Advanced search

failed phonics test year 2

(33 Posts)
Scottie04 Tue 15-Jul-14 11:53:34

MY daughter has failed this again. She really does not have a good grasp of phonics. Any one got any suggestions how I can help over the summer. School have told me not to worry every time I brought it up!
Is there something else rather than phonics we could try?
How can she get a 2b level and fail phonics test?

misscph1973 Tue 15-Jul-14 11:59:07

I hate the phonics test! My son failed his first and only just passed the second.

I do agree with your school, don't worry, but it's hard not to, isn't it?

it's not phonics, but why don't you get her involved with the summer reading challenge at the library. My kids do it every year and it's great fun. Reading can only help!

nonicknameseemsavailable Tue 15-Jul-14 12:31:33

when she comes across a word she doesn't know what happens?

does she read the letters out individually? does she actually read them from left to right? does she sound them out in phonic sounds (so sh instead of s h)? does she just ask what it says? how does she read it?

it is perfectly possible to read by whole words and still achieve a 2b but understanding phonics really will help her to progress.

one of my 2 is an exceptional reader but she has really struggled with phonics. she is unusual as hers is due to a language problem, her actual phonological knowledge is way beyond her age, she can blend but with her various splds something goes wrong.

I am all for saying don't worry about things but I think it is wrong for the school to tell you that as whilst I am not personally convinced the phonics check is vital I do think it can be an enormous indicator of problems and schools should take it seriously.

sazale Tue 15-Jul-14 12:38:42

My Y2 has not passed it again. He scored 5 last year and 20 this year. He does have moderate dyslexia and phonological processing difficulties so wasn't unexpected. He only got a 1c in SATS for reading/writing.

Was your daughter close to passing, OP?

I've discovered that my son reads by recognising the shape of the whole word rather than the letters and if the font is different style or colour it can mean he can't recognise them.

Scottie04 Tue 15-Jul-14 12:53:37

I've no idea what the score was. She got around 20 last year and I don't think that will have changed much. My 5 year old had a better grasp of phonics.
She just guesses words. She can blend some if she sounds them out. Otherwise Ifeel though she she sees one letter and picks a word with that letter. (Sigh) it really is torture listening to her read! At least she does an interest now, before she could not care less.

nonicknameseemsavailable Tue 15-Jul-14 13:09:28

ah ok so the key thing is she CAN sound them out which means her ability with phonics is there she just isn't USING it.

I think it was mrz suggested for children like this to use a piece of card with a little square cut out of the corner. so you put it on the line and move it along so they can only see the next letter or couple of letters and therefore aren't able to guess from the first letter in the word or the shape of the word because they can't see it all to be able to do that. they have to sound it out in order.

my youngest does this a little bit and I don't think it is unusual, the difference is that my youngest rarely does it and if she gets to a word she doesn't know then she automatically sounds it out unless she is tired. her problem with doing it is just when she is trying to read very fluently and sometimes doesn't look at the word in enough detail but she is only in R.

I think it is worth trying the revealing 1 letter at a time thing could help but mrz would be able to explain it better than me as she is experienced with it. it would just slow your daughter down and get her in the habit of seeing phonics and sounding it out as the first step automatically.

maizieD Tue 15-Jul-14 13:43:42

She just guesses words. She can blend some if she sounds them out.

I really wonder how good the school's phonics teaching is if, after 2 years of supposed phonics instruction, she is guessing words. No child should ever be allowed to guess words during reading instruction, or any literacy activity, in school.

I can't believe that a child in a school that didn't allow guessing would spontaneously develop guessing as a reading strategy, because they would be habituated to sounding out and blending as that is all they would have been allowed to do from the very start!. (I know that sounds a bit harsh, but it isn't hard for properly taught children!)

If the school teaches guessing from pictures, context & initial letters alongside a bit of phonics, no amount of frantic practice with non-words in the weeks leading up to the check are going to help children who find reading more difficult to learn.sad

Not saying that that is what your dd's school did but I wouldn't be at all surprised to find I'm right, or nearly right...

sazale Tue 15-Jul-14 14:09:57

Maizie, those methods are exactly what the LA specialist teaching service are teaching my son under the guide of a wave 3 intervention!

sazale Tue 15-Jul-14 14:10:31

*guise not guide

lougle Tue 15-Jul-14 14:31:28

Can I suggest you buy It is a phonics instruction programme that has a strong evidence base (you have to get over the American accent though!). It teaches phonics/reading in 80 lessons and it adjusts itself according to the performance of your child, so that if your child doesn't achieve a very high accuracy and fluency with a sound, it goes over it again without telling the child that they got it wrong!

You can print a headsprout map so your child can see their progress. The programme is around £55 ($99) and it sends you progress reports as they complete the levels.

