Critical Thinking & Pre Test Preparation

At Holmewood House all pupils in Years 5 & 6 follow a programme in Critical Thinking Skills and Pre-Test Preparation. These sessions help pupils to become familiar with the types of questions they will encounter in their entry tests for senior schools, such as the ISEB Pre-Test, which they usually take in Year 6 (for year 9 entry).

Year 5

In the Autumn term children have a weekly Critical Thinking lesson.

In the Spring term the Critical Thinking lesson becomes a weekly BOFA lesson. BOFA is an online teaching system that supports children with all four elements of the Pre-Test (Maths, English, Non-Verbal Reasoning and Verbal Reasoning) and builds a unique learning experience for each child with their Test – Practice – Re-Test approach.

Initially children are introduced to BOFA as a form group and taught how to navigate the platform. They are also shown how to snip questions that have caused them difficulty and share them on the form Team in their personal channel. At this stage there is also a BOFA talk to Parents before children start actually using the platform.

Once children have started to use BOFA they work at their own pace, although their use of the platform and progress are closely monitored and they are given advice, feedback, support and instruction.

Children have a BOFA lesson is school throughout the Spring and Summer terms and are able to access their profile from home.

Year 6

Children continue to have their weekly BOFA lesson in the Autumn term. Preparation schedules are tailored according to each child’s senior school choices.

Children take BOFA mocks in school to familiarise them with the structure of the ISEB Pre-Test.

The majority of senior schools expect the ISEB Pre-Test to be taken in the Autumn term by 1st December. Some senior schools also have interview days and further paper based assessments as part of their admissions process.

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