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Does anyone know whether the new National Curriculum makes weekly spelling tests mandatory in infants?

(58 Posts)
TheOriginalMerylStrop Tue 10-Nov-15 20:35:48

Message from DS (year 1) 's teacher suggests so.

How depressing.

Hulababy Tue 10-Nov-15 20:39:18

Not compulsory as far as I know.

MM5 Tue 10-Nov-15 20:42:42

Not mandatory. But, the new curriculum has definitely upped expectations to Year 1 children having spelling expectations of old Year2-3 curriculum! So, pressure from government irrespective of developmental stages.

TheOriginalMerylStrop Tue 10-Nov-15 20:53:44

Does anyone have a good link to what expectations are?

Year 3? Seriously? Worse than I thought. I am teetering on the brink of pulling DS2 out and home edding. I am really worried about the damage that this new approach will do to kids who may be bright enough but who are just not developmentally ready for so much of this stuff.

cariadlet Tue 10-Nov-15 21:02:17

here's a link to the new National Curriculum for English

The government says what children should know, but not how they have to be taught. There's nothing there about spelling tests - although the expectations have definitely been raised.

leccybill Tue 10-Nov-15 21:05:16

I have a DD in Year 1 who is finding school so tough despite adoring everything about reception and skipping in each day.

Now she says it's just work work work and everyone looks sad. I'm gutted really. Would def consider home ed.

LadyNymeriaGhost Tue 10-Nov-15 21:07:29

NC tells you the spellings that they need to learn, but not how they must be learnt. There's a spelling test as a part of the Year Two SATs.

TheOriginalMerylStrop Tue 10-Nov-15 21:07:30

Thanks, my googling seemed to go in circles.

I feel like I am feeding my children to a SATS machine.

My oldest child is now Y6, and doing very well academically, but he couldn't have done a lot of what is being asked of DS2. Not because he wasn't "able" but because he simply wasn't developmentally ready to do so.

hels71 Tue 10-Nov-15 21:10:04

My DD (now year 3) has had spelling tests since reception. The head claims it is because parents want them. (This one does not)

YesterdayOnceMore Tue 10-Nov-15 21:12:51

I have a ds in yr 1, no spelling tests here (thank goodness)

Snossidge Tue 10-Nov-15 21:13:15

I have a child in Year 1 and he has never had a spelling test. He has lists of words home to practice sounding out, but not to memorise.

SomethingPhishy Tue 10-Nov-15 21:21:54

DS in year 1, no homework other than reading books and a topic piece about Dinosaurs (draw, make or write about) over half term so far.

TalkinPeas Tue 10-Nov-15 21:51:02

If the school is an academy or a free school it does not have to comply with the National Curriculum anyway

TheOriginalMerylStrop Tue 10-Nov-15 21:57:39

It's just a bog standard primary.

Other 2 kids have been so happy. Little one had to start too young and do things he's not ready to from day 1. Outstanding school, has always had a lovely nurturing and creative approach. Becoming more draconian and rigid and less and less child centred.

DolphinsPlayground Tue 10-Nov-15 22:11:34

We have spelling tests for Dd in year one. Horrendous! sad she is so upset about them. The list of words above she can't read let alone spell. We also have a Head teacher that says parents want spelling tests!

WildStallions Tue 10-Nov-15 22:16:28

What's more depressing is the school lying to you - blaming the govt for their own decisions.

That would really infuriate me.

TheOriginalMerylStrop Tue 10-Nov-15 22:20:12

I don't know that they are lying to me. I think that it is implied that the testing is part of the requirement. I shall certainly be having a chat with the teacher.

But I think my issue is definitely more with the system than the school.

MsMermaid Tue 10-Nov-15 22:25:35

My DD in year 1 doesn't have spelling tests. I'm really glad about it, as I'd far rather she learn to spell as part of her writing than just by rote for a test. They seem to do tons of phonics work, and in general she's a better speller than dd1 was at the same age.

cariadlet Tue 10-Nov-15 22:53:50

We also have a Head teacher that says parents want spelling tests! The Head teacher isn't necessarily lying.

We always put feedback forms outside classroom when it's parent interviews (range of questions including homework) and also hold parent forums to get parent views.

It's often split with half the parents thinking that there's too much homework and half thinking that there isn't enough homework. It could be that you don't like the homework, the people that you are in contact with don't like homework, but there are lots of vocal parents who do want spelling tests.

Some people want to help at home, don't know how, and learning spellings seems to be a fairly straightforward way of helping, without having to worry that you are using the wrong methods (unlike maths which seems to make a lot of parents a bit anxious)

mrz Wed 11-Nov-15 07:13:41

The evidence is that sending home lists of words to memorise for tests is an ineffective way of learning spellings. Some parents do like to "help" with spellings whereas others hate them but there is no requirement in the new curriculum to send home spelling lists.

Mrsbadger77 Wed 11-Nov-15 07:30:25

All the pressure that schools and teachers put on students is horrendous.
My dd is 3 and will be starting reception next September having just turned 4. I'm so worried for her as she'll be so young.
I'm actually a teacher myself in secondary and can see the system is rotten the whole way through.
Just wondered if anyone knows if we put her in private school ( which I used to think I was fundamentally opposed to!) do they have to follow the national curriculum and is there the same amount of stress, pressure and targets? I take it they don't do SATs?

Spidertracker Wed 11-Nov-15 07:40:22

I don't know if it is in the curriculum or not but my children's school have done spelling tests each week from year 1 for at least since 9 year old DS started ( and also did them 25 years before when I was there).
Every school I have ever worked/trained in has also done them. I think they are a pretty normal part of school, and practicing spellings at home is no hardship, just 5 or 10 mins after reading.

mrz Wed 11-Nov-15 07:44:13

It's definitely not part of the curriculum or normal in all schools

Spidertracker Wed 11-Nov-15 08:08:37

Fair enough mrz but I have honestly never come across a school that doesn't do them and have worked in various schools across 3 LEAs

irvine101 Wed 11-Nov-15 08:24:36

My ds had spelling test since yr1, but I never put pressure on him to learn it. If he makes a mistake, he remembers it better.

Funny thing is, he's in yr3 now, but the list seems a lot easier than last year.

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