All posts by JK educate

What’s Your Child’s Learning Style?

Understanding how your child learns best is crucial for their academic success and overall development. In this blog, we delve into the fascinating field of learning styles, exploring the diverse ways in which children absorb, process, and retain information.

Whether your child is a visual learner who thrives on images and diagrams, a kinaesthetic learner who benefits from hands-on experiences, or one of the types in between, this blog will help you identify and support their unique learning preferences.


Throughout childhood, babies and toddlers progress through distinct developmental stages. Initially, all young children start as kinaesthetic learners, with auditory and visual preferences emerging in later stages.

Research indicates that while individuals are born with a predisposition towards one learning style, this preference can vary and intertwine with other styles depending on the nature of the task at hand. Very few individuals strictly adhere to a single learning style, as there tends to be overlap between the different types.

You can think of learning styles as preferred ways of learning that create the least cognitive resistance to comprehension and recollection. There is no superior learning style, and they are unrelated to an individual’s intelligence.

The 4 Different Types of Learning Styles

The four main types of learning styles are:

  • Visual (Spatial) – Learning through images, spatial understanding, and visual aids.
  • Auditory (Aural) – Learning through listening, music, and sound.
  • Reading/Writing (Verbal) – Learning through reading, writing, and text-based materials.
  • Kinaesthetic (Physical) – Learning through hands-on experiences, movement, and touch.

Let’s take a closer look at each one in detail…

Visual (Spatial) Learning Style:

Visual learners primarily rely on visual aids and spatial understanding to comprehend information. They prefer seeing information in charts, graphs, diagrams, and videos.

Examples of how visual learners can use their learning style include:

  • Creating mind maps or concept maps to visualise relationships between ideas.
  • Watching educational videos or documentaries to grasp complex concepts.
  • Using flashcards with colourful images to memorise information.
  • Drawing diagrams or illustrations to illustrate concepts or processes.

Auditory (Aural) Learning Style:

Auditory learners learn best through hearing and listening. They prefer spoken explanations, lectures, discussions, and audio recordings to absorb information effectively.

Examples of how auditory learners can utilise their learning style include:

  • Participating in group discussions or study groups to exchange ideas verbally.
  • Listening to recorded lectures or podcasts on the subject matter.
  • Using mnemonic devices or rhythm and rhyme to remember information.
  • Explaining concepts aloud to themselves or others.

Reading/Writing (Verbal) Learning Style:

Verbal learners excel in reading, writing, and textual materials to understand and retain information. They prefer written instructions, textbooks, and written assignments.

Examples of how verbal learners can leverage their learning style include:

  • Taking detailed notes during lectures or while reading materials.
  • Summarising information in their own words through writing.
  • Creating outlines or bullet points to organise information effectively.
  • Engaging in reading assignments and discussing the content afterward.

Kinaesthetic (Physical) Learning Style:

Kinaesthetic learners learn best through hands-on experiences, movement, and physical activities. They prefer to engage with the material through practical applications and experimentation.

Examples of how kinaesthetic learners can apply their learning style include:

  • Conducting experiments or demonstrations to understand scientific principles.
  • Using manipulatives, such as blocks or models, to represent concepts.
  • Role-playing or simulations to immerse themselves in real-life scenarios.
  • Engaging in interactive activities like games or puzzles to reinforce learning.

Understanding these different learning styles can help you tailor your child’s study techniques to accommodate their learning preferences and enhance learning outcomes.


Identifying your child’s learning style can significantly enhance their educational experience. Here are some tips to help you:

Observe Their Preferences: Pay attention to how the child naturally engages with learning materials independently. Do they enjoy looking at pictures and diagrams (visual)? Do they prefer listening to explanations or stories (auditory)? Are they more comfortable with hands-on activities (kinaesthetic)?

Notice Their Study Habits: Take note of how the child approaches studying or completing assignments. Do they prefer reading and writing notes (verbal)? Do they like to discuss topics or quiz themselves orally (auditory)? Do they thrive when they can move around or use physical objects (kinaesthetic)?

Ask for Their Input: Engage the child in conversations about their learning experiences. Ask them questions like: “What helps you remember things best?” or “How do you like to learn new things?” Their responses can offer valuable insights into their preferred learning style.

Experiment with Different Activities: Provide opportunities for the child to engage with various learning activities that cater to different styles. Observe their reactions and performance in each activity to gauge which ones they respond to most positively.

Consider Their Interests and Strengths: Take into account the child’s interests, hobbies, and areas of strength. For example, a child who enjoys drawing and art may be inclined towards a visual learning style, while a child who excels in sports may lean towards a kinaesthetic learning style.

Assess Their Retention Methods: Pay attention to how well the child retains information. Some children may remember information better when they see it in written form, while others may recall it more easily when they hear it spoken aloud or when they physically interact with it.

Use Learning Style Inventories or Assessments: There are various online resources and tools available that can help you assess your child’s learning style through quizzes or inventories. While these tools can provide additional insight, they should be used in conjunction with other observational methods for a comprehensive understanding. Here is one example of an online learning style quiz.


By being able to identify and engage with your child’s preferred learning style, you can enhance their educational experiences, boost confidence, self esteem, academic results, and much more.

Here are some of the benefits that you and your child will experience when using their preferred learning style:

Increased Engagement and Motivation: When children are taught in a manner that resonates with their learning style, they are more likely to feel engaged and motivated to participate actively in the learning process. This heightened engagement can lead to a deeper interest in subjects and a greater willingness to learn.

Customised Learning Experience: Tailoring teaching methods and materials to match a child’s learning style can enhance comprehension and retention of information. This personalised approach helps ensure that the child receives instruction that aligns with their strengths and preferences.

Improved Academic Performance: By accommodating a child’s preferred learning style, educators can facilitate more effective learning experiences, leading to improved academic performance. When children are taught in a way that suits their individual needs, they are better equipped to grasp complex concepts and apply their knowledge confidently.

Enhanced Self-Confidence: Tailored instruction based on a child’s learning style can help boost their self-confidence and self-esteem. When children experience success in their learning endeavours, they develop a positive attitude towards learning and a belief in their own abilities.

Better Communication and Collaboration: Understanding a child’s learning style fosters effective communication between educators, caregivers, and the child. It enables stakeholders to collaborate more efficiently in identifying strategies that support the child’s learning goals and address any challenges they may encounter.

Reduction in Frustration and Stress: When children receive instruction in a manner that suits their learning style, they are less likely to experience frustration or stress associated with difficulty understanding the material. This can lead to a more positive learning environment and a greater sense of well-being.

Development of Lifelong Learning Skills: By recognising and accommodating diverse learning styles, children develop a deeper awareness of how they learn best. This understanding empowers them to advocate for their own learning needs and develop effective study habits and problem-solving skills that serve them well throughout their academic journey and beyond.

In essence, knowing a child’s learning style enables educators and caregivers to create a supportive and inclusive learning environment that fosters academic success, personal growth, and lifelong learning.


Knowing your child’s learning style and adapting studies to align with their preferences goes a long way to setting your child up for academic success, but it’s not the only thing you can do.

At JK Educate, we understand the importance of personalised one-to-one learning that is tailored to the individual needs of each student. That’s why all of our expert tutors employ tutoring methods that match the student’s preferred learning styles.

We begin with an assessment of your child’s ability level, strengths and weaknesses, preferred learning style and information regarding potential. This is the starting point for tutoring and helps us to select a tutor who best fits your child’s personality and academic needs.

Tutoring is flexible and can be accessed through online or face-to-face sessions. Ongoing, we provide continued support and supervision for students, ensuring continuity of quality, effectiveness and rate of progress. Our results and client reviews show the effectiveness of our approach:

“JK Educate have been very supportive, thorough and child-centred throughout our 11-plus journey. Joanne has been a truly amazing tutor, and the whole team has been fantastic. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them.”

Elenor, Date of experience: 20 February 2023

“We love the dedication and skill of our tutor – nothing is too much trouble, and everything is possible. That is an attitude that pervades the entire JK infrastructure. Our tutor is a great role model for our children. Furthermore, the results were excellent – our children received offers at every school from which they wanted offers.”

Sara Kay, Date of experience: 06 March 2018

“I would highly recommend JK Educate. Tania and the team have been with our family on our son’s 11+ journey from the very beginning- from an initial assessment all the way through to interview preparation. They also helped my son match to tutors who brought out the very best in him and supported him in a way that was most suited to him. I would highly recommend the JK team!

Nadia, Date of experience: 16 February 2023


With a wide range of totally flexible services, we can help your child regardless of age, level or geographical location. Get in touch today to find out how we can boost your child’s education.

Call us on 020 3488 0754 or complete our online enquiry form.


The Complete Guide to GCSE Preparation

A teenage boy and girl sat at a desk studying. The boy is writing while the girl is typing on a calculator.

With the GCSE exam season approaching fast, it’s time to focus on your GCSE preparation. It can be a daunting time for students, and many find themselves unsure of how best to plan and carry out GCSE revision and preparation.

Don’t worry. We’ve got you covered with the complete guide to GCSE preparation.


Depending on your education journey so far, you may have some experience revising for and sitting real exams with the 11+ or 13+ entrance exams. For others, primary school SATs and GCSE mocks are the first taster of exam-style testing.

For those with less exam experience, it’s worth considering what you are trying to achieve with your GCSE preparation. Of course, you know you need to revise all your GCSE exam subjects and cover all the syllabus areas, but what is the end goal?

