Preparing Kids For Cambridge Flyers
The Cambridge Flyers exam is a good first assessment for kids learning English. It’s part of the Young Learners series of exams provided by Cambridge English. Within this series there are 3 levels: Starters, Movers and Flyers. The tests are aimed at primary and lower secondary students and correlate with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) which is an international standard for describing language ability. The flyers exam is an A2 level test within the CEFR.
Exams can often be daunting for children to it’s really essential that parents and teachers do everything possible to help them best prepare. That’s why we’ve created this article about preparing kids for Cambridge Flyers. Here you will find the exam breakdown and some useful tips.
Remember, when the exam layout has been familiarized and topics reviewed, a great way for children to gain confidence is by attempting some practice tests which can be found here: http://www.cambridgeenglish.org/exams-and-tests/flyers/preparation/.
The test is split into 3 parts: Listening, Reading and Writing and Speaking. The best way to properly prepare for this type of exam is to find a qualified teacher who has experience teaching children and is familiar with Cambridge Flyers. Break Into English specializes in such classes, click here for more information: https://englishclassviaskype.com/english-classes-for-kids-via-skype/
Preparing for the Cambridge Flyers Listening Section
The listening section is around 25 minutes long and has 25 questions within 5 sections.
Tip: Put your T.V. in English – children often love watching the T.V. and by putting yours in English they can be studying whilst watching their favorite shows!
Part 1: In this part there is a picture with people doing actions (for example, riding a bike, watching T.V.). Above and below the picture there are some names. Children have to listen to what each person is doing and draw a line between the name and the person within the picture.
Tip: Children should listen out for names and descriptions.
Part 2: In this section children listen to a short conversation. They have to complete a missing word/number from a text given.
Tip: Listen for names and remember to check spelling!
Part 3: Here the student will see 2 pictures. On the left, there are some pictures of people and their names, places or objects. On the right, there are more pictures with letters but no words. Children have to listen to a conversation between two people and match each of the pictures on the right to one of the named pictures on the left.
Part 4: Children listen to 5 conversations. For each conversation there are 3 pictures – the student must choose the correct picture in accordance to the conversation they have heard.
Tip: Listen to specific information – the pictures may be similar with small details changed.
Part 5: Here there is a big picture. Children listen to a conversation which describes objects from the picture – they must then color the objects the color that was stated in the conversation. For example, ‘I have some big black boots’ – the child should color the boots black.
Preparing the Reading and Writing Section of Cambridge Flyers
The Reading and Writing Section takes around 40 minutes, has 7 parts and 50 questions in total.
Part 1: Children must match definitions with the correct words. There are 15 words but only 10 definitions.
Part 2: There is a picture and 7 sentences about the picture – children have to decide if they are true or false.
Part 3: Children hear a conversation – they are given a copy of one person’s text but must fill out the answers that the second speaker gives.
Part 4: A text with gaps is given and children must choose the correct word out of 3 to fill the gap.
Tip: Practice reading around the lines in order to get the ‘gist’ of the text.
Part 5: This is a comprehension question. Children read a story and 7 sentences about the story which have gaps that should be filled.
Part 6: Gap filling exercise as before.
Part 7: Children are given a text from a letter or diary with some gaps. They must fill in the gaps (but are not given options this time).
As can be seen, there is a lot of focus on gap filling exercises. This can easily be practiced at home. Simply find a text from a magazine, book or online and block out some of the words.
Tip: find a text about something your child finds interesting and the activity will be fun for them!
Preparing Kids for the Speaking Section of Flyers
This part of the exam takes between 7 and 9 minutes and there are 4 parts. This can be one of the most nerve-wracking and difficult sections so it’s a good idea to get in lots of practice speaking with a Native before taking the exam.
Part 1: The examiner gives the child a picture and keeps one for himself which has some slight differences. The examiner says a sentence about his picture and the student must say if there picture is the same or describe the differences.
Part 2: Here the examiner and student each have different pictures which are similar. The examiner asks the student questions about their picture to which the student must answer and vice versa.
Part 3: The child is shown a paper with 5 pictures on it which tell a story. The examiner describes what is happening in the first picture and the student must describe what is happening in the remaining 4. Tip: Practice by having the student describe scenes from magazines or books that you already have at home.
Part 4: The student will be asked question about themselves. Questions are personal and could be about hobbies, family, school or holidays. Tip: It is easy to prepare the answers for these topics beforehand. Make a list of possible questions and think about the responses. Students should then practice the answers and make them sound natural.
There you have our article about preparing kids for Cambridge Flyers and some useful tips to practice. Remember, exams can be scary for anyone but especially for children as they will be with an examiner that they do not know. The key is to practice the different types of activities and complete practice tests online. Another useful resource is http://younglearnersenglish.org/faq.php which contains fun and interactive games for children to practice. Parents – be supportive and understanding and students – practice and do your best! Good luck!