Can someone please explain what this test is and do I need to help DS at home to "pass" this test. A friend of mine whose DS was in Year 1 last year failed it and nearly all the children in the class failed.
You don't need to do anything, assuming the school is teaching a phonics programme in a competent fashion.
The test is designed to identify this struggling early on, so that interventions can be considered.
You would be doing your DS no favours to attempt to mask any problems. I'd say your best course is to have him read to you regularly, and make sure that you use the reading record or parent/teacher meetings to raise any observations or concerns you have.
Without wishing to appear facetious I would think the best thing you could do, considering most students didn't pass, would be to lobby the school to teach phonics correctly, and not to teach whole-word regcognition/mixed methods!
It's not till summer term, is that correct? DD is doing well with her reading, school haven't done phonics as well as some (going by MN standards) and have encouraged whole word recognition with HFW. But she is reading reasonably well, and I personally feel this whole year will be wasted on her at school whilst they repeat endless phonics teaching she can already read. Forget teaching the children, let's teach to pass a particular test
shattereddreams - hopefully your daughter will be one of the lucky ones and will not encounter problems with reading later on. Unfortunately, there comes a point where trying to remember many thousands of words by sight (especially when they start to get more complicated) becomes rather difficult and a significant number of children struggle if they don't have a better strategy to use to actually read what the words are.
Don't assume the phonics teaching will be wasted even though your daughter is doing well with reading - it will no doubt have a positive impact on her spelling.
llllll the test is a set of words (some real, some names of aliens) that a child is expected to decode. If his decoding is ok then he will pass the test. A school should be teaching the children the phonics that are needed for the test so that they progress in their reading and spelling skills, as part of the NC. Having a thorough grounding in phonics is really important - IME, as DS1 didn't have a solid grounding and his spelling is appalling (although his reading is very good). DS2 now in yr1 probably can spell as well as DS1 (yr6) as his phonics teaching has been superb.