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NC level question, Teachers please help...

(11 Posts)
Tinkerfell Mon 05-Nov-12 20:29:34

We had parents eve today, DD in yr2, didn't reach numeracy target in yr1 (1A instead of 2C), now been told she made 2/3 of NC level in 1st half term and is on 2B. When I queried this I was told that they can only take them to a certain level in yr1. Should I be worried? This sounds to me like a school almost holding up a childs progress (?) Same in english but to lesser degree, DD on 2B, and firmly headed for 2A, next step is paragraphs; in next breath teacher says these won't be covered until later in the year?!?!?

Am I right to be concerned, or am I worrying about nothing? TIA xx

mam29 Mon 05-Nov-12 22:44:54

At end of year 1 expectation is 1b/1a depending on school so 1a end of year 1 no reason to be alarmed.

By end of year 2 expectation is min 2b so to be 2b this early at begginning of year 2 good.

The feedback teachers on here is kids move 2-3sublevels at keystage 1.

most on our dds year got 1c , 1b few got 1a and 2cs think 2c is highest in year 1.

If childs doing well year 2 they can hit level 3

Threes national avarage but sometes if schools very academic and class is genrally higher then it can be hard my dd got 1b end of year 1 and school told me was below average as they expected 1 we since moved schools and they were content with 2b and think shes ben on track to get 2b by sats time.

PastSellByDate Tue 06-Nov-12 06:12:11

Hi Tinkerfell:

First of all I think you should have a read through the Mumsnet learning pages on progressing through the NC Levels in primary school here:

I think this will reassure you that your DD's progress is quite typical. Also please bear in mind that progress is in spurts at this age - they just suddenly get it. They may struggle for a bit with sounding out longer words or adding/ subtracting numbers over 30 and then suddenly they're fine. It's not always obvious why - it just makes sense to them suddenly.

Perhaps I'm wrong - but I think some of the sub-text of your comment is a distrust that the school is doing all it should be doing with your DD. A very good 'reality' check on what is possible to teach children in an ideal world is the primary curriculum prepared by Campaign for Real Education:

This is presented by area of the curriculum but gives you a very clear idea of what should be covered in a given school year. I stress this is 'ideal' world stuff and your school may well not be teaching to this - but it does demonstrate what is possible 'in an ideal world'.

Finally, as someone who has posted here over the years with sometimes extreme frustration at aspects of the curriculum for my DDs (now Y3 and Y5) - one thing to bear in mind is that you can't control how or what the school choses to cover with your DD but you can enhance what they learn at home. There are all sorts of fantastic resources on-line. Some examples are:

Mumsnet Learning learn at home zone:

Oxford Owl (Reading):

Oxford Owl (Maths):

BBC Learning [BETA] teachers pages of KS1: - just click the KS1 tab at centre left in orange outline box - and then select appropriate area of the curriculum

BBC KS1 BITESIZE (revisiong for Y2 SATs):

crickweb (KS1 resources): - just select KS1 on blue menu bar and scroll down to appropriate subject. Lots of on-line games to support learning.

Woodland Junior School Maths Zone:

Woodlands Junior School Literacy Zone:

Woodlands Junior School Science Zone:

and there is nothing better than getting your DD reading as much as she can. Join a library, swap books with friends, visit charity book shops/ stalls, etc...


WofflingOn Tue 06-Nov-12 07:15:31

'When I queried this I was told that they can only take them to a certain level in yr1.'

This line worries me, it's crap. You teach the individual child, and there should be no ceiling on their learning merely because of the class that they are in. If she's working on consolidating and applying the knowledge that she has in different scenarios and tasks, that's different. But if she's capable of working at a 2A now in any subject, she should be heading for the next step regardless.

Iamnotminterested Tue 06-Nov-12 10:24:31

Seconding what WofflingOn said; we were told that DD2 was "A very high ability child" in year 1 and her teacher was (on the whole) great at stretching her and she was a level 3 for reading at the end of year 1; fast forward a couple of years and her target for the end of year 4 is 5c ie. no limits if a child has the potential.

Tinkerfell Wed 07-Nov-12 19:47:14

Thank you all for your comments. Pastsellby thank you for the links; as a single working mum I don't have time to educate my daughter as well (not as much as I would like to anyway!!)
WofflinOn, that line is what made me post here, that's the bit that worried me most. In reading she finished yr1 on a 3b and has a 4b target, so if she can progress in reading why nothing else? My cynical answer would be she does reading herself (with us at home), so her potential has no limits placed on it. I am going to address this with the school. Wish me luck xx brew

PastSellByDate Thu 08-Nov-12 02:46:09

Hi Tinkerfell:

Absolutely hear you about the frustration of working all day and then having to come home and help (way more than you expected) with school work. I am absolutely certain my parents didn't do as much with me when I was in primary, back when dinosaurs roamed the earth.

But do try some of these websites and get your DD in the habit of your getting her started and then getting on with it on her own. One of the things I did over lunch breaks was surf free on-line resources to help with whatever my DDs were currently working on/ struggling with - and then would set them to it at home later.

One handy solution to busy parents is to have them read to you whilst you're cooking/ doing quiet chores (washing up/ making beds/ folding laundry/ etc...) - kills two birds with one stone!


yellowsubmarine53 Thu 08-Nov-12 07:13:34

tinkerfell, maybe I've misunderstood, but it sounds like your dd ended Y1 on 1A maths and 3B reading, but she couldn't go any further in maths as the school doesn't assess beyond level 1 in y.

Did the school explain the discrepancy between assessing to L3 in Reading, but not even L2 in Maths? Seems crazy.

Also, a target of a whole level of progress from a 3b to a 4b in one year is very unusual - what's her maths target for this year?

Tinkerfell Thu 08-Nov-12 19:46:12

Pastsellby, apologies - I didn't mean to sound dismissive of your comments, we do use websites at the weekend sometimes, and read lots of non-fiction books together. she is big time into science, and at the mo is probably driving teacher mad answering all questions in class about materials :-/
Yellowsub her levels for everything are set at 1nc above her attainment last year, although they have not been adjusted to take the new levels into consideration,so 2A maths, although now Im typing 'only' (ironic statement, no judgement please) 2A in writing. Still haven't managed to speak to teacher, will try again next week...

CameronSmith Fri 09-Nov-12 06:25:58

What levels are used in Reception? The mumsnet link posted on this thread to explain NC levels uses NC levels from year one and my understanding was the same that NC levels are not used in Reception. The eg they give shows a reception child's reading level at 6-9. What does that mean? What are the levels used in Reception and what do they monitor?
For example our school monitor NC levels for Reading, writing & maths from Yr1 but I don't know about Reception monitoring.

Thanks for any insights.

mrz Fri 09-Nov-12 06:57:36

At the end of reception children are assessed using the EYFS profile.
In each area of the curriculum (13 areas) children were assessed against 9 scale points - so would be awarded a score between 1-9 for each area.
In September there was a new EYFS curriculum introduced (with fewer [broader] goals) but as yet the new profile hasn't been published, it is expected in the spring.
A reading score of 6 could mean literally anything a score of 9 indicates a child working within NC levels but not secure in all aspects needed to be awarded level 1.

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