With the news that many children will not be returning to school until September, some parents are worried that their child’s long-term absence from the classroom will have consequences on their learning. These concerns are not helped by US experts’ suggestions that pupils aged 8 to 14 may return to school with up to 30% learning loss in reading and 50% in maths, whilst younger pupils could be up to a year behind in their learning.
These predictions are stark, but they are extrapolations of the typical learning loss seen after the long summer break. In contrast to the summer holidays, when families tend to relax and take a break from the demands of schoolwork, most children have been continuing academic work during lockdown. Children may not have had formal schooling, but they have not stopped learning. Parents and teachers have been doing their utmost to support children through lockdown and schools will of course take all of this into account when students do eventually get back into the classroom.
Nevertheless, those children who will be sitting the 11+ exam on their return to school face an added challenge. By the time they reach the summer holidays, they (and their parents!) will have endured months of independent learning. The prospect of continuing home learning makes boredom, fatigue and burnout real risks. Breaking the monotony will be key to re-motivating and reinvigorating your child for exam preparation, so look for different ways to practise important skills. For example, did you know that playing Minecraft enhances non-verbal and spatial reasoning ability? Or that a family game of Articulate challenges vocabulary skills?
Alongside varied revision strategies at home, a Flying Start Tuition holiday course will bring learning back to life for your child. Designed to be fun, sociable and entertaining, holiday tuition involves a wide range of activities to help get skills up to speed. Small groups allow pupils to socialise and make friends with a new set of peers and offer plenty of opportunity for fun and a good giggle! Rediscovering the pleasures of group learning will be a delightful experience for children fed up of home learning, helping them to stay on track with their 11+ preparation and enthusing them for the return to school.
For parents, too, the thought of playing ‘Revision Cop’ over the summer holiday may feel like too much after months spent home educating. Moreover, whilst the easing of lockdown may theoretically leave parents free to return to work, childcare during the summer holidays is always a juggling act. A holiday course is a great way to turn in your Revision Cop badge and relax, with no more worries about who will look after your child whilst you are at work (or having a well-earned cup of tea in the garden!).
The Flying Start team intend to run holiday courses and mock exams in centres during July and August, following all social distancing and hygiene guidelines. We are also offering courses, workshops and mock exams online, so if you don’t yet feel comfortable sending your child to a group session, we have options to suit you. Plus, if circumstances mean a venue-based course must move online and this arrangement doesn’t meet your needs, you will be given the option of a full refund.
Whilst holiday courses have always been a crucial aspect of 11+ preparation, the current circumstances make them all the more vital. Teachers will work hard to ensure pupils get back on track in September; however 11+ candidates have limited time to recoup any learning loss. Attending holiday tuition will give your child a head-start on the return to a more formal and structured style of learning, helping them to transition back to classroom life more easily and ensuring that they hit the ground running in September. All the usual benefits of holiday tuition: tailored support with problem areas, confidence-building, fine-tuning exam techniques, mock exam experience and more will ensure your child is fully prepared for the exam and the academic year ahead, despite Covid-19’s interruption.
Children and their parents have done a phenomenal job rising to the challenge of home educating when simply coping with the upheaval all around them was challenging enough. Our hats go off to you, and if you need a little help, we are here for you!
Need a little help? Flying Start Tuition is an award-winning tuition centre offering classes for children from year one through to GCSEs. Holiday tuition with Flying Start is available to book now. Since we will be running reduced class sizes to meet distancing requirements, places are extremely limited! Book your child’s place today to make sure they are ready not only for the 11+ exam, but also for their long-awaited return to school in September.
For further information, contact:
t: 01494 772 898