11 Plus Preparation Timetable

Updated:April 14, 2024
Author:Creative Hare

Are you wondering how you can help your child prepare for their 11 Plus at home? You’ve come to the right place! 

Preparing for 11 Plus exams can be a big deal for both parents and children. Some of the most common reasons why preparing a revision timetable can feel overwhelming for parents are: 


Pressure to Help

As a parent, you naturally want to support your child as best you can. But you might feel unsure and confused about how to go about it. You may worry about making mistakes or not doing enough in the time you have to prepare.

Time Constraints

As a parent, you no doubt already have a lot on your plate with work, household chores and other responsibilities. Finding time to create a study plan for your child on top of everything else can feel overwhelming to say the least!

Many parents worry that their child should be studying for 2-3 hours a day. Every child has a unique character, different strengths and weaknesses, so there is no one size that truly fits all. 

Fear of Failure

Parents want their child to succeed and the thought of your child not doing well in their exams can be scary. You might worry about the impact it could have on your child’s future. 

Comparing to Others

Hearing about other children preparing for the exam can make parents feel like they’re not doing enough. You might worry about your child falling behind or not being as prepared as others.

Finding the Right Balance

As a parent, of course you want to strike a balance between pushing your child to do their best and not putting too much pressure on them. It can be challenging to find the right balance that works for your child. 

Overall, planning for the 11 Plus exam can be stressful. You want what’s best for your child, so you may worry about making the right decisions to help them succeed.

But it doesn’t have to be overwhelming! 

Having a study schedule can reduce stress and overwhelm when it’s perfectly suited to your child. It can also prevent last minute panic which will children to feel calm and confident in the run-up to exam time.

"Learning is not attained by chance; it must be sought for with ardour and diligence."

Abigail Adams

Study Plan

Using another child’s study plan might seem like a foolproof method to ensure comprehensive coverage, but it isn’t the ultimate recipe for successful prep. 

Your child is unique, so while tackling maths and English topics may seem daunting, nothing can substitute for the investment of time in determining what approach suits you and your child’s needs and family situation. 

It’s essential to get clear on the exact exam requirements for your child’s maths and English exams. For example, ask the school admissions department if the English comprehension involves standard written answers or uses a computerised multiple-choice format. If it’s computerised then online practice, such as Atom Learning, will be helpful. If your child is sitting a written comprehension paper then you know to include plenty of paper practice. 

With a child-centred approach and a sprinkle of flexibility, you can create a study schedule that makes learning fun and effective!

Now Let’s look at how to craft one that best suits your child’s needs.


Understand Your Child’s Needs

Every child is unique. Some might excel in certain areas while needing extra support in others. This is completely normal. Before crafting a study schedule, I recommend you take some time to understand your child’s strengths and weaknesses in English. 

For example, are they confident in comprehension but struggle with creative writing? Or maybe it’s the other way around. Tailoring their schedule to address these specific needs will make studying more individually focused and therefore beneficial. 


Break It Down into Bitesized Chunks

The 11 Plus English exam covers various topics like comprehension, verbal reasoning and creative writing. Instead of overwhelming your child with all these at once, break them down into smaller, manageable chunks. For example, focus on one topic per day or per week, depending on your child’s pace and what year group they’re in. Check out my blog for expert tips on How to Plan for 11 Plus Creative Writing Success


Set Realistic Goals

Smart goals give direction to your child’s study efforts. But make sure they are realistic and achievable. Setting unattainable goals can demotivate your child. So start with small, measurable goals like completing a comprehension passage without assistance or develop a reading habit. Celebrate each achievement to keep the motivation high.


Create a Flexible Schedule

Flexibility is key when crafting a child-friendly study schedule. Children have different energy levels and attention spans throughout the day. Some might prefer studying in the morning, while others are more productive in the afternoon or evening. Let your child have a say in determining the study timetable. Allow for breaks and a generous dose of fun to prevent burnout.


Make Learning Fun

Learning doesn’t have to be boring! Incorporate fun and interactive activities into your child’s study routine. For example, turn vocabulary learning into a game by using flashcards or use vocabulary apps such as ChatterStars. Encourage reading by letting your child choose books that interest them. For grammar practice watch some BBC Bitesize videos that make learning digestible and enjoyable!

Provide Support and Encouragement

Your child’s journey towards the 11 Plus English exam may feel challenging at times. Here are three of my top tips to help keep your child thriving:

  • Nourish yourself so you can be there to provide support and encouragement every step of the way. 
  • Offer praise for their efforts and improvements, no matter how small. 
  • Create a positive learning environment where mistakes are seen as a normal part of life and growth. Your encouragement will boost your child’s confidence and motivation.

Include Practice Tests

Practice makes perfect, and this holds true for the 11 Plus English exam as well. Include regular practice papers in your child’s study schedule to familiarise them with exam questions. It’s best to introduce time constraints after your child has experienced plenty of untimed paper practice. 

What about Mock Tests?

Mock test exams often draw attention to children’s resilience. It’s common for parents and children to have high expectations for their first mock exam. However, this can lead to children internalising a lot of pressure which will impact their performance. It’s a good idea to book several mock tests to help spread any pressure that your child may feel. 


Balance Academic Study with Relaxation

While preparing for the exam is important, so is relaxation and downtime. 

In fact, it’s essential for your child’s creativity to flow!

Ensure their study schedule includes plenty of time for rest, play and relaxation. Engage in activities together that help reduce stress and promote wellbeing, such as a walk or family film nights. A well-rested and happy child will perform better academically.

Review and Adjust If Needed

As your child progresses through their study schedule, regularly review their performance and adjust their work accordingly. If certain topics need more focus, don’t be afraid to allocate additional time to them.

If you feel your child is feeling overwhelmed, experiment with easing up on the workload or adjusting the study timetable. Flexibility is key to ensuring their success and wellbeing.

Celebrate Achievements

Finally, celebrate your child’s ‘wins’ along the way. Whether it’s using more ambitious vocabulary, perfecting their story endings or simply completing their weekly study schedule, acknowledge their hard work and effort. Celebrations can be simple, like a foodie treat, but they go a long way in boosting your child’s confidence and motivation. 




Creating a child-friendly study schedule for their 11 Plus is all about understanding your child’s needs, setting realistic goals and providing support and encouragement along the way. Having the confidence to run with a flexible and enjoyable approach to learning, your child will be well-prepared to tackle their exams with confidence and clarity. 

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