Kip McGrath Lisburn Transfer test results 2014

Well done to all our AQE and GL Assessment students who sat the 2013 Transfer tests.

Martin, Clare and Martina would like to say a big congratulations to all our students who sat their Transfer tests in November and December 2013 and who received their results in February 2014.

We have been delighted to hear that our 2013 Transfer Test students have done so well.  Congratulations to everyone!

Ulster star transfer test resultsThis year we were even more excited to learn that one of our students Ushnik Banerjee has been awarded one of the top marks in Northern Ireland.  Ushnik achieved top marks in the GL assessment paper of 282 and an amazing 125 in the AQE tests.  Ushnik hasn’t made his mind up about where he wants to go in September yet but has narrowed it down to two schools.  A huge congratulations to Ushnik and his family from all of us here at Kip McGrath.

Posted in Primary education, Top education tips for parents, Transfer test | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

GL Assessment Transfer test results 2013

GL Assessment Transfer Test Results

Compare the 2011, 2012 and 2013 Northern Ireland Transfer Test results

Thanks to the Belfast Telegraph for publishing these test results.  For a breakdown of the AQE results for 2013 please visit our AQE  Transfer Test results 2013 blog.

Some schools use a grade boundary system in which they select pupils falling in between specific grade groups, while others use the scores alone to determine who they select.  There are also schools selecting on non-academic criteria which are not disclosed.  The first set of tables are divided into regions and give the highest and lowest grades and scores accepted by schools who disclosed this information.  The last tables show the numbers of children in each grade boundary for the schools using this method of selection.  Some schools have provided highest and lowest scores while others have given grades instead.  If you cannot find your chosen school in the first set of tables please scroll down and check the grade boundary table.

Grade boundaries:
A (234+) B1 (229-233) B2 (224-228) c1 (219-223) C2 (213-218) D1 (138-212)

Belfast and Southern Areas

GL belfast and southern transfer test 2013

North East and Western Areas

gl assessment north west

24 of the GL Assessment schools used a grade boundary system  and disclosed how many of each boundary they admitted in 2013. These results make it clear the numbers of children of varying abilities that were admitted in 2013.

Grade boundaries:
A (234+) B1 (229-233) B2 (224-228) c1 (219-223) C2 (213-218) D1 (138-212)

GL assessment grade boundaries 2013GL assessment grade boundaries 2013If your child needs help to prepare for the Transfer Test please visit our website to find out how we can help.

Read our blog on when to start preparing for the transfer test.

By Clare Rimmer

Posted in Education, Top education tips for parents, Transfer test | Tagged , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

AQE Transfer Test results 2013

AQE Transfer Test Results 2013

Compare the 2011, 2012 and 2013 Northern Ireland Transfer Test results

Thanks to the Belfast Telegraph for publishing these test results on Tuesday 7th January 2014.   For a breakdown of the GL Assessment results for 2013 please visit our GL Assessment  Transfer Test results 2013 blog.

Belfast Area

AQE belfast transfer test results 2013South Eastern AreaAQE southeast transfer test2013North Eastern Area

AQE Northeast transfer test2013Western Area

AQE western transfer test2013If your child needs help to prepare for the Transfer Test please visit our website to find out how we can help.

Read our blog on when to start preparing for the transfer test.

By Clare Rimmer

Posted in Top education tips for parents, Transfer test | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

10 great books to read with children on Christmas Eve

Christmas books for kids

Image: Clare Rimmer

Image: Clare Rimmer

One of my greatest pleasures on Christmas Eve is snuggling up by the fire after we have hung up the stockings and reading a lovely Christmasy book.  We have many favourites in our house and I wanted to share a few of them here along with some great suggestions from our facebook fans on Kip McGrath Lisburn.  I have included an amazon link so you can get some last-minute shopping in.  It’s not too late!

Merry Christmas from all of us at Kip McGrath Lisburn.