The end goal for GCSE revision is achieving detailed active recall for all the topics within each GCSE subject. This simply means that you remember the information and can recall it when needed.

Active recall is best achieved not through simply reading and highlighting class notes but by challenging your memory to answer specific questions and quizzing yourself in detail on those subject topics. This process effectively compels your brain to retrieve information actively, fostering real comprehension rather than mere passive reading.

Research studies have shown that passive learning (reading and highlighting existing notes) is much less effective than active recall approaches to learning. Besides enhancing memory retention, active recall for GCSE preparation highlights areas where your knowledge is under par, allowing you to focus your revision energy on those topics.


1. Plan A Timetable

This can seem redundant to many students, but it has tremendous value. Planning out your GCSE subjects and the topics they contain forces you to note all the syllabus/topic areas for each subject and then drill down into each to know what topic areas they include.

By doing this and planning into a schedule what you can (realistically) fit in on a weekly basis gives you a great overview of each subject, what it contains and how long it will take you to cover.

Remember that when you plan your revision timetable, include time not only to revise for each topic but also to test your knowledge in various ways, such as by completing past GCSE exam papers.

Be realistic with your timetable; don’t cram everything into the last few weeks or months. This will not only be unachievable but counterproductive, as you will wear yourself out and create stress and anxiety at an already stressful time.

2. Know Your Learning Style

We all have different learning preferences, but you might not be aware of your preferred learning methods if you’ve never explored them. Auditory learners thrive through listening, visual learners through seeing. The majority of people benefit from a blend of learning styles.

The 7 main types of learning styles are:

  • auditory
  • verbal
  • visual
  • logical
  • kinaesthetic
  • solitary
  • social

If this is new to you, you can learn more about different learning styles here or take this online quiz to determine your preferred learning styles.

Once you know what learning styles suit you best, you can incorporate these into your GCSE revision and preparation. Be sure to mix things up; variety really helps to keep the brain alert and challenged.

3. Know Your Limits

Knowing what is achievable and being honest with yourself is vital. That’s another reason why creating a timetable is so important. You may think you have all the time in the world until you see the schedule down on paper.

At the end of the day, we are all human beings with strengths and weaknesses, and our daily and weekly schedules are not always controllable. Remember that you will have many other things to do during your revision preparation time, such as continuing to go to school, extracurricular activities, the need for leisure with family and friends, and much more.

Knowing how much time you have for revision and how much revision you can do each day or each week is critical. Plan in free time to rest and recuperate. Be sure to balance your life with time out and about, seeing friends and enjoying your free time so when it comes to revision, you will feel rested and energised.

4. Use Active Recall Methods

The basis of active recall, or active retrieval as it’s sometimes known, is to revise through questioning and testing yourself actively rather than trying to learn information through passively reading.

There are many ways to incorporate active recall into your revision: flashcards, mnemonics, mind maps, presenting information to friends and family, or doing quizzes with friends. When you sit down to revise, try testing your knowledge first to see where the gaps are rather than revising and then testing yourself at the end of your revision session.

5. Mix Things Up And Be Interactive

Regardless of your preferred learning style, be sure to practice many different ways to revise. Try out revising in a study group compared to on your own. Check out revising in the school library instead of revising at home. Use online study resources and not just your books and notes. Whatever you do, don’t just write notes and keep re-reading them.

Not only does this make things more interesting throughout your revision months, but it also allows you to discover different methods that work for you. Remember that different studying methods may be helpful at various stages of your GCSE preparation. Keeping your revision interactive will make it not only more enjoyable and fun but also sustainable throughout your exam preparation period.

6. Use Online Resources

Use revision websites to keep your revision varied and interesting. There are lots of free resources on the net.

The online resources listed below allow you to create revision timetables, find past exam papers, create your own study resources such as flashcards and mind maps, offer detailed revision guides for each GCSE subject and much more.

7. GCSE Tutoring

If you find GCSE preparation daunting and feel a bit lost in the process, consider using a GCSE tutor. Not only does a tutor have vast knowledge of the subjects you need to know, but they are also very experienced in the GCSE exam and revision process, having helped prepare many students before you.

Their expert knowledge and top tips can really make a difference, not only to your GCSE preparation and your performance on the day but also to your confidence, motivation and discipline.

Be sure to find a tutor experienced in the GCSE subjects you are taking, and they have a good track record with their past students. A tuition agency like JK Educate is perfect for GCSE tutoring, offering experienced GCSE tutors by subject, either online or face-to-face.

8. Practice Papers

Don’t leave past papers or practice exam papers until the end of your preparation. Start testing yourself early as this is not only a great active recall method but it prepares you for the exam environment and timings.

You can find past GCSE exam papers to download on these sites:

9. Practice With Peers

Whether it be a maths revision session in the library with your bestie or a biology quiz with a group of friends, try to incorporate revision and preparation with friends and peers.

Be careful which study partners you choose. Just because your best mate is fun doesn’t mean they will make the best study partner. Or indeed that you will both be a good influence on each other’s capacity to focus. It goes both ways!

The benefit of revising with others is that you can try out each other’s methods of learning and testing. The interaction freshens things up, and the active recall used when being questioned by others is a great way to revise. And it’s definitely more fun than sitting in your bedroom alone.

10. Beware of procrastination

If you tend to put things off until the last minute, then you will need to be extra disciplined with yourself. GCSE preparation is not something that can be crammed into a few weeks before your exams.

If you struggle to focus on your revision, be sure to ask for help. A GCSE tutor can really help your motivation and momentum. Alternatively, your school may provide revision study sessions or help you with specific areas of difficulty.

GCSE Preparation With A Tutor

If you’d like to work with a tutor but don’t know where to start, here are some of the essential skills and prerequisites you should look for in a GCSE tutor:

  • Previous experience with GCSE or IGCSE exam criteria
  • Previous experience teaching the key subjects of maths, English and the sciences
  • Familiarity with the exam board
  • Genuine teaching ability
  • An engaging and enthusiastic teaching style

JK Educate’s GCSE tutors are hand-picked and highly qualified GCSE revision tutors who are supported by JK’s in-house training academy. When you get GCSE tutoring from JK Educate, you can be sure that each session is bespoke and tailored to the individual’s needs.

We offer a flexible approach to tuition, enabling students to have as many or as few tutoring sessions as they wish through face-to-face or online sessions.

Get in touch

If you want to have the best chance of success in your GCSE exams, get in touch with us today.

We can tailor tutoring to suit your specific needs and often hold workshops and mock exam practice sessions to boost your skills, knowledge and confidence.

Call us on 020 3488 0754, email us at or complete our online enquiry form.


Half-Term Ideas for 2024

Half-Term Ideas for 2024

Half term is just around the corner, and if you have some energetic young ones, you’ll be thinking about how to fill their free time, have fun and burn off some of that never-ending energy.

In this guide, we bring you half-term ideas for 2024, with options for those based in the southeast and elsewhere in the country. We offer more suggestions for the southeast simply because of the amount and quality of events offered there, but for folks based outside of the southeast, National Rail offers many discounts for children and families, making a trip to the capital accessible to all.


Dark Skies Festival – Various Locations Across The UK

Embrace the celestial wonders at the 2024 Dark Skies Festivals in National Parks. UK’s National Parks are some of the UK’s darkest spots, free of light pollution, making them the ideal place to observe and learn about the stars.

Join the stellar celebration with events catering to families, beginners, and those eager to learn more about astrology. The North York Moors and Yorkshire Dales Dark Skies Festival awaits during the February half-term (9 – 25 February), featuring family-friendly activities, lectures, astrophotography workshops, and adventurous night runs, cycling, and canoeing.

Gaia at Tewkesbury Abbey

From February 2nd – 20th Tewkesbury Abbey hosts the spectacular Gaia installation. Gaia is an extraordinary touring artwork by renowned UK artist Luke Jerram. With a diameter of seven metres, Gaia showcases detailed NASA imagery of the Earth’s surface at 120 dpi, allowing viewers to experience our planet on a grand scale, suspended in three dimensions.

Accompanied by a specially crafted surround sound composition from BAFTA award-winning Composer Dan Jones, Gaia is named after the Earth in Greek mythology. The installation is internally illuminated, creating a captivating spectacle after dark, offering a profound sense of what it might be like to observe Earth from space.

Tewkesbury Abbey is open to all daily from 9 am to 4 pm, excluding February 12-14 when the Abbey is closed.

The JORVIK Viking Experience

Step into the year 975 AD at the JORVIK Viking Centre in York. Built on the site of remarkable archaeological discoveries between 1976 and 1981, the Centre offers a totally unique experience for lovers of Viking history.

Explore reconstructed Viking age streets, gaining a glimpse into 10th-century York. The immersive journey extends to a state-of-the-art gallery featuring significant Viking-age artefacts, making JORVIK a captivating day out.

Embark on a new ride experience introduced in 2023, immersing yourself in the sights, sounds, and smells of the Viking Age. Uncover the daily lives of 10th-century York’s inhabitants as you journey through the meticulously reconstructed city. Based on actual archaeological findings from the Coppergate excavation, every detail, from flora and fauna to animal breeds and natural dyes, faithfully recreates the Viking experience.

National Trust’s 50 Things To Do Before You’re 11¾

In 2012, the National Trust launched its “50 Things To Do Before You’re 11 3⁄4” campaign, aimed at inspiring children to connect with nature through activities like stone skimming, tree climbing, den building, and mud pie making. Launched in response to research revealing a decline in children’s outdoor play, the campaign encourages wholesome outdoor experiences, addressing the concerns raised by the research results.

