What is Verbal Reasoning?

Verbal reasoning is problem solving based around words and language. Children are successful in verbal reasoning tests if they have a broad vocabulary, a solid understanding of synonyms and antonyms as well as a good general knowledge.  It is a test of reading questions carefully and following instructions accurately.


Tips for helping your child:

Encourage your child to read a range of books, picking out and defining new vocabulary as they come across it.

Play word games. Encourage your child to think of synonyms and antonyms of words, look at anagrams or pick out an odd word from a list of words.

Work on tricky spellings.

Broaden their general knowledge in any way possible!

What is Non-Verbal Reasoning?

Non-verbal reasoning is problem solving based around shapes, diagrams and pictures rather than words and it is based around sequences, similarities and differences between these. It is a test of critical thinking and logic.


Tips for helping your child:

Practise number bonds and times tables with your child on a regular basis to ensure they are secure with these.

Play numerical games such as Sudoku.

Practise with shape patterns such as tangrams, symmetry and jigsaws.

Preparation of Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning

Many schools now have verbal and/or non-verbal reasoning tests as part of the 11+ examinations and they are intended to test a child’s ability to understand and reason using words. They are used because they are a test of skill, rather than of learned knowledge.  Having said this, there is certain preparation that can be done in order to boost confidence if the ‘knack’ does not come naturally.  There are also books you can buy so that your child can practise the different sorts of questions that might arise.

 

Books

There is a wealth of information on verbal and non-verbal reasoning online and some good books that will allow your child to practise verbal and non-verbal reasoning problems. We have put together a short list of some of our favourite books:

Verbal Reasoning Study and Revision Guide (For 11+, pre-test and independent school exams, including CEM, GL and ISEB) by Sarah Collins and Andrew Hammond. Galore Park.

Verbal Reasoning Practice Papers 1 and 2 (For 11+, pre-test and independent school exams, including CEM, GL and ISEB) by Chris Pearse. Galore Park.

Non-Verbal Reasoning Study and Revision Guide (For 11+, pre-test and independent school exams, including CEM, GL and ISEB) by Sarah Collins and Peter Francis. Galore Park.

Non-Verbal Reasoning Practice Papers 1 (For 11+, pre-test and independent school exams, including CEM, GL and ISEB) by Neil R Williams, Peter Francis and Sarah Collins. Galore Park.

Bond 11+: Verbal Reasoning Assessment Papers: 10-11+ years Book 1 by J M Bond.

Bond 11+: Non Verbal Reasoning Assessment Paper: 10-11+ years Book 1 by J M Bond.