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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Eleven Plus Problem Solving

Some children find difficulty in solving eleven plus mathematics problems. Problems are not only found in eleven plus papers – but also occur in many different contexts. We are often blessed with very bright children and are thus able to wander outside of the `official eleven plus syllabus’.

A ten year old girl today worked out the volume of a pyramid in her head – this involved working out one third of the area of the base times the height. She was also able to give a logical answer as to why it was necessary to divide by one third. The teaching time was no more than 25 seconds – because she able to grasp the concept looking at the example and then apply what she had read.

1. Your eleven plus child needs to know the four rules of number, fractions, decimals and the metric system. A sound grasp of tables must help.

2, Where possible every effort should be made to help your child see the problem in real terms. Distance, for example, can be discussed in terms of car or train journeys.

3. When you are explaining a problem try to keep your reasonably simple. It must help if any data you present is clear and free from ambiguity.

4. Try to hint a solution to the problem rather than giving the answer.

5. If you suggest that a diagram is drawn, where appropriate, then the illustration or visual explanation has to be clear to your child as well as to you.

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