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Humpty Dumpty SAT on a wall...

(28 Posts)
lovecheese Sun 17-Jul-11 09:33:56

OK, it's another question about year 2 SAT's, bloody things. Can I ask any teachers how wide the gap is between a 2a and a 3c for maths, and would children with 2a's normally be grouped with level 3 children in year 3.

Thankyou blush

allhailtheaubergine Sun 17-Jul-11 09:50:52

I thought this was going to be a pedantry question about whether Humpty should have been sitting on the wall.

mnistooaddictive Sun 17-Jul-11 09:56:29

Levels are worthless.
A level is also a set of marks. The difference between 2a and 3c could be one mark or 30.
It depends how many level 3s there are and how many 2as and if it is just a 2a or nearly a level 3c. How long is a piece of string unfortunately.
Research has shown that giving children levels all the time harms their progress.

MigratingCoconuts Sun 17-Jul-11 10:05:07

I was expecting some sort of anti SATS level performance poetry....

M fault for reading the toddler modern art thread in dicussions for today grin

RosieBP Sun 17-Jul-11 11:32:59

It really depends where the child is within the level - the difference between top end 2a and bottom end 3c is not massive. However, to be teacher assessed as a level higher (ie to be working within level 3 not 2) can be a big thing - it is in my school as the line is that a 3c has met every single criteria for level 2 compared to a 2a who is still working on some. However, I have taught year 3 and I grouped my level 3s and 2as together.

teacherwith2kids Sun 17-Jul-11 12:09:37

Depends on the numbers.

This year I had a table of children who all got 3s, a table of half 3s and half 2as, a table of 2cs and 2bs, and a table ranging from p6 to a bare 1a (this table had full-time TA support in maths for most of the year).

The class coming up has fewer 3s and the lowest is 1c, so I am most likely to have a table of 3s, a table of 2as with some secure 2bs, a 2b/2c table and a 1c-1a table.

I should point out that those are teacher assessment levels, not SATs paper levels, and I will take into account the 'narrative handover' I get from last year's teacher in grouping them - some children work best with children of higher ability to 'drag them along', others work with more confidence when they are at the upper level of ability in their table.

karma22 Mon 18-Jul-11 21:29:26

The difference between 2A and 3C in year 2 is a completely different paper test wise. There is a paper that goes up to 2A and a different paper that tests level 3. I would say there is a large difference between the two and what is expected from each.

TeamEdward Mon 18-Jul-11 21:35:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

teacherwith2kids Mon 18-Jul-11 21:37:04

But Karma, the tests only inform teacher assessment. They are not the only factor in the levels reported - so the different paper is only a minor factor compared with all the other aspects of continuous teacher assessment.

Teachermumof3 Mon 18-Jul-11 21:42:05

*At the end of KS1 there is no level 3c. Children can achieve 2c, 2b, 2a or 3.
What a KS2 teacher would expect from a level 3 child differs greatly from what a KS1 teacher would expect, ime.*

Of course a child can be a level 3c at the end of KS1; it just that the fine grade might not be reported to the parents.

karma22 Mon 18-Jul-11 21:46:13

Of course but the OP asked how the two levels were different. I wouldn't give a level 3 without the child achieving well on the paper as I don't think the year 3 teacher would appreciate a level 3 child that can't achieve that in Optional SATS. It doesn't help anyone, including value added to send a child up on a dodgy level 3. smile I do however believe strongly in teacher assessment but until SATS tests are done away with children need to be able to perform in them, especially to achieve a level 3 going into KS2.

TeamEdward Mon 18-Jul-11 21:49:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

teacherwith2kids Mon 18-Jul-11 21:55:23

I have a child in Year 3 whose optional SATs mark is 2b. Her teacher assessment is a 3a, she is reported as that as I have very strong teacher assessment data to show that (externally moderated APP). She came to me as a 3c, equally with a very low mark in her KS1 papers. She suffers from acute anxiety in tests, but is very able and shows that consistently, day in and day out, in the classroom.

Teacher assessment should be used robustly - I equally have a child who achieved Level 4 in the papers but is reported as a 3a as she over-performs in tests. I am really shocked that a teacher should refuse to give a child a Level 3 if they operate as a secure 3 day in day out, just because they fail to perform on a single occasion in a very artificial environment (we do not coach at all for KS1 SATs, so it is literally the only time they see tests laid out in that way - and we rely on robust teacher assessment, externally moderated as required).

choccyp1g Mon 18-Jul-11 22:00:45

How can you "overperform" in a test? Is it possible to accidently get it all right by mistake?

karma22 Mon 18-Jul-11 22:04:27

I APP every child in my class individually for reading, writing and maths. Teacher assessment is very robust. I clearly have not yet been in a situation where a child that I think is a level 3 has not achieved it in the SAT also. I am very careful about level 3 in year 2 and would expect the child to continue to progress well in year 3 and achieve a level 5 in year 6. smile

Feenie Mon 18-Jul-11 22:04:40

The tests only form a very narrow snapshot of a level. It's perfectly possible to perform well in a test and not be at all secure at that level.

teacherwith2kids Mon 18-Jul-11 22:06:34

Remember that tests only test what is testable. Optional SATs do not test ability to approach an open-ended problem in an ordely way, for example, overcome difficulties that arise, and communicate their mathematical thinking. They also do not test the ability to e.g. collect and sort data to address a hypothesis.

It's like the reading test - it is a test of reading comprehension, not the ability to read with expression using voices, or discuss the genres from which a variety of books come.

So it is possible to score highly in a test of 'closed' mathematical questions but yet score much less well in proper teacher assessment taking a much wider set of criteria and skills into account.

karma22 Mon 18-Jul-11 22:09:24

Totally agree, but, what do we do when these children do not achieve the expected levels in year 6 because they cannot perform in the test? ( this is a genuine question!?)smile

Feenie Mon 18-Jul-11 22:11:20

Maturity and becoming more used to tests usually sorts all that out by Year 6, I would say.

teacherwith2kids Mon 18-Jul-11 22:14:39

Like Feenie (and as someone with an 8 year old and a 10 year old myself), I would say that the difference between a 6 or 7 year old and a 10/11 year old is huge. With careful handling and understanding teaching, I am sure that my anxious child will fly in Year 6.

But she will not fly if I report and group her as the 2b she shows on her papers rather than the 3a her day-to-day work shows her to be.

karma22 Mon 18-Jul-11 22:18:03

Wouldn't dream of grouping according to tests! Obviously a detailed handover from teacher to teacher helps greatly.

teacherwith2kids Mon 18-Jul-11 22:25:15

If you don't group (decide on next steps for, design activities for, pitch work correctly for) according to the levels of the children (which you report are primarily from the tests) then what DO you use them for??

Obviously the precise details of grouping depends on the detailed tracking data and handover, but you show very little faith in your assessment methods if you don't use them to group children in order to design work appropriately for them to make progress??

SE13Mummy Mon 18-Jul-11 22:28:17

If the OP's child was in my class next year (which s/he won't be as I have Y4) s/he wouldn't be grouped on the basis of test performance; I group children according to their social and learning relationships and give individuals work that is appropriate to their level of performance in a given subject.

Thinking about it, that's probably something I should have mentioned at class handover; parents tend to fret about which table their child is on which, in a mixed-ability set-up, is completely pointless.

Feenie Mon 18-Jul-11 22:32:56

But you still give children work which is closely matched to their teacher assessment, and later your teacher assessment, which is teacherwith2kids's very valid point.

teacherwith2kids Mon 18-Jul-11 22:42:20

Should also say that we have maths groups, literacy groups, mixed ability topic and science groups, guided reading groups and randomly assigned (and regularly changed) talking partners, not a single grouping.

So the groupings in the classroom are not 'fixed' and children will move across tables depending on subjects, but as I routinely 4 and sometimes 5 way differentiate maths tasks, for example, I do precisely group them according to their levels / next steps so that they each do exactly what is needed to move them on. It also means that e.g. I can do guided work with a slightly lower ability group which I give as independent work to another table - and I could not do this unless I knew very precisely the level at which each child is working, which I do through teacher assessment of level using APP-derived tracking sheets.

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