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Supporting reception level good reader

(10 Posts)
theboakster Thu 03-Apr-14 17:53:03

DS is 5 and a half, and although I've not really had anyone at his school saying he's well ahead of his age group (maybe they avoid saying this?) I think he's pretty advanced. He's currently reading Horrid Henry books with no problem at all.

I am concerned that he's not reading much at school. I read with him every day, and he reads a lot by himself, but he only seems to be reading once a week if that at school. And then sometimes it's just 'reading the blurb on the back of the book' or 'a recap of the story' (which I get, because they want to check comprehension). Should I be pushing them to read with him more?

What other reading scheme books would be good for me to get for him? I don't really know what 'level' he's at, and what he would understand comprehension-wise. We have all sorts of books at home, but I'm particularly keen to reinforce some of the technical stuff that he'll be doing at school (i.e. we had additional Biff and Chip books at home when he was first reading)

columngollum Thu 03-Apr-14 18:59:30

They don't do any technical stuff in school that's new to a child reading Horrid Henry in Reception. You'll be lucky if they do any in Y1. (Don't know about Y2, but I'll let you know.)

Basically, unless you've got a supportive teacher and a supportive school, you're on your own. What's your local library like?

Ferguson Thu 03-Apr-14 19:03:33

Is he having regular phonics sessions, does he know all the sounds, and can he blend sounds together? I trust your Biff & Chip books are the latest series, which are phonics based, unlike ORT twenty years ago, which certainly weren't.

And are you really sure he READS Horrid Henry, or does he know it off by heart?

I did voluntary work in a Reception class once, where children would recite whole pages, without even being on the correct page! They knew the whole book by heart.

In my experience you won't get very far if you try to 'push' teachers! Beg or grovel might be more productive.

Check what he is reading in more difficult books, and see how he 'decodes' new or unfamiliar words, particularly longer ones. Also let him tackle non-fiction, in subjects that interest him.

To help with the 'technical stuff', look in the MN book reviews, in the 'children's educational books and courses' and consider getting the Oxford Phonics Spelling Dictionary, which will support reading and spelling throughout primary school and into secondary.

nonicknameseemsavailable Thu 03-Apr-14 19:20:34

what books does school send him home with?

GeneralGrevious Thu 03-Apr-14 19:24:34

I would book an appt with the head or EYFS lead and discuss a plan go in with the mindset of I really want us to work together to get the best for DS and to support the teachers at home

columngollum Thu 03-Apr-14 19:29:02

Don't you need some sort of plan with teacher feedback before booking an appointment with the head teacher on this kind of issue. If you just rock up with a message of I really want to support the teacher and get the best for my child then you're just another parent;

they all want that.

bakingtins Thu 03-Apr-14 19:34:56

I think you can ask the teacher what level or book band he is on at school, and for him to be reassessed if that's massively different to what he reads at home. Once a week reading 1-2-1 with an adult at school sounds about par for the course, especially if he's flying with his reading. I expect school will direct resources towards children who are struggling or who don't have parental support at home.
Reading scheme books are beyond dull anyway. We dutifully do our 10 mins of whatever they send home and then get on with Harry Potter. DS is now in Y2 and gets additional support in reading/comprehension and maths because they think he'll get them high grades in SATS this year he's on the gifted and able list for English and maths.
If your DS is reading well, you read to him at home and he reads for pleasure you have nothing to worry about.

MrsKCastle Thu 03-Apr-14 19:37:05

GeneralGrevious it would be pointless to go straight to the EYFS leader- OP needs to see the teacher first.

OP, speak to the teacher and ask what he needs to work on. Often comprehension skills take longer to develop than decoding, so he may need to work on these. Comprehension means a lot more than retelling the story- it means understanding the character's motivation, finding evidence (e.g. 'you can tell mum is cross because it says 'scolded'), talking about the way the author uses language e.g. rhyme, repetition, how these things affect the reader.

I'd speak to the teacher, but also work on the above aspects at home.

GeneralGrevious Thu 03-Apr-14 21:37:24

Sorry I assumed you had already spoken to the teacher if not they should be the first point of call

simpson Fri 04-Apr-14 00:19:06

Definitely speak to the teacher.

HH books imo are deceptively easy and its easy for a child to read and understand the basic story but they are levelled at stage 12 due to the inference (or hidden meaning) in a lot of the text.

DD is in yr1 and a very strong reader and tbh I am grateful that her teacher trusts me to provide appropriate books (she gets no books home from school, just chapter books to keep in school when she reads 121 or by herself) and I am not really a fan of school reading books once a child is strong enough to tackle other stuff.

You can check out the Oxford owl website which has loads of free ebooks (school ones) for free, otherwise I would just provide a variety of books to read at home ie The Gruffalo which is levelled at stage 9.

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