Advanced search

Resources for L6 KS2 SATs English - esp comprehension

(145 Posts)
PastSellByDate Sat 22-Mar-14 06:53:18


I've posted elsewhere about our recent parent/ teacher meeting ( - where basically we were told they want to sit DD1 for L6 English and asked us to do more with her at home.

In particular they want us to work on her comprehension and especially improve how she discusses an author's writing.

They didn't have any notes for us to take away - so that we know what particularly we should be working on and they couldn't suggest any websites. We rather got the impression they were pushing us to buy a L6 KS2 SATs workbook, but studiously avoiding directly saying that.

If parents/ teachers out there have any ideas for useful websites/ workbooks etc... which can help in this area I'd be grateful.

spanieleyes Sat 22-Mar-14 08:33:23

is a good starting point and Rising Stars do a similar ( and more hopefully titled!) book called Achieving Level 6.
There seems to be few online resurces for level 6 unfortunately.

PastSellByDate Sat 22-Mar-14 08:40:53

Thanks spanieleyes - I'll see if I can sneak a peak at our local large newsagent first. DD1 does not respond well to dry workbooks unfortunately.

Iamnotminterested Sat 22-Mar-14 13:23:11

PSBD - if school are pushing you to do stuff at home with her ( and what you describe sounds like stuff that needs a qualified teacer's input) I would question her sitting the L6 tbh. Is she in year 6 now?

PastSellByDate Sat 22-Mar-14 22:11:09

Hi Iamnotminterested:

Yes DD1 is in Y6 - and yes one would expect teachers to lead on things like learning to read, learning to add, learning to subtract, learning to multiply, learning punctuation, learning grammatical terms, etc....

but hey why change the habit of the last 6 years +.

Sorry very cynical - all of the list above and then some can read - as taught by dear old Mum at home.

I'm happy to do more - but I fear I'm really casting about to understand what exactly distinguishes L6 from L5 and what literary devices should be taught at this age?

Also quite concerned that having told my DD1 that she's got a chance of attaining L6 they're rather setting her up for a fall - since nothing sensibly of that level is coming home (we're literally endlessly designing covers for favourite books or writing a new blurb for the back cover here as far as homework is concerned). School just seems to be endlessly reviewing grammars and now testing the kids in one area or the other practically every day.

I'll keep looking ever. But any suggestions gratefully received.

MightBe Sat 22-Mar-14 22:45:33

My advice is not to pressurise yourself or your DC to 'make the grade' unless they are self-motivated to do so. Achieving L6 is more in the school's interests than in your DC's. The school will be looked upon favourably by OFSTED and those inspecting the school's Y6 rating and results. Makes no difference to your DC. You'd be better off prepping them (gently) for the CAT tests. These are usually the tests that decipher which set they'll be in at secondary (in other words, of use and relevance to your DC). Don't go crazy at it though as:
a) CAT tests are supposed to be (but aren't entirely) impossible to prep for
b) you don't want them to portray a potential far greater than is honestly realistic for them to achieve if expected in KS3 and onwards.
(Contradictory, I know). However, if they're the type of child who's bright but verging on being top set, familiarising them with technique and practising under time pressure may help.

Level 6 'stuff' will be of use in so far as it's going to lay a foundation for Y7 where it'll be covered in more depth. However, my concern is that primary school teachers are I'll equipped (experience or time) to teach what needs to be covered in these relatively new (more advanced and recently introduced) aspects of the English and maths and curriculum. To compensate for this, schools are passing the buck to parents. The children encouraged to go for it will feel pressure and a sense/ fear of failure and disappointment.

spanieleyes Sun 23-Mar-14 08:34:39

Why would I be ill-equipped to teach level 6?

MightBe Sun 23-Mar-14 08:44:36

How long has L6 been a feature of the training and experience that we have had as Y6 teachers? I'm assuming that those teachers directing parents to deliver this aspect of the curriculum to their children aren't able to provide this in the classroom or in booster groups - either through lack of resources, experience or confidence.

spanieleyes Sun 23-Mar-14 08:48:16

I've always taught level 6 objectives if the children have been working at that level and level 7 objectives too for that matter, there isn't a cap at level 5! If teachers aren't able to teach level 6 material ( and let's face it, it's hardly especially taxing!) then they need to do some serious CPD to sort it out!

