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Posted on in SATs

Photo of a spelling exercise on paper

The KS2 spelling paper has been designed to test the spelling ability of children in Year 6. The spellings in the test are taken from the current National Curriculum, and in particular, they’re an appendix to the main English curriculum, which outlines all the spelling rules and word groups children are expected to know by this stage.

 

The spelling element of the KS2 English SATs exam is delivered in the form of an answer booklet which contains twenty sentences, each missing a word. The teacher administering the test reads each word aloud, followed by a sentence that uses that word (which corresponds to the sentence in the answer booklet). The sentence is read again and there’s a short gap to allow the children to write their answers.

 

For example:

 

Spelling 1: The word is likely.

Sam is likely to play football at playtime.

The word is likely.

 

Children are given approximately fifteen minutes to complete the test, although this is not as strictly timed as the other tests.

 

The possible spelling patterns or rules that may be covered are diverse, as children in KS1 and KS2 are given extensive instruction and guidance on a wide range of strategies and rules. Listed below are some examples of potential spelling patterns or rules, along with some examples of each:

 

Common Exception Words

 

Common exception words are taught from Year 1 and don’t fall into any common spelling pattern or follow a particular rule. It’s usually harder to ‘sound out’ these words and so they’re often taught as ‘sight words’, or words that just have to be memorised in some way.

 

Examples: school, friend, father, nuisance, symbol

 

Adding Suffixes Beginning with Vowel Letters

 

This rule relies on the child recognising that the last syllable of the word is a stressed (or emphasised) sound. If the word also ends with a single vowel and then a single consonant, the final consonant is doubled before adding a suffix that begins with a vowel. The consonant is only doubled if the last syllable is stressed.

 

Examples: forgetting, beginner, preferred

 

The sound Spelt ‘Ou’

 

These words are common in our vocabulary and may be taught in separate groups, or as part of other spelling patterns.

 

Examples: young, touch, double, trouble, country

 

Words with the sound Spelt ‘Ch’

 

Again, these words may be taught discretely, or they may even form part of topic work, as many of them are Greek in origin.

 

Examples: scheme, chorus, chemist, echo, character

 

Words with the sound Spelt ‘Sc’

 

Many of these words have Roman origin, so they may also be taught as part of topic work. It’s thought that the original pronunciation of these words could have sounded the ‘c’ and the ‘k’ separately as ‘s’ and ‘k’.

 

Examples: science, scene, discipline, fascinate, crescent

 

Homophones and Near-Homophones

 

Homophones are words that sound the same as other words, but are spelt differently. They are tricky to master, and are one of the more difficult elements of the English language.

 

Examples: groan/grown, here/hear, heel/heal/he’ll, knot/not, mail/male, main/mane, meat/meet, medal/meddle, missed/mist, peace/piece

 

Words ending in  –cious or –tious

 

These words are less common but are difficult to spell accurately – children often use the two endings interchangeably and therefore, they’re easy to get wrong. Usually, if the root word ends with –ce, the ‘cious’ ending is used, although there are exceptions to this.

 

Examples: vicious, precious, conscious, delicious, cautious, fictitious, infectious, nutritious

 

Words ending in –able and –ible

 

Generally speaking, the –able/–ably endings are far more common than the –ible/–ibly endings.

 

There are several rules to be applied when deciding on which ending is appropriate but, as with many spelling patterns in our language, not all of the spellings follow the rule and some simply have to be learned by heart.

 

Examples: adorable/adorably, applicable/applicably, changeable, noticeable, forcible, legible, possible/possibly, horrible/horribly

 

There are obviously many more spelling rules to be learnt over both Key Stages. Children should be encouraged to look for patterns, devise ways of remembering words that don’t follow any rules and recognise words that they know how to spell within their reading books. Grouping words that follow a particular rule, devising personal spelling dictionaries and rewriting words are just a few ways to help children develop their spelling abilities.

 

Our SATs Resources

 

 

At Exam Papers Plus, we publish SATs practice exam papers for children at KS1 and KS2 level. The practice tests cover every aspect of the exam process including Mathematics, Reading and English grammar, punctuation and spelling (SPAG). Each practice paper also comes with a full mark scheme so you can check your child’s answers and monitor their progress.

 

SATs practice papers are a great way for students to familiarise themselves with the layout of the exam and to get used to the types of spelling questions they may be asked. These practice tests are completely up-to-date to match the style of the new SATs examinations in line with the recent changes to the National Curriculum. They’re also reviewed and updated regularly to ensure their accuracy and relevancy.

 

Key Stage 1 SATs: Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs: Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2 SATs: Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs: Practice Test 2

 

For additional spelling practice, you may also want to try our 11 Plus English Spelling pack. This set of practice tests can provide a more challenging resource for children at KS2 SAT level.

 

Related posts:

The SATs Reading Comprehension Test: What You Need to Know

SATs Reading Tips

SATs Grammar Test Advice

 

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Posted on in SATs

Photo of a tutor and a student at a computer

To be a good SATs tutor, you should be fully prepared for the challenge your students will face in the tests. In this article, we share some practical advice on how to tutor for the SATs.

 

Create a Study Plan Specific to Each Student

 

Every child is different. When it comes to tutoring for the SATs, you must build a study plan that is tailor-made for individual students, rather than adopting a ‘one size fits all’ approach. This study plan should be created early on, to allow enough time to cover all the SATs topics. Discuss the plan with your students’ parents, as they will have a better idea of their child’s typical routine and can offer guidance and insight.

 

When creating a study plan, tutors should:

 

  • Encourage short, regular study sessions – these make it easier for children to maintain their motivation, as opposed to long, more irregular study sessions.
  • Find the right learning strategy for each student. As a tutor, it is your duty to ensure that the study plan is tailored to each student’s needs and includes a mix of learning techniques that will resonate with the student. For example, if the student has a particular interest in writing, note-taking could be a beneficial learning technique.

 

Learn the Exam Format

 

Photo of children learning in a classroom

 

To be an effective SAT tutor, you need to have an excellent understanding of the material that you’re tutoring. This means learning as much as you can about the SATs and, in turn, making sure your students are familiar with the exam format.

 

In an early session with your student, cover the basics: how long the tests are, how many questions they will be required to answer and the difference between different sections in the SATs exam. In order to tutor children for their SATs, you must know exactly what your student should expect to see on the test papers and have a solid grasp of both the question formats and subjects covered in the tests.
In Year 6, children sit SATs exams that cover the following subjects:

Exam practice papers are an effective way to help students become more familiar with the SATs exam layout and question types.

For Year 6 students, we would recommend the following resources for SATs exam practice:
Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Practice Papers Under Timed Conditions

 

While SATs exams are relatively short time-wise, they do require children to read texts quickly, and answer questions confidently. For many students at this stage, it will be the first time that they have had to sit a test under timed conditions. Therefore, many students that come to you for tutoring might not have any experience of time management or its importance in the SATs.

 

You can test a child’s existing time management skills by asking them to sit a practice paper under timed conditions. If they run out of time before answering all the questions, it is likely that you will need to dedicate tutoring time to working on their time management. Similarly, if they finish the practice test too early, they might have missed a question, or not answered each one in full and therefore lose marks.

 

Practice SAT exam papers give children necessary practice ahead of the exam and provide you with immediate feedback after completion, allowing you to track their progress.

 

Set Tutoring Goals

 

Photo of a girl writing on a desk

 

It’s a good idea to establish what students (and their parents) are hoping to achieve from the tuition. It’d be easy to assume that all parents are simply interested in their child getting ‘a high SATs score’, but you might be surprised; it could be that they would like their child to focus on  improving their concentration, or to become more motivated ahead of the SATs.

 

It’s impossible for all students to achieve top scores in the SATs, so setting achievable goals that work for both students and their parents will give you something to work towards in your tutoring sessions.

 

Do Not Leave a Question Unanswered

 

Previous SATs have shown that many children are opting to leave the harder questions unanswered, rather than tackle them. When tutoring children for SATs, it is important to encourage them continually to answer all questions, whether they believe that they know the answer or not.

 

Harder questions are usually worth the most marks, so children are missing out on potentially higher scores. Tutoring children to attempt every question on the test sets them up with a greater chance of achieving a high score.

 

Your students are likely to perform better in the SATs if they are confident, so help to build that confidence during your tutoring sessions. If students believe that they can do well in the exam, they are much more likely to perform at their best on the day. Acknowledge when a student has performed well and they will be motivated to keep receiving positive feedback.

 

Related posts:

SATs Tips for Tutors

Study Tips for the SATs Exam

 

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Posted on in SATs

Photo of a boy and tutor working at a desk

Primary school SATs tests can be an anxious time for children and their parents. However, as a parent or guardian there is plenty you can do at home to prepare your child for the exams. In this article, we share some advice on how to teach key strategies to help your child in the SATs.

 

Mental Maths Should be Routine

 

At KS2 level, pupils are required to complete three maths papers: one in arithmetic and two in reasoning. In all three papers, they will need to demonstrate good mental maths skills, so encouraging your child to ‘think on their feet’ should become part of their daily routine when revising for the SATs.

 

There are plenty of easy ways to teach the necessary skills for mental maths in everyday life. For example, put children in charge of checking shopping receipts to make sure they add up, or count change to test their addition skills. Mental maths can be difficult for some children to grasp, but if you teach them to focus on the numbers and concentrate on which calculation is required, they will soon begin to find the correct answers.

 

Skimming and Scanning of Texts

 

Photo of a girl writing in a notebook on a desk

 

In the English reading comprehension SAT, children are given one hour to read the text and complete the questions in the accompanying answer booklet. As the text can be quite long, pupils often find that they don’t have enough time to complete the whole paper after reading it through. Teaching your child how to extract key information from texts using skimming and scanning will really help improve their time management skills.

 

Skimming and scanning involves locating important information by focusing on headings and sub-headings in order to find the relevant sentences that contain the answers the examiner is looking for.

 

Understand Weighted Marks

 

When it comes to teaching for the SATs from home, parents should make their children aware of the weighting of the marks against each question. The more straightforward questions are usually awarded one mark, whereas more complex or longer answers are awarded two, or even three marks.

 

Of course, children should always aim to answer all the questions on the paper, but they should pay particularly close attention to questions that are worth more marks.

 

Expand Vocabulary

 

Photo of a boy reading a book on a desk

 

In the English SAT, children must be able to use a variety of sentences and so will need a good vocabulary. When teaching for the SAT, encourage your child to create a vocabulary list, made up of new words, or any words that they don’t recognise. If a child is unable to work out a word’s meaning from its context, that word should be added to the list.

 

With practice, children will learn to understand the meaning of the word and use it correctly in a sentence. Once they have achieved this, move on to a new list of words. Try to ensure that your child always has a ‘new words’ list on the go. Reading is one of the best ways of improving vocabulary, so take a look at our SATs Reading Tips post for more advice.

 

Use Practice Exam Papers

Practice exam papers are one of the best resources parents can use when preparing for SATs. Not only can they help familiarise your child with the layout of the exams, the can also quickly highlight where your child’s strengths and weaknesses lie.

 

Our SATs practice papers come complete with marking schemes that enable you to check your child’s answers and track their progress in the lead up to the exam. At Exam Papers Plus, we have several SATs resources that will help your child prepare for the tests:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Previous SATs have shown that students tend to score less in questions that are placed towards the end of the test paper. This could indicate that pupils are often struggling to manage their time correctly.

 

Practice papers can help your child improve their time management skills, by giving them the experience of gauging how quickly they need to answer each type of question. When teaching SATs skills, you should set your child the task of completing each test paper with ten minutes to spare, so they can return to any unanswered questions.

 

Answer All Questions

 

Too often, children leave the harder questions unanswered. As the difficult questions are usually worth the most marks, children are missing out on potentially higher scores. Try to encourage your child to answer as many questions as possible. An unanswered question will of course receive no mark, but if your child aims to write some form of an answer, even if it is a complete guess, they might pick up the odd mark or two.

 

Parents are well-placed to help their children prepare for the SATs exam at home. As with all exams, practice makes perfect, so make good use of our practice SATs papers to easily track your child’s progress in the countdown to exam day.

 

Related posts:

Key Stage 2 SATs: A Parent’s Guide

SATs Advice for Parents

 

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Posted on in SATs

Photo of a girl doing maths

Although there is no longer a ‘formal’ mental arithmetic element to the KS2 SATs, there are still a good many opportunities for children in Year 6 to demonstrate their ability to quickly manipulate numbers mentally.

 

In Paper 1 particularly, there are likely to be several questions where mentally calculating the answer is preferable to formally writing it out. Mentally calculating answers saves time, enabling children to work through the paper quicker. In total, there are 36 questions in Paper 1 that need to be answered in 30 minutes, giving an average of only 50 seconds per question!

 

Below are some examples from the 2017 paper, showing how a good grasp of mental strategies is key to succeeding in this area:

 

SATs Mental Maths Sample Question 1

 

Although it may sometimes be instinctive for children to write out the calculation, particularly if they find maths difficult, this question is a good example of where a secure understanding of place value is essential.

 

Once the child has established the value of each digit within both numbers (and recognised that although the second number is longer than the first, it will not affect how the calculation happens), they should be able to simply add 3 and 2, and insert the 0.7 into the currently ‘empty’ tenths position, giving an answer of 5.714.

 

The potential pitfall here could come if the child does not recognise the values of the digits within each number, or writes the calculation out, but misaligns the values of the digits, resulting in an incorrect answer.

 

SATs Mental Maths Sample Question 2

 

At first, this may seem like a simple calculation. However, the ‘reverse’ nature of this addition may prove confusing for some children, particularly those who only recognise the symbol ‘=’ as meaning ‘is the answer’ and not its true meaning of ‘the same as’ or ‘equal to’.

 

In other words, it’s effectively a balance scale, with one side of the number sentence having the same value as the other. As the total of the two numbers on the right of the calculation is 5,100, this should be the answer in the empty box.

 

SATs Mental Maths Sample Question 3

 

This may seem like quite a difficult calculation but it’s actually a good example of the kind of mental multiplication expected of KS2 children today. Once children have learned their times tables well, they are encouraged to expand their use, using place value in order to complete calculations using larger numbers.

 

In this example, a child who understands 8 x 3 = 24, should also understand that 8 x 30 = 240. Adding those two components together would achieve the correct answer of 264.

 

A child with less-secure times table/place value knowledge may instead rely upon simpler facts, such as 10 x 8 (three times) + 3 x 8. Bearing in mind the limited time allowed to complete each question, the first method is more efficient.

 

SATs Mental Maths Sample Question 4

 

Again, some children may fall into the trap of setting out this calculation in a formal way, using columns and the decomposition method. This would likely take longer than 50 seconds to complete, so it would be faster to mentally calculate by subtracting 824 in stages.

 

Firstly, 4,912 – 800 is 4,112. The final stages could either be 4,112 – 20 (4,092) and then 4,092 – 4 = 4,088 or in one final calculation of 4,112 – 24.

 

SATs Mental Maths Sample Question 5

 

Another example of a question relying on the child’s understanding of the ‘=’ sign and its meaning. In this calculation, making both sides of the number sentence have the same value means finding a number which, when 100 is subtracted, results in 1,059. In other words, the initial number should be 100 more than 1,059, which is 1,159.

 

SATs Mental Maths Sample Question 6

 

This is another example of a question that may initially seem like it needs to be written out formally but can, in actual fact, be solved more speedily with mental calculation. In this case, a strong knowledge of the seven times table and a good understanding of place value are needed. Knowing that 7 x 8 = 56 should help the child conclude that 7 x 80 = 560. The remaining 21 is, of course, 7 x 3, giving a final answer of 83.

 

This question can therefore be calculated using multiplication facts and not formal division, which many children find difficult. Children would, of course, need to understand the concept division being a grouping of the same number and recognise its relationship to multiplication.

 

SATs Mental Maths Sample Question 7

 

Being able to mentally manipulate decimal numbers is a key skill and requires a secure understanding of the value of each digit. Furthermore, in this question, an understanding of number bonds, or pairs that equal 100, would also be useful.

 

Some children may transfer this question to a number line (with 3.45 on the left and 9 on the right) and use it to find the difference between the two numbers. It is also possible (and faster) to calculate the answer by recognising that 0.55 is added to 3.45 to get to 4, and then a further 5 is added to get to 9, giving a total answer of 5.55.

 

This could be achieved either entirely through mental calculation, or at the very least through the jotting of the number needed at each stage.

 

There are countless ways to solve mental calculations, and everyone has a preferred method. The method itself is not really the key issue here, but rather the ability to see how numbers can be manipulated mentally and without the need for formal methods of calculation. This ability will not only give the child confidence, it will crucially save them valuable seconds, which should leave a little extra time to answer the harder questions.

 

Related posts:

KS2 SATs Maths: What You Need to Know

Sample Maths SATs Questions and Answers: Reasoning

 

Posted on in SATs

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SATs revision is necessary, but some children can find it boring and soon become distracted or demotivated. That’s where revision games come in! When used as one of a number of learning techniques, games can make SATs revision in Year 6 more fun. In this article, we’ve collated some of the best SATs revision games.