The charity’s initiative provides a diverse list of enjoyable outdoor activities for children under 12 (and the young at heart), fostering a love for nature and outdoor play. Almost all of the suggested ideas are free, and with such a wide variety of ideas, you’re bound to find something to suit all ages and interests.


The Warner Bros. Studio Tour – The Making Of Harry Potter

Embark on a journey through Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter. Immerse yourself in genuine sets, unravel the enchanting secrets of special effects, and delve into the behind-the-scenes wonders of the Harry Potter film series.

Experience the iconic Hogwarts Great Hall, venture into the Forbidden Forest, and board the original Hogwarts Express at Platform 9 ¾. Stroll along Diagon Alley, all set within the Studios where all eight films came to life. This tour celebrates the British talent, creativity, and artistry that turned the fantastical into reality on the big screen. Step into the magic as you witness the filmmaking process through the eyes of those who brought Harry Potter’s world to cinematic life.

Shrek’s Adventure! London

This interactive fairytale experience is a blast for younger children and great value for money. Embark on the extraordinary adventure of Shrek’s Adventure London! Developed by Merlin Entertainments in collaboration with DreamWorks Animation.

This immersive one and a half hour experience brings the hilarious world of Shrek and his friends to life. The fantastical tour features 10 live shows, iconic sets from the Shrek films, mesmerising storytelling, a thrilling 4D ride, breathtaking special effects, and captivating DreamWorks animation.

As you explore Shrek’s Adventure! London, encounter all your beloved Shrek characters, navigate a magic mirror maze, traverse a smelly swamp, face powerful spells, and partake in a lively DreamWorks Game Show. Can you rescue Pinocchio, outsmart Lord Farquaad’s mischievous Magic Mirror, and safely find your way home?

Southbank Centre Imagine Children’s Festival

The Southbank’s annual children’s festival returns on Wednesday, 7th – Saturday, 17th February, perfectly timed for a half-term day out, or several days out, with its mix of theatre, comedy, music, literature, poetry, dance, and immersive family fun, all crafted for children aged 0 to 11.

Highlights of the event include inspiring talks by Children’s Laureate Joseph Coelho and Michael Rosen, Motionhouse’s Starchitects: A Cosmic Adventure, a mesmerising performance by YolanDa Brown, and the BBC Symphony Orchestra deliver the CBeebies Ocean Adventure. Not forgetting captivating workshops in the Art Makes People Powerful creative zone, plus hip-hop, comedy, singing, poetry, dance parties, and more.

The festival is very relaxed, allowing freedom of entry and exit during performances, with chill-out spaces and noise-cancelling headphones available for adults and children. It offers events featuring BSL interpretation, sensory-adapted and audio-described shows, and non-verbal performances, creating a welcoming environment for all.

40% of the events are free, with non-paying events available every day except for the final day.

Chelsea Physics Garden’s Family Valentine’s Day Chocolate Workshop

Chelsea Physics Garden presents its Family Valentine’s Day Chocolate Workshop on Monday, February 12, 2024, from 11 am to 1 pm and Wednesday, February 14, 2024, from 11 am to 1 pm. Dive into the world of chocolate, from learning how it’s grown to discovering how chocolate bars are made. Participants can get hands-on, creating personalised chocolate treats and experimenting with various botanical ingredients.

Tailored for children aged 5 and above. Children must be accompanied by at least one ticket-holding adult.


Half term is also a great time to consolidate learning, especially if your child is heading towards exams, whether that be 11+, entrance exams, GCSEs or others.

No matter where you are in the country, JK Educate’s bespoke tutoring and educational support services are available for you and your child. We offer online tuition and interview preparation for children aged 5 all the way up to university level.

During the February 2024 half-term, we will run a series of workshops in our North London office designed for 11+ and 13 + exam students. These workshops, together with the online interview practice, give Year 5 and Year 6 children the skills they need to excel in these assessments.

No matter what age, stage, or educational needs your child has, we are here to support you every step of the way.


Get in touch with us today to find out how we can boost your child’s confidence and educational performance with our tried and tested bespoke services.

Call us on 020 3488 0754 or complete our online enquiry form.


Why Tutoring is a Great Career Change for Qualified Teachers

Love teaching but need a new challenge? Tired of teaching large groups in a classroom but feel like you have more to give? Tutoring could be the perfect job to reinvigorate your teaching career.

If you’re a qualified teacher looking to develop your career, private tutoring can be a great option. There are lots of benefits to private tutoring, here we explore why tutoring is a great career change for qualified teachers.

Why tutoring?

Tutors have the unique opportunity to see first-hand how a little extra instruction and work can pay off in a big way. They can experience the true satisfaction of giving a struggling child the gift of confidence or watch a motivated student jump up a tier thanks to their support.

Private tutoring is one-on-one or small group teaching that allows tutors to customise their teaching style to fit each student’s unique needs. Tutors get to choose their working schedule, the subjects and age groups that they teach, from primary school all the way up to university-level courses. Tutors can even choose if they work in-person or remotely online, giving real flexibility to the way you work.

Benefits of being a tutor

  • The ability to set your own schedule
  • Better working hours than teaching in a school
  • Freedom to work in different locations
  • A chance to see first-hand how your tuition changes the life of a student
  • Work independently
  • Earn more, work less hours
  • As a qualified teacher with experience, you are greatly valued
  • Flexibility
  • Choose the subjects you teach
  • Never be short of work

What does a tutor do?

A tutor’s goal is not to help students finish homework but rather to become self-motivated, independent learners. Tutors can work with pupils of all ages and may teach students one-to-one or in groups, and cover a variety of subjects or specialise in a discipline, such as maths or science.

Tutoring also calls for teaching beyond the curriculum to improve a child’s learning ability and to assist them in developing critical thinking skills to help them achieve their future academic goals.

As a tutor in a private tuition agency such as JK Educate, you will work one-on-one with your students, determining their strengths and weaknesses and how they learn best. This helps you plan your sessions and what teaching methods work best for them. You will identify topics that need to be worked on, using various resources and innovative methods to improve their understanding of a subject.

At JK Educate, we offer a range of services, so you may also tutor small groups as we hold regular workshops, exam preparation, mock exam practice and other events throughout the year. This makes our tutors’ work fun and diverse. We offer a supportive environment to our valued tutors with training and check-in sessions available to all, so we can grow together.

Duties of a tutor

  • Create separate lesson plans for each student or groups of students
  • Review work completed with the regular teacher
  • Identify their students’ strong and weak points
  • Adapt your teaching style to each student’s unique personality
  • Keep accurate records of each student and related administrative tasks
  • Schedule and oversee meetings that may include parents or administrative staff
  • Regular feedback sessions and reports with students and parents to keep them on track
  • Upholding policies and procedures relating to child protection, health, safety and confidentiality

Tutoring online or face-to-face?

At JK Educate, we offer face-to-face and in-person tuition to our students. Tutors can choose which tuition method they prefer and set their schedule to suit them. We also provide a homeschooling tutoring service, which is becoming increasingly popular, and so as a tutor at JK, you also have the option to tutor during standard school hours, as well as evenings and weekends.

One of the main differences between teaching and tutoring is that tutored students will continue learning with you during school holidays, giving you a steady stream of work and income. And as homeschooling is currently

To find out what it’s like to be a tutor at JK Educate, the recruitment process and how to apply, read our dedicated tutoring page.

If you have questions about being a tutor or would like to apply to be a face-to-face or online tutor at JK Educate, click the relevant link below:

Be a face-to-face tutor at JK Educate

Be an online tutor at JK Educate

Start Your Tutoring Career With One of London’s Top Tuition Agencies

If you would like to become a tutor at JK Educate or have questions about the role, do not hesitate to get in touch.

To apply to work as a tutor at JK Educate, follow this simple process to kick-start your tutoring career now:

  1. Email Recruitment Coordinator Yasmin Maddocks at
  1. Include an up-to-date CV and a cover message giving an indication of your intentions, e.g. location, number of teaching hours available each week, and preferred subjects.
  1. Complete the interview and recruitment process
  1. Start tutoring!

During the recruitment process, you can expect full transparency and assessment. We check academic qualifications, certificates and identity documents. We also require an original Enhanced Disclosure from the DBS, not more than three years old. We take up full reference checks and only retain tutors who receive positive feedback from our clients and students.

Start tutoring with JK Educate today!

We very much look forward to hearing from you.


How To Help Your Child Explore Their Passions

Passion is critical to a well-rounded, fulfilling life. When people are passionate about what they are doing, they are more naturally motivated to achieve their goals and strive for greatness. Recognising the important role that passion plays throughout our lives, it’s necessary to provide children of all ages with passion-based learning experiences.

Here, we offer guidance on how you can encourage and support your child to find their personal passions.


As parents, we are the biggest role models in our children’s lives. They observe our behaviours and take cues on how to deal with the world based on how we ourselves operate. Showing your child that experiencing new things, enjoying hobbies and pursuing passions brings joy, meaning and fun to our lives is the foundation that inspires them to discover their own passions.

Talk with your child about your own interests and explain why you like them, how you discovered them and how they enrich your life. Passions don’t have to be ostentatious like learning to fly a plane. Personal passions can be simple yet fulfilling activities such as growing your own food, playing a sport, practising a hobby craft or starting a collection. The key is the enjoyment it brings. Discovering passions is a life-long journey.


