As it is widely known, the 7 plus school admission exam that typically takes place during Year 2 for admission in Year 3, primarily consists of both exam and interview components. The assessment part typically determines a student’s proficiency in English, mathematics, and reasoning, while the interview part (either individually or in a group setting) evaluates the student's interpersonal communication abilities. Because most parents are not very familiar with the entire 7 Plus process, preparing a child for a school entrance exam without extra help, can be a difficult task.
Since there are only a few places available at independent schools in and around London every year, the 7 Plus exam is one of the most competitive exams, and most parents worry that they won't be able to sufficiently prepare their child for it, which is also why many parents enlist the services of a private tutor.
There are many benefits to private tutoring. Your child will not only receive the necessary instruction in English, math, and reasoning but he or she will also receive adequate preparation to help them build confidence for the interview portion of the 7 Plus exam.
One very important aspect that parents should understand, is that it is ineffective to prepare a child for the interview portion of school entrance exams through ‘drilling’. At worst, it may prevent your child from displaying their distinct personality and vibrancy, since schools are trained to distinguish between organic (natural) and rehearsed responses.
However, by teaching them well-spoken (articulated) words in new settings rather than settling for shy, one-word responses, you can help your child gain confidence over time, and with the correct instruction and guidance from a private tutor, your child will build up a significant vocabulary, which will be his or her best possible chance to reveal their special talent during the 7 Plus interview.
Setting a child up for success is never easy, but as the saying goes: practice makes perfect, and private tutoring is all about practice. The right instruction will teach a child from a very young age to think about their responses, rather than drawing a hasty conclusion with confronted with a challenging question. Furthermore, private tutoring aids in the development of the solid foundational abilities that will be assessed in the 7 Plus exams.
Parents often are unaware of the exact format of the 7 Plus interview, but private tutors have expertise and experience (many have taught their own children), and most are very familiar with the entire 7 Plus process. Through parental guidance, a competent private tutor can also help parents overcome the challenges that might prevent their children from being accepted into an elite school.
If a child was successful during the first round of the 7 Plus exam, they will usually move on to the interview part, which is the second round of the exam. At various points during this process, the child will have discussions or conversations with the head teacher, which will either be in a group setting or a one-on-one interview. Keep in mind that schools will also assess how students interact and behave around their peers. Students will amongst others, be assessed on teamwork and co-operation, but something that many parents did not know, is that a school may also require to interview the parents, so it is essential that parents also be prepared.
The reality of the 7 Plus exam is that it will also be expected of a student to be able to perform at levels much higher than the prescribed curriculum, and while many parents express that this level is up to two years higher than their child's actual age, there are some significant benefits.
If your child succeeds on the 7 Plus exam, there is a higher possibility of acceptance by some of the most prestigious schools in London but the important fact is that getting your child into the right school will ultimately lay the foundation for their future careers.