 

Book Character Roleplay

 

This is a fantastic game for children who love to perform and be active. Get your child to pick a character from a book to ‘play’ during a fun session of learning. Parents can choose to play another character from the same book, or opt to be a stranger that meets the child’s character for the first time. Ask them questions about themselves, prompting children to remember key facts about the character.

 

This role-playing game can be a lot of fun and can help your child to improve their English comprehension ahead of the Year 6 SATs. Teacher role-playing – in which the child takes on the role of teacher – is also a good revision game for primary school children.

 

Mental Maths Card Games

 

Photo of cards on a table

 

A simple pack of playing cards can provide one of the most versatile SATs revision games for children in Year 6, especially for helping to improve their mental maths. They are fun, informal and are great mental arithmetic practice for SATs. For example, try these revision games using a deck of cards:

 

For addition:

 

Players turn up two/three/four cards in each round. The highest sum wins.

 

For multiplication:

 

Turn up two cards and multiply. Make this more difficult by turning three or four cards over and multiplying.

 

Similar games can also be created to include division and subtraction. As children will be tested on these basic operations in their SATs, it’s important that they feel confident with them heading into the exam.

 

Revision Quizzes

 

Quizzes make excellent revision games for SATs, as they don’t feel like typical revision and can be a lot of fun for both parents and children. To add an element of competition (which many Year 6 children will enjoy), write a selection of questions that relate to the topic your child is currently revising. Write the answers on the back of the same pieces of paper.

 

Mix up the question difficulty and include a few easier questions that will boost your child’s confidence and give them the motivation to try and answer the more difficult questions.

 

Record Key Facts

 

Photo of a boy writing on a notepad

 

If your child is primarily an auditory learner, making a selection of voice recordings can help them to recall information for their SATs. Children can record their revision notes on anything from a dictaphone to a smartphone – essentially, any recording device they can regularly access.

 

Voice recordings are best used when your child finds it difficult to get motivated. Get them to listen to their recordings as a way of kickstarting their revision session. While we wouldn’t recommend this type of passive learning for all SATs revision, it will teach children to retain and recall information on exam day.

 

Flashcard Spelling Game

 

For Year 6 SATs, your child will have to demonstrate a solid grasp of English vocabulary and spelling, making this flashcard game a must when revising for the SATs.

 

The game is best used for words your child consistently struggles with. Create flashcards with all the words on their ‘must practice’ list. Once they’ve created all the flashcards, test them on their spelling by having them write the word down or speaking it aloud.

 

Revise Against the Clock

 

Photo of an egg timer

 

If your child is struggling to concentrate during their SATs revision sessions, the Egg Timer Game (also known as the Pomodoro Technique) offers your child an incentive at the end of a dedicated, previously-agreed, revision period.

 

Set some goals with your child and assign a specific reward for when each period is complete. This reward needn’t be anything big, or expensive – for example, for every 20 minutes of uninterrupted revision, your child gets 10 minutes to play in the garden or chat to their friends online.

 

Although this is a good game for Year 6 SATs revision, children must understand that its aim is to improve their knowledge and learning ahead of the SATs – not simply an opportunity to receive treats.

 

When used as part of a wider revision programme, SATs revision games for Year 6 are a useful development tool, so if your child responds well to them, make time to include them in their revision sessions.

 

Related posts:

SATs Revision Made Easy

SATs Preparation in Year 6

 

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Posted on in SATs

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KS2 SATs are mandatory tests for all state schools in England. They are designed to give an accurate reflection of the ability of the UK’s children as a cohort. English and Maths SATs are administered to all Year 6 children. Progress in other areas, such as writing and Science are assessed through data collected by the class teacher. However, a selection of schools will also be asked to administer science sampling papers.

 

The current sampling consists of three separate papers which are based on the three key areas of Science: biology, chemistry and physics. The papers are expected to last 25 minutes each, and each paper is awarded around 22 marks. Children will answer questions based on their studies throughout KS1 and KS2.

 

Below are some examples of the types of question your child may be asked in the KS2 Science papers, based on the KS2 teaching programs.

 

Biology

 

Plants:

 

  • Identify and describe the functions of different parts of flowering plants: roots, stem/trunk, leaves and flowers.
  • Identify the requirements of plants for life and growth and how they vary from plant to plant.
  • Complete the life cycle of a plant.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 1

 

Living Things and Their Environment:

 

  • Group a selection of living things according to certain characteristics.
  • Describe environments and habitats and their features.
  • Describe the life process of reproduction in some plants and animals.
  • Describe the differences in the life cycle of a mammal, an amphibian, an insect or a bird.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 2

 

Animals, including humans:

 

  • Identify and explain correct nutrition and relate it to food types.
  • Identify that humans and some other animals have skeletons and muscles for support, protection and movement.
  • Identify the elements of a food chain or web.
  • Identify the main parts of the human circulatory system, and describe the functions of the heart, blood vessels and blood.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 3

 

Evolution and Inheritance:

 

  • Show an understanding that living things have changed over time and that fossils provide information about living things that inhabited the Earth millions of years ago.
  • Identify how animals and plants are adapted to suit their environment in different ways and that adaptation may lead to evolution.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 4

 

Chemistry

 

Rocks:

 

  • Describe in simple terms how fossils are formed when things that have lived are trapped within rock.
  • Recognise that soils are made from rocks and organic matter.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 5

 

States of Matter:

 

  • Observe how some materials change state when they are heated or cooled, and measure or research the temperature at which this happens in degrees Celsius (°C).
  • Identify the part played by evaporation and condensation in the water cycle and associate the rate of evaporation with temperature.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 6

 

Properties and Changes of Materials:

 

  • Compare and group together everyday materials on the basis of their properties, including hardness, solubility, transparency, conductivity (electrical and thermal), and response to magnets.
  • Explain that some materials will dissolve in liquid to form a solution, and describe how to recover a substance from a solution.
  • Give reasons, based on evidence from comparative and fair tests, for the particular uses of everyday materials including metals, wood and plastic.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 7

 

Physics

 

Light:

 

  • Recognise that we need light in order to see things and that dark is the absence of light.
  • Describe the idea that light travels in straight lines to explain that objects are seen because they give out or reflect light into the eye.
  • Describe the idea that light travels in straight lines to explain why shadows have the same shape as the objects that cast them.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 8

 

Forces and Magnets:

 

  • Explain that some forces need contact between two objects, but magnetic forces can act at a distance.
  • Describe magnets as having two poles.
  • Predict whether two magnets will attract or repel each other, depending on which poles are facing.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 9

 

Sound:

 

  • Describe the patterns between the pitch of a sound and features of the object that produced it*.
  • Explain how sounds are made, associating some of them with something vibrating.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 10

 

Electricity:

 

  • Label a simple series electrical circuit, identifying and naming its basic parts, including cells, wires, bulbs, switches and buzzers.
  • Explain how a switch opens and closes a circuit and associate this with whether or not a lamp lights in a simple series circuit.
  • Give reasons for variations in how components function, including brightness of bulbs, loudness of buzzers and on / off position of switches.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 11

 

Forces:

 

  • Explain how unsupported objects fall towards the Earth because of the force of gravity acting between the Earth and the falling object.
  • List the effects of air resistance, water resistance and friction that act between moving surfaces.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 12

 

Earth and Space:

 

 

  • Describe the movement of the Earth, and other planets, relative to the Sun in the solar system.
  • Describe the Sun, Earth and Moon as approximately spherical bodies.
  • Explain the idea of the Earth’s rotation to explain day and night and the apparent movement of the sun across the sky.

 

KS2 SAT Science Sample Question 13

 

Related posts:

Sample Maths Questions and Answers: Arithmetic

Sample Maths Questions and Answers: Reasoning

 

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Posted on in SATs

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With plenty of SATs help available, it’s important to pick the right approach for your child if they are going to perform at their best in the tests. To make things easier for you, we’ve put together this round-up of some of the best places to find help when it comes to primary school SATs.

 

The Exam Papers Plus Blog

 

We created our blog to be an invaluable source of information and advice for parents with children currently studying for primary school tests. We have written a selection of SATs-related articles that cover everything from what SATs are through to how to support your child during their SATs preparation.

 

On the blog, you’ll find practical, easy-to-follow advice that will make your life – not to mention your child’s – much easier when it comes to preparing for SATs. We think it’s important to be open and honest about what your child will face in their exam.

 

If your child is due to sit their SATs, make their revision easier and follow our Parents’ Guide to Key Stage 2 SATs. With our help, you can successfully prepare your child for the tests and help them achieve the results they deserve.

 

Private SATs Tutors

 

Photo of a tutor helping a child with school work

 

If your child needs additional help preparing for SATs, a specialist private tutor can help them prepare for the English and Maths sections at both Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 national assessment. Choosing a suitable tutor for your child can take a lot of research, but initially you should consider the following:

 

  • Check their qualifications – Although the UK does not have a recognised tutoring qualification, it’s important to check how qualified a tutor is ahead of booking. Most good private tutors will be educated to at least degree level and have experience of working with young people.
  • Always get references – Good quality, experienced SATs tutors will be happy to provide you with references from previous students and their parents. You should also ensure that the tutor has an up-to-date DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) certificate.
  • Are they a good ‘fit’? – Most tutors offer an initial consultation, either for free or at a reduced rate, which will give you a chance to learn more about their tutoring style and approach to SATs revision. If your child is going to follow a tutor’s schedule in the lead-up to their SATs, parents must see potential for a positive, rewarding relationship between the two parties. If you don’t think it’s a good fit, don’t be afraid to look elsewhere.

 

Practice Exam Papers

 

KS2 SATs

 

Practice SATs papers can be a huge help when revising for the tests. The more practice papers your child sits, the better prepared they will be for the actual exam. There are a number of benefits to using practice SATs papers, which include:

 

  • Identifying gaps in knowledge
  • Improving time management
  • Recognising SATs question types
  • Tracking progress

 

Our practice exam papers for the SATs are designed to be challenging and engaging, to help maintain your child’s interest whilst revising. They cover every subject tested in the exam and are regularly reviewed to ensure that they are current and in the style of the new SATs examinations.

 

Online Forums

 

If this is your first time experiencing SATs, you might be overwhelmed by the amount of information online – some of it useful, some not so much. Getting reliable SATs help online can be tricky, as forum users can offer misguided opinions or even incorrect information, rather than facts.

 

However, some online forums can help when it comes to preparing for the SATs. If you have a question about the tests, the chances are that at some point, someone like you will have asked the same question. It’s just a case of searching!

 

Both Netmums and Mumsnet are useful sources of SATs information for parents, and their community pages tend to get busier in the build-up to the exams. If you have a specific question about preparing for the tests, use these forums and you’ll often find fellow users are more than happy to give you help with an answer.

 

For more information about SATs, take a look at our post, SATs Advice for Parents.

 

Related posts:

Key Stage 2 SATs: A Parent’s Guide

The Benefits of Using SATs Practice Papers

 

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Posted on in SATs

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If you have a child in primary school, the chances are that you’ll have heard about SATs. But conversations in the school playground with other parents can leave you feeling more confused than ever about what SATs are and how they are measured. In this article, we reveal everything you need to know.

 

What are SATs?

 

SATs (Statutory Assessment Tests) are national tests that children in all state primary schools in England must take.

 

Who takes SATs?

 

Children in Year 2, who are at the end of Key Stage 1 (KS1) and children in Year 6, who are at the end of Key Stage 2 (KS2) are required to take SATs. However, on the 14th of September 2017, it was confirmed that the KS1 SATs will be made non-statutory from 2023, so the decision to administer them will be left up to individual schools. Until then, children will continue to be assessed in Year 2.

 

What do SATs Measure?

 

The SATs exams are used for state school league tables, they measure each student’s progress compared to the national average and compared to other children in the academic year group. They are used to provide an indication of a student’s current and future academic ability and help teachers set individual progress targets.

 

SATs are also an indicator of the overall teaching that children receive and so they aim to measure the effectiveness of each school too.

 

What Subjects do SATs Cover?

 

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KS1 SATs

 

At KS1, SATs are usually assessed by teachers, rather than external markers. The tests are taken in an informal environment and cover:

 

  • Maths (arithmetic)
  • English (reading, spelling, punctuation and grammar)

In Years 3, 4 and 5, some schools choose to have children take optional SATs, although fewer schools have opted to do so in recent years.
Our resources:
Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

 

KS2 SATs

 

SATs taken at KS2 are more formal than those at KS1 and exam papers will be externally marked. Children will be tested in:

 

  • English (reading comprehension, grammar, punctuation, spelling)
  • Maths (reasoning and arithmetic, including times tables, division, multiplication and problem-solving)

 

Our resources:
Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Will I be Told the Results?

 

Yes, by law parents must be given their child’s SATs results at the end of the summer term in Years 2 and 6. This report will be broken down by subject and, as of 2016, they’re reported in the form of ‘scaled scores’, rather than the previous ‘levels’.

 

Parents will receive their child’s SATs report, which will state:

  • Your child’s raw score – the total number of marks they received
  • Your child’s scaled score – a conversion score, which is used for year-on-year comparisons
  • The expected standard – whether or not they have achieved the national standard

 

Can I Help My Child Prepare for SATs?

 

Photo of a girl working in a textbook

 

Yes, absolutely. Every year, there is a debate about the effectiveness of SATs in measuring children’s progress in primary school, but as the tests are set to remain for the foreseeable future, parents should do whatever they can to support their children in the lead-up to the exams.

 

While teachers will prepare children in the classroom for SATs, there is plenty parents can do at home to complement this learning, such as:

 

  • Prepare a structured revision plan that is divided into all the required subjects your child will be tested on in the SATs. Make sure you include periods of relaxation as part of this plan, to boost motivation and ensure your child does not become overworked.
  • Primary school children have a relatively short attention span, so revision sessions should not be too long. Start revision well ahead of the test date. Just 20 minutes every other day could make a huge difference to their progress ahead of the SATs. As the tests get closer, increase this revision time, perhaps to 30 minutes per session.
  • Include practice SATs papers in your child’s revision at home. These papers will help children to familiarise themselves with the exam format and question styles. If you set children the task of taking these papers under timed conditions, they could also learn to perfect their exam technique ahead of the marked SATs.

 

Download our SATs practice papers today:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 
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Posted on in SATs

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By Year 7, most children are competent in using online resources, so it makes sense to include them in their SATs practice. If your child enjoys using the internet as part of their usual study time, there are a number of ways you can incorporate it into their SATs revision. In this article, we look at how your child can prepare for the exam using online resources.

 

Improve Spelling Through Apps

 

One of the best ways to prepare for the SATs exam is to focus on improving spelling. There are plenty of online spelling tests available, but using an app means your child can practice their spelling on the go, whether they’re in the car or waiting for swimming practice.

 

Squeebles Spelling Test is an app that allows parents to manually input words for their children to spell. By typing your selected words into the app, your child will be presented with a list of words spoken aloud for your child to spell. This app is easy to use and can make your child’s spelling revision a lot more fun.

 

KeyStageFun has a host of pre-recorded spelling tests available to download for both KS1 and KS2 level. Their phonics tests can really help your child improve their spelling by sounding out words. The tests available on this app fully adhere to National Curriculum teaching requirements.

 

Use a Grammar Checker

 

Screenshot of the Scribens website

 

Learning the grammatical skills required for the SATs exam can be difficult. Nevertheless, it’s an important area for your child to focus on. In order to be awarded full points in the exam, your child needs to demonstrate that they have a solid grasp of English grammar. When preparing for the SATs, an online grammar checker is a useful tool for highlighting your child’s weaker areas.

 

Free online grammar checkers such as Grammar Check and Scribens can help children improve their writing skills, as they allow them to enter text for review. Initially, we would suggest that parents use these checkers with their children, to ensure that they’re being used correctly. Once your child understands how to use them, they can work with these tools independently.

 

Take Online Mental Maths Tests

 

Timed online maths tests are a great way to improve your child’s ability to work out sums in their head quickly. Mental maths tests like those found on BBC Bitesize can help sharpen your child’s skills.

 

Many of these online tests are timed, which give your children the experience of answering questions under pressure – something that they will face in the KS2 SATs.

 

Read Child-Safe News Sites

 

Screenshot of the WhizTimes website

 

Children sitting their SATs, especially at KS2 level, need to demonstrate good reading comprehension. This part of the exam involves understanding the meaning of words, reading at speed and critical thinking, all of which can be improved with regular practice.

 

It’s important to give your child plenty of reading material from a variety of sources to maintain their interest and to prepare them for the SATs texts that they might face.

 

Child-safe online news websites such as whiztimes.com and The Learning Network, aimed at older primary school children, are a good place to start. These child-friendly news sites are an invaluable resource for improving your child’s reading skills.

 

At Exam Papers Plus, we publish SATs practice exam papers that can help your child prepare for their SAT exams. We’d suggest introducing our online papers into your child’s preparation early on, to help them become familiar with the layout of the exam and give them experience of answering questions under timed conditions.

