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Can anyone explain National Curriculum levels to me?

(8 Posts)
byanymeansnecessary Tue 25-Mar-14 18:23:00

DD will be 6 in August, is in yr 1.

Is at level 1b for reading,
level 1c for maths, and
level 1c for writing.

I'm worried that she isn't making enough progress - her teacher told me she was doing well. But surely if she doesn't progress next term and stays on level 1c for maths and writing then she's 'behind'?

I also don't understand the reading thing - she's reading turquoise banded books (fluently, she practically never can't read a word in them) and I thought that put her slightly higher than average, but a 1 b would suggest not?


Day1987 Tue 25-Mar-14 19:32:16

Hi there,

National Curriculum levels for KS1, KS2 and KS3 are the APP (assessing pupil progress) levels.

I'm a secondary school teacher and work with APP levels at KS3. A middle, 'average' range child would have roughly all 4's when they enter year 7 to be in set 2/3. In theory, if this is right in lower school (I'm not 100% sure), but at secondary we anticipate that a child would make 3 sub levels of progress over a year. It is not unusual that a child may stay on the same sub level but ideally they will move up a sub level each term. If they stay the same then it may be because one assessment focus is still an issue for example spellings, punctuation, paragraphing etc...

The way they are assessed are across a number of focuses; so there are inconsistencies because you might be measuring AF's 1,2 5 and 7 in one piece of writing and 1,3 and 6 in another which can lead to students either getting slightly lower or high levels from assessment to assessment but teachers should be 'holistic' in their approach and give them their average level.

Have they suggested that they are intervening in some way?

I looked here at book bands (again, don't know 100% sure if this is accurate). Turquoise is at the lower end (1c?) so if she's fluent, and should move up to purple, or her teacher sees she is more a purple book reader, she may have given her a 1b recognising that the 1c Turquoise books are easy for her now? That would make sense to me according to that scale on that website.

Also, students can be different sub levels, or be expected to make different levels of progress in different subject areas. Levels may not be in line with each other. Does your school suggest what level she should be at the end of the year so you can measure her progress against an end goal?

byanymeansnecessary Tue 25-Mar-14 19:43:09

Thanks day

She is not at level 1c for reading - she is level 1b according to her teacher. I've just googled turquoise books and they show as being level 1a for Year 1, and a recommended reading age of 6-7 - which would be yr 1 standard, wouldn't it?

Sorry, I didn't understand your comment about turquoise being at the lower end - it's slightly over the middle, isn't it, according to your link.

The teacher hasn't suggested any interventions, as she says DD is doing well. I guess if she is expected to move up a sub level a term then she'd be on a 1b for writing and maths and a 1a for reading by the end of yr 1?

byanymeansnecessary Tue 25-Mar-14 19:43:46

sorry, should say a recommended reading age of 6-7 - which would be yr 2 standard, wouldn't it?

bluegiraffe Tue 25-Mar-14 21:15:11

Advice would be don't get hung up on the nc level, or the book band for that matter, just read lots of other stuff at home/from library.
DD came home today with a book she had already read in first term of year 1, but because it is an ORT level 11, it seems it can be either a ks1 book band gold (age 6-7) or book band brown ks2 (age 8-9) And as she is now on 'Brown' level books, i.e, one up from lime at her school, in year 2 (so still ks1) she is being given dual banded books, but they are using the ks2 banding option....
We have stopped fretting and just read lots of other things/harder stuff at home too.
and her nc level never matched either, always 1/2 levels lower than Google stuff would tell me wink

bluegiraffe Tue 25-Mar-14 21:17:09

sorry 'sub'-levels that should have said (
they weren't THAT way off shock wink

byanymeansnecessary Tue 25-Mar-14 21:29:00

Sorry, I have confused this post.

I'm not worried about her reading. It's the 1c in maths and writing that I'm more concerned with.

LittleMissGreen Wed 26-Mar-14 12:17:17

Is at level 1b for reading,
level 1c for maths, and
level 1c for writing.

A child in year 1 is expected to make a level of progress in the year, so a sublevel of progress a term. They are expected to be at 1b at the end of the year. So your child looks perfectly on track to be 1b in maths and writing in a terms time smile

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