An old custom, often revived on Halloween night, was to roast two chestnuts on a fire. There was one nut for a boy and one for a girl. If the nuts cooked without any problem the couple would marry.
If one exploded, or fell in the fire, the marriage, if it took place, would fail.
Some children enjoy the routine of a systematic approach to the examinations. They like feeling prepared.
Other children seem to enjoy the challenge of leaving every thing to the last moment.
Some parents like the idea of regular lesson – so that they feel they have given their child the best possible chance. (Some parents are also very competitive.)
Other parents feel that if they leave their child to choose when and what to work on they are making sure that if their child does pass the child really does deserve to win a place in grammar school.
Both extremes are probably a bit nuts – most parents and children are somewhere in the middle.