 

Our SATs practice papers can also improve your child’s time management and boost their confidence heading into the exam room.

 

Our SATs resources include:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

 

Related posts

SATs Exam Preparation Tips and Strategies

SATs Grammar Test Advice

 

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Posted on in SATs

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Being able to work out a Maths question in your head is an important skill when it comes to the SATs. In the Maths part of the exam, children need to show that they fully understand mathematical concepts and have the ability to solve problems logically and methodically. In this article, we share our advice on how to improve your child’s mental maths skills when preparing for the SATs.

 

Practice Mental Maths Skills Daily

 

Maths SATs questions are based on problem solving and usually take the form of real-life scenarios. You should therefore encourage your child to practice their mental maths skills in everyday situations.

 

We use maths in our daily routines more than we realise. Here are a few examples of how you can incorporate mental maths into your child’s daily routine:

 

  • Give your child small errands, such as buying a bottle of milk or a newspaper, and give them more money than they need, so they can work out which coins to pay with.
  • When at the supermarket, task them with finding the cheapest product of a particular item, such as apples or pasta.
  • In the kitchen, encourage them to weigh and portion food. Ask them questions like: ‘If everyone eats 3 potatoes, how many do we need in total?’

 

Using mental maths in everyday situations could hold the key to your child’s understanding of fractions, division and much more – these skills are vital for your child to perform well in their SATs.

 

Play Card Games

 

Screenshot of people playing cards around a table

 

We’ve discussed the benefits of using games to revise before, but when it comes to mental maths, card games in particular can be beneficial to learning.

Popular family games such as Crazy Eights, Memory and Uno require players to use numbers, sets and various mathematical concepts, so they’re often a good place to start.

 

Introduce Practice Papers

 

The Maths sections of our SATs practice exam papers will encourage your child to ‘think on their feet, which can help them improve their mental maths skills. Our practice papers cover every part of the exam and are fully up-to-date with the new SATs curriculum. They can help boost your child’s confidence and familiarise them with how the exam paper is laid out.

 

Introduce practice papers into your child’s preparation early on to give them as much experience in answering questions under timed conditions as possible.

 

Our SATs resources include:

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Tackle Multi-Step Problems

 

Photo of a boy studying at home

 

The KS2 SATs exam requires children to solve problems using the four basic maths operations: addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. They will also need to know how to use these operations to calculate with fractions, decimals and percentages.

 

A lot of the mental maths problem-solving questions will involve multiple-steps, meaning children will need to carry out two or more operations in order to work out the answer. Please find some example questions below:

 

A group of friends earn £100 from washing cars.

The money is shared equally.

They get £20 each.

 

How many friends are in the group?

 

A school is raising money for charity.

Their aim is to collect £500.

So far, they have collected £365.17

 

How much more money do they need to collect reach their target?

 

Be More Visual

 

Mental maths questions can be difficult for children with weak working memory skills, so having facts or equations written down on revision cards can help. Using graphical representations for maths problems such as numbering steps or using arrows that connect information can be very helpful for some children.

 

Your child’s overall maths fluency will increase with the improvement of their mental maths skills. By using a combination of the techniques above, your child will be well prepared for their maths SATs.

 

Related posts:

KS2 SATs Maths: What You Need to Know
Sample Maths SATs Questions and Answers: Arithmetic

 

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Posted on in SATs

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For your child to succeed in their SATs exams, they need to feel fully prepared when they sit down for the tests. In this article, we make SATs revision easy with a series of easy-to-follow tips and techniques to ensure your child is confident about their SATs exam.

 

Start SATs Revision Early

 

Setting a SATs revision programme early is important. At Exam Papers Plus, we consider it beneficial to start revising 6-9 months before the date of the exam. The sooner your child starts revising, the more material they’ll be able to cover and the more time you’ll have as a parent to identify any areas that need improving.

 

Create a SATs Revision Timetable

 

A structured revision timetable can make SATs revision much easier. By creating a timetable together, your child will have a sense of ownership over the work they need to do. This should help with their motivation when it comes time to revise. Try to set aside specific revision periods on set days, so that your child knows exactly when they’re scheduled to study. This can help avoid ‘double bookings’ with their other activities and potentially avoid arguments.

 

Make sure that your child doesn’t become distracted by using the timetable to set achievable targets. Once they have successfully completed a session, get them to tick it off on the timetable. Don’t forget to include regular breaks as well, as giving their brain a rest is just as important as revising for their SATs.

 

Find a Quiet Revision Spot

 

Photo of a tidy desk space

 

A quiet place to study will help your child to concentrate, ensuring that they get more out of each revision session. Try to remove any distractions from the area, such as televisions, radios and the internet – or put a family ban on them during study time.

 

If younger siblings complain, kindly point out that they will need to revise for their SATs in the future and they will then appreciate a bit of quiet time too.

 

Play Revision Games

 

 

We know that children often complain about revision being ‘boring’, so games are a fantastic way of making SATs revision easy. As a starter, read our post on Revision Games for Primary Kids, which provides a list of games parents can play with their children during SATs revision.

 

Revision games are a useful development tool, so if your child responds well to them, be sure to introduce a few in the build-up to the exams.

 

Use SATs Practice Exam Papers

 

Practice SATs papers can be an effective tool in guiding your child’s revision. By including practice papers in your child’s revision routine early, you’ll be able to identify any knowledge gaps that need additional attention. You can also track their progress by comparing their practice scores as they work through more tests.

 

Practice exam papers will boost your child’s confidence by enhancing their understanding of what will be required of them in the actual exam.

 

Revise in Short Bursts

 

The average 10-year-old can concentrate for approximately 20 minutes, so use this knowledge to your (and their) advantage by aiming for short revision sessions. If your child is required to concentrate at home for any longer, they’ll simply become distracted or demotivated.

 

During the first few weeks of revision, we would advise setting out 20-minute revision blocks on your child’s timetable, which can then be increased to 30 minutes as the exam approaches.

 

Use Visual Aids

 

Photo of a boy working on a board

 

Visual aids, such as post-it notes and flashcards, can make SATs revision easier. Simply write keywords on post-its and stick them in strategic places around the house – ideally in rooms that your child uses regularly. When your child passes a note, it will help to jog their memory about key revision topics.

 

To succeed in the SATs, your child needs to be able to recall information quickly, so using visual aids is a great way to improve this particular skill.

Tackle Weaker Subjects First

 

At the start of revision sessions, children tend to be more alert and have more capacity to concentrate, so it’s wise to tackle any weak areas first. Once the ‘hard part’ is out of the way, the rest of the revision session will seem much more enjoyable. There’s also the added bonus that your child is more likely to retain information when they’re in a relaxed, positive frame of mind. Which brings us to our next point…

 

Stay Positive

 

Revising for any primary school test can be an anxious time for some children, but with SATs there tends to be additional pressure. The tests are more formal and are likely to be your child’s first experience of working under exam conditions. As a parent, it’s important that you stay positive throughout the revision process. Help your child out as much as possible and always be constructive in your feedback. The more positive you are, the easier the SATs revision will be for your child.

 

Keep Your Child’s Usual Routine

 

In the build-up to the SATs exam, try to maintain your child’s usual routine as much as possible. Make sure that they continue to attend any after-school clubs and socialise with friends, as relaxation is a key component of SATs revision. Relaxing helps them to recharge and will improve their concentration for the next session.

 

By keeping these tips in mind, your child’s SATs revision should tick along nicely. As long as you are organised, follow a detailed study plan and stay positive, your child will have the best chance of performing well in the exams.

 

Related posts:

Study Skills for Primary School Children

Learning Strategies for Primary School Students

 

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Posted on in SATs

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This article is for parents who are currently helping their child with SATs preparation in Year 6. Follow our useful tips on how to prepare for the tests at home and improve your child’s confidence before the exams.

 

Practice Mental Maths

 

The ability to do sums in your head is an important skill for your child to have in the Year 6 SATs tests. The best way to improve your child’s mental maths ability is to encourage practice – and lots of it.

 

There are a number of ways you can integrate mental maths practice into everyday situations, such as asking your child to double-check till receipts from shopping trips, counting change, and being the ‘scorer’ during a game of Scrabble. The more exposure your child has to situations that require them to ‘work out’ mathematical answers without a calculator, the more likely they’ll be to produce correct answers in their Year 6 SATs.

 

Focus on Problem-Solving

 

Try to set aside time for your child to focus on their problem-solving skills. At KS2 level, pupils are asked to complete three maths papers: one in arithmetic and two in reasoning. All of these papers involve an element of problem-solving that require pupils to demonstrate skills in the four key mathematical operations: addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

 

Make sure your child gets plenty of practice in calculating with fractions, decimals and percentages – and ensure that they learn to show all of their working. Our practice SAT papers cover the types of mathematics questions Year 6 children will be faced with in their SATs.

 

Improve Reading Comprehension

 

Photo of a crossword puzzle

 

As part of your child’s Year 6 SATs exam, they need to demonstrate their ability in reading comprehension. To help your child prepare for this element of the exam, encourage them to read a range of different texts written in different styles. Take the time to discuss the texts together, focusing on the characters and the structure of the texts as much as possible.

 

Asking questions about what your child is reading and discussing it together is beneficial for improving their reading comprehension skills. The more time your child invests in reading, the quicker their comprehension, vocabulary and decoding of words will improve.

 

Take Fractions Further

 

Photo of a puzzle on a table

 

Previous SATs results at Year 6 level show that children tend to struggle with multi-step questions, particularly fractions, when they are combined with addition, subtraction, division or multiplication.

 

As part of your child’s Year 6 SATs preparation, try to focus on working through questions that involve multiple steps. Begin by ensuring that they have a good understanding of fractions as a concept on its own, then aim to introduce questions that require additional mathematical knowledge.

 

Use SATs Practice Exam Papers

 

Practice exam papers can help to familiarise your child with the layout of the SATs exams. Try to introduce these practice papers into your child’s preparation early on, to ensure that they gain plenty of experience in answering questions under timed conditions.

 

In a typical SATs exam, students tend to score less in questions that are placed towards the end of the test paper. This would suggest that most Year 6 students struggle with time management in exams. Practice papers can help your child to improve this skill, by giving them the experience of gauging how quickly they need to answer each type of question. Ideally, your child should aim to complete each test paper with ten minutes to spare, so they can return to any unanswered questions.

 

At Exam Papers Plus, we have several Year 6 SATs resources that will help your child prepare for the tests:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Read Between the Lines

 

Photo of a student and teacher reading

 

To improve your child’s overall reading and comprehension skills, encourage them to focus on inference and deduction questions. Inference questions ask students to read between the lines of a text, and deduction questions ask them to read beyond the text. These are two vital skills that your child will need to master for their Year 6 SATs.

 

Here are some sample SATs questions that make use of inference and deduction:

 

Inference:

 

…like a toy sitting on a glass table.

 

What does this description suggest about the boat?

 

Deduction:

 

Gaby thinks she makes two mistakes while trying to rescue the cat.

 

What is the first mistake that Gaby makes while trying to rescue the cat?

 

If your child is preparing for their SATs in Year 6, using a combination of the techniques above will do wonders for improving their overall confidence and stamina on exam day. Practice makes perfect, so be sure to use our SATs resources to ensure that your child is fully prepared.

 

Related posts

The SATs Exam Format

How to Use KS2 SATs Practice Exam Papers

 

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Posted on in SATs

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All SATs papers taken by children in Year 6 are sent to be marked externally by qualified assessors, most of whom have previously worked as teachers.

 

Children are tested in their reading, spelling, grammar and punctuation and in mathematics. Writing is teacher-assessed.

 

Each year, 10,000 schools in the UK also receive a science test so that the subject can be monitored nationally. Schools that don’t use the national science test rely on their own assessment data instead.

 

When Are the Results Given?

 

The results of the externally marked tests are sent to schools at the end of July. There is a facility to challenge scores and potentially have papers remarked, providing there is a case for doing so.

 

The results of individual tests are normally given to parents as part of the written report at the end of a school year.

 

Schools receive exam results for individual pupils and as a school as a whole, by the end of July. National and local authority results, which form the league tables, are published in December.

 

What Do KS2 SATs Scores Mean?

 

Photo of a student and teacher reading exam results together

 

Scores are given in a scaled format, which enables peer comparison. The scores determine whether or not your child has achieved the national standard for each subject as part of that year’s cohort. In other words, the parameters for achieving a ‘pass’ will change slightly each year, based on the overall national results.

 

However much the raw scores may change, the range of scaled scores will always remain the same: 80 being the lowest and 120 being the highest.

 

A scaled score of 100 or more means that your child has met the expected standard in that particular test, whereas a scaled score of 99 or less means they haven’t reached the nationally expected standard.

 

Each paper your child takes will be awarded a ‘raw’ score. These scores, collated nationally, determine the national standard. A child who meets that standard would be awarded a confirmation of ‘AS’, with those who don’t meet the standard receiving ‘NS’. Other codes used in the results include:

 

  • A: The child was absent from one or more of the test papers
  • B: The child is working below the level assessed by KS2 SATs
  • M: The child missed the test
  • T: The child is working at the level of the tests but is unable to access them (because all, or part of the test is not suitable for a pupil with particular needs)

 

In certain, strict circumstances, children may be discounted from the results data. For example, the National Subject Association for EDL (NALDIC) states:

 

Schools can apply for pupils who have recently arrived from overseas to be discounted from performance tables calculations. To be discounted, a pupil must meet all 3 of the following criteria: they were admitted to an English school for the first time during the 2015 to 2016 or 2016 to 2017 school year; they arrived from overseas before their admission; English is not an official language of the country from which they came.”

 

The marks required for 2017 on each of the Key Stage 2 SATs tests were:

 

  • Maths: 57 out of 110 (down from 60 in 2016)
  • Reading: 26 out of 50 (up from 21 in 2016)
  • Grammar, punctuation and spelling: 36 out of 70 (down from 43 in 2016)

 

This year, 61% of pupils met the expected standard in reading, writing and maths (compared to 53% in 2016); 71% of pupils achieved the expected standard in reading; 76% of pupils achieved the expected standard in writing (which is teacher-assessed); 75% of pupils achieved the expected standard in mathematics and 77% of pupils achieved the expected standard in spelling, punctuation and grammar (also known as SPaG).

 

Other Assessments

 

To supplement the SATs test results, most schools also provide teacher assessment results for each child. These results will cover the same subjects as the SATs papers (reading, spelling, grammar, punctuation and mathematics) but will also include writing, science and other, non-core subjects too. All schools should give an indication of the level at which each child is working at, and may also include indicators to other important learning behaviours, such as independence, organisation and attitude to learning.

 

Some abbreviations that may be used in reporting these results include the following:

 

  • GDS: Working at greater depth within the expected standard (for writing assessment only)
  • EXS: Working at the expected standard
  • WTS: Working towards the expected standard (for writing assessment only)
  • HNM: Has not met the expected standard (reading and maths assessment only)
  • PKG: Pre-key stage, growing development of the expected standard (the child is working at a lower level than expected)
  • PKF: Pre-key stage, foundations for the expected standard (the child is working at a significantly lower level than expected)
  • BLW: The child is working below the pre-key stage standards
  • D: Awarded if the child is ‘disapplied’ (the child has not been tested at KS2 level)

 

Finally…

 

It’s important to remember that each child works at a different level and in a different way. Some children learn quickly but perform poorly in tests; others may struggle in the classroom but can reach the expected standard anyway. If a child has not met the expected standard by the end of Key Stage 2, it’s not the end of the world; it just means they haven’t reached their full potential yet.

 

At Exam Papers Plus, we have several SATs practice exam papers that can help your child prepare for their tests. We recommend the following resources:

 

Key Stage 1: SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1: SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2: SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2: SATs Practice Test 2

 

Related posts:

What Are the Different Sections in a SATs Exam?

How to Score Highly in the SATS Test

 

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Posted on in SATs

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Your child is more likely to perform well in their SATs exam if they are thoroughly prepared and confident. Whether your child is sitting SATs this year or not, this overview of useful exam prep materials will come in handy for when the big day arrives.

 

 

A Study Planner

 

 

It’ll come as little surprise to know that a good study planner is a vital resource for SATs preparation. A planner can take any form, whether it’s as a spreadsheet, a notebook, or a wall planner. Essentially, a study planner is a calendar that contains the topics and subjects that your child needs to revise on specific days.
As a starting point, consider using the following model for your planner:

 

  • Divide however long your child has until the SATs exam by the number of subjects they are required to study
  • Next, divide up all the topics your child needs to cover
  • Keep the planner simple, while including specific tasks your child should aim to achieve in each session
  • Include time for breaks

 

A study planner is one of the first SATs prep materials that your child should create, as it’ll likely form the cornerstone of their revision.

 

 

A SATs Reading List

 

Photo of books in a bookshelf

 

To succeed in the SATs exam, your child must be a confident and able reader. Devise a reading list to help improve their overall comprehension and increase their vocabulary.

 

Encourage your child to read a mix of genres and authors and actively ask them questions about what they’re reading to enhance their understanding of the text. Having them recount the information that they’re learning encourages them to think beyond the words on the page. This is a skill that will come in very useful in the English SATs exam and one that can easily be nurtured at home.

 

Practice Exam Papers

 

 

Practice exam papers are a key SATs preparation resource for primary school children as they put theory into practice. Exam practice papers allow your child to familiarise themselves with the layout of the SATs exam and they encourage good time management too. When creating your child’s study planner (mentioned above), allocate time for regular SATs practice papers. The sooner these are introduced into your child’s routine, the more time they will have to get used to answering questions under timed conditions.

 

Practice papers can quickly highlight areas that your child might need to improve in, which will allow you to adjust their study schedule to focus on their weaker areas in the lead up to the SATs exam.

 

Our SATs resources:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

A Grammar Checker

 

Photo of spelling in a notebook

 

At SATs level, children are tested on their ability to use grammar correctly. For some students, grammar skills don’t come easily and can cause them to lose marks in the exam. A grammar checker is a useful tool to have when preparing for SATs.

 

There are several online grammar checkers that can help improve your child’s writing. Some of the free options include Grammar Check and Scribens, both of which allow users to enter text for review.

 

Alternatively, there are many paid grammar checkers that may be worth considering for longer-term use. Grammarly and Correct English are two of the most popular paid options out there at the moment.  Regardless of which grammar tool your child uses, we would advise parents to help them out initially, to make sure that they’re using them correctly.

 

Flashcards

 

 

In the SATs exam, students are required to recall a fair amount of information, whether it be maths formulas or specific keywords. Flashcards are a useful SATs prep resource, not least because they can make learning more fun. Flashcards are an effective tool for spelling or vocabulary games.

 

For instance, if your child has vocabulary to learn, have them create flashcards with all the words they need to know. Once they’ve created all the flashcards, test them on their spelling by having them write the word down or speaking it aloud. For all the words they get right, stick the corresponding flashcard onto a wall so they can chart their progress easily.

 

Planned Exercise Breaks

 

Photo of kids running on grass

 

Although this isn’t a physical tool, ensuring that your child takes regular breaks to relax and burn off excess energy is an essential part of their SATs preparation. If your child feels under significant pressure in the lead-up to the exam, they are more likely to become stressed, despondent and demotivated, so relaxation is key.

 

Allow your child some time to themselves when they come home from school before they start studying again. Ideally, your child should spend time doing some physical activity as this stimulates the part of the brain that’s responsible for learning. Time away from SATs preparation will help their brain and body to recharge, resulting in better concentration when they do return to studying.

 

Related posts:

SATs Reading Tips

The SATs Curriculum in the UK: An Overview

 

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Posted on in SATs

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If your child has their SATs exams coming up, it’s vital for them to feel positive, confident and fully prepared for the tests. In this article, we outline a selection of the best SATs exam tips and strategies.

 

Prepare Well in Advance

Don’t worry about your child starting their SATs revision ‘too early’. The sooner they start revising, the more likely they are to cover all the required topics for their exam. For SATs, consider starting your child’s revision at least six to nine months ahead of the actual test. This might seem early, but it will give your child plenty of time to get to grips with what’s required of them and to improve any weaker areas.

 

 

Revise Little and Often

 

 

Children under the age of twelve are able to concentrate for around 20 minutes at a time before they start to lose their focus. At home, try to plan shorter bursts of study time to ensure that your child gives their full attention to the task at hand and doesn’t become distracted. Using a revision timetable, mark out 20-minute revision blocks, gradually increasing the time period to 30 minutes once they have an established routine and are responding well to regular revision.

 

Try Visual Aids

 

Photo of a laptio and a notebook

 

Lots of children respond well to visual aids when it comes to studying for exams. Visual aids can include flashcards, post-it notes and mind maps – in fact, anything that provides a visual reference and aids their studying. A simple approach is to write keywords or relevant mathematical formulas on flashcards or post-it notes and place them around the house. When your child comes across one, encourage them to expand on the keyword, or do a short maths question. These visual aids are a great way of testing your child’s memory ahead of the SATs exam.

 

If your child would respond better to mind mapping, check out this short video on how to create them:

 

 

Take Notes

 

 

Note taking is a more traditional strategy for revision, but one that can be very effective in getting your child to recall important information in their SATs exam. Children who enjoy reading and writing are most likely to benefit from this learning strategy and it can be a fun task.

 

Rather than simply rewriting text passages word for word, note taking is an important study skill that requires children to record essential information that can be accessed at a later date.

 

If your child struggles to grasp note taking initially, encourage them to use a highlighter to mark out the most relevant information first.

 

Use Exam Practice Papers

 

KS2 SATs

 

One of the best SATs exam tips we can share is to provide your child with practice exam papers well ahead of exam day. While revising exam material is important, your child should develop a good exam technique to ensure they perform as well as possible in the test.

 

To begin with, work through practice SATs papers with your child to ensure that they fully understand each question and have an idea of the type of question they are being asked.

 

Once they are familiar with the layout of the exam, encourage them to sit a few practice papers on their own, under exam conditions. Not only will this improve their time management skills, it will also identify their strengths and weaknesses – enabling you to allocate additional time to learning where necessary.

 

Provide Study Incentives

 

 

We know that for some children, being asked to do additional revision for their SATs on top of their usual school work is a step too far, so incentives can be a good way to motivate them. If you do choose to use incentives as a SATs exam strategy, you must follow through with your promises. Fail to deliver and it won’t work again!

 

As a parent, you know which incentives will work best for your child, but here are some suggestions you could try:

  • Time on the internet
  • A trip to the local park to play sport
  • Time playing video games
  • A sweet treat

 

Make Time for Breaks

 

Photo of kids playing football

 

Breaks are just as important to your child’s SATs exam success as their study sessions. All work and no play can lead to your child being demotivated and burned out, both of which could have a very negative impact on their SATs performance.

 

If your child is distracted during their revision sessions, make a mutual agreement that if they concentrate on a task for just 20 minutes, they will have a set amount of leisure time. Encourage them to do something active during their breaks, such as playing outdoors, rather than remaining at their desk or staring at a screen, as this will put them in a better frame of mind for when they return to study.

 

These SATs exam preparation tips will put your child in a good position ahead of their test. In most cases, a combination of several learning strategies is the most effective way for your child to retain information ahead of their SATs exam.

 

Related posts:
How to Score Highly in the SATs Tests
The Benefits of Using SATs Practice Papers

 

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Posted on in SATs

Photo of a calculator on a Maths paper

The second part in our series on Maths SATS questions and answers, this post looks at the Reasoning part of the exam. Alongside our sample SATs arithmetic questions, these examples can be used to help your child prepare for their Maths SATs tests.

 

The following examples have been chosen to provide a general overview of the types of reasoning questions that your child may come across on exam day. We’ve also included sample answers and full explanations to help you understand what the examiners are looking for. All questions are taken from the most recent tests, which were administered this year.

 

 

Maths SATs Reasoning Sample Question 1

 

Maths Sample SATs Question

 

The SATs reasoning papers are designed to test a child’s ability to apply their understanding of all areas of mathematics. They also aim to test their ability to select relevant information and present answers in a correct context. The question above expects the student to be able to add and subtract numbers in the thousands, once they have recognised that there are two stages to the question. They should show their working out as a mark may be awarded for doing so, even if the answer provided is incorrect.

 

In most cases, it’s usually the student’s inability to extract the key information that results in them giving an incorrect answer for this type of question.

 

 

Maths SATs Reasoning Sample Question 2

 

Maths Sample SATs Question

 

This question focuses on equivalent fractions. Children may easily recognise 3 | 4 when the shape is divided into four equal parts and three are shaded. What they should also recognise, is that six out of eight, nine out of twelve and twelve out of sixteen all have the same value as three out of four. They should also recognise that those shaded sections do not necessarily need to be next to each other.

 

One thing to watch out for here is the shape in the top right-hand corner – although three sections are shaded, it is three out of six, not three out of four.

 

 

Maths SATs Reasoning Sample Question 3

 

Maths Sample SATs Question

 

This question is a straightforward test of the student’s understanding of the language of geometry. ‘Faces’ are the flat surfaces that make up a three-dimensional shape, and ‘vertices’ are the points where two or more edges meet. If that knowledge is secure, this is a fairly straightforward question!

 

Maths SATs Reasoning Sample Question 4

 

Maths Sample SATs Question

 

This is a question about scale and proportion. Again, it is a multi-step question. The child should first recognise that 1cm on a map represents 20km. They should then demonstrate evidence of an appropriate method, such as 250 ÷ 20 to achieve an answer of 12.5cm.

 

Other indications that the child has understood what the question is asking of them may include the following: 20km is 1cm, 100km is 5cm, 50km is 2.5cm. 5cm + 5cm + 2.5cm = 12.5cm. Once again, showing the method is important, as it may achieve a mark even if the answer is incorrect. It’s worth noting however, that a correct answer provided without any method would achieve the full two marks.

 

Maths SATs Reasoning Sample Question 5

 

Maths Sample SATs Question

 

The ability to extract information from charts and graphs is an important skill, and one area that many children find extremely difficult. This may have something to do with the way the data is presented and could also link to how relevant the information is to the child. This example is all to do with temperature changes over a period of time. Although many children may understand the concept, it isn’t perhaps a daily feature of a Year 6 child’s life.

 

There is a lot of information here, with the two axes showing the time and change in temperature. The expectation is that the student can pinpoint the temperature at certain times during the period shown, and use the data they identify to answer the questions.

 

 

Maths SATs Reasoning Sample Question 6

 

Maths Sample SATs Question

 

This is another example of a question set in context, although this time using a timetable. Although children will be taught how to read timetables accurately, this question not only relies on their ability to read the timings, but also their ability to make a decision based on factors.

 

William needs to arrive in Paris by 5.30pm and therefore the 14.01 train is the latest he should take. The potential stumbling block here would be if the child cannot translate times between twelve hours and twenty-four hours – although the question is asked using ‘pm’ the timetable is written using the twenty-four-hour clock.

 

Maths SATs Reasoning Sample Question 7

 

Maths Sample SATs Question

 

This is perhaps one of the most difficult questions in both reasoning papers. It relies on the child’s ability to manipulate numbers and, in actual fact, use algebraic equations to solve a problem.

 

If the child recognises that 18 + 9 + 2 widths = 34 + 1 width, or that 27 + 2 widths = 34 + 1 width (or even that 27 + 1 width = 34), then they should be able to conclude that 34 – 27 = 7, which is the width of one tile. In effect, they are using algebra: 34 + w = 18 + w + 9 + w or 34 + w = 27 + w + w.

 

Related posts:

What Are the Different Sections in a SATs Exam?

What Are Optional SATs?

 

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Posted on in SATs

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The maths SATs papers cover the entire breadth of the subject across both Key Stages. Children taking the paper can expect to come up against a wide variety of question types, ranging from straightforward arithmetic to more complex, multi-step problems.

 

The following examples have been chosen to give you a good understanding of the types of questions that your child may face on the day of the test. We’ve also included some hints and tips for maximising the potential of scoring full marks on each one. All questions are taken from the most recent tests, which were administered this year.

 

 

Maths SATs Sample Question 1

 

Maths SATs Sample Q1

 

Initially, this might seem like a straightforward addition question. However, bearing in mind that there are 36 questions in the arithmetic paper and that children only have 30 minutes to answer them all, the question actually requires swift working.

 

 

In the given example, children may default to writing out the calculation using a formal written method (column addition). However, this can take precious seconds to do. A more effective alternative would be to answer the question using mental calculation/jottings. For example, if the child can count in hundreds, they could start at 1,800 and count on seven hundreds: 1,900, 2,000 (at this point they may even be able to add the remaining five hundreds) 2,500. 18 + 7 = 25, and adding this to the previous total would give 2,525.

 

This kind of mental agility is extremely beneficial when faced with apparently ‘simpler’ question types and may save valuable time that can be used later, on much harder questions.

 

 

Maths SATs Sample Question 2

 

Maths SATs Sample Q2

 

Again, here is an opportunity to save valuable time. Setting this calculation out in a formal way would take quite a lot of effort, as well as increasing the risk of making a mistake (either in the setting out or in using the decomposition method).

 

If a child recognises that 60 is the same as 45 + 15, they can complete the subtraction in two stages: 345 – 45 = 300. 300 – 15 = 285.

 

When checking the calculation, children should aim to use the inverse, or opposite operation, i.e. 285 + 60 = 345.

 

Maths SATs Sample Question 3

 

Maths SATs Sample Q3

 

This question relies on a secure understanding of the BIDMAS rule for operations, whereby the order of a calculation should be Brackets, Indices, Division, Multiplication, Addition and finally, Subtraction. For the calculation shown, everything within the brackets should be calculated first, so 36 ÷ 6 = 6, and then the addition, 50 + 6.

 

Maths SATs Sample Question 4

 

Maths SATs Sample Q4

 

Solving this calculation relies on an understanding of the rules of fractions. In this particular case, we cannot add the fractions together as they have different denominators. To find a common denominator, the child should find the lowest common multiple of all three denominators (in this case 20).

 

They should then adjust each numerator by recognising what happened to the denominator to turn it into 20. For example, to turn 4 into 20, it must be multiplied by 5.

 

The same operation should be carried out on the numerator, meaning the 1 should be multiplied by 5 also, resulting in a fraction of 5|20. This rule is applied to all three fractions, resulting in three which have a common denominator of 20.

 

The fractions can then be added together and the resulting answer of 11|20 is in its lowest form, requiring no further adjustment.

 

 

Maths SATs Sample Question 5

 

Maths SATs Sample Q5

 

There are two main ways to solve this calculation, and both require a secure understanding of place value. The first method could be to recognise that 0.9 x 2 = 1.8 and then, as the 2 is actually 100 times larger, the answer would be 180.

 

The second way of solving the question could be to calculate 0.9 x 100 and then to double the answer. Again, children who may be tempted to write out the calculation in a more formal way should consider the time this may take and try a mental approach if possible.

 

Maths SATs Sample Question 6

 

Maths SATs Sample Q6

 

This question is worth two marks – two marks would be awarded for an entirely correct answer (even without any working out shown!) or, in the event of an incorrect answer, one mark may be awarded for a correct method applied to the working out.

 

The most likely method here would be to use ‘chunking’, or repeated subtraction of groups of 59 until there is a result of either zero or a remainder. Children should try to use easier groupings of the number and recognise that if they know 10 x 59 = 590, then 5 x 59 would be 295 and 20 x 59 would be 1080.

 

The fastest and most straightforward method for most children might be 20 x 59, 10 x 59, 5 x 59, 3 x 59 (or possibly 1 x 59 three times) to achieve an answer of 38.

 

Hopefully, the explanations of these arithmetic SATs questions have provided you with some insight into the level your child will be expected to achieve in their exam. As time is of the essence, it’s important that students identify time-saving methods to answer questions.

 

 

Our SATs Resources

 

 

In order to give your child the best chance of performing well in their SATs, you should consider giving them extra practice with SATs practice exam papers. At Exam Papers Plus, we have a range of SATs papers that cover the entire SATs curriculum, including the Maths elements.

 

Not only are our practice papers up-to-date, but the contain detailed marking schemes, so you can chart your child’s progress throughout their studying. To help your child prepare for the Maths SATs exams, we’d recommend the following resources:

 

Key Stage 1: SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1: SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2: SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2: SATs Practice Test 2

 

Related posts:

SATs Grammar Test Advice

How to Score Highly in the SATs Tests

 

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Posted on in SATs

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Many parents might not be aware that children in Year 6 are frequently assessed during the Key Stage 2 curriculum, but it is only the results of the Year 6 SATs that are nationally recorded. In England, some primary school assessments in Year 3, 4 and 5 can take the form of ‘optional’ SATs. In this article, we explain more about what these optional SATs are, who takes them and why they exist.

 

 

What Are Optional SATs?

 

 

Optional SATs are tests taken in English primary schools in Years 3, 4 and 5. They are called ‘optional’ because schools do not have to use this form of assessment. Taken in the years that children do not have to sit official SATs, they are used by schools to check if pupils are on track to deliver the expected standard in their Year 6 SATs.

 

There are two papers available for optional SATs, which focus on Maths and English (reading and writing).

 

 

Do All Schools Use Optional SATs?

 

 

All UK primary schools have a responsibility to assess their pupils’ progress towards the end of each school year. Due to a number of changes within the National Curriculum in 2014 and new SATs in more recent years, some English primary schools use the optional SATs from Year 3, as these papers acknowledge the new curriculum.

 

These optional SATs do not replace ongoing teacher assessments, such as observation or regular classroom work, they are simply another opportunity to gauge pupil progress throughout their primary school life.

 

 

If They Are ‘Optional’ SATs, Why Should My Child Do Them?