  1. The Empty Stocking by Richard Curtis – Written by the award-winning writer and director this book gives a new twist to the naughty and nice theme and has become a firm favourite in our house this year.  A heartwarming tale that will ensure perfect behaviour from now until the big day! Find it here.
  2. Mog’s Christmas by Judith Kerr – This book is a classic and should definitely be on everyone’s Christmas book shelf.  Our copy is dog-eared and even has my eldest daughters early attempts at writing adorning its front cover (I hope Santa wasn’t watching!).   Mog finds Christmas just a little bit strange.  Trees that walk and talk, too many people in the house and everyone is too busy to play.  You will have to read this one again and again!  Find it here.
  3. The Lighthouse Keeper’s Christmas by Ronda and David Armitage – The final story in a series of books about the Mr Grinling the Lighthouse Keeper.   Christmas is in danger of becoming a disaster with no food and no presents.  Another heartwarming tale that shows the true spirit of Christmas is a about being around the ones we love.  Find it here.
  4. Angelina’s Christmas by Katherine Holabird – A sweet little tale about being alone at Christmas and a kind-hearted little mouse who makes sure that an old, lonely man can enjoy the magic of Christmas too.  Find it here.
  5. The Jolly Christmas Postman by Janet and Allan Ahlberg – A great book for younger children due to its interactive element.  The Jolly Postman delivers gifts to various fairy-tale characters and not only that the children are able to take each present from its envelope to find out what the characters get for Christmas. Find it here.
  6. How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr Seuess – Nobody can stop the magic of Christmas – not even the Grinch!  Your little ones will be captivated by the whimsical drawings and witty rhymes that make this book a modern classic.  Find it here.
  7. Twas the Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore – This poem has been entertaining us at Christmas since 1822 and Christmas Eve wouldn’t be the same without it.  Start your recital with hushed suspense and build into a dramatic crescendo as the mysterious night-time visitor makes his appearance.  Find it here.
  8. Box of Delights by John Masefield – A wonderful Christmas fantasy novel set in snowy England.  The Box of Delights is a true Christmas classic.  A young boy is entrusted with a shiny black box with magic powers, which can transport the owner through time and space.  Find it here.
  9. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (retold for younger children by Gill Tavner) - The definitive Christmas story.  The moral transformation of Ebenezer Scrooge helps us to rescue the festive season and set a guideline for what the spirit of Christmas should mean.  This version of the book makes the story much more accessible for younger readers and is a great introduction to the work of Charles Dickens.  Find it here.
  10. The Lion the Wich and the Wardrobe by C.S Lewis – Another unforgettable Christmas classic that all children should be introduced to. Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy step through a wardrobe door and into the wintry land of Narnia where a magical adventure full of Christian allegory unfolds.  Find it here.
Posted in Education, Just for fun | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

When should my child start preparing for the Transfer Test?

When is the best time to begin supporting your child for the AQE and GL Assessment Transfer Tests?

tranfer test tuitionThe answer simply is now!  Your child is half way through Primary 6, fully settled and by now parent-teacher consusultations have taken place.

Learning time is crucial as there are many new concepts which need to be introduced and your child needs time to digest these and fully understand them without any stress.

English skills need to be assessed and bad habits with punctuation and spelling need to be worked on.  Understanding of figures of speech such as nouns, verbs, adverbs and adjectives needs to be thorough.  Your child must be confident skimming and scanning questions and texts.

Problem solving methods need to be worked on in maths, which is the key to success for the Transfer Test.  A solid foundation in times tables, decimals, fractions and percentages is required along side a good grasp of measure, shape and the use of statistics.

A year to prepare for the Transfer Test allows time to build in revision of concepts to consolidate understanding as well as the opportunity to be introduced to past paper questions.  This helps build confidence by building on success and learning from mistakes.

The aim is to maintain a steady pace of progress which peaks as the first test approaches around the first week of November 2014.

transfer test tuition

At Kip McGrath we have a lot of experience guiding children and supporting parents successfully through this process.   We begin with a free assessment from which we can pinpoint areas of weakness and tailor a programme of study designed to help them achieve their own personal targets as they move towards the test.  Our lessons are 80 minutes long, which allows us to work on both English and Maths as well as past papers.   Our tuition involves extensive past paper practice in both the AQE and GL Assessment papers, which is vital to improve exam technique.

For more information or advice please call us at our Lisburn centre on 9267 5071.

By Clare Rimmer

Posted in Primary education, Top education tips for parents, Transfer test | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

World Teacher’s Day – Which teacher inspired you?

Qualified teachers inspire

Image: Kip McGrath Ashmore

Image: Kip McGrath Ashmore

At Kip McGrath we like to celebrate the teacher! What makes our tuition so successful is that it is delivered by experienced, qualified teachers who understand the different ways in which children learn and tailor their tuition to get the best out of each individual child.