Try not to force your ideas on your child. There is no harm in encouraging them to try an activity that you are also interested in, but focusing on their interests above yours will help ensure that they will find their true passions.

Try not to be critical of things your child enjoys, even if they are activities that you don’t personally like. Our interests are very individual, and it’s important to recognise that nurturing passions are for personal enjoyment, and not a status symbol, a competitive game or require the approval of others.


Learn about the world

Introducing your child to various experiences and topics will help you both better understand what sparks their interest. The biggest obstacle for a child looking to discover their passion is their lack of experience and knowledge – there are still many parts of their life that they haven’t experienced.

As a parent, you can help by exposing your child to as many new experiences as possible, whether trying a new activity, visiting a new place, learning a new skill or meeting a new person.

When they have a new experience, talk to them about it; how did it feel? What did they think about it? What did they enjoy or dislike? What would they like to know more about regarding that topic? Talking to your child in this way teaches them how to analyse their experiences and feelings in the future.

Ask questions

No one can offer better insight into your child’s passion than your child themselves. Ask them what subjects in school they are most interested in, what sports or music they enjoy, and if they have anything they are interested in learning more about. Listen to what they say and help guide them to explore further.

Non-traditional extracurricular activities

Many schools offer elective and extracurricular activities such as computer science, languages, sports or after-school clubs. As your child’s school years progress, they will become busier and busier with studies and exams. Make the most of the early school years and sign your child up for after-school activities while they have more free time to explore and develop their passions before studying and exams take over.

Less pressure

Children often change their minds, which is a natural part of development, so it’s important not to pressure them to stick with something if they start having second thoughts or not enjoying it. What interests a child at age five may not be interesting a year or two later. Give your child the space to choose their hobbies and activities and don’t shame them for giving up if it simply doesn’t interest them any more.

Encourage curiosity

If your child shows interest in an activity or topic, you don’t need to overwhelm them with information. Instead, start asking questions to determine what their level of interest is so you can find the best route in helping them explore their passions.

Show them it’s okay to investigate new things and discover the world around them without making a long-term commitment immediately. Instead, encourage them to be curious about the things that interest them first, and show them how they can learn more about a topic.

Start short term

If your child wants to sign up for a new hobby, it’s always a good idea to choose the short-term option first. Signing up for a short number of sessions provides flexibility, which can be helpful, especially as children can change their minds quickly. It’s also a great way for your child to try out experiences and discover new likes and dislikes without a long-term commitment.


A confident child is more likely to explore their interests, try new things and persevere in learning a new skill. Nurture your child’s self-confidence by:

  • Focusing on their strengths
  • Expressing your belief in their abilities
  • Creating opportunities to nurture their interests
  • Celebrating their successes and efforts
  • Encouraging a growth mindset and coping with failure
  • Supporting and encouraging exploration and bravery

Remember, helping your child to discover their passions is a process that requires patience, understanding, and an open mind. It may not always be easy to find the time, but it’s worth the effort.

Encourage your child to try new things, explore different hobbies, and pursue their interests with enthusiasm. This way, you can help them discover their true passion in life and set them on a path toward a fulfilling and successful future.


The Pros and Cons of Homeschooling


According to the Department for Education (DfE) and media reports, homeschooling is a growing trend in the UK. Having never previously recorded the number of homeschooled children in the UK, the DfE set about gathering this information in Autumn 2022.

The DfE’s published findings show that an estimated 80,900 children were homeschooled in October 2022, and this number rose to 86,200 in January 2023. This is a significant rise in a short period of time, and while figures need to be studied over a longer period, it gives a good indication of the growing popularity of homeschooling amongst UK families.

In this post, we cover the pros and cons of homeschooling and how tuition agencies like JK Educate can support and bolster homeschooling for both parents and children. We also include resources for further research to help parents considering homeschooling for their children.


Instead of attending traditional public or private schools, homeschooled children are taught by their parents at home.

Under the Education Act 1996, those who choose to home-educate their children are responsible for ensuring that the education provided is efficient, full-time and suitable to the child’s age, ability, aptitude and any special educational needs. They are not required to provide a broad and balanced curriculum and do not have to follow the National Curriculum.

Many homeschooling parents choose this way to educate their children because they have strong beliefs and ideologies about what their child’s education should include and how it is delivered. For other families, they may choose homeschooling because of their child’s unique aptitudes.

The educational philosophy a homeschooling family chooses will significantly influence the structure of their days. Most of us are familiar with only one style of education—the traditional system of textbooks, desks in rows, and standardised testing—but a wide array of educational philosophies exists. These methods include Waldorf, Montessori, Charlotte Mason, classical, leadership education, interest-led learning, unit study, and more. Homeschooling parents have the freedom to blend ideas that best meet their children’s needs.


With such broad definitions and flexible requirements, it can be difficult to pin down homeschooling’s pros and cons. Successful homeschooling depends on many factors, including the individual family, the parent’s teaching abilities, the style of learning utilised, the curriculum taught, the child’s personality, learning style and unique needs.

Nevertheless, it is possible to draw on the experiences of homeschooling parents and children, review homeschooling research studies and reflect on the opinions of education specialists. These resources enable us to analyse, in broad terms, the advantages and disadvantages that a homeschooled education can offer a child.

So, let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of homeschooling your child.


Educational freedom

This means different things to different people – from wanting to provide a customised homeschool curriculum that will allow their child to learn at their own pace to wanting to include religious instruction or other types of ideology.

In his best-selling book The Element, British author and speaker Ken Robinson writes that “the key to [educational] transformation is not to standardise education, but to personalise it, to build achievement on discovering the individual talents of each child, to put students in an environment where they want to learn and where they can naturally discover their true passions.”

A homeschooling atmosphere provides a natural setting in which parents can deliver a personalised method of teaching that matches the child’s unique interests, abilities, and learning style.

Healthy socialisation

Homeschooling promotes healthy family relationships. Strong parent-child and sibling bonds form when families learn, play, and relax together. Even the inevitable squabbles can provide opportunities for growth and bonding if handled with love and patience.

Aside from the intrinsic value of a loving family, current research strongly suggests that healthy family relationships promote higher self-esteem, steadier future relationships, and greater overall physical, mental, and social well-being.

And what about socialisation with peers? Getting your child involved in extracurricular activities may take some extra effort. Still, studies generally suggest that there’s little difference in social skill development between homeschooled students and other students.

Protection from bullying and peer pressure

Homeschooled children do not have the same exposure to peer pressure and bullying as traditionally schooled children, both of which are tied to poorer academic performance and lower self-esteem.

Parents often decide to homeschool because they do not want their children’s values to be defined by their peers or for their children to face social ridicule or bullying. In private or public schools, the pressure to “fit in” or achieve a perceived level of social status among classmates can be significant.

Homeschooling removes these potentially negative exposures, allowing your child to express themselves naturally without fear of ridicule or the desire to fit in with the crowd.

Effective learning

Without a classroom of 20-30 children, your child gets all the attention they need. Parents and children can move through material quickly or slow down if they need to. The overall quality of education increases when a child learns in a one-to-one environment, especially when a child’s learning style is considered.

Flexibility and free time 

Since parents have a choice of curriculum, there is complete freedom in how to teach and what to teach. If your child has a particular interest, you can spend time developing it. Some parents may have a particular value system they want to incorporate, and others may have a child with special needs who requires a customised approach. The benefit of homeschooling is that the possibilities are endless.

The benefits of free time are similar; parents who homeschool have no need to follow the strict routine that traditional schools set. There’s the opportunity to take holidays in the off-season or even change the months that are spent schooling. Appointments don’t require special notice to a school, and children can learn at a time of day that works best for them.

Academic performance and success

A common misconception about homeschooling is that students receive an inferior education. While UK statistics and studies are minimal, we can look to the US homeschooling statistics, and these show the exact opposite to be true.

In the US, Ivy League universities are actually recruiting homeschool students because of their higher success rates in exams and at college. During the application process, being homeschooled helps a student stand out against the crowd.

According to the US National Home Education Research Institute (NHERI), home-educated children typically score 15 to 25 percentile points above public-school students on standardised academic achievement tests. 78% of peer-reviewed studies on academic achievement show homeschooled students perform statistically significantly better than those in institutional schools (Ray, 2017), and home-educated students typically score above average on the SAT and ACT tests that colleges consider for admissions.

Perhaps most interestingly, the NHERI reports that homeschooled students score above average on achievement tests regardless of their parents’ level of formal education or their family’s household income.


Burden of responsibility

Deciding to homeschool is a big decision not to be taken lightly. You suddenly become not just a parent but also a teacher, administrator, principal, and more. You must prepare, plan, organise, and keep each child’s lesson plans, tests (and scores), and projects every year. It’s a huge responsibility that cannot be taken lightly.

Creating, teaching, and grading a day’s or week’s worth of learning on multiple subjects takes serious time and effort. However, prepared curriculums and home school support is available from tuition agencies such as JK Educate, so you are not totally alone in your teaching efforts.

Additionally, if you have younger children at home who aren’t school-age, you may also struggle to keep them occupied while you sit down to teach older children, or you may have two or more school-age children who require different levels or styles of teaching for particular subjects. If you’re not prepared for the organisation and planning required, homeschooling may not be the right choice for you.

Inability to work 

The work of homeschooling is guaranteed to take up many hours of your day. Therefore, as a homeschooling parent, you may not be able to work outside the home, or you may have to cut your hours significantly.