MightBe Sun 23-Mar-14 09:07:54

Of only all Y6 teachers were so competent. Most I've met feel slightly out of their depth even in some aspects of L5 (maths in particular) and are keen to pass the buck in terms of incorporating L6 objectives/ concepts into their classroom

spanieleyes Sun 23-Mar-14 09:14:56

You've met the wrong ones grin

mrz Sun 23-Mar-14 09:28:15

What a strange idea MightBe hmm

PiqueABoo Sun 23-Mar-14 10:10:19

Only 0.4% of children passed KS2 SATs L6 Reading last year.

DD has a fighting chance of passing, but I've told her about that relatively tiny number of passes, convinced her that it's all a bit random and could hinge on familiarity with the subject of the comprehension text. I also threw in the official suggestion for the low pass rate which is essentially lack of life experience. For DD's nature this works because she likes a challenge and will give it her very best shot, but should she fail will very likely shrug and use being a summer-born to rationalise that away.

I don't think it's as straight-forward as L6 maths where mastering several little distinct topics means you can access more of the questions to get a better score. I'm not sure what you can do that might be a significant help besides gain familiarity with the L6 Reading paper, learn to play the game with the questions.

spanieleyes Sun 23-Mar-14 10:14:49

There's more emphasis on authorial intent on the Level 6 paper but I would agree, much of it is down to maturity ( as is the writing ) which is difficult to teach! Maths is much more straightforward-which is why the pass rate for L6 maths is much higher,we had 25% last year.

PiqueABoo Sun 23-Mar-14 10:16:44

MightBe "You'd be better off prepping them (gently) for the CAT tests."

Funny you should say that. DD's upstream secondary CAT tests them in the very first week and if there isn't at least some correlation with a child's levels of anxiety over being at Big School[tm] then I'll eat a hat.

I won't be doing very much, but DD will have played enough with CATs sometime in the previous week not to be scared of them.

mrz Sun 23-Mar-14 10:19:43

Since level 5 is the expected level for most 14 year olds is it surprising that most 11 year olds don't have the level of reading maturity required for level 6 PiqueABoo?

PiqueABoo Sun 23-Mar-14 10:21:02

spanieleyes "There's more emphasis on authorial intent"

A while back we had a fine little protest over "What do you think the author meant to convey when they wrote... " as in how was she supposed to know what they meant to convey and whether what was actually conveyed was a fair representation of their intent?

PiqueABoo Sun 23-Mar-14 10:27:05

mrz "is it surprising that most 11 year olds don't have the level of reading maturity required for level 6 PiqueABoo?"

No it isn't. The trick is ensuring the child understands so failure doesn't hurt them much, without simultaneously convincing them they can't possibly pass.

PastSellByDate Sun 23-Mar-14 11:02:37

Thanks all - interesting discussion and I totally take the point that a very small proportion of pupils achieve L6 in Reading, and should make that clear to my DD1 (to help ease the pressure a bit).

I think the school would like her to get L6 across the board and this is her one weak area.

If anyone out there has some useful resources for 'Author's use of language' let me know. I fear much like maths I'm going to have to go away and search out resources.

spanieleyes Sun 23-Mar-14 11:16:48

There's some here ( although american!)

teacherwith2kids Sun 23-Mar-14 11:22:41


Interestingly, i had a parallel - but rather different in tone - conversation with DD's Y6 teacher last week. DD is on course to get L6 Maths, Writing and SPaG.

The conversation went 'I know that you are working at L6 in reading. I have lots and lots of evidence from all of your work in class over the year. However, we know that the L6 reading test, as a test, is very hard. If you don't pass it on the day, your teacher assessment level of L6 will be reporterd to your secondary along with a L5 test result, so don't worry, they will know you are an extremely good reader. Just don't worry too much about whether you pass or fail a single test on a single day, we know your overall level IS a level 6. Just keep reading a really wide range of books, including some that you really feel expand your ideas, and perhaps think about HOW the author is writing in order to have a particular effect on you'.

[Bucking the national stats, DD's school got I think 7 or 8% L6 reading in the test last year]

MightBe Sun 23-Mar-14 14:57:03

Sadly, not so strange, Mrz

sassytheFIRST Sun 23-Mar-14 14:59:40

I'm a teacher - secondary English - and I've told dds school that they are not to enter her for L6 paper. It is of no benefit to her, only to the school, and will cause her stress - she is also not a L6 kid ime so it will all be needless.

mrz Sun 23-Mar-14 15:06:23

It's very strange that you believe someone who has studied to a much higher level is not capable of teaching level 6 MightBe or do you think that primary teachers are less qualified than those working in secondary?

MightBe Sun 23-Mar-14 15:12:42

Mrz, I am one. I'm also a Leading Literacy teacher for the borough and a dyslexia assessor. So I speak through experience.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: