Monday 16 September, 2019

11-Plus Math paper threw some curveballs

Students leaving the Examination Center at the Combermere School.

Students leaving the Examination Center at the Combermere School.

The general consensus from students sitting the 2018 Barbados Secondary School Entrance Exam (BSSEE) was the exam was relatively easy, however the Mathematics paper was somewhat challenging.  

A total of 3,426 students sat this year's 11+ examination at various secondary schools around the island on Tuesday. Loop News visited the Combermere School where 231 students from Lawrence T. Gay Primary, St. Matthew's Primary, Hindsbury Primary, The Rock Christian School, Windsor High, Hill Top Preparatory School and Belleville Grammar School were registered to sit the examination. 

When the examination ended shortly after 1 pm, a mass exodus of students rushed to the gates to meet anxious parents and guardians who embraced and showered them with hugs and kisses.  Students gathered in groups to share commentary on the exam with phrases such "it was cake" and "too easy" being thrown around. 

Mother of Sadé Clarke, Marilyn Husbands-Clarke could barely contain her emotions when she saw her daughter exit the school. The L.T. Gay student told Loop News the exam was "good". She said she chose to write on the picture composition and she felt a sense of relief after she completed that part of the exam.  

Sadé admitted the Mathematics paper was more difficult than she expected but she is hopeful her performance would still allow her to get into her first choice- The St. Michael School.  



Hemanjali Mahabir of the Rock Christian School said going into the Exam she was not at all nervous and had fun writing her Composition. She said the preparations were intense as she attended lessons every day of the week excluding Fridays and Sundays. 

Hemanjali echoed similar sentiments about the difficulty of the Mathematics paper, "the Math was a little challenging … a few things were hard. Section C was the challenging thing and a few in Section B," she said.  

Twin boys of the Hill Top Preparatory School, Kyle and Gavin Alleyne both said the Exam was a lot easier than they expected. Gavin said there were a few trick questions in the Mathematics paper but he was able to work through them.  Father Brian Alleyne said the boys did a lot of preparation leading up the exam, starting lessons from as early as Class Two and he is confident they both will do well. He said The St. Michael's School and Harrison College are the top choices for the boys.  









Teacher at the Hill Top Prep School, Beverley Lowe told Loop News during her 15-year tenure as a Class Four teacher she too has recognized that Section C of the Mathematics paper poses the most problems for students.  

"Section C is usually the most challenging and children hate to put down working so I insisted on that. And I gave them clues on how to go about doing it so they were pretty good in the end." 

Lowe also said leading up to the exam she made sure each of her 33 students were properly grasping the concepts which they would be tested on.  

"We did quite a bit of preparing, we did mostly past papers. I didn’t do the past papers in order, I did them according to the standard of the children so that they will be able to perform well." 




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