High School entrance exam
By Chantale Alvaer, SOSteacher founder and teacher
The end of elementary school, which leads to starting high school,marks an important step in a child’s life. Most private schools and public high schools with selective programmes require that aspiring candidates pass an entrance exam. Since the number of applications often far exceeds the number of students who can be admitted, the entrance test for these schools is a rigorous selection process which requires careful preparation. Preparing properly will reduce the stress and anxiety experienced by many hopeful candidates (and their parents).
What is included in the high school entrance test?
The multiple-choice assessment is divided into four components:
- General Culture
- Logical Skills
FOR YOUR INFORMATION REGARDING THE TEST FORMAT
Regardless of your choice of school, the high school admission test is fairly standardized. You will need to ask each school you wish to apply to for a test outline and test format. This will allow us to customize our approach to your choice of school, and we will follow the outline provided.
We offer the high school entrance exam preparation service online as well!
How SOSteacher works for private high school entrance exam preparation courses: our specialty!
- We offer personalized private tutoring services, according to your schedule, with a tutor specialized in high school entrance exam preparation. This preparation leaves no room for improvisation:
- over 92% of our students pass the high school entrance exam.
- You will need an average of 10 to 15 hours of tutoring to complete your preparation, divided into 5 or 6 classes. The number of hours of private tutoring depends on your student’s current academic performance.
- We work with the High School Entrance Exam package available at any good bookstore or big box store.
- You will begin by completing the Challenge Test 1 to identify your child’s needs (strengths and challenges).
- We will acknowledge his or her strengths, and work on your child’s particular challenges, which is the great advantage of working one-on-one.
- Additionally, a correction of the final simulation will be done.
- Feel free to add additional courses as needed, to consolidate learning, maintain skills, or provide enrichment.
Over the years, we have acquired an EXCELLENT NOTORIETY with the majority of schools. We are therefore recommended by many private and public schools. – Chantale Alvaer, founder and teacher
PREPARATION KIT (on sale everywhere for approximately $19.99)
Photo: Renaud Bray
The advantage of individual private lessons offered by SOSteacher
How to choose the right tutoring service?
The private lessons offered by SOSteacher are very advantageous compared to small group lessons:
- Flexible schedule that fits your schedule;
- You select your tutor through our personalized and diversified teaching resources;
- Very quick and efficient targeting of your child’s particular needs (where he/she is in his/her learning process)
- Your child will not have to adapt to a new group, reducing anxiety;
- You get immediate feedback from your tutor;
- No time is wasted in managing a group and the pace of learning for each individual, private lessons allow you to see results 3 times faster.
It is required that students write a narrative or descriptive text for the French component, hence the importance of knowing and practicing the structure of these texts beforehand. It is crucial to know that the subject matter of this test is seen in grade 5 and not the current year, i.e. grade 6. Most high schools set the passing grade at 70% for the entrance exam. However, if your child received 60% when the required pass mark is 10% higher, some schools offer the possibility of retaking the entrance exam at a later date if there are still available spots.
Duration of the Test
The High School Admission Test is approximately 3 hours in length. Two 15-minute breaks are usually offered to candidates. It is a real countdown that requires excellent preparation and much practice.
Tips: There is no such thing as perfection. Very few candidates pass the test with 100%. However, you should trust yourself and not waste your precious time on a question that is causing you problems. You can come back to it at the very end if you have time left. The important thing is to answer as many questions as possible without neglecting the quality of your answers. One question dodged is nothing compared to 10!
Would you like a tutor to help you prepare?
Preparing for the High School Entrance Exam
- You must prepare several weeks in advance, more precisely two months.
- Practice practice, practice! Many good quality workbooks can be found on the shelves of good bookstores as well as some big box stores.
- Review Grade 5 material during the summer using a one-on-one tutoring service. Homework time is already a very problematic time for many families; imagine the stress of having to prepare for the high school entrance exam in addition. An online tutor is a wise choice.
- The child and parent should be able to discuss the assessment and create a Plan B. Passing is the goal and ideal for everyone, but also be prepared for failure, with or without the possibility of a retest.
- Make sure you get a few good nights’ sleep before the entrance test.
The Day of the Exam
Learning how to manage stress is a key element for the success of the high school admission test – practice relaxation techniques to properly manage your anxiety. Bring the necessary school supplies for the test: an eraser, a pencil, a pen, a highlighter, a corrector (preferably tape) and a snack. Since tests differ from school to school, a list of items is provided in advance. One last point: make sure you eat a well-balanced breakfast. Concentration will be at its best!
For the exam, you will need:
- Identification, usually a birth certificate
1. A pencil
2. An eraser
3. A blue pen
4. A correction pen (Wite-Out)
5. A highlighter
6. A geometry set
Don’t get discouraged, no matter what the outcome!
In conclusion, as a parent, I went through this private school exam preparation process with my child. Although I am a Grade 5/6 teacher, it was a stressful time, as my daughter, who was in Grade 2 at the time, was not always cooperative and was sometimes reluctant to put forth the necessary effort. An added stress was that her schooling had always been in English and she was migrating to French. “Overconfident,” she said, she failed her admission test, but not by much. Fortunately, she was able to recover and was eventually admitted. What if your child doesn’t pass? That’s a reality you need to prepare for as well, in addition to being overwhelmed with the excitement of passing the high school entrance exam in the first place.
Other relevant links to help you prepare: