Monthly Archives: July 2019

SATs and GCSE Curriculum Change

Homework Image

Did you know there was a SATs and GCSE curriculum change in 2016 and 2017?

New grading systems are put in place so a clear differentiation can be made amongst the brightest students.

SATs Curriculum

The SATs grading system was measured in levels, e.g. Level 4 was the expected level for students finishing primary school. Since its change in 2016, it is now scored from 80-120, where 100+ means students are meeting the government standard. The SATs writing assessments are graded by the teachers, who decide their student’s progress.

The Grading System

The GCSE grading was previously measured by a letter system, from A*- U.

Since 2017, a numerical grading system is now in place, from 9 (highest) to 1 (lowest).

This is understandably a confusing change to adapt to; made easier through comparing the letter grades alongside the numerical ones.

→ Grades 9, 8, 7 are equal to A* and A, with fewer grade 9s are awarded than A*s.

→ A grade 4 can be compared to a C.

There are two pass marks:

→ 5 = high pass (high C).

→ 4 = low pass (low C).

→ Gaining all 4s means passing all exams.









To test this new system, the new grades are slowly being eased in, with the letter grading system phased out from 2017-2019. In its first year in 2017, the new English and Maths curriculum were the only subjects to introduce the numerical grades. According to the Department of Education, this system is more challenging, especially maths. The amount of content has increased and there are concerns about the amount of pressure put on students.

In the GCSE curriculum, the amount of coursework has been reduced with a focus on exams. Another major change is the English Literature and Language syllabus.

The English Syllabus

→ English Literature: focuses on ‘classic texts,’ like Shakespeare, 19thcentury novels, poetry from 1789 onwards, and prose from the British Isles from 1914. This means there are no more classic texts like Of Mice and Men.

→ English Language: no more set texts that students can revise, but rather a “wide range of texts” from the 19th, 20thand 21stcentury. These will be unseen texts, both fiction and non-fiction. Students will analyse vocabulary, form and structure.

Additionally, all the exams are now sat in one summer, rather than across two years. This means that students do not have the option to resit exams in Year 11, that were sat in Year 10.

Worried about the new GCSE and SATs curriculum change? StudyBox offers tuition for this, teaching the new, current syllabus, in order to prepare students for their exams.

Book your free trial here. Alternatively, call StudyBox on 02086428884.

Top 10 Tips to Prevent Summer Learning Loss

StudyBox Child Student Reading KS1 KS2 SATS 11PLUS 11+

The summer holidays are a well deserved break after a year of hard work. Key exams like SATs, the Eleven Plus and GCSEs are challenging and take months of preparation, so the 6-week break is certainly rewarding. Read on for StudyBox’s Top 10 Tips to prevent the Summer Learning Loss.

During this long break, it is easy to forget the work learnt throughout the past academic year. This means it can be easy to fall behind when starting primary and secondary school again in September.

Sometimes secondary schools set work for new year 7 students in order to prepare them for their new chapter. But often, primary schools are unable to assign tasks due to teachers and classrooms changing when moving up a year.

Keeping younger children engaged in learning is especially important to promote growth. They are not yet at the age where they can participate in activities during the summer holidays like work experience or volunteering.

This is why revisiting learning tasks is vital for promoting growth and keeping up to date during the summer break. Summer tuition at StudyBox is open throughout the summer holidays, providing maths and English activities to keep children’s brains engaged and prevent the summer learning loss. We also offer an exciting Kids Coding Course, for those interested in technology, or want to try something new! We believe tuition is important to keep building upon what was learnt in the previous school year, as well as learning new material. Follow our top tips to prevent the summer learning loss.

Top 10 Tips to Prevent the Summer Learning Loss:

1. Tuition

Try our English, maths and coding sessions during the summer with StudyBox.

2. Reading

Find a gripping book and read in the sun!

3. Creative Writing

Creative writing is fun and develops literacy skills. Design some fun storytelling tasks with your child.

4. Practice Papers

Put aside some time for completing mock exam papers. You can set the papers in exam conditions or go through the papers with your child.

