Hello. I’m Douglas Bray, founder of 11plusify. My friends and students call me Doug, or Duggie, so please feel free to do the same. I should probably tell you a bit about myself first but, more importantly, I should tell you about 11plusify and why I was compelled (if not obliged) to develop it for you and your family.
“I qualified as a teacher in Swansea and got my first teaching post in Essex in 1970. Over the years, however, I became increasingly alarmed at what I saw as a major flaw in our country’s education system.”
I could see that the desperate pursuit of 11-plus success had narrowed the national curriculum and promoted a coaching culture. Furthermore, I felt it was a system that favoured the wealthy to the exclusion of the majority who couldn’t compete financially.
As a maths teacher, I could see that the system meant there was never enough practice of mathematical concepts in text books, the very opposite of what is needed. My teaching had and has always been structured around practice. Practice leads to confidence which leads to understanding which, in turn, leads to speed, precision and accuracy.
So, this was my start point.
I set about creating a scheme that would equip children between the ages of 7 and 11 to perform at the very best of their ability through an attitude of a positive work ethic and a desire to improve their learning skills. I devised hardcopy workbooks in Mathematics, Verbal Reasoning and English.
But I knew that the workbooks on their own were not the complete answer. All evidence and my own experience points to one major fact—children need support. And of all support, it is parental support along with their encouragement and involvement that is so crucial to a child’s success.
For this reason, I developed the scheme that meant parents could be involved in the whole process alongside their children.