The children think they're playing a game -they are often helping the characters get across space/up a volcano, etc.

sazale Tue 15-Jul-14 14:41:32

Will Headsprout measure the progress in a way I can show school/LA/tribunal that he has made progress using it, Lougle?

We're waiting on a tribunal date for a rubbish final statement and the school want to send home more of what they've been doing for the summer. He hasn't made any progress this year in reading/writing even with a wave 3 intervention. It would be good if I can show that if he does make progress over the summer it's with this program.

My concern would be he struggles to transfer skills but this could form part of a bespoke package if it works and he loves computers which is even better!

proudmama2772 Tue 15-Jul-14 15:00:01

my daughter passed hers in Y2, but only after 3 weeks of intensive phonics card study.

She is also a 2b Ort 9 reading level. If her phonics understanding was better, its possible, I suppose she'd be a much better reader. I'm a little skeptical of the whole phonics debate - particularly because it always seems to evolve into a catfight!

maizieD Tue 15-Jul-14 15:31:38


Are you saying that your son is being taught the Look & Guess method in a Wave 3 intervention shockshockshock

Oh, let me guess...I bet they told you that 'Phonics doesn't work for him..'

sazale Tue 15-Jul-14 16:32:19

They say it's phonics but they are defo teaching him to guess from the initial letter/picture etc.

It's called Reading Rescue and is meant to be based on Reading Recovery and I've just found out the SENCO wrote it! It has now been suggested by the specialist teaching service that he start Fischer Family Trust in September (no ones told me this, I've found out after requesting a copy of school records). I'm not happy with this after everything I've been reading lately. The school also have been identified in ofsted inspections as not very good at phonics teaching!

Ferguson Tue 15-Jul-14 16:35:02

There is a book that could possibly help; if you look in MN Book Reviews, "children's educational books and courses" you will find the Oxford Phonics Spelling Dictionary. It is an easy to use, attractive book, that children can use on their own, or with adult support.

The review gives a link so you can see sample pages, and you can purchase via Amazon if you wish.

But if she is finding it that difficult, is there perhaps a possibility she has some special need that needs to be investigated by professionals?

lougle Tue 15-Jul-14 18:27:40

sazale - yes, you would get a report like this that you can access at all times.

Each episode report tells you what element of phonics the child has learned and which words s/he should be able to read as a result.

Scottie04 Tue 15-Jul-14 18:30:11

Thanks for the ideas. I will have a look at those.
I'm not so worried about the actual test. It confirms what I have been concerned about for a while.
I have spoken to her teacher since year r and get told not to worry. I used to wonder if she had some sorry of auditory processing disorder but I'm not sure now.
She was never interested for a long time as she was one of the younger ones but now she is finally interested, she just doesn't get it.
It's so difficult because my oldest just picked it up without any help and my youngest is becoming better than my middle child! Is hard not to compare them all.
I just got a pissed off at the letter the school sent saying she had failed the test butithey would let her Junior school

Scottie04 Tue 15-Jul-14 18:31:41

That looks good lougle.

mrz Tue 15-Jul-14 18:40:49

Reading Recovery is mixed methods and only teaches phonics as an after thought not systematically and effectively and encourages the type of guessing you describe, even in it's New Zealand home it's failure is being noted

mrz Tue 15-Jul-14 18:42:22

Sorry meant to say as a SENCO I totally disagree with what the school is saying and I'm afraid they are the ones responsible for your child not meeting the check expectations!

maizieD Tue 15-Jul-14 18:49:22

Reading Recovery is not a phonics based programme. It pays lip service to phonics but doesn't teach it sytematically,it doesn't give children practice in the correspondences they touch on in a session and the reading books they use are not decodable at all. Added to which, as you have found, 'other cues' are encouraged along with instead of sounding out and blending.

I don't know how you could extract your son from this useless intervention but you should certainly take the advice of others here and do some phonics at home with him. A very good site to look at is which will give lots of help.

It is also worth looking at for an explanation of how synthetic phonics 'works' (and, how 'other strategies' don't work..)

maizieD Tue 15-Jul-14 18:50:04

X posted with mrz! We agree...

Scottie04 Tue 15-Jul-14 18:53:09

I know Mrz. I will speak to teacher after school tomorrow, but is to late for this year. She has had some intervention but not enough obviously!

orangepudding Tue 15-Jul-14 19:06:27

Fischer family trust is based on reading recovery. It seems to be a very very similar intervention.

My son (year 1) started FFT in December. He's had on average 4 lessons a week since then. He enjoys the lessons but hasn't learnt to read more than about 15 words! He memorises the books but doesn't connect what he has memorised with the individual words.
I don't know anyone who's child has used it to know of others have had success with it.

mrz Tue 15-Jul-14 19:23:04

actually I would say too much of a totally inappropriate intervention

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

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

Register now