Also, take into consideration the cost of schooling a child at home. This can be a lot higher than people first anticipate. Not only will you need to buy all the teaching resources, such as books, teaching aids, whiteboards and computers, but you will also need to fund extracurricular activities and pay for exams. For some households, this significant cut to household income, coupled with the additional costs, may make homeschooling impractical.

Too much togetherness

While many families find that homeschooling improves relationships between siblings and parents, there is such a thing as too much togetherness.

You may find that spending all day, every day, with your children leads to feelings of frustration or confinement. You may also go through an adjustment period as your children learn how to view (and respect) you as their teacher.

It’s important to take breaks, both for yourself and your child. Or, depending on the resources in your area, you might try a homeschooling co-operative or enrichment programme one day a week to provide your child with socialisation opportunities with people outside the family. Adding formal tutoring is also an option for subjects that you struggle to teach or your child has a special aptitude for.

At JK Educate, we support homeschooling through our homeschooling support service and our online one-to-one tuition service. Including tuition and support like this into your weekly teaching schedule can give parent teachers some breathing space and provide fresh input and teaching styles for your child.

Missing out on certain opportunities

Despite the enormous flexibility of homeschooling, in some ways, it can limit opportunities for your child. For high school-age children, for example, a homeschool curriculum may not be able to provide the same variety of electives as a large public school. After all, how many of us have a woodworking area or science laboratory in the back garden, let alone be fluent in several languages that your child might like to learn?

If your child wants to pursue subjects you can’t easily teach at home, you’ll have to diligently seek alternatives. The same holds true for social opportunities. As a homeschooling parent, it’s up to you to provide the social interaction your child won’t get from school activities, assemblies, playground interaction and everyday classroom partner work.


If you are considering homeschooling your child, take a look at the below resources to find out more about your responsibilities and the Government and local authority requirements for homeschooling.

To learn about your responsibilities as a homeschooling parent, there are several guidance documents from the Government that you need to be familiar with:

1.) The elective home education guidance document is for local authorities and schools about children educated at home but it is very relevant for parents too.

2.) The DfE has published departmental guidance for parents (PDF) on home education.

3.) The DfE has also published guidance for local authorities (PDF).

4.) Also review the Government webpages on homeschooling.

Local authorities have no formal powers or duty to monitor home education provision. However, they have duties to identify children not receiving a suitable education and intervene. As part of this, the DfE recommends that authorities should contact people who are home educating on at least an annual basis so they are aware of the suitability of the education being provided.

If your child has SEN and attends a special school, you’ll need to get the council’s permission to educate them at home. You do not need the council’s permission if your child attends a mainstream school, even if they have an education, health and care (EHC) plan.

The council can make an ‘informal enquiry’ to check your child is getting a suitable education at home. They can serve a school attendance order if they think your child needs to be taught at school.


If you are considering homeschooling, it’s important to know that support is available. At JK Educate, we value and respect that every child is different. That’s why we offer personalised tuition and special homeschooling support. No matter what your child’s abilities or the teaching style you use, we can support you in bolstering your teaching skills and your child’s learning.

Our homeschooling service offers a range of support that includes daily check-in calls with your dedicated tutor, curriculum planning for those who require it, a homework setting and marking service, and the ability to WhatsApp message your dedicated tutor anytime for additional support as you need it.

There are many other services also available at JK Educate, from SEN support, one-to-one tuition, mock exam practice and much more. Learn more about our homeschool tutoring services or get in touch with us today to find out how we can support your child to achieve their full potential.


How to Encourage Your Child to Read

happy father and daughter at sofa looking at digital tablet

Reading is one of the most valuable skills we can encourage in children. Fostering a passion for reading as a child serves as a solid foundation for a life-long love of reading. The pleasure of reading is in itself rewarding and as we all know, reading is the key to knowledge and opens doors to numerous opportunities and rewards.

So, how can you encourage your child to read? Different ages bring different challenges – for the younger children we must make it fun, for primary school children we want to foster autonomy, and for teenagers; reading can be a great escape and is critical for successful studying.

In this post, we offer effective ways to encourage reading in younger children and teenagers, so it becomes a life-long pleasure.


The benefits of reading extend into all areas of our life. From relaxation and building confidence to better outcomes at school and work, there are many reasons to read and no reasons not to.

Here are just a few of the benefits of fostering a love of reading in your child:

  • Children who read regularly perform better academically
  • Reading grows empathy
  • It exercises the brain
  • Reading improves vocabulary and language skills
  • Promotes higher levels of creativity and imagination
  • Teaches children about the World and different cultures
  • Reading improves concentration
  • It supports cognitive development and improves memory
  • Reading improves social and interaction skills


Not every child enjoys reading. Some common reasons children don’t like to read include:

  • They feel like reading is a chore
  • They have difficulty reading
  • They think reading is boring
  • They haven’t found the right books yet

If your child hates reading, try having an open, non-judgemental conversation with them about why they dislike it. If your child struggles to explain why, try asking if any of the reasons stated above could be issues.

If your child finds reading difficult it could simply be because they are not used to it and need to hone their reading skills. Consider whether they are trying to read unsuitable books for their level or whether they could have undiagnosed dyslexia or another type of learning difficulty.

If you suspect that dyslexia or other learning challenges could be holding your child back, speak to us at JK Educate. We have many years of experience working with and tutoring children with special educational needs. Find out more about our SEN services here.


By learning to make reading fun, young children are more likely to develop a love of reading, encouraging better reading habits and making learning easier.

Make reading a daily habit

Education experts recommend reading with your child every day. If this isn’t possible, as a minimum, read with them at least four times per week. Don’t shy away from re-reading books – just be sure they are ones that your child loves.

Be a reading role model

Read in front of your child regularly. Watching you read magazines, newspapers, and books shows your child that reading is important and enjoyable. Encourage your child to join you with his or her own book while you are reading.

Create a cosy reading space

Make a comfortable dedicated reading space with cushions, teddies to cosy up with and good lighting. Ensure it is a quiet space where they can relax, be comfortable and focus on their book.

Regular trips to the library

Weekly or bi-monthly visits to the library are a great way to expose your child to different books and genres and teach them how to select books they might enjoy.

Let your child pick what to read

This is critical. Don’t dictate what your child should read. Giving suggestions is useful but let them decide for themselves.

Reading moments in everyday life

From song lyrics and comic books to food menus and subtitles on the TV, words are everywhere. You can use TV subtitles as a way of negotiating reading time with your child – turn the sound down and the subtitles on – voila, TV and reading combined!

When out food shopping with young children, challenge them to find a word in the ingredients list of food packaging. Try out crosswords and word games like Scrabble, or ask your child to read instructions for a task that you can do together.

Book subscriptions

Children love getting mail and unwrapping gifts. A children’s book subscription is a clever way to get them excited about books.

The Willoughby Book Club has a 3-month children’s book subscription for £34.99

Hand Me Down Book Club gives second-hand books a new lease of life with their child subscriptions at £13.99 a month.

The Teatime Bookshop has subscriptions for different ages and genres, starting at £9.99 a month.

The Little Book Boutique has books just for children and subscriptions start at £16 a month.


As older children need to read frequently for school they may lose the joy of reading for pleasure and think of it as a chore. Try these tips to reignite the joy of reading in your teen:

Graphic novels

There’s a lot happening in their lives and an easy-to-pick-up, illustrated, action-packed short novel grips their attention and is a great way to escape reality.

Remove the distractions

Mobile phones, tablets, TV, excessive noise and sibling activities make concentrating difficult at any age. At a minimum, agree with your teen that they put their mobile phone in another room when they read.

E-books and audiobooks

Audiobooks help children discover books that might otherwise be too difficult for them, increasing both vocabulary and comprehension skills. Reading on a Kindle or similar device allows your teen to access hundreds or thousands of books at any time. Try an e-book Amazon account with a book purchase each month to encourage choosing and reading new material regularly.

Discuss books

Make it a family habit to talk about the books that you and your children are reading. It’s a great dinner table topic that everyone can join in. After your child has finished a book, ask them about what happened and what they liked and disliked. This will enhance your teenager’s comprehension skills, and make reading a family activity.

Resist the urge to criticise

You may not like the vampire stories your teen reads but don’t voice that criticism. If you think magazines are inferior to novels, don’t share that opinion while your teen is reading a magazine. Be tolerant and encourage reading, whatever form that takes.

Books everywhere

Encourage your teenager to always have a book to hand – packed into weekend bags, taken on journeys, next to the bed, scattered on the coffee table. Place books in several rooms of your house so they’re easy to pick up on a whim. Gifting a Kindle or similar device to your teen will make this habit much easier.

We hope these tips have given you some effective ways to encourage reading in your child. If you are looking for advice regarding your child’s academic development, whether it be tutoring, SEN services or exam preparation, do not hesitate to get in touch. We are always happy to help.

Top tips for secondary school applications

The secondary school application process can be a fraught one for many parents. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. If you’re a parent thinking about your child’s secondary school, here’s what you can do to make the application process smoother.

Start early

If you’re aiming for one of the top-tier independent schools, you should ideally start thinking about applications once your child reaches Year 4 in their primary school. Even if you are not aiming for a top-tier school, starting early is nothing but beneficial.

The application shouldn’t be rushed, review each school’s application criteria carefully, it’s not uncommon for families to overlook an element of required documentation, which can delay your application. Most importantly, your child will need time to prepare for any entrance exams and interviews.