Teaching is not an easy profession. A teacher is charged with inspiring and steering young minds and preparing them for the real world. If you have been watching the Channel 4 series Educating Yorkshire you will no doubt have been in awe of the true dedication and care that the teachers in Thornhill Community Academy show their pupils. This is the story in schools across the country – teachers doing their up most, often in challenging situations to provide the best education they can for their pupils. I would just like to take a moment to thank all the truly inspirational teachers out there who often go beyond the call of duty to help their students achieve their goals.

Inspiring teachers

Here are a few stories about inspirational teachers I have been gathering for World Teacher’s Day 2013. It was a surprise and a delight to get so many people wanting to write about their favourite teacher and just goes to prove what a difference a great teacher makes to children’s lives.

My favourite ever teacher at Primary school was Mr Lund. I was in Year 4 when he taught me. Our classroom was a prefab separate from the rest of the school and adjacent to a country lane. Every Friday Mr Lund’s twin brother would whiz down the lane on his bike ( he was too quick for us; we never saw him cycle down the lane. Mr Lund would just point and say “Look! here comes Gordon!”) Mr Lund would then go into the vestibule at the back of the classroom to let his twin in. Gordon would then come back without Mr Lund (he’d gone for a coffee) with his hair all messed up and a cycling jacket on. We would have a great time while Gordon clowned around asking all sorts of questions about what we’d been doing and generally getting things wrong so us Y4s had to put him right. He would always then hear Mr Lund returning from having his coffee and tell us not to tell Mr Lund that we’d been messing around and dart off. Mr Lund was always really annoyed that he’d missed his brother and strangely we never saw them both together. It wasn’t until years later that it occurred to me that Gordon was really Mr Lund with his hair messed up and a different top on. Years later still, while I was doing my teacher training, I realised that Gordon was Mr Lund’s brilliant, if somewhat eccentric, way of assessing what we had learned during the week! Gordon still has a special place in my heart. Kelly Barrett

My favourite teacher ‘followed’ me from Year 4 to Year 5 (then Juniors 2 to Junior 3). She was newly qualified and full of enthusiasm. She always had a cuddle for those who needed one, was VERY protective of ‘her’ children and nobody was allowed to make us feel bad. We did projects, had fun trips, science days (unheard of in the very early ’80s) and basically learnt EVERYTHING that we needed to with a smile on our faces. She encouraged everyone to follow their dreams and never laughed at their aspirations. Knitting classes during Friday afternoon ‘funtime’ started and she knew just how to make sure that there was always something for everyone. When I was upset about something at home on the day of school photographs (I had been having a good old cry on her immaculate shoulder), she made the photographer go to the other classes and come back to us while she applied make up (from her very own make up bag) onto my face to disguise the fact that I had been blubbering for most of the morning! When we found out that we would have her again in Year 5, the whole class cheered and hoped that she would stay with us until we left the school. Many years later I qualified as a primary school teacher, using her practices and techniques for engaging the students. One day I walked into yet another staffroom, as part of my supply job, to meet the Head Teacher. As she held out her hand to welcome me to the school, I recognised her face – it was Miss Doxsey (now Mrs Charlton, funnily enough), my Year 4/5 teacher. My heroine. My inspiration! What did I say to her, I hear you ask…well, how does ‘You taught me at Moorgate!’ isn’t exactly inspired, but it was accurate! She later appeared in my classroom, to inform the Year 5 class that I was teaching that she had once been MY teacher in Year 5 and if I had any problems with anyone… The class were amazed and cross-examined me about what she had been like. Even as a Head Teacher she had never lost the personal touch with ‘her’ children – they all adored her – and I still aspire to be as good as her! Sherrie Charlton

Mrs Johnson from Victoria College, Belfast inspired me by teaching A Level History & Appreciation of Art as though we were already students and kept me very motivated that I would find a way of studying Architecture even when I was struggling with my other subjects. I mostly remember Mrs J’s classes as being fun and informal but she still taught us and imparted her knowledge. She got us to take the lead and do our own presentations on an Impressionist artist and collating and providing study notes to our class mates. This was invaluable experience for “crits” that I would later endure at Art College. I think because she was one of the few teachers to treat us like adults and to give us respect and freedom it made us warm to her more on a human level. This meant that ultimately we were (hopefully) easier to teach and each of us wanted to get as much as possible out of Mrs J’s teaching. With Mrs J as a teacher it was great to be able to do her proud and get to university based on my A Level results straight after School. I cannot thank her enough! Catherine Doyle

