How to spot a Kent Test mindset in your child
23rd November 2011
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I was chatting with Peter Whisson, who owns and runs Tuition Canterbury in Dover Street, and we were discussing the popularity of an article he had written for our blog back in 2010, The blog was entitled 'How to spot a Kent Test mindset' and it received lots of page views when first published. I know many parents, myself included, are concerned whether their child would be ready for the Kent Test and this article gave a few key behaviours to look out for in your child.

I have decided to publish the article again and would welcome comments from our blog readers;


How to spot a Kent Test mindset                                                 

What are the early signs that a child might pass the Kent Test to grammar school? Is it possible to spot a grammar school mindset in, say, Year 4?

One clear sign would be avid reading, the early latching onto series by children’s authors like Enid Blyton or Jacqueline Wilson; complementing this, an enjoyment of writing creatively, stories or poems or letters.

The developing of neat writing and correct spelling are positive signs, but not crucial. These are not tested in the 11+. Reliably correct spelling takes most people all their school years to acquire – if then.  Towards the top of primary school, the understanding and using of a wide vocabulary is far more important than correctness.  Approximate spelling and avoidance of common mistakes such as wich and thier and thay etc. are good achievements in Year 5.  

Turning to Maths, an early flair for numbers is important. Grammar school prospects will typically have mastered the tables up to 12x12 by the middle of Year 5. But equally important is the ability to divide readily, and resolve multiples into factors - that is to turn the answers in tables back into their elements. Many 11+ Maths questions require this.

Finally, an early sign to look out for will be a child’s attraction to visual puzzles that test observation – such as Odd one out, and Spot the difference.  These puzzles provide painless early grounding for skills required by non-verbal reasoning tests in the 11+.  


Peter Whisson runs Tuition Canterbury, an Education Centre providing English, Maths and Science tuition.


About the Author

Paul W

Member since: 9th July 2012

Hi I am Paul Williams and I own thebestof Canterbury, the place to find the best local recommended businesses and events happening in and around Canterbury. Welcome to my Blog - I hope you find the entries...

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