How to research secondary schools

League tables, especially if they rank solely on exam results, can be misleading. Make sure you take into account extracurriculars, class sizes, ethos and whether your child’s abilities and personality will suit a particular school. This doesn’t just help you pick the best school for your child; it’ll also help your child’s application if you can show you’ve really put thought into why the school is right for them.

You can find all secondary schools in your area by using this school search tool.

Ofsted reports, exam results, performance data, catchment map information and independent reviews can help you get a better feel for a particular school. But nothing beats actually visiting a school, so look out for the dates of open days or virtual tours. Open days are the only way you can determine the atmosphere of the school and whether or not you think your child will like it, short of physically attending the school as a student.

Consider the right living situation for your child. Boarding, flexi-boarding, weekly boarding and day-only are all common options. Pick the environment that is right for your child to flourish. If they are strongly independent, boarding may be the way forward, more shy students may prefer a day school.

Work with a tuition agency

Working with a tuition agency that specialises in school admissions can have huge advantages for secondary school applications. Not only will you benefit from their expertise and insider knowledge of a particular school’s admissions processes but they can also provide a range of educational support for your child.

At JK Educate, we offer the following services for families preparing for secondary school applications:

  • Academic assessments – to test your child’s ability against the rest of their cohort nationally and establish their academic potential. This gives great insights into which secondary schools to apply for.
  • Mock exam practice and interview preparation – We also offer mock individual interviews each year, alongside mock group interviews. This preparation improves grades and bolsters student confidence.
  • Personalised one-to-one 11+ tutoring based on your child’s individual needs.
  • Specialised school admissions support – 97% of this year’s JK Educate 11+ entrance exam students were offered places at their chosen selective schools.

Admissions criteria

Thoroughly and carefully check the admissions criteria on the school website. If your child doesn’t fit the admissions criteria and the school is oversubscribed year on year, then look elsewhere.

If you’re applying for a school where demand far outstrips supply, it is well worth studying the statistics that come in the application booklet. They will show how many children in the previous year’s cohort were offered places based on a number of criteria.

Pick more than one school. Most local authorities ask for a list of three or four schools in order of preference. London requests six. Parents should not leave any blanks on the form and include at least one school where there is a strong chance of getting a place – even if it isn’t your ideal school.

Otherwise, there is the risk of being offered a place only at an undesirable school some distance away. It is for this reason that having other options is so important. Not only just having other options, but having options that you would not mind being accepted to.

The secondary school application timetable

These dates are a rough guide, so don’t forget to check with each school that you are applying for.

  • Open days: September/October
  • Applications deadline: October/November (some local authorities actively encourage you to get applications in earlier than the deadline)
  • Assessments/entrance exams: October/ November
  • Offers for places made: February/March
  • Offers from waiting lists: March-August
  • Appeals heard: May/June

Tips for successful applications

Once you’ve done your research and decided which schools to apply for, these tips can help your secondary school application go smoothly:

1.) You will need to show proof of address. In most cases, this will be your council tax account number. But you may have to also send recent utility bills. Make sure they are originals, not photocopies.

2.) Make sure your child is eligible for the schools you’re applying for. You don’t want to waste one of your choices. This, however, does not mean you should not be ambitious. It just means you should be fully informed before you make any decisions and carefully consider all the schools you are applying for, not just your preferred choice.

3.) Place your schools in order of preference on the form, no more than that. Use the first choice for a school where you stand a good chance of getting in. If an incredibly popular school is your first choice then be sure to include at least one school in your application that is less over-subscribed. This is because if your child doesn’t fulfil the criteria for your first choice, and the other schools on your list have similar criteria, there’s a chance that you could be offered a place in a school that is not on your list.

4.) If you’re applying to a faith or church school, you’ll need to fill in a supplementary information form (SIF) if you’re applying for a ‘foundation’ or church-sponsored place. These usually go directly to the school, not the local authority. Include as much detail as possible, as the school will use the information to help allocate places.

5.) If you are applying to schools outside your local authority, it must be done using the common application form from your own local authority, which will pass the details on to the relevant authority.

6.) Keep track of deadlines and dates, including a copy of your application form. For most schools, the application deadline is October 31st, but it does vary.

7.) Be sure to know when entrance exams and interviews will take place as your child will need plenty of time to prepare. They typically occur during the September before official entry, so a year 6 student would take the exam in September 2023 to get into the school the following year.

This is vital so you know how much time you have to prepare for the exam and can enlist the support of a tutoring agency like JK Educate.

8.) If you are planning on taking aptitude tests, for music, for example, you will need to contact the school directly for specific dates on when your test will occur. You can usually find this on their website.

9) Keep proof that you sent your application. If posting an application be sure to use registered mail and if it is an online application take a screenshot of the application confirmation page. You can also call a week later to confirm the application has been received.

10) Prepare your child for any interviews and exams. The secondary school application process isn’t just a form-filling exercise. Arguably, the most critical part of the process is the entrance exams and interviews. For a 10 or 11-year-old child, this can be a daunting prospect. This is where taking advantage of JK Educates 11+, interview preparation and school admission services can be invaluable.

What if you don’t get your first choice of secondary school?

First of all, don’t panic! Ask for your child to go on the waiting list for your preferred school, but don’t turn down the offer you have. You can also find out where on the list your child is.

It is not unusual for places to become available over the autumn term so make sure you stay on the shortlist if you’re determined to find your child a different school. After all, quite a lot can happen between spring and September. There will also be an opportunity to appeal, although appeals are not commonly successful.

The benefits of working with JK Educate for secondary school applications

Mock exams and interview practice not only prepare your child for the environment and type of questions they will face but also develop their exam and interview skills and bolster confidence, which has huge benefits when exam day rolls around. 97% of this year’s JK Educate 11+ entrance exam students were offered places at their chosen selective schools, which shows you the value of our services.

If you are able to work with a tuition agency before secondary school applications begin, all the better. School admissions services, such as that offered by JK Educate, can help to inform you of your child’s abilities and potential. JK Educate will work with you to identify the best schools that match your child’s abilities and goals while striving to boost your child’s knowledge through personalised tuition.

With the support of JK Educate in your child’s educational development, they will have the best chance of success.

What our clients say

Here’s what some of our families say about our school admissions support:

“JK Educate has supported my daughter through every stage of her successful Oxbridge application, finding the right person at the right time for her at each point. She received guidance and feedback on her Personal Statement, and an invaluable mock interview which helped her to approach the real one with confidence and enthusiasm.

She is very able but post-Covid appeared to be heading for a car crash. With the reassuring support of her tutor, she got back on track. I am enormously grateful to JK Educate not only for the expertise of their tutors but also for Katie’s astute judgement in understanding what was needed and selecting the right people to help.”

August 2023

“We used the services of JK Educate for English Tuition and Interview Prep for the 11+ secondary school exams. Tania was an extremely kind, patient and deeply knowledgeable teacher. Our son was prepared extremely well through the process and enjoyed his lessons. We would highly recommend JK Educate to anyone looking to apply to the top schools in the UK.”

January 2023

“Katie and her team have helped both my children get into top selective schools, most recently a competitive mid-cycle chance vacancy. The tutors were excellent, as we have come to expect from JK. Arguably of even more value was Katie’s session on interview techniques, where she encouraged my teenage son to present himself in the best possible light without putting words into his mouth. Couldn’t recommend more highly.”

April 2021

To explore how we can help your child reach their goals, get in touch with us today, by phone, email or online enquiry. We look forward to working with you.


11+ interview questions

It is becoming more common for independent and state-selected schools to use interviews as part of their selection process at 11+. For a child of 10 or 11 years old, this can be a daunting prospect. And just like the 11+ entrance exam, the 11+ interview needs preparation.

Putting your child through the 11+ without adequate preparation can make the experience stressful and traumatic, and can knock a child’s confidence badly. By preparing your child for the 11+, it gives them the best chance of success and ensures a positive learning experience.

This guide gives you everything you need to prepare well for the 11+ interview. It explains the 11+ interview process and its purpose, gives top tips on how to ace the 11+ interview and the type of 11+ interview questions your child may be asked.


Before preparing for the 11+ interview, it’s important to understand why your child is being interviewed and what the school is looking to assess. Of course, every school is different, with perhaps a different ethos or subject focus, but the reasons for the 11+ interviews are the same.

In a nutshell, the 11+ interview is an opportunity for the school to gauge a child’s confidence, social skills and interest in joining the school. The school is also assessing if your child is a suitable match for them. They want to know that your child will fit in academically and socially and exhibit behaviours that the school expects from its pupils.

They are looking for evidence that your child is intelligent, has critical thinking and problem-solving abilities, is committed to studying, participating in extracurricular activities, as well as having the confidence and the ability to talk well about a range of subjects.


The way in which your child presents themselves during the 11+ interview is just as important as the answers they give. First impressions count. Behaviour and conduct send strong signals to the interviewers about the child’s ability to act appropriately, contain their behaviour and perform under pressure.

Here are some simple yet important tips on how to present and conduct oneself in an 11+ interview:

1.) Dress appropriately in neat and tidy clothes, such as a smart school uniform or formal clothing.

2.) Arrive in plenty of time for the interview so your child is not rushed and flustered beforehand.

3.) Maintain good posture, try not to fidget (holding hands together in your lap is a good way to keep them from unconsciously moving around when nervous) and maintain a friendly, confident demeanour throughout the interview.

4.) Greet the interviewer(s) with a confident handshake while making eye contact and wait to be invited to sit down.