5. Arts & Crafts

Encourage children to draw and make art this summer. You can even go on daytrips to art galleries, many of them are free!

6. Cooking & Baking

Get hands-on with the kids and bake muffins or involve them with cooking the dinner, cooking is a skill for life.

7. Educative Games

Brain games are fun and rewarding. Print out Sudoku puzzles or play a game of scrabble together.

8. Learning Apps

There are hundreds of educational apps for children, available on smart phones, tablets and computers. If you don’t have access to these, why not take a trip to your local library and use the computer for educational online games. While you’re there, borrow a book, too!

9. Learn a Language

Take the 6 weeks off as an opportunity to learn a new language, or improve on a language that your child is learning. There are many ways to do this: downloading apps (like Duolingo), using the internet for videos or interactive websites, or purchase children’s reading books in the desired language.

10. Fun activities

Despite the importance of keeping the brain active during the long break, don’t forget to have fun! Keep active and go on a bike ride, go swimming and  go on day trips, fly a kite – the activities are endless!

Sign up for summer tuition packages with StudyBox now!

Available from Monday 22nd July – Saturday 31st August 2019.

Book your free trial here.

Year 5: Summer Tuition Sessions for the Eleven Plus Exam

Image of kids in classroom with tutor

With just 63 days to go until the Eleven Plus exam, it is important to start preparation early in order for your child to achieve the best results.

At StudyBox, we are aware that preparing for the Eleven Plus can be a stressful time for students and their families.

That’s why StudyBox offers a Year 5 Eleven Plus mock package during the summer to prepare your child for their exam.

What is the Eleven Plus exam?

The Eleven Plus is taken by students to gain admission to a grammar school or secondary school that uses academic selection. Most students are aged 10 when they take the Eleven Plus. The exam is taken in the September of Year 6.

How can StudyBox help with Eleven Plus tuition?

This year the Eleven Plus exam takes place on Tuesday 17thSeptember 2019.

StudyBox works with Year 4 and 5 students in order to help them to secure a spot and their secondary school of choice.

The Year 5 mock package is a 3 hour session, available from Monday 22nd July until Saturday 31st August 2019.

The course:

● 1st hour: Completing a maths or English mock test.

● 2nd hour: Marking the paper with pupils, going over incorrect answers.

● 3rd hour: Revising and teaching new topics.

Our Eleven Plus course is based on the exams used by the schools in Sutton, Wallington, Croydon and Kingston.

Grammar schools that we prepare your child for:

Wallington County Grammar (boys)

Wallington High School for Girls

Sutton Grammar School (boys)

Nonsuch High School for Girls

Wilson’s School (boys)

We focus on the following areas:

Comprehension techniques:

  • Reading for meaning
  • Interpreting questions
  • Long and short written answers
  • Answers using short quotations

Grammar and Writing:

  • Creative writing
  • Common spelling errors & punctuation
  • Common grammatical errors
  • Vocabulary development


  • Problem solving
  • Multi-step questions
  • Handling data
  • Multiple choice skills


Book your Eleven Plus package here.

Contact us for a free trial

You can request a free StudyBox trial and assessment any day after school or Saturday mornings. For a no-obligation chat, contact us at our Sutton Tuition Centre on 0208 642 8884, or at our Wallington Tuition Centre on 0208 669 4343.

Alternatively, book a free trial here.

World Youth Skills Day

Study Dice

Today is World Youth Skills Day, bringing to light the importance of youth development in their education and abilities.

Starting to think about your child’s future?

The job market is extremely competitive in today’s generation. Young people are three times more likely to be unemployed than in previous years, despite possessing developed skills.

School-to-work transitions are becoming more and more challenging for the youth of today, so what is the solution?

That’s how StudyBox can help.

StudyBox offers one-on-one tuition in maths, English and science. Not to mention, a kids coding course. Additional tuition outside of school will boost your child’s confidence, as well as equipping them with the learning skills to be the top of their class.

“Education and training are key determinants for the job market.”

