Creating a positive and supportive environment can help alleviate stress.



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