Current Date:May 27, 2024

Vocabulary Building Tips For Your Child’s 11 Plus Vocabulary Preparation

Vocabulary knowledge is related to school achievement and critical to a child’s success. Research shows that children need to understand 98% of the words they read to get what they are reading. Eleven-plus mock test help students in preparation for 11-plus vocabulary sections. A mock test exam is very helpful for parents and students to get an idaea of the exam.

Vocabulary preparation is one of the toughest things of the 11-plus exam and, if language is limited, it can be a barrier to understanding English and verbal reasoning questions. 11-plus exams come in various formats, as it depends on the region or individual school requirements, tests always focus on vocabulary: both meaning and understanding.

11 plus Vocabulary preparation is important for your child. Vocabulary skills are something that we advised you to start early in preparing for 11 plus exams. If your child works on their vocabulary skills, it will give them confidence to deal with even the hardest of papers. Here we have some vocabulary building tips for students that will help them with vocabulary preparation. 

11 Plus Vocabulary Preparation

Vocabulary Building Tips for Students

Read, read, and read!

For 11-plus vocabulary preparation, your child must read a lot as words stick inside the head when you read them or hear them many times. Children should continue to be read to at this age, alongside reading by themselves, this will allow them to understand and encourage growth. 

Audiobooks are a great way of exposing children to language and vocabulary, especially when time is limited. 

Add variety to the material 

Reading material should not be the same and varied as possible. Mix fiction and non-fiction, also your child can try out different authors, genres, and books comprising different topics. These have challenging vocabulary which is often tested through the 11 plus.


When talking with your child, do not be afraid of using difficult words. Children are naturally curious and will enjoy learning and using some new vocabulary. When your child asks the meaning of a word, use words that they already know and explain them. 

When they get the idaea, ask them to explain it using their own words and give an example of a word in action to see if they understand. Encourage your child to make up some good oral storeys and ask them questions to introduce new vocabulary. 

For example- Child: “A girl found a house”

Parent: “Was it a big house or a small house? What could an alternative word for found be?…discovered/unearthed?

Reinforce learnt vocabulary by using it in daily conversation around the house.


Word games like Scrabble or word puzzles are a great way to build spelling and vocabulary skills. Crosswords and word search type puzzles are another way to teach spelling and enhance your child’s synonyms and antonyms skills.


When your child is reading, either by themselves or with you, encourage them to have a notebook with them to write down interesting and difficult vocabulary and phrases. This helps to broaden their language and allows them to have a record of new words that they have not learnt yet. This will also help in creative writing, as they use ideas from successful authors. 


Take time to use 11 plus vocabulary lists and practise the Vocabs anyplace and any time! However, be sure to break it down into small chunks (around 10-15 words each time) as the list is long. 

Mix the list to include some easy words, commonly misspelt words, and some hard ones This will help your child get used to the variety of words. Try to create variation in learning. 

Using oral and written techniques, encourage your child to put the word into a sentence to confirm their understanding. It is also a good way to encourage them to find synonyms and antonyms of the words they are learning.

Mini tests

Every other week, create a little test to ensure the new words are included. Remember, good vocabulary needs development over time and children need frequent exposure to words. Just learning new words once will not be enough. Some words have more than one meaning so where this is the case, learn various meanings. 

Don’t forget the spelling!

Knowing how to spell words and spotting mistakes in words is a major skill to be practised for 11 plus exams and tests.

Focus on a few words a day.

  • Use the ‘Look, cover and write’ method
  • Try to spell the words orally
  • Try to write the word in fun colours or shapes to make them memorable
  • Spell the word many times in 30 seconds
  • Use mnemonics or fun ways to help remember tricky ones (ie-one coffee, two sugars for ‘necessary’)

Vocabulary Building Tips an Tricks

Write Storeys

Storeys writing, keeping a notebook, and even entering a Storeys competition are fun ways for children to utilise new vocabulary. Without a fear of misspelling new words, children can learn to let go to express their unique creativity, bringing them joy and happiness. 

As children’s confidence grows they feel more open to editing their work and accept it as a normal part of the writing process.

Buy your child a children’s dictionary

A children’s dictionary is a valuable asset for 11-plus Vocabulary preparation. Many children do not understand the definitions in adult dictionaries as they sometimes have words that they do not understand and need to search for. Buy them a dictionary that is easy to understand, so they can learn things from it easily.


Building vocabulary is an important part of preparing for eleven plus mock test, and as a parent, it’s your responsibility to play a crucial role in helping your child score well in the exams. By making your child read daily, using a dictionary, writing storeys, using new words, playing games, etc, you can help them build a strong vocabulary that serves them in their academic success. 


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