Globally, unemployment and lower quality of jobs is currently one of the most crucial issues. According to the United Nations, “education and training are key determinants” for the job market. Through private tuition, your child can get a head start in their education.

If you’re looking to send your child to their secondary school of choice, StudyBox also offers Eleven Plus courses in preparation for the Eleven Plus exams. A good education is vital for a successful future.

According to the Department for Education and Employment, today’s society are seeing lower levels of achievement in basic English and maths skills. Moreover, existing systems are failing to address young people’s learning needs. At StudyBox, our tutors provide tailored lessons to each child, focusing on the areas they find the most challenging. This will help to pave their education from primary school to secondary school, and their way from higher education into the job market.

“Today’s youth are the leaders of tomorrow.”

It is key to encourage children’s potential through their own skilled abilities. This will “promote lifelong learning opportunities for all” (United Nations).

Consequently, it is important to start thinking about your child’s future early on. According to United Nations, developing technical and vocational education early on prepares children for future workplace skills. StudyBox’s Kids Coding course not only helps with maths and writing skills, but is also a great addition to a CV and for enhancing job opportunities.

Sign up for tuition with StudyBox on World Youth Skills Day to give your child a head start with their future!

After all, today’s youth are the leaders of tomorrow.

Book your free trial here.

Kids Coding Lab

Kids coding lab image.

Did you know that StudyBox offers a Kids Coding Lab?

This course will introduce your child to coding concepts. They will use a variety of techniques and be introduced to new tools. This will enhance their knowledge of coding.

Why learn coding?

In our digital generation, coding is the future. It is the source of websites, apps and video games. Coding not only helps with maths and writing skills, but will look good on a CV and eventually enhance job opportunities.

The Kids Coding Lab will include:

Creating a game using software

Curriculum-oriented activities

Learning to input commands

Programming a robot through learning sensors and control

Course Details:

5-7 year olds:

(1 hour lessons)

  • Fun introduction to coding
  • Screen-free, hands-on activities
  • Programming a robot to perform a sequence of steps
  • Setting up cause and effect sequences

8-9 year olds:

(1-2 hour lessons)

  • Progress from off-screen to on-screen activities
  • Team-based projects
  • Create and program a vehicle to move and complete tasks
  • Introduction to Python coding language

10-12 year olds

(2-4 hour lessons)

  • Learn how coding languages work
  • Create your own code
  • Linking software with hardware
  • Learn how to continue working on their project after the lesson has finished

Come and visit our centres:

Don’t forget to book a free trial!

Year 4 Eleven Plus Exam Course with StudyBox

Image of child completing test

The Eleven Plus exam can be daunting. Everyone wants to secure a spot at their secondary school of choice, which is why it is important to start preparing early. That’s how StudyBox can help.

We can help your child prepare in order to achieve the best results. The mock exam package for Year 4 pupils covers advanced Year 4 topics and foundations of Year 5 topics, in preparation for the Eleven Plus at the start of Year 6.

The Eleven Plus exam preparation teaches one hour of Maths and English per week, from September until the end of July. We believe it is important to set a revision timetable. Additionally, one hour per week in each subject disciplines children to revise at specific times in a learning environment.

This course is also beneficial for parents who may not have enough time to revise with their children at home. It gives parents more time to go through homework and other tasks with their children, so StudyBox can do the rest.

We cover the whole Eleven Plus specification:

English (Modules 1, 2, 3): adjectives, adverbs, nouns, tenses, punctuation, fiction, non-fiction, poetry, creative writing.

Maths (Modules 1, 2, 3): fractions, decimals, area, perimeter & volume of shapes, angles, problem solving, algebra.

Choose StudyBox to help your children be rewarded with a secure spot in their secondary school of choice, so they secure a good education to pave their future.

Grammar Schools we help your children prepare for:

Wallington County Grammar (boys)

Wallington High School for Girls

Sutton Grammar School (boys)

Nonsuch High School for Girls

Wilson’s School (boys)

Here are some other tips you can try outside of tuition: continuous revision of vocabulary and mental maths, purchasing a dictionary, practice essays, making flashcards.

Book your free trial here!