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Are Reception children expected to be able to read already?

(23 Posts)
thetropicmama7 Wed 05-Nov-14 15:20:55

Sorry if my question sounds a bit stupid but just wondering as when my DS started Reception, he certainly could not read, didn't know his letter much less phonemes. He is a July baby though so people had no expectations smile However, my DD is a September baby so one of the oldest but in the same position. I am worried she might be considered "behind". I feel embarrassed to ask the other parents whether their DCs can read.

LeMousquetaireAnonyme Wed 05-Nov-14 15:28:37

DD2 is in reception and can't read yet (apart some random word and a few word on her school list). I don't think she is expected to. She can spell her words but can't blend and just spurt really random words instead.

p-i-n, p-i-n! humm? tap, pan, top, sit????

louisejxxx Wed 05-Nov-14 16:23:46

My ds has managed to read the first couple of Biff, Chip and Kipper books that have been sent home. They are usually 5 or 6 pages long with about 3 or 4 words per page. He also recognised about 15 words that have been sent home for him to learn (some tricky and some that he is expected to decode). The decoding is going alright...but he doesn't always "hear" the word as he's sounding it out.

LittleMissGreen Wed 05-Nov-14 16:30:20

I don't think they are ever expected to be able to, but some children can.
With DS2 (October birthday) he went to a nursery attached to the school. They decided he was ready to start reading the half-term before he started in reception and started sending him home with books. By the October he was reading with the year 1s so clicked quickly for him.
With DS3 (September birthday) he did a little bit of phonics in the nursery but didn't really get books until he started in reception. It was around February of reception that reading really clicked for him.

CaramellaDeVille Wed 05-Nov-14 16:32:27

My DS has just started reception and none of the children are expected to read. They're just starting now.

manchestermummy Wed 05-Nov-14 16:57:29

Dd1 couldn't read when she started reception and is one of the best readers in her class. She too is an older one. Please don't worry; I spent an inordinate amount of time doing just that and it was completely pointless.

TalkinPeace Wed 05-Nov-14 17:50:02


DS refused to learn to read till he started year 2

m0therofdragons Wed 05-Nov-14 17:51:22

No dd couldn't read and is now reading at a year 4 level in year 2 so it hasn't held her back. When they are ready they pick it up quickly, until then it's a pointless battle. Pre school it's more important to read to your child to increase their vocabulary.

Taffeta Wed 05-Nov-14 17:58:11

No, and early reading in our household caused a problem. DS has always had a high "reading age" but he rushes and doesn't think about what he's reading. He got to Y4 and we realised there was a comprehension bypass, so we had to go back, which he found very frustrating, for a whole year.

He's Y6 now and doing brilliantly, but if we hadn't spotted it, he'd have been in trouble. No use just decoding, comprehension is key. No rush, at all.

simpson Wed 05-Nov-14 18:19:35

DD could (self taught) but DS couldn't & didn't really click with reading until May/June of his reception year.

mumsneedwine Wed 05-Nov-14 18:30:35

My current year 10 DD couldn't read a word when she started school. Her birthday is in September and she didn't start til the January so was nearly 5&a half. She's getting A*s now so doesn't seem to have affected her too much !!

mrz Wed 05-Nov-14 19:16:33

It is very unusual for a child entering our reception class to be reading or recognising letters other than those in their own name

nonicknameseemsavailable Wed 05-Nov-14 19:32:03

no they aren't. Some can read fluently (rare), some can read quite well (unusual), some can read a bit and some can do all their letters (fairly common) and some won't know anything (also fairly common).

bearwithspecs Wed 05-Nov-14 19:35:55

Nope. Some do. Most don't

MollyBdenum Wed 05-Nov-14 19:36:25

No. Some nurseries start the children on phonics, so those children will be reading a bit at the start of the year, but the rest won't, and the teachers will start from scratch.

thetropicmama7 Wed 05-Nov-14 19:42:59

Thank you so, so much for all your comments. I feel much better now. I suppose it will come with time. I am thankful she loves having books read to her at the moment smile

pointythings Wed 05-Nov-14 20:30:32

My DDs could both read and write some simple cvc words and had a good grasp of phonics, but that was because it was offered in their nursery. They were certainly not fluent readers in any way and they worked their way through the phonics programme just like anyone else.

As long as your DD loves being read to and you do it lots, she will do well. It's the single most effective thing a parent can do to support their child in school.

Madcats Wed 05-Nov-14 21:13:02

Before reception, I was too busy trying to get rid of a 2-3 hour nap in the afternoon to worry about phonics.

DD (at 3 or 4) had no idea about letters, but could string a moderately complicated sentence together and understand one in return. Equally important, she knew how to communicate to adults when she needed help/encouragement

I think she finally "got" the idea of phonics around Easter in reception (June/July baby) and reduced the number of letters she flipped when reading or writing about a year later (so Easter yr1). We were still a bit worried, but didn't stress.

She wasn't ready..we didn't push it..she loves school....very keen to go every day (at her selective 7+ Junior).

Please just encourage DD to love school (if she feels pressured at 4 or 5 it is going to be a long slog to 18)

ghostvitruvius Wed 05-Nov-14 21:59:19

No, very few are reading when they start Reception. My school has an intake of 60 and I can maybe think of 2 or 3 who could actually read at the beginning, and they weren't necessarily the oldest. The vast majority do not recognise most letters.

zoemaguire Thu 06-Nov-14 09:25:58

Weirdly my ds can blend if we sound things out for him, but still can't recognise all his letters! D b p and a are interchangeable as far as he is concerned... And he cannot even hold a pen, so not writing at all. DD at this stage knew all her letters but couldn't blend at all. Now in yr 2 and picking books from the yr 4 library. They all seem to do it in their own sweet way!

HaplessHousewife Thu 06-Nov-14 10:44:07

I think it depends on the school and the preschools in the area, I would say at least 10 in DDs class could read before starting school but some didn't know their letter sounds.

Now, at the start of yr1, I think there's four girls who are on accelerated readers, yet there's one or two still on red books so the range is huge.

ReallyTired Thu 06-Nov-14 10:52:32

Dd could not read this time last year and now she is on Turquoise books in year 1. (Boast emoticon!!!) She knew her phonemes this time last yera from school nursery, but couldn't blend.

A child picks up phonics pretty quickly when ready. If a child wants to read before school then it doesn't hurt them to teach them. However the other children will catch up and possibly over take in some cases.

ChocolateWombat Fri 07-Nov-14 17:17:36

I don't suppose there is any 'expects' about it.
My child could read when they started reception. Had started at 3.5 and by reception could manage L5 of ORT or simple Dr Seuss type books. Tbh, being able to read seemed more surprising to the teacher, who found it hard to believe that DS could do it. However, within 3 weeks he was put onto L5 of ORT. He had done all of the reception sight words in pre-school (attached to the school).

I think there is a huge variation at this stage.
I think the best thing you can do is to read to your child every day and if they have reading books or words or whatever,to do it consistently 7 days a week, because regular practice is the thing that makes the difference.

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