 

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As a parent, you are bound to be concerned if you think your child is being put under pressure to sit optional tests; that is perfectly understandable. However, there are several reasons why schools use these optional SATs – many of which will be of benefit to your child and their learning. These include:

 

 

  • Optional SATs give teachers accurate information about pupil progress. This will help with target-setting for classes in your child’s next school year, ensuring a relevant and appropriate learning environment.
  • Optional SATs can help to identify any pupils who are not progressing at the expected rate. Once this is recognised, teachers can offer extra support to those pupils as and when needed.
  • Similar to practice SAT papers, optional SATs can help to familiarise children with the structure and format of SATs. As per the KS2 tests, optional SATs are usually taken under exam conditions. Although this can be difficult for some children in Years 3, 4 and 5, it is important that they learn correct exam techniques ahead of the SATs in Year 6.

 

 

Do Parents Receive Results from Optional SATs?

 

Photo of three boys sitting in a classroom

 

Yes, but the results parents receive depends on the individual schools. While some primary schools choose to give parents results from the optional SATs, most provide a combined level based on the SATs results and teacher assessment.
This combined result sometimes shows that some children do not respond well to exam conditions and may not have performed as well as teachers know they can. By using a variety of assessments, parents will get a better idea of their child’s current attainment level.

 

 

How Can Parents Support Children with Optional SATs?

 

 

Your child should cover everything they need to know for optional SATs in the classroom, but there is still plenty parents can do to help their children to prepare for them at home.

 

To support your child with Maths and English in Years 3, 4 and 5, read this selection of articles:

 

How to Help Your Child Revise for Exams

Top 10 Revision Tips for Primary School Kids

Our Top Revision Games for Primary School Kids

 

Related posts:

What Are SATs in the UK?

The SATs Curriculum in the UK: An Overview

 

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Posted on in SATs

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Primary school children in England are required to sit their SATs exams in Years 2 and 6. In this article, we give an overview of the format of the SATs exams.

 

SATs are an indicator of the progress your child has made at school so far and are taken by children at Key Stage 1 (KS1) and Key Stage 2 (Ks2) level.

 

 

The KS1 SATs Exam Format

 

 

KS1 SATs will be scrapped by 2023 but until then, Year 2 pupils will be required to sit the following SATs papers:

 

 

The KS1 Reading SAT

 

 

The KS1 reading test is made up of two papers:

 

  • Paper 1 is made-up of a range of texts, with questions relating to the texts throughout
  • Paper 2 is a reading booklet comprising of a selection of texts. Children are required to write their answers in a separate booklet

 

Although KS1 SATs are not strictly timed, each reading paper should take around 30 minutes and is worth 50 per cent of the total marks. Children should expect to be tested on a range of texts, including both fiction and non-fiction. The papers will include different question types, including:

 

  • Multiple choice
  • Short answer, e.g. ‘What does the chicken do?’
  • Find and copy, e.g. ‘Find and copy one word from the poem that shows that the dog was frightened’

 

The KS1 English Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPaG) SAT

 

 

The spelling, punctuation and grammar test at KS1 is made up of two papers:

  • Paper 1 – a 20-word spelling test. This takes approximately 15 minutes and is worth 20 marks
  • Paper 2 – a grammar, punctuation and vocabulary test that is split into two sections, each taking approximately 10 minutes each. This test is worth 20 marks and will involve a mix of answers, including multiple choice and labelling.

 

The KS1 Maths SAT

 

Photo of a boy reading a book

 

The KS1 maths test is made up of two papers:

 

  • Paper 1 – arithmetic, this paper takes approximately 15 minutes and is worth 25 marks
  • Paper 2 – mathematical fluency, problem-solving and reasoning. This paper takes approximately 35 minutes and is worth 35 marks. Children will be faced with a range of question types, including multiple choice, true or false and matching.

 

To help your child prepare for their KS1 SATs, we recommend the following resources:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

 

 

The KS2 SATs Exam Format

 

 

Year 6 children will be tested in English and maths at KS2. These SATs are externally marked and will be taken under official exam conditions.

 

At the end of Year 6, children sit tests in:

 

 

The KS2 Reading SAT

 

 

This hour-long test is a single paper with questions based on three different texts. Your child will be required to answer a range of question types, including:

 

  • Ranking/ordering, e.g. ‘Number the events below to show the order in which they happen in the story’
  • Labelling, e.g. ‘Label the text to show the title of the story’
  • Find and copy, g. ‘Find and copy two words from the poem that show that the dog was frightened’
  • Short answer, e.g. ‘What does the chicken do?’

 

The KS2 English Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPaG) SAT

 

 

The grammar, punctuation and spelling test consists of two parts:

 

  1. A 45-minute, short-answer grammar and punctuation paper
  2. A 15-minute aural spelling test of 20 words

 

 

The KS2 Maths SAT

 

Photo of a girl writing on a notepad

 

Year 6 children sit three papers in maths:

 

  • Paper 1 – arithmetic, 30 minutes long and made-up of fixed response questions. Children must correctly answer questions on calculations using long multiplication and division
  • Papers 2 and 3 – reasoning, 40 minutes per paper. These papers will include a number of different question types, including multiple choice and true or false.

 

To help your child prepare for their KS2 SATs, we recommend the following resources:

 

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 
Whether in Year 2 or Year 6, it’s important to prepare your child for their SATs exams. Our SATs practice tests cover all the topics your child will need to know for the marked exams. They are updated regularly to ensure that they are current and accurate and detailed mark schemes are included, which will allow you to track your child’s progress easily.

 

Related posts:

The SATs Curriculum in the UK: An Overview

What Are The Different Section in a SATs Exam?

 

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Posted on in SATs

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The KS2 reading exam aims to test a child’s comprehension skills. The questions range from simpler, literal questions (the answers for which are typically located within the text) to more complex questions that require inference or deduction skills.

 

Formal Exam Conditions

 

 

The test takes place under formal examination conditions. Students are typically seated apart and aren’t allowed to talk during the test (unless it’s to ask the teacher a question). No phones or other distracting devices are allowed in the exam and students generally aren’t given any help in answering the questions (there are certain allowances for children with additional needs).

 

The following information is given to every child taking the test:

 

‘This is the key stage 2 English reading test. You should have a reading booklet and a reading answer booklet in front of you.

You will need a blue / black pen or a dark pencil, and you may use a rubber for this test.

Write your name, school name and DfE (Department for Education) number on the front of your reading answer booklet.

Open your reading answer booklet to page 3. I will read the instructions to you.

You have 1 hour to complete this test, answering the questions in the answer booklet. Read one text and answer the questions about that text before moving on to read the next text.

There are 3 texts and 3 sets of questions.

In this booklet, there are different types of question for you to answer in different ways. The space for your answer shows you what type of answer is needed. Write your answer in the space provided. Do not write over any barcodes.

Some questions are followed by a short line or box. This shows that you need only write a word or a few words in your answer.

Some questions are followed by a few lines. This gives you space to write more words or a sentence or two.

Some questions are followed by more answer lines. This shows that a longer, more detailed answer is needed to explain your opinion. You can write in full sentences if you want to.

For some questions, you do not need to write anything at all and you should tick, draw lines to, or circle your answer.

Read the instructions carefully so that you know how to answer the question.

The number under each line at the side of the page tells you the maximum number of marks for each question.

As this is a reading test, you must use the information in the texts to answer the questions.

When a question includes a page reference, you should refer to the text on that page to help you with your answer.

You should work through the booklet until you are asked to stop.

You should try to answer all of the questions. If you can’t answer a question, move on and return to it later. Remember that you should keep referring back to your reading booklet.

Pay particular attention to any instructions within test questions.

To make sure your answers can be marked, don’t write in the grey areas, on the barcode or on the lines at the top and bottom or the edge of the page and don’t crumple your answer booklet.

If you want to change your answer, put a line through the response you don’t want the marker to read.

If you have to use a rubber, make sure you rub out your answer completely before writing a new one.

Remember to check your work carefully.

If you have any questions during the test, you should put your hand up and wait for someone to come over to you. Remember, I can’t help you answer any of the test questions or read any of the words to you.

You must not talk to each other.

Are there any questions you want to ask me now?

I will tell you when you have 5 minutes left. I will tell you when the test is over and to stop writing.

You may now start the test.’

 

 

The Exam Process

 

Photo of desks in an exam hall

 

Children taking the test will be given a reading booklet, which usually contains three different texts. Each one is written in a different genre and style. Students may also use monolingual English electronic spell checkers or highlighter pens, if this is within their normal classroom practice. It’s worth remembering though, that spelling is not being tested and using a spell-checker could waste valuable time.

 

Children may request extra lined paper, should they feel they need it. In the first instance, students are encouraged to use up all the space on their answer papers first. This is normally more than sufficient. All three texts within the reading booklet may have a central theme, such as ‘travel’ or ‘rescue’ and the least demanding text is normally the first one in the booklet.

 

 

SATs Reading Exam Technique

 

 

Children are given one hour to read the text and complete the questions in the accompanying reading answer booklet. This isn’t a huge amount of time, so it’s important that students are well-practised in methods for extracting information, such as skimming and scanning, or using headings and sub-headings to locate key information.

 

They should also be mindful of the weighting of the marks against each question. Simpler, more straightforward questions are usually awarded one mark, whereas more complex or longer answers are awarded two, or even three marks. Although children should endeavour to answer all questions on the paper, they should aim to pay particular attention to questions that are worth more marks.

 

Some questions do not require a written answer at all. There may be a box to tick, statements to place in a correct order or boxes to join. Accuracy is just as important here as it is with written answers. If an examiner is unable to read any of the child’s answers clearly, they will be marked wrong.

 

There is no set ‘protocol’ to completing the test – some children prefer to work on the first text and complete all the questions before moving on to the next, whereas others may read the three texts in their entirety before beginning to answer the questions. Although the instructions given at the beginning imply that children should work through one text at a time, they would not be penalised in any way for answering questions in any order they choose.

 

 

Reviewing Answers

 

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Once students have completed all the questions they can, they should always go back and check their answers carefully. They should consider whether they have answered each question with sufficient depth and clarity. They should aim to leave no question unanswered – even if they have no idea of what the question is asking for. A blank answer space has no chance of a mark, but an answer of some kind, however it is achieved, may just help to add one more mark to their total!

 

 

Staff Responsibilities

 

 

There will be at least one member of staff present during the test. In practice, there are usually two as there may be a need for a child to leave the room (to visit the toilet for example). Staff present are allowed to answer questions if a child raises their hand, but cannot in any way ‘lead’ them or influence their answers.

 

For example, if a child states that they don’t understand the question, an appropriate response from the teacher would be to encourage them to reread the question, perhaps underlining words that they think could be important. It would not be appropriate for the teacher to lead the child in any way, such as pointing to particular words or indicating a particular section of the text.

 

Teachers are also forbidden to give children any other hints, such as pointing to a question and encouraging the child to look at their answer again.

 

Children are normally reminded of the time they have remaining. This is done at the discretion of the teacher but will probably be at around the halfway point and again when there are ten minutes remaining.

 

If you’d like your child to gain extra practice in preparing for the SATs Reading Comprehension exam, our practice exam papers are ideal. We currently have four separate SATs exam papers that include reading comprehension questions. All of our resources come complete with answers and a detailed marking scheme, so you can easily track your child’s progress.

 

Our SATs resources:

 

Key Stage 1: SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1: SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2: SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2: SATs Practice Test 2

 

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Posted on in SATs

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For your child to perform well in their SATs, they must be a confident reader. Reading doesn’t always come naturally to some students, but the good news is there are many things you can do at home with your child to help them improve. In this article, we share some tips that could turn a young reader’s reluctance into enthusiasm.

 

Encourage Daily Reading

 

At SAT level, your child needs to demonstrate good reading comprehension, essentially talking about texts and their words. What better way to learn how to do this than to read as much as possible? You can help your child by making sure that they know that books are valued at home and that reading is seen as an enriching and worthwhile activity.

 

Research shows that reading on a daily basis will significantly improve a child’s reading comprehension, vocabulary and their ability to work out the meaning of unfamiliar words. Once your child gets into a routine of reading every day, it’ll soon become the norm, and they’ll start to look forward to the activity.

 

Use a Wide Variety of Reading Materials

 

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Children should read a mix of genres, authors and a variety of fiction and non-fiction texts to broaden their reading experience as much as possible in anticipation of the SATs test. Try to introduce a new genre or author into your child’s reading time as often as you can in order to broaden their horizons.

 

Likewise, giving your child access to a wide variety of reading material like leaflets, poetry, jokes, magazines and comics can help improve their vocabulary and their understanding of language. And reading doesn’t need to be a matter of routine. Try to take advantage of any spur-of-the-moment opportunities, such as menus in cafes, food labels, even household letters.

 

Read as a Family

 

 

Be a role model for your child and make sure that they see you reading too, whether it’s for pleasure, or for work. The more often your child sees you reading, the more likely they’ll be to pick up a book without being asked.

 

Consider family reading time, where for 20-30 minutes every day, everyone reads together. Reading as a group can be a good way to encourage your child to read for longer periods. Typically, young children start to lose focus after 15 minutes, but if they see that you’re still reading, they’ll be more likely to read a little longer.

 

For more information on how to read with your child, take a look at this useful video from Hampton Primary School in Mauritius:

 

 

Share the Reading

 

 

As your child becomes more confident with reading, they’ll start to read more on their own and less to you. A good way to make this transition is to share the reading by taking it in turns to read a paragraph or page aloud. This technique is especially productive if your child is tackling a challenging book on their own.

 

During shared reading times, discuss unfamiliar words in an effort to expand your child’s vocabulary and ask questions about what they’ve just read. Asking questions like ‘why has this happened?’ Why did the character do that?’ enhances their understanding of the text and encourages them to think beyond the words on the page.

 

 

Look for Progress

 

 

For your child to perform well in their SATs reading exam, it’s important to be aware of where their strengths and weaknesses lie. Reading on its own often doesn’t provide enough insight into their current level. This is where practice reading papers can prove useful.

 

At Exam Papers Plus, we publish practice papers for the SATs exam. They cover every aspect of the exam, including the reading element. They’re a great way to familiarise your child with how the reading section is laid out and to give them an idea of the types of reading questions they may be asked. Our papers come complete with marking schemes that enable you to check your child’s answers and track their progress in the lead up to the exam.

 

Our SATs resources:

 

Key Stage 1: SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1: SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2: SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2: SATs Practice Test 2

 

Explore Words

 

 

If your child comes across any words that they don’t recognise, and can’t work out their meaning from the context, encourage them to build a ‘new words’ list. Once their reading time is complete, ensure they check the meanings of these words online or with a dictionary.

 

During shared reading, parents should pick an interesting word that really stands out in the text and ask their child to discuss why it’s a good word to use. You can also ask your child if they can suggest alternative words that could also be used within the context. Any discussion you can create around words and reading will be of huge benefit to your child when it comes to sitting the actual SATs exam.

 

 

Help with Reading Problems

 

Photo of a girl reading with a teacher

 

Don’t just rely on your child’s school to detect reading problems. Often, by the time reading issues are identified, they’ve already become more serious and require a lot more effort to put right. Spend time with your child focusing on identifying words that they don’t know and try to gauge whether or not they should be able to understand them given their age.

 

If your child does have a specific reading problem, it’s unlikely to improve without help. Practice SATs papers are one of the most effective ways of highlighting any specific issues, so ensure you use them early, allowing plenty of time to work on any problems areas that you identify.

 

 

Be Enthusiastic

 

 

Finally, one of the best ways to improve your child’s SATs reading skills is to provide plenty of encouragement and praise, especially if reading doesn’t come easily to them. Your reaction has a huge influence on your child’s motivation and commitment to becoming a good reader. Of course, you’ll need patience, as each child’s reading comprehension ability develops at different rates, but it’ll be worth it when your child’s hard work pays off and they get the SATs results they deserve.

 

Related posts

English SATs Practice Papers: How They Can Help

The Benefits of Using SATs Practice Papers

 

 

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Posted on in SATs

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All children at KS1 and KS2 level are tested on their grammar skills as part of the SATs spelling and grammar test. In this article, we look at how you can help your child improve their skills in time for the test.

 

At KS2, your child will sit the English grammar, punctuation and spelling (SPaG) tests. This exam includes questions that assess the following:

 

Grammar –identify and write sentences that are grammatically correct

Punctuation –form sentences that are correctly punctuated

Vocabulary – demonstrate knowledge of when a word is used correctly

Spelling –spell words that are spoken aloud by the examiner

 

For your child to perform well in the SPaG test, they need to have a solid understanding of how the English language works. For that to happen, they must know grammatical rules.

 

Learn the Terminology

 

Children sitting the SATs grammar test must have a good knowledge of grammatical terms such as adjectives, adverbs, verbs, nouns, passive voice, and sentence structure. They will also need to understand what connectives are and how they are used.

 

An effective way to ensure that your child understands these grammatical terms is to write a series of sentences that contain each of the terms. You can then ask your child to underline the word in the sentence that uses that particular part of speech. For example, in the following sentence, you may ask your child to underline the word or phrase that demonstrates passive voice:

 

The ball was thrown

 

For further practice of grammatical terminology, use SATs practice papers. They will familiarise your child with the types of grammatical questions that they might come up against. At Exam Papers Plus, all of our SATs practice papers are fully up-to-date to match the style of the new SATs exams.

