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to ask ds' teacher to move him up to next stage reading books?

(32 Posts)
mummymacbeth Wed 24-Apr-13 23:58:14

On the one hand I feel like a pushy mother, on the other he has been in the same level/ stage books for over two months. He gets one book at home reading per week. He is finding them very easy - and has been since he first started on that level. He should be being challenged surely? And progressing. Or should I just leave it and get a grip. After all, he's only six grin

Eebahgum Thu 25-Apr-13 00:23:14

Ask the teacher if it's possible. If he were in my class I'd be more than happy to move him up. Chances are you hear him read far more regularly than the teacher anyway - we're too pushed with other stuff to listen to readers regularly.

OutragedFromLeeds Thu 25-Apr-13 00:25:30

It won't do any harm to ask nicely. Or put a note in his reading record. I find 'X found this book very easy' a couple of times usually does it.

picnicbasketcase Thu 25-Apr-13 00:35:00

I agree, a comment in the reading record about how easy he's finding the books works well.

mummymacbeth Thu 25-Apr-13 00:38:14

Thanks for replies. Outraged I have tried comments like that a couple of times and I have discussed it at parents night and she agreed to look into it. He is a good reader and I want him to progress. He races through the homework books. They are easy compared to what we read together at home. I suppose it is no big deal, he can read! But it is just annoying that home work is not matched to his abilities.

OutragedFromLeeds Thu 25-Apr-13 00:50:11

Maybe change technique and instead of asking for him to be moved up ask what you can do to help him be ready for the next stage up. If she can't think of anything he needs to do then it should remind her that he needs more of a challenge. Maybe she needs him to work on understanding what he's reading or using expression when reading or something and doesn't feel he's ready yet.

mummymacbeth Thu 25-Apr-13 01:03:02

hmm you may have a point re the expression - but I reckon it is cos he is bored! he definitely has no problems with comprehension or interpretation or whatever. Think a polite note is in order...smile

Blossomgirl Thu 25-Apr-13 01:14:22

Yes, get him moved on. This is why I say so...

DS1 had a really hard time with reading in Y1. I never really questioned why, just accepted that he found it a challenge.

Now I realise why... Back at age 5 DS1 was not put up when he should have been and, now I remember was 'jumped up' to a higher stage.

Now I realise it was stage 3 he missed because my DS2 is on stage 3 and I and Ds1 have never seen the books before and we love the series the school uses (Biff and Chip fans are we) and all of the difficulties I remember with reading with DS1 I now see were actually gaps in his knowledge that directly relate to the sounds learned and practiced at stage 3!

DS1 had overcome it, I left him alone to just enjoy reading (after too much pushy and worry before) for all of Y3 and now he is above average, but I and he have talked about these stage 3 books and he has said. 'I wish I could have read them Mum.'

Hope that makes sense, I should have gone to bed already. If the school won't cooperate then you might choose to order in books through the library or purchase on line / ebay if possible, but in any either way if you can avoid learning gaps then that's the best job you can do.

I wish I had know that for my ds's sake. Good Luck

Jinty64 Thu 25-Apr-13 05:26:34

I would go to see the teacher and find out how the reading "works".

At the primary school ds1 is at they read in groups. There are six in his group. They have one reading book a week and they work on this book for a week. They read it at home four nights and do a reading activity linked to it each day. This could be a work sheet, reading to the teacher individually, reading as a group or a practical/craft activity.

Ds is in P2 (Y1) and is currently on ORT level 9. I sometimes feel he is not very challenged by the actual book. He has no difficulty reading it and rarely comes across a word he can't read but he enjoys it and is challenged by the activities that go with it. There is no question of "moving up a level" as they will move on as a group.

I used to find this a bit frustrating as he reads harder books at home and has good comprehension and expression but he is a really great reader so something must be working!

melonribena Thu 25-Apr-13 09:47:47

As a year 2 teacher it can be frustrating when parents ask for their child to be moved up a level.

Often the child is definitely not ready and needs to develop their decoding skills or their comprehension and expression.

However, sometimes the child is on the cusp of a new level.

What I usually do if I feel the child needs to develop their comprehension and expression but is also finding the actual reading easy is to send the child with one book on the new level - to encourage them, but also with one on their current level to continue to develop other skills.

Maybe this is something to suggest to the teacher.

If the teacher doesn't make any changes I would use the school books to develop his expression/ comprehension/ predicting skills / understanding of inference and visit the library to find other books of interest.

You could also ask the teacher for some non fiction books on the same level, they often present many new words and promote lots of lovely discussion! (Reading to learn not learning to read!)

DeWe Thu 25-Apr-13 09:57:06

If he's only getting one book a week, then it may takes ages to go up if they want to read through a variety at each level. He's only read 8 in 2 months, which may not give enough evidence for the teacher to move them up.

I think ds goes up about every term, but he gets 4+ books a week-and they're small chapter books so take ages to read, smaller books often get more.

I'd say similar to Jinty in that the activities challenge him more than the book, and he reads harder ones at home, although mostly non fiction.

DIYapprentice Thu 25-Apr-13 10:09:33

One book a week? Is that what the school issues or is that what you get through?

Depending on the length of the book - the different series they have can vary quite a bit in length - DS 6yrs usually go through 3 or 4 books a week, he read through a 24 page Chip and Biff one yesterday, and he's only slightly above average at the school from what I can tell.

SpanishFly Thu 25-Apr-13 10:49:11

My DS1 (8yo) is WAAAAAAY ahead in his reading compared to most of the kids in his class (teacher has said so too), cos he is always reading at home.
There are 4 kids in the class on a level higher than the rest of them, but he still finds the books really really easy.

