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The Kent Test

                                                The Kent Test consists of an English paper, a maths paper and a reasoning paper.                                                      The reasoning paper contains verbal reasoning questions, non-verbal reasoning                                                          questions and spatial reasoning questions. The final task on Kent Test day is a timed                                                  writing task.

                                                The English paper and the maths paper of the Kent Test will have their basis in the                                                    work that the children will have covered at school, but there may also be questions,                                                  particularly in the maths paper, that require the children to think about what they                                                     are being asked in a new way, and questions that require the children to combine                                                       their knowledge from two areas of what they have been taught at school in order to                                                 correctly answer. These types of maths questions are generally considered to be the                                                 most challenging.

One of the questions that I'm asked most frequently by parents is how they know whether pursuing a grammar school place is a sensible option for their child. To answer this question, I've written an 8-step guide that will prove a useful starting point in answering this. Click the button below and I'll share my insights with you. 

The second most commonly asked question from parents, here at Sunnydene Tutoring, is which skills they should focus on at home. I have two answers to this question: vocabulary development and mental arithmetic. 

Vocabulary Development

By far the most enjoyable way for a child to develop their vocabulary is for

them to read - a lot and from a wide range of sources. There are many, many

high-quality titles available for all ages of children but a few of my

recommendations for children in Years 4, 5 and 6 are here. Reading a range

of high quality literature will expose children to lots of previously unfamiliar

words as well as providing them with lots of fabulous ideas for their own

writing, both of which are important when we're preparing for the Kent Test.

As well as encouraging reading for pleasure and for the added benefit of developing vocabulary and improving writing skills, some parents find it useful to use specific vocabulary resources at home, which are targeted at introducing their children to new words and exploring their meanings.


Would you like some support in giving your son or daughter's vocabulary a boost? If you would, click the button below and we'll be in touch with some of our favourite vocabulary-boosting ideas for your child's age group.

                                                          Mental Arithmetic

                                                    The maths paper of the Kent Test contains 25 questions and has a time                                                                      limit of 25 minutes. Some of the questions are challenging and require                                                                        some serious thought, even for the most able mathematicians. Every year, I                                                             I tell my pupils that the best way for them to gain this all-important extra                                                                    time for the more difficult questions is for them to ensure that they have                                                                    fantastically quick mental arithmetic skills. Fast, and consistently accurate,                                                                recall of times tables is a great starting point for this, but there are lots of                                                                    other arithmetic areas that can be focussed on too when we consider                                                                          mental maths skills. I've popped links to a few of my favourite online maths                                                                 games below. I recommend encouraging your child to play these games                                                                      regularly if they will soon be taking the Kent Test. 

Hit the Button: Many children will be familiar with this game already but most tend to focus on the times tables option. Try division facts, doubling, halving and square numbers too. As an added bonus, the inclusion of the timer within this game makes it useful for building the pace required for the Kent Test as well as for practise of arithmetic skills.

Tommy's Trek: This is a popular game with my pupils. The platform-game style of Tommy's Trek makes it fun to play.

Make 24: This is my favourite maths game! This game definitely provides a challenge and encourages perseverance alongside practise of mental arithmetic skills.

If you'd like any further advice, or if you're interested in my Kent Test preparation sessions for your child, please send me a message. I'd love to hear from you!

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