5.) Use positive body language, such as nodding and smiling, to convey engagement and enthusiasm.

6.) Speak clearly and confidently. If your child makes a mistake or gets flustered, they should simply acknowledge the error, correct themselves and continue.

7) Try to be relaxed, but not too casual – sit upright, and maintain eye contact and polite demeanour. Don’t use informal language or slang. Your child should imagine speaking to a friend’s parent and use the same tone.

If your child isn’t naturally very self-confident and tends to get restless, it is important to practice the interview setting with them, so that they can learn to keep eye contact and sit still whilst listening and responding to questions with confidence.

Working with a tuition agency like JK Educate is a great way to get focused tuition and expert advice in preparation for the 11+. Specialist tutors experienced in the 11+ can provide ‘insider knowledge’ on the 11+ and the selection process at specific state and independent schools. If you are able, seriously consider 11+ tuition for your child. Or perhaps sign your child up for the 11+ mock exam practice or 11+ mock interview practice to give them the best chance of success.


Interview styles differ from school to school. While most 11+ interviews use a 1:2 or 1:1 interview technique with one child and 1 or 2 interviewers, some schools interview children in groups of eight or ten, by asking them to engage in a group activity. Group interviews allow schools to evaluate a child’s social skills and ability to work effectively in a team.

Some schools ask the students to bring something with them to talk about, typically a favourite piece of work from Year 6 or some other personal item, and then base the interview around this. While others focus purely on asking a series of questions that are the same for each interviewee.

Whatever the style of interview employed, the way in which your child should answer 11+ questions is the same:

1.) Do your research about the school so you can show awareness of the school’s history, approach and achievements during the interview.

2.) Listen carefully to the question, take a moment to gather your thoughts, and then respond thoughtfully. There’s no need to rush.

3.) Clarify the question. If your child does not understand what is meant by a particular question, they should not feel embarrassed about clarifying, it is always better to do this than to answer a different question.

4.) Use clear and articulate language to express thoughts effectively. Try not to use repetitive language if possible, it helps to use a wide range of words that demonstrate a good vocabulary.

5.) Keep answers concise and focused, avoiding rambling or going off-topic. Equally, avoid one-word answers. Aim to provide thoughtful explanations that demonstrate understanding.

6.) Provide specific examples and experiences to support the answers given.

7.) Be prepared for follow-up questions and be ready to expand on answers if required.

8.) Be enthusiastic and convey keenness to join the school and contribute to the school’s community.


While it’s impossible to predict the exact questions that will be asked in an 11+ interview, there are common questions that come up time and again.

Here is a list of the types of questions asked in the 11+ interview. Spend time with your child preparing answers to these questions and practice the interview technique as much as possible before the big day.

General interview questions:

Tell us about yourself.
How do you manage your time between schoolwork and extracurricular activities?
Describe a challenging situation you faced and how you overcame it.
Who is your favourite author and why?
Name someone from history who you admire.

Academic questions:

What subjects do you enjoy the most, and why?
Which subjects do you find most challenging, and how do you cope with them?
Can you explain a topic you’ve recently studied in detail?
How do you approach problem-solving in Maths or other subjects?
Tell us about a school project you are particularly proud of.
Tell us about a piece of group work or teamwork you were involved in.

Questions on extracurricular interests & hobbies:

What hobbies or extracurricular activities are you involved in?
How do your hobbies or activities contribute to your personal growth?
Tell us about a project or activity you’ve undertaken outside of school.
What are your hobbies and interests?
What do you do in your spare time?
What do you typically do on a Saturday afternoon?

School and learning environment questions:

What do you like about your current school?
If you were a headteacher, what would you change at your current school?
Why do you want to attend this particular school?
How do you envision yourself contributing to the school community?
What type of learning environment do you prefer, and why?
Why do you want to come to this school?
What do you like about our school?

Questions on personal goals and aspirations:

What are your academic and career goals for the future?
How do you plan to achieve these goals?
What do you hope to gain from attending a new school?

Behavioural questions:

How do you handle challenges or setbacks in your studies?
How do you collaborate with peers in group projects?
Describe a situation where you showed leadership and initiative.

Abstract questions:

Is it important to be kind to people?
What would you do if you did not have to work when you are older?
What would you do if you won the lottery?
What is the biggest problem facing the world at the moment?
If you could be an animal, what would you choose to be and why?


Towards the end of the interview, students will usually be asked if they have any questions. It’s always good to prepare 1 or 2 questions for this section of the interview. Think of questions that you and your child genuinely want to know about the school, not what you think they want to hear. Example questions could be:

  • What extracurricular activities or clubs are available for students at the school?
  • How does the school support and encourage students to pursue their academic interests and passions?
  • How does the school foster a positive and inclusive learning environment?
  • I particularly enjoy X and X subjects, how does the school support students focusing on these subjects?
  • What makes this school so successful?


By preparing for the 11+ interview as well as the 11+ exam, you give your child the best chance of 11+ success. Turning the 11+ experience into a positive learning journey that bolsters their confidence and teaches them skills they will use throughout life.

To be fully prepared for the 11+ exam and interview, consider working with a tuition agency like JK Educate. JK Educate offers effective and targeted 11+ tutoring, including mock 11+ exam practice and mock 11+ interview practice.

The JK Educate 11+ tutoring includes:

  • A personalised teaching plan is created for each student based on their existing knowledge and what 11+ elements they are taught at school. The teaching plan is updated and evolves throughout your child’s journey so tutoring is targeted and effective.
  • Each student is carefully matched to an ideal individual 11+ tutor, based on learning style and personality. This is a key element in our students’ success stories.
  • Highly sought-after, experienced tutors who undergo a rigorous selection. Tutors are also trained in specific 11+ tutoring techniques and curriculum content by the unique JK Academy.
  • Unique JK 11+ teaching packs are regularly updated to reflect the ever-changing requirements of the 11+ exam boards and the individual schools’ entrance exam procedures.
  • All of JK’s private 11+ tutors are monitored by JK’s senior team throughout the entire 11+ tutoring journey, whether they are in-person or online 11+ tutors.
  • Parents receive regular, detailed feedback including their child’s progress against the agreed targets.
  • 11+ interview preparation sessions focus in detail on what schools are looking for and include opportunities for individual 1:1 interviews, group interviews and practical activities as well as a bespoke interview for a parent and a child.
  • Individual interview preparation sessions at times that best suit you.
  • Mock exam practice with exams that have been specifically written by 11+ experts, commissioned to reproduce the challenges and standards that will be tested in the 11+ selective secondary school exams.

At JK Educate, we have an outstanding success rate with our 11+ students, our recent cohort achieved a 97.4% pass rate in the 11+. This reflects the exceptional 11+ tutoring delivered by JK through our experienced and highly sought-after 11+ tutors combined with the unique JK learning materials.

To find out how we can support your child through the challenges and rewards of the 11+ get in touch with us today.


How to Get a 9 in GCSE Biology

Students often get nervous about their Biology GCSE exam as the subject requires remembering a lot of information. This creates anxiety about whether their grade boundaries will be high enough.

If you’re aiming for a grade 9 in GCSE Biology, you may be feeling stressed about your revision. Getting a high grade in GCSE Biology is essential if you want to study the subject at A-Level or want to go on to Biology-centric subjects, such as medicine, at university.

In this guide, you’ll find everything you need to achieve your goal of a 9 in Biology including study materials, recommended revision techniques and other valuable advice from the expert GCSE tutors at JK Educate.


While GCSE Biology can be a challenging subject for many, achieving a grade of 9 is not out of reach. For those who regularly put the study time in, understand the application of the concepts in the curriculum and study smarter, not harder, a grade 9 is truly attainable.

Nobody knows for sure where the grade boundaries will be set because each year there are small differences in the difficulty of an exam paper. This is why every year there will be small changes to the grade boundaries.

In a normal exam year, grade boundaries are agreed during a process called “awarding” that takes place after all the exams are marked. Senior examiners from all the exam boards compare samples of exam papers from the current and previous years. This is to ensure that standards have been maintained over time, and a grade 9 in 2020 is comparable with a grade 9 in 2021 and 2022, and so on. In this process, the Senior Examiners also take into account:

  • Feedback from examiners about the exam paper
  • Data about the previous achievements of the cohort of students taking the exam
  • Previous statistics

Without knowing exactly what the grade boundaries are for a grade 9 score this year can be disconcerting for students. Don’t let this stress you. Focus on tactical systematic revision and do the best you can to increase your confidence. Feeling confident that you have prepared well will help you to feel more relaxed when exam day comes, and this alone can be a game changer for your exam performance.


The percentage needed for a grade 9 varies from year to year as it is, of course, linked to the grade boundaries. Approximately, we can say grade 9 is awarded to those in the top 5% – or 1 in 20 candidates.

To work out approximately what percentage you need to get a grade 9, you can refer to the previous year’s grade boundaries as a guide. Using that figure you can calculate the percentage score needed. So you can practice your GCSE Maths at the same time!

Here’s an example of how to calculate the percentage score:

The exam has a total of 200 marks. If 165 marks are needed to get a grade 9 that percentage can be calculated as: 165 ÷ 200 x 100 = 82.5%

82.5% is the minimum grade needed to get a grade 9 in this example.

Here’s another example; the exam has a total of 180 possible marks. 130 marks are needed for a grade 9. The percentage needed is 130 ÷180 x 100 = 72.2. In this example, 72.2% is the minimum grade needed to get a grade 9.

