## Wednesday, December 21, 2011

### An Eleven Plus Perspective 19/12/2011

Eleven plus children will have their up and downs – just like the rest of us. Robert Service, in `The Rhymes of a Red Cross Man’, dedicated the book to his brother Lieutenant Albert Service, of the Canadian Infantry, who was killed in action in France in 1916. One poem was called `Carry On’.
It’s easy to fight when everything’s right,
And you’re mad with thrill and the glory;
It’s easy to cheer when victory’s near,
And wallow in fields that are gory.
It’s a different song when everything’s wrong,
When you’re feeling infernally mortal;
When it’s ten against one, and hope there is none,
Buck up, little soldier, and chortle:

Carry on! Carry on!

Looking at some eleven plus questions, a vague thought may flicker though a mother’s mind - `Are we trying to fit round peg into a square hole?’ Carry on! Your eleven plus child may be able to help you with a partial solution. If we carry the thought a little further – which fits better a round peg in a square hole or a square peg in a round hole?

Your eleven plus child may be able to help you to remember the work you did at school on ratios. Your mathematics teacher would have instructed you on the question. You are looking at the working out which is larger – the ratio of the area of a circle to its circumscribed square or the ratio of a square to its circumscribed circle?

You could ask your child to see if the following statement is true. It all revolves round the number 9. If the number is less than 9 a round peg fits better into a square hole.

When the tedium and the frustration of eleven plus questions creep up on the family, then some may care to consider the number 9. Some parents alternatively, may contemplate reading the verse from Robert Service to their candidate – and discussing the issues. This may help to put it all into perspective.