Bright Sparks

11+ Tuition

There are eight Grammar Schools in Birmingham and five in Warwickshire, plus a ‘bilateral’ school, Ashlawn School in Rugby. These …


    There are eight Grammar Schools in Birmingham and five in Warwickshire, plus a ‘bilateral’ school, Ashlawn School in Rugby. These school have high academic standards and consistently achieve top positions in national league tables. However, their popularity means competition is tough.

    Warwickshire and Birmingham Grammar School use the ‘Durham CEM test’ and do not make past papers readily available.

    At Bright Sparks, we understand that this can be an anxious time for both students and parents and know how difficult it is to find the opportunity to sit down and work through papers at home.

    Our experienced and specially trained tutors can guide you both through the 11+ process, providing expert tuition, support and guidance.

    Students will benefit significantly from additional preparation and practice with them.


    What does the exam involve?

    There are two exams, each lasting approximately 45 minutes.

    Papers are divided into smaller, individually timed sections which test:

    • Verbal reasoning and literacy skills
    • Non-verbal reasoning
    • Reading comprehension
    • Mathematics

    Children record their answers in booklets and some questions will take a multiple-choice format.

    Verbal reasoning involves thinking with words. These questions test a child’s ability to understand and reason using words, and are a test of skill, rather than of learned knowledge. Questions involve thinking about text, solving word problems, following written instructions to come up with solutions, spotting letter sequences and cracking letter, and number based, codes.

    Reading comprehension involves comprehension and a ‘cloze test’, which consists of several short passages of prose. Students select the most appropriate word from a choice of three to fill in various missing gaps in the passage.

    Non-verbal reasoning is problem solving based around pictures, diagrams and shapes rather than words. Questions will require students to work out sequences, similarities and differences between figures and break codes. Students need to have a good understanding of mathematical concepts such as symmetry, rotation, direction and shape. This part of the test will see how your child can use logic and critical thinking to solve problems.

    The numeracy test will test ability in mental arithmetic and recognition of mathematical patterns.

    How can Bright Sparks Tuition Help?

    Following our initial consultation, we will devise an individual education plan to build on your child’s strengths and addresses current areas of weakness, in order to maximise your child’s potential.

    Our sessions will cover:

    • Verbal reasoning and literacy
    • Non-verbal reasoning
    • English
    • Maths

    Our sessions will result in:

    • A clear insight into the format of the examination
    • Familiarity with the different question types
    • Thorough preparation and practice
    • Increased confidence and enjoyment

    How can you help?

    At Bright Sparks, we aim to work in partnership with both parents and students and recognise that this trinity lies at the heart of our success.

    To support our work further you can:

    • Allow ample time for your child to prepare for the examination
    • Establish a regular reading time (approximately 20 minutes per day). Encourage your child to read a wide range of genres, fiction and non-fiction texts and explore different text types
    • Develop and extend vocabulary by recording  ‘new’ or advanced vocabulary and finding synonyms
    • Play word games and complete crosswords and quizzes, for example, spotting the odd one out from a list of words, giving a synonym or antonym for a word and solving anagrams
    • Play spot the difference, Sudoku and mirror images
    • Practise mental maths
    • Find real and imaginative ways of practising mental maths skills; for instance adding or subtracting numbers from car registration plates

    Admission Information for September 2016 entry

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    About Bright Sparks

    “Enjoy, Aspire, Achieve”
    Our courses are designed to help improve your child’s knowledge and understanding of core topics in key curriculum areas, whilst also developing skills such as analysis, interpretation and exploration; skill which are vital for examination success.

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