If you want to calculate your overall grade, including your coursework and exams, you can use an online tool like this one to make the calculation easy.

To help you calculate the score you need here are the grade boundaries, by examining board, for GCSE Biology in 2021 and 2022:

EDEXCEL Max mark 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 U
Nov 2021:
Foundation Biology 200 –  –  –  –  115 95 69 43 17 0
Higher Biology 200 150 130 110 87 65 43 32 0
June 2022:
Foundation Biology 200 –  –  –  –  115 95 69 43 17 0
Higher Biology 200 165 147 130 107 85 63 52 –  –  0
AQA Max mark 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 U
Nov 2021:
Foundation Biology 200 –  –  –  –  119 102 74 46 18 0
Higher Biology 200 130 114 98 81 64 48 40 0
June 2022:
Foundation Biology 200 –  –  –  –  126 104 76 48 20 0
Higher Biology 200 144 123 103 80 58 63 25 –  –  0
OCR Max mark 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 U
Nov 2021:
Foundation Biology 180 –  –  –  –  80 63 46 29 12 0
Higher Biology 180 128 112 97 78 59 40 30 0
June 2022:
Foundation Biology 180 131 116  102 83 65 47 38 0
Higher Biology 180 125 110 95 78 61 45 37 –  –  0
WJEC Max mark A B C* C D E F G
Nov 2022: No data available for this year
June 2022:
Foundation & Higher Biology 180 162 144 126 108 90 72 42 36
CCEA Max mark A B C* C D E F G
June 2022:
GBL1 Foundation  102 94 84 70 56 42 28
GBL1 Higher 140 112 103 84 84 70 63 –  – 
GBL2 Foundation  116 –  –  108 96 80 64 48 32
GBL2 Higher 160 128 117 108 96 80 72
GBL3 Foundation  72 67 60 50 40 30 20
GBL3 Higher 100 80 73 67 60 50 45


The exam contents and format can vary slightly depending on the examining board, but here’s a general overview of the exam format:

  • Multiple-choice questions: These questions present a question followed by several response options.
  • Structured questions: These questions may require shorter responses, such as filling in the blanks, labelling diagrams, completing tables, or matching items.
  • Extended writing tasks : These questions require more detailed and extended answers. You may be asked to explain biological concepts, describe processes or analyse experimental data, for example.
  • Practical or experimental skills: The exam may also include questions or tasks that assess your practical knowledge, such as interpreting experimental data, planning investigations, or evaluating experimental procedures.

Most exam boards assess GCSE Biology with 2 written exams, often referred to as Paper 1 and Paper 2. The duration of each paper can range from 1 hour to 1 hour 45 minutes, depending on the examining board. It’s important to check the specifications and guidelines of the examining board relevant to you. If you are not sure which examining board your school uses, ask your teacher for clarification.


Past papers are a great way to test your knowledge and improve your time management skills during the exam. They also allow you to familiarise yourself with the exam format and style. Past papers are easy to find, just be sure to use the past papers and marking schemes from the examining board relevant to you.

Where to find past papers:

Online – Revision World provides a wide range of past papers for GCSE Biology.

Examining boards – Each examining board has past papers and marking schemes available on their websites:



Edexcel –



To get a grade 9 in GCSE Biology you need to have a solid study schedule that covers all the curriculum you have learned. You must start revising early, cramming at the last minute is not enough to get top marks.

Start by creating a study schedule and set specific goals, such as covering 2 curriculum topics per week. Identify your weak areas and focus on these, but don’t forget that you need to revise all the content in the curriculum, not just the ones you know least about.

Test yourself regularly to know if your revision is on target. You can do this in a study group with friends by asking each other questions based on the curriculum, by asking a family member to quiz you based on your study material or find online quizzes and tests. Use different learning and testing methods to keep things interesting and as a way of testing your knowledge in different ways.

Visual aids such as flashcards and mnemonic devices can be effective ways to consolidate big topics down to small prompts that trigger your memory. Mnemonics can be words – such as a phrase or acronym. A visual mnemonic could be a flow chart or other visual cue. Or create a ‘memory journey’, which involves making up a story or journey with each part of the story being a memory prompt.

To learn more about how to use mnemonics for revision check out these examples .

When revising content you should do more than just read your notes. Review the course book material, study with friends, find videos online about the specific topic you are studying and do quizzes – all these different inputs will keep you on track so you don’t get bored throughout your revision time.

Working with a private tutor is an incredibly effective way to study and revise. The tutor knows your target subject inside and out, having helped dozens if not hundreds of students like you. They know how the examining boards test and the common pitfalls that students experience. Working with a tutor will build your confidence also – which is a common factor for poor exam performance. Having their expert one-to-one support is priceless. So if this option is open to you seriously consider it.


Here at JK Educate our highly experienced and knowledgeable GCSE tutors have helped hundreds of students reach their GCSE potential. Here are some of their pro tips for achieving success in GCSE Biology:

Make a plan
Make a detailed revision schedule using the exam board specification as a checklist for each curriculum topic. Break topics down into smaller sections and spread them across your revision schedule. Remember that you will be revising for many GCSE subjects so start early, plan breaks into your schedule and don’t try to cram too much into one revision session or a week’s schedule. A steady constant pace will get you the best results.

Create a revision guide
Using the main curriculum topics as a starting point, go through all your class notes for each topic to ensure that you have all the information to work from. Create a ‘cover sheet’ for each curriculum topic that highlights key topics, formulas, units of measurement and any other key terms that relate to that topic. Create a summary paragraph for each cover sheet that sums up the topic. Be sure that you understand what you’re writing here and not just copying notes.

Mix things up
If you don’t have a preferred style for memorisation, be sure to utilise lots of different techniques in your revision. This not only minimises your chances of daydreaming but it can make difficult topics fun. Students can get bogged down in complicated terms and processes when revising Science subjects.

Try different learning methods such as watching Youtube videos for any tricky topics and concepts you struggle with. Write notes on what you’ve learned, try to explain the concept to a friend or family member (recalling information in this way solidifies learning very effectively) and use mnemonic visual aids as a way of expressing detailed topics in a simple form. Connect concepts and information to real-life examples to enhance your understanding.

Practice the exam
You are not just revising the curriculum of Biology but you are also learning how information should be presented in the exam, how questions may be asked, and how to answer exam questions in a way exam boards are looking for.

Failing to read the question carefully is a common way for students to drop marks in the exam. Practice analysing the exam question carefully, paying specific attention to keywords and command terms used. Review answers from top-mark students. Observe how they structure their answers, give as much detail as possible, use examples to demonstrate understanding and problem solving and show their process of thinking such as the formulas used.

Exam technique
Past papers are perfect for this. Be sure to practice many and score your finished paper using the marking scheme so you can track your strengths and weaknesses. Practising exam time management is also important. Time yourself, and practice answering the questions you know first, then come back to tricky questions later, so you don’t waste precious exam time.

Revise with friends
Don’t just sit in your bedroom reading your notes alone – this is a guaranteed way to get bored and start daydreaming. As well as being an ineffective way to memorise information. Find a friend who you can study with, you can test each other and share different ways of revising and recalling information. A big study group can be a fun way to practice recall – make teams and quiz each other, turning it into a game.

Use online resources
There’s a wealth of information online, from study schedule templates and quizzes to past papers, videos, online forums and much more. Working with a tutor is one of the most effective revision methods. One-to-one tutoring can assess your knowledge, give tips specific to you, and you can tap into their wealth of knowledge and experience. JK Educate offers online GCSE tutors so no matter where you are in the country you can benefit from their expertise.


The exam period is a stressful time. Fear of failure, the pressure to perform well and high expectations from yourself and others can add to the stress. Intense revision periods and last-minute cramming can result in feeling burnt out and overwhelmed by the time exam day rolls around, all of which will negatively impact your exam performance.

It’s important to manage your stress during this time. Here are a few tips to keep you calm and focused:

  • Create a study environment that promotes focus and relaxation. Revising while feeling calm and relaxed means you will be able to absorb and learn much more effectively.
  • Practice mindfulness and deep breathing exercises. Stress is physical as well as mental. Deep calm breathing practices instantly calm the body and mind. Try deep breathing exercises every day, and use them as a way to calm yourself if you find your anxiety rising.
  • Take regular breaks, making sure you plan this into your study schedule. Revising all day with few breaks is much less effective than short bursts of focused revision. During breaks be sure to get outside, take a walk, do some sports, or other activities that you find enjoyable and relaxing.
  • Seek support from family, friends and professionals. Remember that those around you not only have experience of what you’re going through but they know you well and are rooting for you. Don’t be scared to ask for help from teachers, parents and tutors. Teachers and tutors can offer detailed guidance and support. Equally, friends are not only great study buddies but can give us a safe space to unload our feelings and share ideas.


With this clear guidance you have all the tools you need to optimise your revision efforts and get you closer to achieving a grade 9 in GCSE Biology. Following these steps and being as prepared as possible for exam day will give you the best chance of success while keeping stress and anxiety at bay.

If you still have concerns about your revision technique, or ability to learn particular topics in the curriculum, seek the support of a professional tutor. Working with a tutor is the fastest and most efficient way to get your studies on track while boosting your confidence.

Get in touch with JK Educate today to find out how an expert GCSE tutor can help you . We offer flexible tutoring services face-to-face or online with our highly experienced and much sought-after tutors. Call us on 020 3488 0754 or fill in our online enquiry form .