 

Our resources include:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test Pack 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test Pack 2

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test Pack 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test Pack 2

 

 

Practice Sentence Structure Exercises

 

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Sentence structure can be one of the most difficult aspects of the grammar test to grasp. One of the most effective ways of improving your child’s awareness of the different types of sentences that exist is to do ‘missing word’ exercises. Write out a few sentences and in each one, miss out a word. Ask your child to identify where in the sentence the word is missing and have them write in the correct word.

 

In the SATs grammar exam, sentence structure questions typically look like these:

 

Sentence substitution: The boy enjoyed eating bananas (use the following words to change the sentence in one way: girl, hated, chopping)

 

Find the right word to fit the sentence: Jane ____ lemonade (choose from jumps, eats, throws, drinks)

 

The more practice your child gets in answering these types of questions, the easier time they will have on exam day.

 

Play Word Games

 

 Photo of a game of scrabble on a table

 

Word games are a hugely effective way of expanding children’s vocabulary and improving their ability to put sentences together correctly. Consider playing the game ‘Not Just’, which involves using additional adjectives after saying ‘I’m not just…’, for example:

 

“I’m not just tired, I’m exhausted”

“I’m not just happy, I’m joyful”

 

Once you’ve said a sentence, get your child to repeat it or even to add to it if possible. Similarly, describing games can be fun, including the alphabet game that focuses on objects (nouns) and what they are doing (verbs), such as:

 

Cool Cat

Elegant Elephant

 

You can use these games when your child becomes tired or bored of their usual revision techniques. Children can have a lot of fun playing them with the family, so the games won’t feel like work.

 

Sing Songs

 

You will know from experience that it only takes a few listens of a song before your child catches on and begins to hum or sing along. Singing together allows children to put together more and more words quickly. Rhyming helps children to use full sentences, improve their intonation and build their confidence.

 

The popular children’s song ‘If You’re Happy and You Know it, Clap Your Hands’ involves a difficult grammatical structure that would be difficult to teach through explanation. However, by listening to the song and following the words, children will begin to recognise the structure without getting anxious about it. Give it a try:

 

 

Don’t forget to use correct grammar when you speak to your children. By doing so, they will learn the patterns of the English language – and will be less likely to make mistakes. Children practice their grammar every day as part of their speech, but if your child struggles with particular terminology, or is unable to put sentences together correctly, they might need additional practice ahead of the SATs grammar test.

 

Related posts:

English SATs Practice Papers: How They Can Help

The Benefits of Using SATs Practice Papers

 

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Posted on in SATs

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The National Curriculum tests, known as SATs, are used in all state-funded schools to assess children’s performance in key areas and to provide data used to monitor progress and provision in schools. The tests are quite rigorous and are designed to allow each child to demonstrate the breadth and depth of their knowledge and understanding.

 

The following list is designed to help parents prepare their children for the SATs exams. As you’ll discover, there are several things you can do to help your child maximise their chances of gaining a high score in the tests. Some of these tips are very easy to apply, whereas others may require more ‘training’, but all are aimed at helping KS2 children do their very best they can in this year’s SATs.

 

 

Keep Your Child Healthy

 

 

It seems like such a small thing, but eating well, sleeping well and relaxing are all an important part of doing well in any test. Although your child may have anxieties about the SATs, try to ensure that they feel relaxed about the exam, particularly at bedtime. Try to avoid sugary drinks or caffeine so that they get lots of deep, restorative sleep in the lead up to the big day. On the morning of the test, try to ensure that they eat a good breakfast, as studies have proven that hungry children have dramatically reduced levels of concentration in comparison to those who have eaten well.

 

 

Don’t Put Too Much Pressure on Them

 

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Although the tests are important, they are only the first stage of your child’s academic career and may well have a limited effect on their future educational successes. That said, forming good study and revision habits at this age can greatly benefit your child in future examinations. A positive and proactive attitude towards learning and developing the skills required for SATs will stand them in good stead for the future.

 

With this in mind, we advise parents not to put too much pressure on their child. Allow them to consolidate and focus on any weaker areas that they need improvement in. If they seem worried or anxious about the tests, try to avoid setting hours and hours of revision at the expense of their leisure time – it’s important to keep a sense of perspective.

 

 

Build Stamina

 

 

A common area of concern for a lot of parents is their child’s ability to focus for long periods at a time. Most of the SATs tests last for less than an hour, but for a ten or eleven-year-old, it can be very difficult to concentrate at full capacity for this length of time.

 

Encourage your child to focus on screen-free tasks that require them to concentrate away from a computer screen. Gradually build up these ‘concentration periods’ over time. For example, if your child only reads for five minutes before they become bored or restless, try encouraging them to aim for ten minutes, then twenty and so on. Board games that require skill, writing for a purpose (such as letters to a relative or composing a shopping list), fine motor skills activities such as building Lego models, and colouring activities are all ideal to help your child build up their ability to concentrate for longer periods of time.

 

 

Read the Question Twice

 

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Many children lose marks when they misread a question. This happens in all of the subject areas and can easily knock 10-20% from a child’s score. Encourage your child to read the question twice in order to improve their chances of understanding what they are being asked to do. Although this is important for questions that are weighted with higher marks, it’s just as important for the seemingly easier one-mark questions too. If your child doesn’t understand what the question is asking them to do, they should leave it and come back to it at the end of the test.

 

 

Check the Answer Twice

 

 

Another common reason that students lose marks in the SATs exam is that they don’t check their answers. They often don’t see the mistakes they’ve made and simply skim over their answers without pro-actively looking for errors. Teach your child the following strategy to help them identify mistakes:

 

Encourage them to imagine that they are explaining their answer to their teacher. What would the teacher say? What questions would they ask? Would they be satisfied with what was written?

 

For maths questions, children at this age should understand how to use the inverse, or opposite operation, to check their answers. For example, if they were asked to divide 200 into 8 equal groups, and they arrive at an answer of 25, then they should be able to confirm this is correct by using the calculation 8 x 25.

 

Don’t Leave Questions Unanswered

 

 

Many children leave harder questions unanswered. Of course, an unanswered question has absolutely no chance of scoring a mark. If your child is completely confounded by a question, they should always aim to write some form of an answer, even if it is a complete guess – you never know, it could be right!

 

Our SATs Resources:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs: Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs: Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2 SATs: Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs: Practice Test 2

 

Related posts:

Key Stage 2 SATS: A Parent’s Guide

The Benefits of Using SATs Practice Papers

 

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Posted on in SATs

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Parents with children in primary school know they have SATs to contend with in the future. You’ll no doubt hear a lot about SATs, but despite all the information available, these exams can still cause concern and you probably have some outstanding questions. In this article, we give an overview of the subjects covered in the SATs curriculum and how you can prepare your children for success in the exams.

 

The Role of SATs

 

 

The UK SATs curriculum aims to assess the level your child is working at. It’s an opportunity to compare pupils nationally across England to ensure that schools are helping pupils to master the basics in English and Mathematics.

 

 

The SATs Curriculum: Key Stage 1 (Year 2)

 

 

Your child will sit their first SAT test in Year 2 of primary school. These tests are taken at any time during May and are not strictly timed. In fact, in many classrooms, pupils won’t even know they are taking them, as teachers often incorporate them into normal lessons.

 

Students are currently tested in the following subjects:

 

  • English reading – two papers: (1) short text and questions (2) longer text with separate questions
  • Mathematics – two papers: (1) arithmetic (2) mathematical reasoning
  • English grammar, punctuation and spelling – two papers (1) spelling; (2) punctuation and grammar

 

It’s worth noting that SATs at KS1 could be scrapped under new government plans in the near future, so always check whether your child will be required to sit these tests with your child’s teacher.

 

Our Resources:

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

 

 

The SAT Curriculum: Key Stage 2 (Year 6)

 

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Children sit their Key Stage 2 (KS2) SATs in Year 6. These tests are 45 minutes long, are taken on set dates, under exam conditions and are externally marked.

Pupils are currently tested in English and Mathematics, with some schools opting to include science too. Papers are split as follows:

 

 

  • English reading: one paper
  • English: grammar, punctuation and spelling two papers: (1) spelling (2) punctuation and grammar (including vocabulary)
  • Mathematics: two papers: (1) arithmetic (2) mathematical reasoning
  • Mathematics: one paper on mathematical reasoning

 

Our Resources:

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 
Parents should receive SATs test results by the end of the summer year of Year 6. Your child will also receive an assessment from other parts of the curriculum, including English Writing and Science, but these will be administered by your child’s teacher.

 

 

How Parents Can Help Their Child Prepare

 

 Photo of a boy studying at home

 

The SATs curriculum requires children to have a good knowledge of a range of subjects, so in order for your child to feel confident heading into their SATs exams, they must feel prepared.

 

As a parent, there are a number of things you can do to help your child with their SATs preparation, including:

 

  • Setting a revision plan to cover all the subjects required within the SATs curriculum.
  • Build their concentration gradually. In order for your child to focus for the entirety of the 45-minute exams, they should start by revising little and often.
  • Introduce practice SATs papers into their study early on. These papers are proven to be an effective way of familiarising your child with the types of questions they might come across, leaving them less anxious about the marked exam.

 

Our practice tests cover all the topics your child will be tested on in the SATs curriculum. All of our papers match the style of the new SATs examinations to ensure they are current and accurate.

 

Download One of our Packs Today:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Related posts:
What Are SATs in the UK?

Key Stage 2 SATs: A Parent’s Guide

 

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Posted on in SATs

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In Year 6 of primary school, your child will sit their Key Stage 2 (KS2) SATs exams. For most children, this will be the first time that they experience test conditions. Practice SATs papers are one of the most effective ways of ensuring your child gives their best on exam day. In this article, we discuss how to use practice SATs papers at KS2 level.

 

Identifying Gaps in Knowledge

 

 

By Year 6, your child should have gained a solid grounding in the subjects covered in KS2 SATs, but there is often room for improvement. Practice SATs papers can help you identify your child’s weaker areas well ahead of the KS2 exams.

 

After your child has completed a few practice papers, take some time to see if you can spot any common errors they may be making. For example, in the English paper, your child might struggle with prefixes and suffixes, so more revision time should be given to understanding these processes.

 

At KS2, children can lose a considerable number of marks for not showing the working out of their answers, especially in the maths paper. If this is the case with your child, encourage them to take more time over their answers and record their workings. Doing so will certainly pay off in the end.

 

 

Tracking Progress

 

Photo of a girl in a red t shirt in the classroom

 

It’s important to track your child’s progress in the build-up to their SATs to make sure that they’re improving and are at the right level in time for the exams. Practice KS2 SATs papers will give you a good indication of their progress from paper-to-paper, as you can easily refer back to previous results and compare. All of our SATs practice papers come with a full marking scheme, which allows you to easily check your child’s answers and see what they need to do to improve.

 

By using practice papers to track your child’s progress, you will have a good overview of where they excel and where they need additional study time. For example, your child might have good subject knowledge but may not have experienced exam-style questions. With practice KS2 SATs papers, you’ll have every eventuality covered.

 

Recognising Question Types

 

 

Students often struggle to understand exactly what SATs questions are asking. Using SATs papers at KS2 level will give children the necessary experience required to identify the types of questions they’re likely to be asked. If your child knows what to expect, they are less likely to worry about the exam itself.

 

Children who are able to identify the question type will be in a better position to provide the examiner with the answer they are looking for. Even if a child doesn’t fully understand the wording of the question, if they follow the process for the specific question type, they stand a good chance of providing the correct answer.

 

Essentially, practice SATs papers give children a confidence boost, so the more they work through them, the more familiar they’ll become with how the exam is laid out.

 

 

Practice Under Exam Conditions

 

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In order for your child to perform at their best in the KS2 SATs, they must have experience of taking timed tests. With increasing emphasis being placed on SATs, it’s not uncommon for children to feel worried or anxious about the exams. Taking KS2 SATs papers under timed conditions gets students used to answering questions under pressure, so try to introduce them into your child’s study routine as early as possible.

 

The more practice papers your child takes under exam conditions, the better they will become at gauging how long they should be spending on specific questions. They’ll also feel more resourceful, knowing that they’re capable of completing a KS2 SATs paper within the allocated time.

 

Our Resources:

 

Key Stage 2 SAT Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SAT Practice Test 2

 

Related posts

KS2 SATs Preparation Tips

Key Stage 2 SATs: A Parent’s Guide

 

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Posted on in SATs

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In Year 6, your child will take their KS2 SATs exams, including three papers in English. In the English SAT, your child will be assessed on a number of reading and writing skills, so they will need to demonstrate accurate punctuation and good vocabulary. In this article, we explain how English SATs practice papers can help your child succeed in the exam.

 

 

Understanding Exam Structure

 

 

One of the biggest challenges that your child will face in their first SATs exam is understanding how the tests themselves are structured. Given that your child’s English SATs exam will likely be the very first one that they will sit in their school career, it’s worth taking the time to ensure that they know what to expect from each test paper.

 

The English SATs exam at KS2 level is split into three papers:

 

  • Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling: Paper 1. This paper tests all three areas and students are allocated 45 minutes to complete the test.
  • Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling Paper 2. This paper is a spelling test. The teacher will read 20 sentences out loud and students needs to complete the missing word in each one, while spelling it correctly. This second paper takes approximately 15 minutes to complete.
  • In this test, students are presented with three texts, all written in different styles, alongside an answer book with reading comprehension questions. This test takes one hour and questions can be answered in any order.

 

If your child already has a good idea of how the exam will be formatted, they won’t feel as nervous in the lead up to the big day. Familiarity breeds reassurance, so the more practice papers your child does, the more confident they’ll feel.

 

 

Recognising Question Types

 

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One of the most common reasons for children answering exam questions incorrectly is that they don’t understand what’s being asked of them. If your child is able to identify the type of question being asked, they should be able to form an answer that reflects what the examiner is looking for. The reading test, for example, has a selection of question types, including:

 

  • Ranking questions that require students to allocate numbers to specific events within the text.
  • Labelling questions, where pupils have to identify particular parts of a story.
  • Word finding questions that require students to find a word that refers to a specific theme or event.
  • Response questions, where students are asked a straightforward question and need to find the answer within the text.

 

The grammar and punctuation tests tend to have two different questions types: selected response, and constructed response. The former typically involves choosing from a selection of answers like in multiple-choice and true/false formats. The latter typically requires a written answer, like in ‘complete the sentence’ questions.

 

Using English SATs practice papers gives your child a better understanding of the types of questions that may be asked in the exam. The more practice tests your child takes, the better they will become at answering each type of question well.

 

 

Highlighting Weaker Areas

 

 

When it comes to revising for the English SATs exam, efficiency is key. Of course, you’ll want to ensure that your child’s revision plan covers everything they’ll need to know, but a little insight into their current performance can help structure their revision for the better.

 

English SATs practice papers are a great way to identify your child’s weak areas. Once they’ve completed a few papers and you’ve checked their answers, you may notice a pattern in their shortcomings. For example, if you notice that your child tends to answer the same type of question incorrectly, you’ll know to allocate more time to that particular area.

 

If you feel that your child’s reading skills aren’t up to scratch, encourage them to read about topics that interest them. This will feel less like revision and will help keep them motivated.  If they struggle with grammar, take on the role of teacher and read sentences out loud that have missing words in them, as per the actual exam.

 

Practice papers are also a good way of making children feel comfortable with receiving feedback, which will help their learning in the long-term too.

 

 

Improve Concentration

 

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The English SATs papers require your child to concentrate for long periods of time – probably longer than they’re used to in class.

 

In particular, the hour-long reading exam might challenge your child’s ability to focus. Practice SATs papers help your child to gradually build up their concentration levels. We would advise that students start small, with short, 10-minute practice sessions, gradually building up to a point that they’re able to complete a whole test paper in one go, under timed conditions.

 

By gradually increasing the amount of time that your child has to concentrate for, by the time the exam arrives, they should easily be able to focus for its entirety.

 

Give your child the best possible chance of success in their English SATs papers by downloading our packs today:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Related posts

Key Stage 2 SATs: A Parent’s Guide

SATs Advice for Parents

 

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Posted on in SATs

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When it comes to the SATs exam, there’s no such thing as too much practice. The more practice papers your child sits, the better prepared they’ll be for the actual exam. In this post, we look at the main benefits of using SATs practice tests.

 

Improved Time Management

 

 

Most children preparing for their SATs need to improve their time management skills. The more questions your child can get through on the day, the better chance they’ll have of achieving a high score.

 

Time management in the SATs exam is all about process. The more practice papers a student does under timed conditions, the better they’ll become at knowing how long each type of question typically takes. Once they know how long to spend on each question type, they’ll instinctively know when it’s time to move on.

