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Y5 child - struggles to write legibly, spelling atrocious. This is school's suggested 'learning plan' - do you think it is adequate?

(12 Posts)
firstchoice Mon 01-Sep-14 17:12:44

Child is Y5 (repeated Y1)

Very bright but struggles hugely with writing (physically) and legibility (almost none). Also finds spelling incomprehensible. Doesn't spell phonetically even, or consistently at all. Dad v dyslexic as is Grandad.
Sensory issues / ASD traits (but no dx for either).

This is what school have finally suggested (he has been having scrappy Learning support since Easter but no plan in place so we have been asking and asking for some sort of plan).

We are in Scotland and education under the current Curriculum is much more 'woolly' and it is harder to pin down if a child is meeting targets for age.

This is the 'PLAN':

"I will be able to spell the most commonly used words correctly".

X will have a dedicated half hour spelling input with Mrs Y, Support for Learning Teacher each Friday. These sessions will be used to practice words focussing on specific spelling patterns as well as reinforcing spelling of the 200 most common words.

Spelling rules been given to Mr and Mrs X to encourage support at home.

Regular spelling homework activities will be provided by Mrs Y. These will be emailed home on a Monday.Comparisons made between spelling assessments at start and end of term.

Regular consultations with the Support for Learning Teacher will allow us to evaluate progress and discuss next steps.

Annual tracking of spelling age. (Next due May 2015)

"I can access support when needed in order to spell unfamiliar words."

X encouraged to ‘have a go’ on scrap paper then to self-check, ask peers or ask adult if word is spelt correctly.

Dictionary available at all times.

X will have access to a spellchecker when completing written work within class.Bank of X’s written work will be created in order to track whether he is able to transfer knowledge of spelling patterns, and access spelling support, during extended writing tasks.

"I can present my work in a neat and organised way."

X will have access to a laptop for extended writing tasks.

Handwriting practice sheets been given to Mr and Mrs X to support handwriting development at home.

Correct letter formation and neatness encouraged through class handwriting activities.Bank of X’s written work will be created in order to see progression with neatness and organisation over time.

I don't know?
Does this seem adequate to you?
It seems as though there will be little assessment to me?
We don't know his 'starting point' (although we tested him on the first 200 high frequency words in the Spring and he scored 42% - he is now 10).

Am I expecting too much???

misssmapp Mon 01-Sep-14 17:17:14

These targets are way to big. Spell all 200 words correctly!! By when ?

I would ask them which group of sounds/rules they are focusing on first. and how.

Have they tested him for dyslexia? I would think understanding the cause of his difficulties is far more important.

BTW ds1 is exactly like your ds . he is going into yr 5 aswell . I am ging in weekly to review his work and progress and hope this will lead to more productive targets and support being put in place.

Good luck

Badvoc123 Mon 01-Sep-14 17:22:42

Check out engaging
Also write from the start.

fluffypiglet Mon 01-Sep-14 18:00:26

Hmmm... it does say that comparisons will be made between assessments, tracking of spelling ages and consultations with teachers- this looks very comprehensive imo. How else could they track progress?

You say he struggles to write legibly. My child is the same and is now in S2. His school have done loads for him but yet his writing still is quite messy. I've just come to accept that this is how it is for him. I'm more concerned about what he is writing rather than how neat it is. After all- you never see a doctor with neat handwriting!!

misssmapp- I don't think these targets are too big!!! It says on the plan that they will be reviewing his spelling age in May 2015. These are obviously long term targets with strategies in place to monitor progress along the way.

Thanks for the websites Badvoc123. Gonna check these out tonight.

firstchoice Mon 01-Sep-14 18:15:48

badvoc thanks for these suggestions.

fluffy I think our issue is that we simply don't trust what they say.

We asked about the 200 Hi-Freq words at Easter as he couldn't spell eg, book, school, house......

They looked blankly at us and suggested we 'test and practice at home'.

Come end of summer term, a dyslexia tutor assessed him and found he was getting around 30% of the words and gave a spelling age of around 6 years.
One week later school told us he had been tested on 30 random HF words and got 100%. Obv there will be a difference on random tests and performances, but a 70% difference seems odd.
When we asked him did he remember the assessment he said: oh yes, it was good, they gave me all the answers so I just copied them out.


Badvoc123 Mon 01-Sep-14 18:31:16

Your child has got to y5 and they haven't managed to teach him to read.
Please don't expect them to!
My son was dx severely dyslexic on year 4 (spelling was < 3rd centile) so I decided that school were doing nothing so I would smile
He did write from the start - got it from amazon.
Bear necessities and apples and pears by sound foundations...the BEST residing and spelling intervention around. And I've tried em all! smile
If I were you I would
1. Begin write from the start
2. Start engaging
3. Begin bear necessities
My son is now in year 7 and in his sats got a level 5 for reading smile
Good luck x

fluffypiglet Mon 01-Sep-14 19:09:31

Can't your child read? This looks like a plan for spelling and neat handwriting... not reading?

FC- I understand what you are saying about school suggesting you do work at home. To me this sounds like they are not passing the buck. If your child is struggling then you need to work in partnership with the school. Your child would benefit from learning support at the school as suggested but also from some input at home. Isn't this what they were suggesting?

Badvoc123 Mon 01-Sep-14 19:20:49

If he is struggling with such simple words then I would suggest he has big gaps in his phonics knowledge.
Work on the formation and pencil grip...write from the start will help with this.
Then make sure his eyes are tracking and can converge properly (80% of kids with reading/writing issues have problems in this area)...engaging eyes will a Help with this.
Then make sure there are no gaps in his phonics knowledge...bear necessities and apples and pears.

misssmapp Mon 01-Sep-14 20:12:28

Fluffy- Targets being reviewed in May is far too long to be useful for anyone. It should be termly and targets should be SMART
Specific, measurable, Achievable , Realistic and timed.

Saying 200 words by May is pointless- if he could do it , he would have by now The school need to break this down into achievable chunks with specific support/guidance/programmes in place- then by May he may well haver achieved all 200.

firstchoice Mon 01-Sep-14 20:27:03

He CAN read. Struggled massively until about 2 years ago then just 'got it'. Reads fluently with expression. Such a relief.

Work at home would be great but he simply WONT. He screams, chucks stuff etc - goes into meltdown. He just refuses. It's exhausting

missmap - yes, I agree - a year to do 200 words is silly.
targets should be SMART.
Anyway, he wont be getting LS next term, we have already been told - it is on a 'rota' andhe will have had his 'share' by then hmm

fluffypiglet Mon 01-Sep-14 20:54:38

I see what you are saying misssmapp. Although I would like to think that the school would be treating this as a working plan and reviewing it regularly- setting new targets along the way.

How many LS teachers are in the school. I know with my youngest child there are only 2 LS teachers for a school of almost 500 pupils! Can't expect them to be able to see all children for all of the time!!!

firstchoice Mon 01-Sep-14 21:04:57

1 LS teacher.
Shared between 5 schools, so in for 1/2 day a week.

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