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Monday, March 10, 2008

Inspiring the Eleven Plus Child

The great writer Jack Kerouac helped to inspire the beat generation over fifty years ago. He wrote a book called `On The Road’ about a trip across America. I must confess this book inspired me to hitch hike from London to my home back in Rhodesia (Zimbabwe).

There is a passage in `On The Road’ that covers what every parent must wish for their child – the ability to get focused, excited and stimulated about the approaching Eleven Plus examinations.

"The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn.”

If only you could find some way of helping your child adopt a burning passion to concentrate while he or she is working through an Eleven Plus paper with you at home.

You must dream of a child who never feels tired or yawns while he or she is working on a paper.

You must pray for a child who desires the pass the examination with the same fervor that consumes you.

You must want a child who will give evidence of passion when the topic of the Eleven Plus and grammar schools comes up.

But if your child is laid back and relaxed about the whole experience then you too can try not to be too obsessed. After all if you let the Eleven Plus wind you up too much you will simply become rather mad, mad mad! (To paraphrase Jack Kerouac.)

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