I had an English teacher in my middle years at secondary school, the wonderfully named Miss Venus. She was just out of college and I properly LOVED her. She inspired my love of books and writing and it’s because of her I studied English at uni. She even wrote to me after she left the school to keep me encouraged. In Year 4 we had a very dull teacher but one day had a brilliant supply teacher. Mr Barrett. He taught us how to make a sundial and we went outside and tested them. I’m still in touch with some of my primary friends and we all remember that one day! Claire Hitchcock

Mrs Johnson from the art department of Victoria College in Belfast. She not only encouraged in me a love of art history and taught me how to write a great exam essay, she also showed a tremendous amount of care towards me during my A-Levels when my mum was ill in hospital with cancer. Mrs Johnson phoned me to check that I was ok and to pass on my good marks to give me something positive to focus on during what was a very difficult time. I went on to achieve 3 very good A-Levels despite what was going on at home and I think that a lot of that was due to her care and support. I will never forget her kindness. Clare Rimmer

My inspirational teacher was Mr Barry McCann from Maghull High. Took no messing but always had time for people. Everyone was a little scared of him but those were the types of teachers I learned more from! Neil Bayliff

Mr Brian Russell- 4th Year (now year 6). His passion for all good novels and opening up the world of Roald Dahl- his inspiration still lives on and has been passed onto my eldest, age 7 and beginning to show in 5-year-old son. I understand he is no longer with us, but he will forever remain an inspiration to me. Many memories of reading and all the work we did around it – The Hobbit, The Witches, The BFG, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and many more – all still remain firm favourites in my household. How did we get through so many books in one year! Vicki Seamons

Did you have a teacher who inspired you? Feel free to share in the comments below.

By Clare Rimmer

Posted in Education, Just for fun, Kip McGrath Northern Ireland | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Choosing tuition in Lisburn?

Maths and English tutors in Lisburn

Image: Kip McGrath UK

Image: Kip McGrath UK

When it comes to choosing the right tutor for your child parents can be forgiven for being confused and overwhelmed by the task. Where do you start looking? What questions should you ask about the tutor’s qualifications? How will you know your child will be comfortable and happy?

At Kip McGrath Lisburn we are delighted that most of our referrals come from word of mouth. A friend’s recommendation is always the best way to make sure that the service a tutor provides is what you are looking for. Kip McGrath Lisburn have been providing a professional tuition service in Lisburn since 2007 and in that time have helped over 1000 children and families to achieve their academic goals.

Why do people recommend Kip McGrath Lisburn?

  • All our tutors are fully qualified and police checked by Access NI. This gives parents the security of knowing that their child is in safe hands and that the person teaching them has been trained to differentiate their child’s specific needs and tailor their studies to accommodate their learning style.
  • We provide a FREE assessment that enables us to identify any strengths and weaknesses and develop a programme of study designed to target these areas and bring your child up to a level that allows them to be comfortable in their class or to achieve their academic goals. Assessment is ongoing and embedded in every single lesson.
  • We teach to the Northern Ireland National Curriculum and provide Transfer test preparation. The reason most parents seek out additional help from a tutor is because their child is struggling with some aspect of their school work or they may need help to prepare for an exam. Our teaching and resources support the Northern Irish curriculum and our trained, specialist teachers tailor tuition to your child’s specific needs to help them achieve the desired level in the classroom.
  • We are adaptable. We carefully plan each lesson based on our initial detailed assessment, the curriculum your child follows in school and the previous lesson. However, if there is something in particular that your child is struggling with at school or in their homework we are happy to adapt the plan to make sure that it is included.
  • We provide detailed feedback after every lesson. We believe that continual communication with you the parent is vital to the success of your child’s tuition. We do not hold termly parent interviews but discuss your child’s progress each week so that you know exactly what we are doing to help and what the next steps will be.
  • We allow our parents to pay for tuition on a weekly basis. We believe that when your child has achieved their goals and you wish to finish your tuition you should not be tied into a lengthy contract. We simply ask for a weeks notice. When your child is ready to graduate from Kip McGrath we are always delighted that the work we have done has been successful.
  • Our centre is professionally equipped with a wide range of resources including professionally designed worksheets, modern textbooks, computer software, multi sensory learning aids, a wide range of past papers and appropriate stationery.

Read our testimonials and find out what our parents have to say about Kip McGrath Lisburn.

By Clare Rimmer

Posted in Kip McGrath Northern Ireland, northern ireland curriculum, Primary education, Secondary education | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment