Archives Jan. 1, 2015


  • Eton pre-test preparation

    Dec. 9, 2015.

    What do Eton expect from a pre-test?

    What is a typical Eton boy like?

    The typical Etonian is confident without being arrogant, resilient, well organised, focused and a good communicator.  He will appear mature beyond his years but almost always have a keen sense of humour.  

    What does Eton expect of an 11-year-old boy?

    For boys heading for their pre-test, Eton are realistic and do not, of course, expect their skills or character to be fully developed yet.  Eton states that they do not want academic robots, instead they are looking for individuals. They do not necessarily prioritise the best ...

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  • Private School Entrance unravelled

    Nov. 23, 2015.

    Entrance to London schools

    London has grown 16% in the last ten years and there are now over 2 million children under the age of 19 in the capital.  Entrance to all London schools is highly competitive, with parents racing to be that early bird that catches the worm.

    35% of parents would still favour private school education if money was not a consideration and, although state schools in London are among the fastest improving schools in the nation, their private counterparts still have the edge in terms of results with 50% of St Paul’s pupils consistently scoring top ...

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  • Grow your brain!

    Aug. 24, 2015.

    Grow your brain !

    Let’s not believe ability and potential are predetermined and fixed.  What’s in an IQ test?  Clearly, there is a part to be played by our genes but there is more and more understanding now of how genes react with our environment to create who we are and who we become. 

    Our brains have tremendous elasticity so there is no end to how much we are able to absorb, develop and achieve.  Naturally, there are a variety of different starting points, different backgrounds and different interests but the message is clear: intelligence is not fixed.  Growing ...

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  • How to improve reading skills

    June 29, 2015.

    Meeting Bear

    This week, we met Bear the dog, our beautifully understated village celebrity.  Bear was trained to be a guide dog but did not quite manage to graduate.  Consequently, he was adopted by our neighbours and has since become the most loved furry friend in the area.  Children will knock on Bear’s door and ask if he would like to come out and play, they make him cards for his birthday and greet him with big smiles and hugs.  Bear is as calm as can be and takes all this attention in his stride.  Thanks to his lovable ...

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  • 13+ Common Entrance is over: Let summer begin!

    June 13, 2015.

    13+ Common Entrance is over but school is not quite out.

    Now that the dust has settled on the Common Entrance results, the Year 8 students are in a period of long awaited limbo land.  Mostly, they are in the final year of their Prep School and have licence to kick back and cruise towards the end of term.

    How do children cope without structure though?  For many, school becomes a stream of videos in class, an afternoon ‘on the fields’ and, best of all, no homework!  To start with, the freedom is great as no one is badgering anyone ...

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  • 13+ Common Entrance: The results are in!

    June 12, 2015.

    Congratulations to all the Common Entrance students!

    Congratulations to all of our Common Entrance boys and girls on some fabulous results!  Top grades are one thing and we have plenty of those but more unique are the great many inspiring stories of improvement.  Here are a few favourites:

    Lovely young Ted, predicted D grades at best in February, has toiled harder than anyone, putting the hours in both at Easter and half term, most weekends and week day evenings as well. There were no guarantees though and the progress reports were somewhat shaky. Outstanding news then that Ted some how ...

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  • In the midst of Common Entrance?

    May 15, 2015.

    Well done to all the young people who have finally started with their 13+ Common Entrance exams.  The long awaited week(or so) of reckoning is now here and it’s time to show off!  

    Tough to kick off with Mental Maths Common Entrance but wonderful once it’s out of the way.  Some of you will have found the language side of things more irksome this week with Common Entrance French listening and speaking exams taking centre stage.  French listening might have felt doable as, like all comprehension papers, there is at least material there to hear and to ...

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  • Top 10 ways to make Common Entrance French Oral stick!

    April 27, 2015.

    Common Entrance French Oral is just round the corner so, with 2 weeks to go, this is an opportune moment to make sure what’s going in is really staying in.  

    1.  Blast one topic at a time 

    Focus on ‘School’ for 10mins, take a quick break then come back for another 10minutes on a different topic, like ‘Myself’.  By changing the theme and only allowing a fixed amount of time to really focus, this should help concentration.  Beware: a quick break is no more than 5mins!

    2.  Little and often

    Much better to plan three twenty minute or half ...

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