 

At the end of each practice test, you can analyse your child’s time management based on how many questions (if any) are still left to do. If there are only a few questions left, then it may only take a few small adjustments to make up those extra minutes needed to complete the entire paper. Similarly, if you find that your child completes each practice paper with lots of time to spare, it could be that they aren’t answering each question in full. Or perhaps they need to use their extra time to double check their answers.

 

Practice SATs exams help students to pace themselves correctly by understanding which sections are likely to take more time than others.

 

 

Identify Gaps in Knowledge

 

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It’s easy to assume that your child already has all the knowledge they’ll need to perform well in their SATs. However, in reality, most students do have at least one weak area. With the help of practice exam papers, you can identify these early.

 

Once your child has completed a few different papers, have a look to see if you can spot any trends in the types of answers that they get wrong. You might find, for example in the Maths paper, that they struggle with tables and charts. In which case, you can allocate more focus to these weaker areas, giving your child time to improve before the exam.

 

The only way to improve your child’s weaker areas is through regular revision and testing using SATs practice papers. Our guide to the best revision techniques provides some useful insights into how you can make your child’s study sessions more effective.

 

Progress Tracking

 

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SATs practice papers are an excellent way of tracking your child’s progress in the lead-up to their exam. Although your child should certainly put in the hours when it comes to revising for their SATs, reading through notes alone won’t provide them with an indication of their progress.

 

Practice papers encourage children to think more critically about a topic or question and enable them to put their knowledge to the test. In some cases, children may have the knowledge and understanding but lack the exam technique to attain full points in certain questions.

 

At Exam Papers Plus, all of our SATs practice papers come with a full mark scheme, so you can check your child’s answers, identify their weak areas and see what they need to do to improve.

 

 

Recognising Question Types

 

 

Sometimes the most challenging part of answering an exam question is understanding what’s being asked exactly. The more experience your child has with answering different types of SATs questions, the more familiar each question type will become.

 

If your child is able to identify the type of question that’s being asked, they should be in a better position to form an answer along the lines of what the examiner is looking for. By following the process for that specific question type, they’ll be more likely to arrive at the correct answer, even if they don’t fully understand the wording of the question.

 

The more SATs practice tests your child takes, the better they will become at understanding exactly what each question is asking. And the more they work through SATs practice papers, the more familiar they’ll become with how the exam is laid out.

 

Our Resources:

 

Key Stage 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Key Stage 2

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Related posts

SATs Preparation: How to Support Your Child

Study Tips for the SATs Exam

 

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Posted on in SATs

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To help your child prepare for their SATs exam, we’ve put together this post which looks at the individual sections of the test. We’ve also outlined the skills your child will need to tackle them.

 

Sections in Key Stage 1 (KS1) SATs

 

 

Children sit their KS1 SATs at the end of Year 2 in primary school. These SATs are split into the following sections:

 

Reading

 

 

The reading test is made up of two papers:

 

  • Paper 1 – a selection of texts, with questions interspersed
  • Paper 2 – a reading booklet made up of a selection of texts. Children are required to write their answers on a separate sheet.

 

English Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPaG)

 

 

The SPaG test is made up of two papers:

 

  • Paper 1 – a 20-word spelling test
  • Paper 2 – a grammar, punctuation and vocabulary test

 

 

Maths

 

 

The KS1 maths test is made up of two papers:

 

  • Paper 1 – arithmetic
  • Paper 2 – mathematical problem-solving and reasoning

 

To help your child prepare for their KS1 SATs, check out the following resources:

 

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Sections in Key Stage 2 (KS2) SATs

 

 

Children sit their KS2 SATs at the end of Year 6 in primary school. These exams are more formal in nature and are usually externally marked. KS2 SATs are split into the following sections:

 

Reading

 

 

The KS2 reading test is a single paper with questions based on three passages of text. The paper will include a range of questions and children will be asked to interpret information within the text and comment on writers’ use of language throughout the passages.

 

 

English Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPaG)

 

 

The SPaG test is split into two parts: a grammar and punctuation paper and an aural spelling test. In the former, children will be required to identify particular word types such as adjectives and nouns and rewrite sentences or add missing apostrophes to constructed sentences.

Maths

 

At KS2, children sit three maths papers:

 

  • Paper 1 – arithmetic, this is made-up of fixed response questions, such as long division and multiplication
  • Papers 2 and 3 – reasoning, these papers involve a mix of questions including multiple choice and true or false

 

To help your child prepare for their KS2 SATs, we recommend the following resources:

 

KS2 SATs

 

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

 

SATs Skills Your Child Will Need

 

Photo of a boy reading a book

 

Subject-wise, your child’s school will be doing all they can to prepare them for the SATs, but you may still want to help them at home. In fact, there are certain skills that you can focus on outside of school that will really make a big difference.

 

Reading and Interpreting Questions

 

Once this skill is learnt, it can be used in all tests that your child will sit in the future. Children can sometimes misread what they are being asked to do and lose marks, so this is a skill well-worth working on at home. Use practice SATs papers to help your child perfect this skill ahead of the tests.

 

Understanding Test Format and Structure

 

 

As a parent, you should spend time familiarising your child with the SATs exam format, structure and content. Our practice papers show children what the test will look like, how it is laid out and where they should provide answers. The more time your child spends using practice papers, the more likely they are to be comfortable with the marked assessment.

 

Concentration

 

Boy concentrating

 

SATs are a challenge, particularly if your child tends to struggle with concentration. At KS2 level, your child will be required to concentrate for longer periods of time than might come naturally to them, so they will need to work to develop their capacity.

 

Help your child to gradually build up their concentration. Revision sessions tend to be more effective in shorter bursts of 20 minutes on a regular basis. It may be a while before children are able to concentrate for the full 20 minutes, so offer encouragement to maintain their focus. As the SATs tests draw nearer, begin to increase their concentration time, providing incentives if necessary.

 

Time Management

 

For your child to perform at their best in the SATs exam, they must have good time management. Practice this skill by challenging your child to see how many times tables or simple maths calculations they can complete in a given time period. You can build this up steadily and gradually give them more time.

 

Encourage your child to sit practice exam papers under timed conditions. This will enable you to identify any areas that might require more work. The SATs exam requires your child to be a good reader, so work on their reading skills by selecting a few pages from a book and reading it for a given time-period. You should also encourage any other form of reading.

 

Preparing your child for the different SATs sections is crucial. Your child needs to feel good about themselves and believe that they have the necessary skills to do their best in the exam. Remember to always take an interest in their SATs revision and provide them with good quality practice papers to hone their skills.

 

Related posts

What Are SATs in the UK?

Study Tips for the SATs Exam

 

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Posted on in SATs

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Using KS2 SATs practice papers is a valuable part of your child’s exam preparation. Not only do they help to keep revision focused on the important subjects, they also allow children to practice SATs exam-style questions.

 

In this article, we look at how practice SATs papers at KS2 level can help your child succeed in the exam.

 

Introduce Papers Early

 

 

Practice papers will help your child become familiar with the types of questions they may be asked in the KS2 SATs exam. The more your child understands the tests, the more comfortable they’ll be on the day. Similarly, the longer your child has to revise, the more opportunity they’ll have to retain all the information they’ll need. Early learning, little and often, is the best approach to using practice papers.

 

Track Progress

 

 

You can regularly track your child’s progress with our KS2 SATs papers. If your objective is to obtain an overview of how your child might perform in the SATs tests, then have your child take the tests under timed conditions.

 

However, if you are using the tests to identify any gaps in your child’s subject knowledge, then the time limit could be altered to ensure that your child is given enough flexibility to complete the test.

 

Practice tests help highlight the topics your child hasn’t mastered yet. To help them improve their knowledge, consider introducing different revision techniques into their study routine. Similarly, practice SATs papers can tell you which topics your child is most comfortable with, allowing you to direct their learning to other areas.

 

Practice Exam Papers as Mock Exams

 

 KS2 SATs

 

A popular way of using KS2 practice exam papers is to do them under timed conditions, as a mock exam in order to give your child a more realistic experience. When using practice papers as mock exams, it’s important that students stick strictly to the time limit. They should also avoid talking to anyone during this time, and shouldn’t refer to study materials.

 

If, for example, they are stuck on a question, they should learn to move onto the next one and return to it at the end. This way, they are more likely to answer as many questions as possible within the allotted time. Students who sit practice papers under timed conditions tend to perform better than those who simply revise.

 

It’s better for children to experience the disappointment of underperforming in a timed mock exam, than in the actual exam. Doing practice SATs papers under timed conditions helps focus children’s attention and develops the skills they need to perform under the pressure of exam conditions.

 

Reduce Anxiety

 

 

KS2 SATs will likely be the first time your child has experienced formal exam conditions, and understandably, they may feel anxious about sitting the tests. By using practice papers, children can familiarise themselves with the structure and layout of the exam. The more comfortable they are with the types of questions they may be asked, the less they are likely to be anxious about it.

 

Reinforce Learning

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Practice papers don’t just measure how much your child knows, or how well they are prepared for the KS2 SATs tests, they also help reinforce learning. Practice papers enable students to put their theory into practice by testing their ability to recall information and processes.

 

Focusing on practice papers throughout a child’s KS2 SATs preparation can also help them get used to receiving feedback, which is an essential skill for them to develop.

 

Related posts

KS2 SATs Preparation Tips

Key Stage 2 SATs: A Parent’s Guide

 

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Posted on in SATs

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For many children, the Year 6 SATs will be the first time they experience formal test conditions, and this can cause stress among some pupils. If your child is set to sit their SATs soon, they might be experiencing some anxiety. But don’t worry; as a parent, there is plenty you can do to support your child’s preparation. In this article, we outline some practical, easy-to-follow advice to help parents support their child during the SATs period.

 

 

Set a Revision Timetable

 

 

Parents should create a study plan that works for your child and your family’s life. Your child is more likely to stick to the plan if it slots easily into their daily routine. Most children respond better to revising little and often; just 20 minutes of SATs preparation every day can do wonders for your child’s knowledge and confidence going into the SATs assessment.

 

Support your child in the build-up to their SATs exam by preparing a revision timetable that they can easily follow. This timetable should clearly outline the topics that need to be covered and should offer a good mix of your child’s strong and weaker subjects, to maintain their overall motivation.

 

Maintain a Routine

Photo of a boy reading a Roald Dahl book

 

 

Exams are an inevitable and important part of your child’s education, but as their SATs date approaches, it’s vital to prioritise their overall wellbeing too. Keep the family’s routine on track; make sure your child continues to attend their usual sports clubs, or pursues their much-loved hobbies.

 

While children should be doing regular SATs revision, it shouldn’t be at the cost of their relaxation time. Children are more likely to perform well in their SATs if they have a good diet, get plenty of rest and participate in some physical activity.

 

 

Varying Their Learning  

 

 

Once you have established your child’s preferred learning strategy, it’s a good idea to mix up the types of learning they are using for their SATs. Support your child by running through some practice exam papers; doing so will give your child a better idea of the SATs format.

 

You can also play some fun revision games with your child, some of which can be done on the move or in the car. Turn everyday activities into SATs preparation, such as going shopping and estimating the cost of the items in your basket or create interesting stories based on an activity that happened during a visit to the park.

 

Learning shouldn’t be confined to a desk; SATs preparation can take many forms and parents should strive to pick a range of activities to help support their child ahead of the exams.

 

Use Good Quality Practice Papers

KS2 SATs

 

Parents should provide their child with relevant SATs resources during their exam preparation. For your child to succeed in their tests, they should already have good knowledge of the exam layout and format before entering the test room. Practice exam papers cater for this.

 

Our SATs practice papers are an affordable and comprehensive resource that are designed to help pupils prepare for their exams. They are updated regularly to ensure that they are current and accurate and detailed mark schemes are included, to help you monitor their progress and help them improve.

 

Work Against the Clock

 

 

Your child will be required to answer questions quickly if they stand any chance of completing the tests within the allotted time. So, put them under a little pressure to work under timed conditions. Again, practice exam papers are an excellent way of achieving this.

 

If your child struggles with time management, encourage them to use their time wisely in order to complete all the questions. Some children struggle to keep an eye on the time passing; if this is the case with your child, show your support by teaching them to assign a similar amount of time to each question. If they cannot complete a question, get them to move on and come back to it towards the end. The more your child works under timed conditions, the more likely they are to be calm during their actual exam.

 

 

Track Their Progress

 Photo of a girl working on a laptop

 

Your child will keep their motivation for longer if they can see that they are making progress. If you’re using our practice papers, detailed answers are included with the test, so you could set-up a bright wall chart in their designated study area to record results. This is a visual way to track progress over time.

 

 

Be Positive

 

 

Children are more likely to respond well to SATs preparation if their parents are positive and supportive throughout the process. Show your child that rather than being something to be feared, SATs are actually a good opportunity to share what they have learnt.

 

Keep the exams in perspective; don’t talk about ‘failing’ the SATs, as this can make things worse for a nervous child. Instead, share supportive words after each study session and work closely with your child during their revision periods.

 

Related posts:

Study Tips for the SATs Exam

SATs Advice for Parents

 

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Posted on in SATs

School boy in the classroom

Parents with children about to sit their Key Stage 2 SATs are bound to have questions about these government-set assessments. It can be a daunting time for children and parents can often struggle to help them fully prepare.

 

In this guide, we cover all the essential information you need to know about KS2 SATs and answer those burning questions.

 

 

What Are Key Stage 2 SATs?

 

 

Key Stage 2 SATs are formal assessments that children sit in Year 6 at primary school. They are national tests that aim to assess pupils’ academic progress in a fair and consistent manner. The tests are both set and marked externally, and the results are used to measure a school’s performance. KS2 SATs were updated by the UK government in 2016 to reflect the new National Curriculum. They are generally considered more challenging than previous iterations of the SATs exams.

 

 

Why Are Key Stage 2 SATs Important?

 

Photo of papers on a desk

 

Key Stage 2 SATs exist primarily to provide an overview of a child’s academic attainment and are considered a good way of measuring progress. They provide a means for both parents and teachers to learn about a child’s strengths and weaknesses, ahead of them advancing to secondary school.

 

Parents should view their child’s KS2 SATs as an opportunity. The assessments give your child the chance to shine and can put them in a stronger position in their next school. Good SATs results can give your child access to better educational opportunities in the future.

 

What Subjects do Key Stage 2 SATs Cover?

 

 

The National Curriculum for KS2 SATs covers the following subjects:

 

English Reading

 

 

For the English reading SAT at Key Stage 2, your child will need to complete an hour-long exam paper that contains questions based on three passages.

 

Your child will be expected to answer a range of question types during the English reading SAT. The questions will assess some or all of the following:

 

  • Short constructed responses – children must pick out relevant pieces of information in order to answer the question
  • Ranking and ordering – children must rank events according to when they happened in the passage(s)
  • Open-ended responses – children must explain their answers using the passage(s) as guidance
  • Find and copy – children must find and copy a word that fits the description laid out in the question

 

English Grammar, Spelling and Punctuation (SPaG)

 

 

The English grammar SAT at KS2 consists of two sections:

 

  1. A grammar and punctuation paper – this lasts 45 minutes and requires short answers.

This test will include two types of question: identification and constructed response. Identification questions require the student to identify or pick out keywords from a sentence. Children should be comfortable distinguishing between adjectives, nouns, verbs etc. Constructed response questions require students to correct, complete or rewrite sentences, or add a missing apostrophe where necessary.

  1. An aural spelling test – this lasts approximately 15 minutes and covers 20 words

 

Mathematics

 

 

At Key Stage 2, children sit three maths SATs papers:

  • Paper 1: arithmetic – this lasts 30 minutes
  • Papers 2 and 3: reasoning – these each last 40 minutes

 

Paper 1 will test a child’s ability to do fixed calculations, such as long division, whereas papers 2 and 3 will cover a range of questions, such as true or false, multiple choice or drawing shapes and completing diagrams.

 

Some schools also choose to test Science at Key Stage 2, so parents are advised to check with their child’s school prior to any SATs revision.

 

 

How Are Key Stage 2 SATs Marked?

 

Photo of a boy studying

 

 

KS2 SATs are no longer scored as ‘levels’. Under the current marking scheme, children receive ‘scaled scores’.

 

A child’s raw score – that is, the actual number of marks they get – is translated into a scaled score. This helps to allow for fluctuations in the tests year-to-year and allows for more accuracy when comparing results. Parents will receive both their child’s raw and scaled scores, and be told whether they reached the expected standard.

 

The range of scaled scores available for each test is:

  • 80 (the lowest scaled score that can be awarded)
  • 120 (the highest scaled score)

 

Children are expected to achieve a scaled score of 100 or more; if they received a scaled score of 99 or less, they will not have attained the expected standard in the test.

 

 

How Can Parents Help Their Children to Prepare for Key Stage 2 SATs?

 

 

Children set to sit the Key Stage 2 SATs should have access to the best practice resources available to improve their academic ability as well as their performance in the exams. As a parent, you can invest in practice SAT exam papers to ensure that your child has everything they need to achieve high marks in the assessments. Preparation is key, so alongside a revision timetable, children should regularly take practice papers to gain an idea of the types of questions they will face.

