Reading books v easily - what to say to teacher?(23 Posts)
Hi, so my ds was only given books home at end of last term. We had been reading songbirds and books from charity shop etc at home and he's getting good at reading now. However the school still send the red level books home. He does read with knowledge of what's going in in story and reads fluently, I dot want to sound pushy mothery but would like him to fulfil his ability and maybe be stretched a bit.
What shall I write in the reading journal?
Reading journal entry
"all read, discussed XYZ about story afterwards"
And then go and read something interesting with him of your own (or better still his own) choice.
Just ask if you can have one of the next level books up to try him with (or if they can try it in school with him) as you're worried he's finding it too easy. Most teachers unless they're totally bonkers will happily comply or check him in school with another book - if it was a parent I know who'd be honest in their judgement I'd send one home to see how it went, if not I'd try a couple of bits of books in class... finding the right level books is often a bit of trial and error. Occasionally I'd keep a child on a "lower" book to boost confidence or work on understanding the story or similar but I'd always explain why to a parent.
Read with ease, talked about the story and the characters
Agree with addicted - then find something more interesting
Ds1 was in the same position just after Christmas, it suddenly clicked with him over the holidays and he was reading the yellow band songbirds books easily and still having red band ones from school which he'd read in a couple of mins and be bored with.
I wrote a note to the teacher explaining this and politely asking if she could listen to him read and look at moving him up a level. She did so and he now has yellow books from school. Tbh they're still a bit easy as we're now on blue songbirds but they have more of a story to them and he enjoys being able to read them confidently.
We also went to the library and got a batch of books around yellow/blue level so he can try different styles of writing/types of books.
I'd suggest finding out how your school assess and progress children. For example some schools insist on children reading every book in each stage, others use a commercial assessment tool such as PM benchmark or the equivalents for ORT or Big Cat Collins, some schools will only assess once a term, others more often. Some will only move a child up one band at a time, others will happily allow jumping up several bands if the assessment results support this. Yet others will hear a child read from their current book and decide if they are ready to move up based on professional judgement.
DDs reception class allowed rapid progression and were happy to assess when parents requested it (or noted DCs were finding books easy) but not all schools are like this. If you want to provide extra reading material then Reading Chest, the library and, as you've mentioned charity shops, are all great.
"X is finding his reading books very easy- could you see if he's ready to move up a stage, please?"
Write in your reading diary that your ds is finding the books easy and ask for him to be moved up a level. IME, the teacher will hear your dc reading and then move them up if you ask. S/he should have noticed already, though
Agree with Tired that you could check with your teacher how they assess and move children up the reading levels. Staying on one level too long is demotivating for dc though - they want to move up and get bored if their books are too easy.
"He found this quite easy, could have have some harder books, please?"
And go to public library in meantime to get them for him.
We had the same issue. I just told them that the books were really easy and that we were reading harder things at home. They tested my DD (they use a sheet of words for each stage - if the child can read those, they get moved up), and up she went. The then moved her up again straight after Christmas, but actually this time it was a little bit hard for her and so I asked for one book from the old level, and one from the new, and that is working beautifully. She enjoys being able to read the lower level quite easily, and gets satisfaction from being able to read the harder level. I was worried about seeming to be a pushy mum too, but in reality, I don't think the teachers mind if you are just updating them on what is going on at home. They have 30 odd children to keep track of, so you are very likely to know more where your one child is at. Good luck.
We get a comment written into the book when they have assessed for the next stage - even if they keep the child on the same level, just to 'keep us in the loop'. assuming you haven't recently had such a note I think you would do better to ask if DS could be assessed for the next stage of books (rather than to move up a level) and if it decided that he isn't ready yet, what areas you should be working towards with him e.g expression as he is finding just reading the words easy.
I would be honest in the diary and say, read easily or read fluently or with expression and so on.
If after noting that kind of thing a few times then they haven't done anything I would ask a bit more directly.
I think it is always polite to say things like 'what does he/she have to work on in order to progress?' 'is there anything we should be working on?' rather than 'can they move up a level'
^^ are you me nonic? That's exactly what I do.
I found that once I had written 'DD read this book easily' a few times in the reading diary she tended to get moved up a level!
haha - i don't think I am 2 people no but my mum was a teacher and I always think that respect and politeness go a long way towards potentially getting what you want! The majority of teachers are very good and more than capable of working out what level a child is at but with so many in a class and so much else going on plus taking into account a child at school may be different to the child at home then it just seems a sensible approach to me.
I think they are perhaps waiting until the phonics forgave learned in class are covered ie oa\ng/zz or whatever before giving them books with these sounds?
Thanks for replies, think ill just write that he read with ease and talked about story before asking if he can move on.
I asked to meet with my daughter's teacher and just took in a few books that she was reading at home and the teacher then sent home books of a similar level.
I am not keen on whole class learning where reading is concerned. Children will have widely differing attainments in reading in that some read very well at 5 whilst others are still struggling. Some are reading tomes at 8 whilst others are still on basic reading books. Therefore how can a class all learn the same aspect of phonics at the same time before they move on? Some will know it and read so they should be accelerated and have the more complex books more quickly instead of waiting for the others to catch up.
Others have suggested very good comments and best not to use mine!!! I would definitely make use of the library though as they should have plenty of books to keep him going for years!
put a note in the diary. The only thing is that there is a massive range in red books - dd was given one last week that she found too easy, I wrote comment about her being wordperfect first time and we got a much harder red book on the next phonics stage. We've also had songbirds books (although you may be talking about a different level of them).
I think whole class reading instruction and rigid schemes say more about the school/teacher than they do about children's abilities.
Try reading ORT books on line at oxford reading owl. You can choose your own level that way. It's all the usual biff and chip plus more.
I'd record how he got on in the reading record. Read with ease, understood story. And then I'd pull out a real book for him to read and be thankful the school book is easy and short and you can focus on encouraging him to read the books he chooses to read rather than reading the crap the school sends home with usually no regard for personal interests.
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