HOWEVER, the teacher used to give him extra books home, but they were equally as boring for him. This has now stopped, and the teacher explained at parents night that the main problems are 1) the language lessons in class go hand in hand with the level of books they're on, so theres actually often no point in them flying ahead with their reading level, and 2) it's hard for a teacher to find a variety of more advanced books where the child will understand the themes/subject matter/emotions of the books, as they're aimed at physically older kids with different experiences. Also, they dont have a limitless supply of interesting books to hand out.

She reckons it's far more important for us to keep up his enthusiasm at home, ie take him to the library to choose some books, or buy him magazines etc to keep him interested.

HomeworkAgain Thu 25-Apr-13 10:55:54

My ds has been on the same level since October last year. His comprehension is fine, he can quote bits, talk about the texts and feelings.

His teacher won't put him up as she thinks his writing doesn't match his reading. He is now retreading his favourite books from the level.

We have asked and asked what we can do to improve him. We fought for months and have now got comprehension sheets sent home for him. Which he finds incredibly easy.

We have decided it is not worth the fight anymore and will be letting it slide until we get a new teacher next year. We supplement his reading with hundreds of books from the charity shops. Apparently we are bad parents because we don't take him to the library!

Fillyjonk75 Thu 25-Apr-13 11:05:07

As a parent reader if the child says to me they've read nearly all of one level, the reading record seems to bear this out, there are comments about the books being easy etc and they really want to get a book from the next level, I say go ahead. Then I write a notes to the teacher on the readers sheet to this effect and 'hope this is OK' and say how they found the book as usual.

coralanne Thu 25-Apr-13 11:08:15

This is why my DD home schools her DC.

They work at their own level which then maintains their interest and enthusiasm.

Miss 5 recently told her "This isn't working Mum. This work is far too easy I need something different and harder".

They then sat down together and worked out the next step in DD's day.

This included an hour in the middle of the day to practice her ballet. (DD's idea).

Fillyjonk75 Thu 25-Apr-13 11:10:04

DD1 who is 8 in July is on the most difficult band they have in the library, but the teacher checks what she has chosen to make sure the subjects covered aren't too old for her. If it's more borderline she writes a note in the home school book.

melonribena Thu 25-Apr-13 12:54:00

Homeworkagain, that's ridiculous that the teacher won't move your son on in reading because of his writing.

In all my years as a teacher I have never done this, it makes no sense. Clearly they are linked but they are separate too.

Surely being introduced to more complex language and sentence structure in an appropriate level book will help his writing?

I've had many children who's reading far outstrips their writing, this is how literacy develops, you read it, you process it and eventually it appears in your writing.

I would ask the teacher what specific features of the writing needs improving before he can move up.

I would also suggest what I said to the op, that the teacher gives one book on the current level and one on the correct level.

If this doesn't work I suggest seeing the head teacher to ask why on earth this is policy.

Good luck

teta Thu 25-Apr-13 13:03:42

This happened to my ds too.He actually said he was so bored of the books that he didn't want to read any more[he was on the same level for months].I went to the Headmaster and the problem was solved within a week.I think perhaps some teachers can become a bit blinkered and hold children back with the best of intentions,to be honest.

MiaowTheCat Thu 25-Apr-13 13:09:16

Just ask - I always would make a point of trying them on the next book up in class with me when someone made a request like that to get a feel for how they'd cope and either move them up or explain why not (couple of times it was just that I wanted them to work on something like expression or just to build up some confidence with a book I knew they'd be able to tackle).

And usually reading's slightly ahead of writing anyway - if you think about it, it's logical.

daftdame Thu 25-Apr-13 13:24:03

I wouldn't worry too much. In my opinion reading comprehension is not necessarily restricted by reading books which are labelled 'easy'.

For example, somebody with an advanced level of comprehension would be able to interpret a fairytale far more deeply than somebody with less advanced comprehension who may just read it at face value.

Anyone can get bored with badly written / or irrelevant books -no matter what 'level' they are.

I would continue reading books with your child that he enjoys and find out what the teacher is expecting in terms of what he should be learning re. comprehension, expression etc.

Even if the teacher has assessed him rather cautiously, I would hope that soon his understanding will become obvious, as he begins to communicate his own ideas more.

Pigsmummy Thu 25-Apr-13 13:26:27

Yes do and also get some books at home (local library?). In primary school I had read every book in the school and the teacher used to get me to meet the libabry service to get further books, when asked to read aloud I used to get into trouble as I had raced ahead! (sometimes finishing the book) and was bored. I am very grateful to them and I suspect that they did this to keep me engaged and interested, it worked.

KansasCityOctopus Thu 25-Apr-13 13:34:08

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Lizzids Thu 25-Apr-13 13:54:49

I'm a teaching assistant in yr2 and one of my jobs is to look through the reading records and set reading books. If I was getting notes from the parents to say that the books were too easy, I would make sure either mysef or the class teacher heard them read ASAP. We would then be better able to see if they need to be on a different level.

The only problems we sometimes come across are that a child may be able to read the vocabulary but their fluency/comprehension may not be good enough. My advice would be to keep writing notes in the record, for example 'whizzed through this one in 2 minutes' or 'ready for the next level?'. Make sure you are asking your DS comprehension questions as he reads and that the fluency is good.

If this doesn't work then don't be afraid to ask the teacher for a meeting to discuss it - they'll want to make sure your DS is reading the appropriate books and is happy.

groovejet Thu 25-Apr-13 14:02:38

Worth asking, I had to ask dd2's teacher, hate coming across as pushy so just asked if she could try one book on the next level to check if she was ready.

Was worth asking as the teacher admitted that she had overlooked her progress and dd2 ended up being moved 2 levels in 3 weeks.

DD2's reading is far better than her writing skills, has never been a linked with her book level in fact since the teacher keeps a better eye on the levels her writing is improving.

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