 

The following resources have been created specifically for those sitting the Key Stage 2 SATs exams:

 

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

These practice tests come with detailed mark schemes includes so you can see exactly what’s expected of your child. With a good parental understanding of KS2 SATs, and regular practice sessions with your child, these exams shouldn’t be the cause of any unnecessary worry at home.

 

Related posts:

KS2 SAT Preparation Tips

SAT Advice for Parents

 

Image source(s):

Chris Yarzab

Lash

Pexels

 

 

Posted on in SATs

Photo of a calculator and exam paper

Whether you are specifically helping your tutee prepare for SATs or not, it’s important to be aware of the SATs exam, and what it entails. In the first instance, if you are unfamiliar with the exam, find out more about SATs in this post.

 

 

Ensure Students Understand the SATs Exam Format

 

 

It’s essential that students understand how the SATs exam is structured. In Year 6, children sit exams that cover the following subjects:

 

  • Reading – A reading comprehension paper, 60 minutes duration
  • Spelling Punctuation and Grammar – Paper 1 is a 45 minute grammar and punctuation test and Paper 2 is a spelling test
  • Maths – Paper 1 (30 minutes) tests arithmetic , Paper 2 (40 minutes) and Paper 3 (40 minutes) test mathematical reasoning

 

A good way to help students become familiar with the exam layout and the types of questions they may be asked is to work through exam practice papers. SATs exams are relatively short time-wise, but require children to answer questions quickly and confidently.

 

Arrange for students to sit timed papers. If they run out of time, they’ll likely need to work on their time management skills. If they finish too early, they might have missed a question, or not answered each one in full. Practice exam papers give children vital SATs practice and immediate feedback after completion.

 

We would recommend the following resources for SATs practice.

 

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

 

KS2 SATs

 

 

Create a Tailored Study Plan

 

 

A study plan should be one of the first things you implement in a student’s SATs preparation. The plan should allow adequate time to cover all the required topics, while allowing students some much-needed relaxation in between sessions. A study timetable can be as simple as a spreadsheet, or as vibrant as a wall planner – either way, make sure that there’s a plan in place before you begin your first study session together.

 

Children are more likely to perform well in the exam if they have a structured plan in place, so tutors should aim to:

 

  • Encourage students to study little and often – shorter study sessions make it easier for children to retain information.
  • Consider which learning strategy is best for your student. Good tutors should assess a child’s ability on a case-by-case basis, to ensure that their study programme is as tailored as possible and contains the right mix of learning techniques. For example, a good SATs tutor will know whether their student is good at note taking, or prefers visual aids to improve their memory.

 

 

Make Revision Fun

 

Girl in a classroom smiling

 

Motivation is key in preparing children to sit the SATs exam. Tutors should make revision sessions fun in order to maintain students’ interest in studying, particularly on days where their motivation is lacking. Of course, this can be difficult, especially after a tiring school day, but it’s vital to a child’s success that revision sessions don’t become boring.

 

Try to vary each lesson as much as possible by introducing different teaching methods and revision games.

 

 

Reward Good Effort

 

 

A large part of SATs exam success is down to confidence. If students believe that they can do well in the exam, they’re far more likely to perform at their best on the day. As a tutor, it’s important to acknowledge when your student has performed well in a certain task. By providing positive, encouraging feedback, your students will be motivated to continue doing well.

 

Although rewarding good effort is undoubtedly important, be careful not to give undue praise. It’s important that students have realistic expectations and know where their strengths and weaknesses lie.

 

Related posts:

SATs Advice for Parents

Study Tips for the SATs Exam

 

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Department of Ed

Posted on in SATs

Photo of a boy in the classroom

The build-up to SATs in primary school can cause feelings of anxiety and unease in young children and it can also be a tense time for parents too. In this post, we’ve put together some helpful SAT advice for parents, including how to help your child study and how to help them deal with exam stress.

How to Help Your Child Cope with SATs

 

The more preparation your child does for the exam, the more confident they’ll feel in answering the different types of questions. One of the best ways of helping your child establish effective learning habits is to plan what they’ll study beforehand. Creating a study schedule with your child can be a great way to ensure that they cover everything they’ll need to know for the exam.

 

However, coping well with SATs isn’t just about what, or when, your child studies but how. The way that your child approaches their revision is just as important as the time they put in. As a parent, there are several ways you can ensure your child develops good study habits, such as:

 

  • Helping them to find a quiet place to study.
  • Encouraging them to ask for help, either from yourself or a teacher, if they are unsure of something.
  • Investigating the best learning strategy for your child, to ensure all study time is as effective as possible.
  • Taking practice exam papers to enable your child to not only familiarise themselves with the test’s layout, structure and format, but to also improve their time management.
  • Splitting study time into short, 20-minute bursts. For the majority of children, this is a more manageable approach than long study sessions and it’ll keep their motivation levels higher for longer.

 

Coping with Exam Stress

 

Photo of Desks in an exam hall

 

Everybody reacts differently to exam pressure, including young children. While many cope well with test conditions, others might need more support. During this time, it’s important that parents also learn to cope with SATs stress, in order to keep your child’s anxiety levels low. But how?

 

Be positive

 

As an interested parent, you are one of your child’s main support networks – not to mention their biggest cheerleader. Children will have a better response to their SATs preparation if they are surrounded by positive messages during their revision sessions. Don’t talk about ‘failing’ the SATs; keep your child motivated by encouraging them after each study session and if they are struggling with a particular topic, work through it with them.

 

Think beyond the classroom

 

As a parent, it is your responsibility to ensure your child is eating well, sleeping properly and keeping active during the SATs revision period. Establish a routine of going to bed at a reasonable time, make sure they are eating a balanced diet and build time into their study plan for them to have some fun and get enough exercise. The key is to avoid SATs exam burnout, so allow your child to lead a balanced life in the run-up to the exam.

 

If your child is struggling with stress, watch this short video together and have a chat afterwards about their worries or concerns:

 

 

Be prepared

 

Feeling unprepared is one of the biggest causes of exam stress in children. The more your child prepares for their SATs, the more likely they’ll cope easily with the whole process – and therefore, so will you! Work through practice SAT exam papers with your child to ensure they are comfortable with the questions. Once they understand what the examiners are looking for, have them take a few practice papers on their own, under exam conditions. You’ll be amazed at how much a child’s confidence increases once they’re fully prepared for SATs.

 

Dealing with SATs Results Day

 

Photo of a girl upset

 

Waiting for SAT results can be a tense time for the whole family. If your child doesn’t get the results they’d hoped for, disappointment is understandable, but it’s not the end of the world.

 

Keep SATs in perspective on results day by:

 

  • Reassuring your child that you’ll be proud of them however they do. Explain to them that their SATs results are only a small part of their time at school, and an even smaller part of their whole life, so as long as they tried their hardest, you’re happy.
  • Explaining to your child that SATs only focus on specific subjects. If they have a passion for a subject or two that isn’t tested, then the results don’t showcase their overall ability.
  • Learning from the overall experience. If your child has taken SATs in KS1, is there something different you would do for their SATs preparation in KS2? Or if your child has taken SATs in Year 6, can they learn from their experience? Parents should remain positive on results day; even if your child doesn’t do as well as you’d hoped, it’s important to stay constructive about their future learning. If you’re positive, your child is less likely to be despondent.

 

Related posts:

Study Tips for the SAT Exam

What are SATs in the UK?

 

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Emmy Kid 49

 

Posted on in SATs

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Key Stage 2 (KS2) SATs take place in May and aim to give teachers an indication of the academic progress your child has made so far.

 

Pupils sit their second set of SATs at KS2 in Year 6 and are tested on:

  • Reading
  • Maths
  • Spelling, punctuation and grammar

 

KS2 SATs are marked externally, with children receiving their results before they leave primary school in the summer term of Year 6. As a parent, it can be easy to feel unprepared ahead of the SATs exams. But with some organisation and planning, KS2 SATs revision needn’t be a stressful experience.

 

To get the most from your child’s SATs preparation at KS2, consider the following advice:

 

Be Organised

 

This is arguably the most important part of SATs preparation. Success in the exams comes from starting your child’s revision early and establishing an action plan. It’s important to involve your child in establishing a study routine from the very beginning, so that they feel included and more willing to listen to advice later on.

 

Devise a Study Plan

 

At KS2 level, SATs are more formal than previous exams your child will have taken, so it’s a good idea to create a study plan early on. Some children prefer a wall planner, so they can actively cross off completed study sessions, while others work better online with a spreadsheet that’s updated regularly with progress.

 

A KS2 SAT study plan should clearly state the subjects that need to be studied, when, and for how long. You should encourage your child to make time to study every day, even if it’s just for 20 minutes. It may be a good idea to complete SATs study immediately after school, so your child has some valuable relaxation time before they go to bed.

 

Read Anything – and Everything!

 

Photo of books on a bookshelf

 

At KS2 SAT level, children need to be good readers, so encourage them to read more. Pick a book from this reading list or suggest they expand their reading into something more meaningful to them, such as sport, travel or appropriate news stories.

 

At 11 years old, your child might think they are too old for a bedtime story, but reading together will improve both their reading and listening skills very quickly. The KS2 Reading SATs exam focuses on comprehension, so try to ask them questions during the story.

 

Make SAT Revision More Fun

 

Asking a child to commit time regularly to KS2 SATs revision is a big ask, but by making it more fun, there’s more chance of them enjoying the process. Revision games are an excellent way of keeping a child focused on the task at hand.

 

Take some time to make up a quiz, play a round or two of revision snap or help your child to remember key facts with silly mnemonics or ridiculous rhymes. These types of games work particularly well for children who struggle to sit still for fixed periods of time.

 

Use Practice Papers

 

Practice papers for KS2 SATs can be used early on in your child’s preparation, as they give a clear idea of how the exam paper will be laid out and what format it will take.

 

At Exam Papers Plus, our practice tests cover the subjects your child will be tested on in the KS2 SAT exams: Mathematics, Reading and English grammar, punctuation and spelling. They also come with detailed mark schemes, so you can easily identify in which areas your child may need additional preparation.

 

Our SATs practice tests cover all the required subjects of the real exams and have been updated to ensure they are current and accurate. Download a pack today:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

Keep a Normal Routine

 

Kids playing soccer outside

 

Ahead of the KS2 SATs, children should continue with their usual routine. Don’t skip after-school clubs or sports practice, as this down-time is a vital component in keeping your child happy and healthy. In fact, in these periods of relaxation, children are able to recharge their brain and often come to their next study session more focused and able to concentrate for longer. Ensure your child gets a good night’s sleep ahead of the exam and give plenty of reassurance that there’s nothing to worry about, it’s just another day at school.

 

This selection of SAT tips for KS2 should banish many of your worries about the tests themselves. If you and your child are organised, follow a study plan and keep positive throughout the process, you’ll realise that the KS2 SATs aren’t so difficult after all.

 

Related posts:

Study Tips for the SAT Exam

What are SATs in the UK?

 

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KD1890

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Posted on in SATs

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For your child to do their best in the SATs exam, they need to be fully prepared and confident in their ability. As a parent, there’s plenty you can do to ensure that your child’s SATs revision time is fun and not overwhelming. In this post, we cover a variety of useful study tips that will help your child through stress-free, SATs exam preparation.

 

Create a Designated Study Area

 

At home, it can be tough to create an environment that’s conducive to studying, but it’s important to make the effort. It’s worth setting up a separate desk space in a lesser-used room in the house, rather than having your child study in their bedroom, where there are lots of distractions.

 

If you have younger children, make sure they know that they shouldn’t interrupt during study periods. For SATs, revision sessions should be little and often; you don’t want to overwhelm your child. Try to aim for 30-minute bursts of learning on a regular basis.

 

Create a Study Plan

 

Photo of a hand-written timetable

 

The key to performing well in SATs is good preparation. Not only does being prepared reduce stress levels for you and your child, but it provides an overview of what topics are left to cover. Play to your child’s preferences with the planner – if they’re a visual learner, opt for an attractive wall planner, for example. Alternatively, set up a simple spreadsheet.

 

A good SATs study plan should outline the topics that need to be studied, when and for how long. Keep your child’s confidence high by mixing up their weaker subjects with their strongest. Tick off each study session and reward your child for completing them.

 

Take Regular Breaks

 

Breaks should be accounted for in the study plan. Without them, your child will lose their focus and they may begin to resent their study sessions. Ideally, your child should give their brain and their eyes a rest during their breaks, so encourage them to go for a walk, or play in the garden, rather than using the internet or watching TV.

 

Make Learning More Fun

 

Even the most diligent pupils can sometimes find study sessions a chore. Revision games are an excellent way of keeping your child on track with their SATs study.  Some games you might want to try include creating a rhyme, or rap to remember important information, making quizzes to test their knowledge, and making voice recordings as a passive learning technique.

 

Use Practice Exam Papers

 

SAT Practice Exam Papers

 

When studying for SATs, it’s important to ensure that your child has a good understanding of what to expect in the actual exam. Exam practice papers are a great opportunity to familiarise them with the exam structure and layout. As the SATs get closer, arrange for your child to do timed papers. This will help them get used to answering questions under pressure and improve their time management skills.

 

Adapt to You Child’s Preferred Learning Style

 

Most children have a preference for a particular learning style. If your child is a visual learner, encourage them to use mind maps or diagrams. If they are an auditory learner, suggest they record their notes and play them back through headphones. For more active learners, give them space to move around the room while reciting their revision notes. Find what style works best for them early on in their study plan and they will make excellent progress in time for their SATs exam.

 

For more information about learning styles, check out this video:

 

 

Make it a Family Affair

 

The whole family should be aware of any impending SATs exam and should try to be as encouraging as possible during the preparation period. Many children respond well to the challenge of quizzes, so devise short question tests for family members to run through with them.

 

Related post:

What are SATs in the UK?

 

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Kessi

Posted on in SATs

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If you have a child at primary school in England, you’re probably aware of SATs. In this post, we look at the exams at each level and provide advice on the best way to prepare for them.

 

What Are SATs?

 

SATs are national tests that children take twice during their primary school life. Firstly, at the end of Key Stage 1 (KS1) in Year 2, and then secondly, at the end of Key Stage 2 (KS2) in Year 6. These standardised tests are actually known as End of Key Stage Tests and Assessments, but most people know them as SATs.

 

What do SATs Aim to Achieve?

 

Photo of two girls writing in a book

 

SATs are an indicator of the progress your child has made at school so far. They are not a measure of whether your child is passing or failing; they simply show what level your child is currently working to.

 

Every year, there is a debate about the effectiveness of SATs. Our advice is to find out your child’s preferred learning methods and support them during the build-up to the exams.

 

SATs at KS1

 

KS1 tests are assessed by teachers. This means that there is no external marking, except occasionally for moderation, and the tests themselves tend to be fairly informal, so as not to create any undue pressure for pupils. Currently, children are tested in maths (arithmetic) and English (reading, spelling, punctuation and grammar). However, under new government plans, in the near-future, SATs at KS1 level could be scrapped.

 

In Years 3, 4 and 5, some schools choose to have children take optional SATs. Although the results from these tests are not nationally recorded, they do enable teachers to assess a child’s progress.

 

Our resources:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

 

SATs at KS2

 

Pupils sit their second set of SATs at KS2 level in Year 6. These tests are more formal than those taken in KS1 and have set exam days as well as external marking in the majority of schools. Children will take exams in English reading comprehension, grammar, punctuation, spelling, mathematical reasoning, and arithmetic.

 

Our resources:

 

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

When Do We Get SATs Results?

 

Photo of a front door letter box

 

Once the KS2 SATs are complete, they will be sent away for external marking and children should receive their results towards the end of the summer term in July of Year 6. You will receive a report stating your child’s:

 

  • Raw score – simply, the actual number of marks they received in their SATs
  • Scaled score – a conversion score that allows results to be compared year-on-year
  • Expected standard – whether or not they have achieved the national standard

 

SATs have undergone significant changes in recent years, having previously been marked using ‘levels’. As of 2016, national SATs results are to be reported only in the form of scaled scores.

 

How Can I Help My Child Prepare for SATs?

 

A lot of the skills that students need to do well in the test are taught in the classroom, but you can also do additional preparation at home to make your child feel confident going into the exam, including:

 

  • Agreeing on a revision plan and ensuring your child sticks to it.
  • Revising little and often – asking children to concentrate for 45 minutes requires practice, so don’t overwhelm them. Take a look at our revision tips for more practical advice.
  • Take SATs practice papers. Practice papers will go a long way in helping to familiarise your child with the types of questions they might come across.
  • Keep a positive attitude. Yes, SATs are important but if you stress out about your child’s upcoming tests, it might rub off on them.

 

Our SATs practice tests cover all the topics your child will need to know for the real exams. They are updated regularly to ensure that they are current and accurate. Detailed mark schemes are included.

 

Download one of our packs today:

 

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 1 SATs Practice Test 2

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 1

Key Stage 2 SATs Practice Test 2

 

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Sam Muir

Seattle Community Tech