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Have a go at the key stage 2 grammar SATS.

(284 Posts)
neolara Fri 12-Feb-16 12:41:07

Have a go at this mini Key Stage 2 SATs test.

See if you'd pass.

I think it's incredibly important that all 10 year olds know what subordinating conjunctions, modal verbs and determiners are because I use these terms on a daily basis in my actual daily grown up life.

In fact, I'm delighted that my kids will be spending more time learning to label parts of speech and consequently less time on largely irrelevant stuff like computer programming, art, developing social skills, music, history, geography etc. The sort of things that barely impacts on my actual daily grown up life as I work alongside other people, use computers every day, travel, work as a social scientist, appreciate a wide range of cultural experiences such as music on the radio, plays, art galleries .......

While I totally get the need for kids to learn good spelling, punctuation and grammar, somehow I can't get my head round the feeling that things have just gone nuts. Firstly, learning to label grammar parts is not the same as learning to use good grammar. Secondly, learning to label grammar parts at the expense of learning all the other much more useful stuff seems crazy.

Lucsy Fri 12-Feb-16 12:45:27

It's fucking outrageous and beyond belief that in a few weeks our children are sitting these tests

I'm so unhappy with the situation that my daughter will not sit them, and I'm currently in discussion with school as to what the consequences to me will be for keeping her off school for the period of time I have to to ensure she does not do them

The teachers don't think they are in the children's best interests. The HT don't either. One teacher I spoke to said it was ridiculous, she had sleepless nights and she thought it would damage some children

I am amazed there isn't more fuss about them from the teachers unions.

Lucsy Fri 12-Feb-16 12:46:33

And no, I wouldn't pass.

BillMurrey Fri 12-Feb-16 12:48:13

I got 30%! I have never heard of half of those things.

CremeBrulee Fri 12-Feb-16 12:54:28

But be aware that the site has skewed the questions to make sure parents will get low scores, be scared and order their products for their DCs

mercifulTehlu Fri 12-Feb-16 12:55:53

Nope sorry - those are all pretty basic questions about how sentences work. They are absolutely what kids should be learning at primary school imo. Unfortunately many people get very upset when they see grammatical terminology for some reason. It's ridiculous. Proper maths and science terminology doesn't seem to upset people. Just calling something a subordinating conjunction doesn't make it difficult to understand. It's no wonder we as a nation are so crap at learning foreign languages - we have bugger all understanding of how are own language works, which gives us no basis to learn others.
Sorry - I'm an MFL teacher and may be a bit tetchy after 20 years of having to explain grammatical concepts from scratch in MFL lessons because pupils don't know anything whatsoever about them.

Peppapigallowsmetoshower Fri 12-Feb-16 13:02:30

I got 70% but I have a languages degree so some things only made sense as I'd learned about them in a different language.

Really pointless questions. I totally agree that there are far more important things (and I'm really a fan of good grammar!)

Literacy is very important. It's vital in our society and everyday life but that test doesn't reflect what our children need to be learning.

BillMurrey Fri 12-Feb-16 13:03:59

I'm actually not bothered what my kids learn in school as long as they're taught imaginatively and well by fun, happy people that are interested in them.

Honestly, there's so much to learn, anything done in school is just a springboard and if done in a good way it will give them thirst for learning that will last them the rest of their lives.

2 years ago my dd had a brilliant year 5 teacher who taught them so much - difficult grammar and maths too. She was like Mrs Honey; never a cross word. And it was a challenging class.

ds is in year 5 at the moment and hates it! Different teacher who is very negative and shouty. She's doing a grand job of turning him off learning for life.

Maybe this wasn't the right thread for this, sorry - It's just been brewing for a while and I needed to get it out. grin

As you were.

Pantone363 Fri 12-Feb-16 13:04:20

40%

BillMurrey Fri 12-Feb-16 13:06:39

Tehlu I know exactly what you mean. I went to a crap school and for years thought verbs were French - had no idea that they applied to the English language too (or any other Language for that matter) blush.

tootiredforthissh1t Fri 12-Feb-16 13:13:19

I'm educated to postgraduate level and 'achieved' 20%. I agree that Key stage 2 children do not need to know this in order to use grammar correctly.

AugustRose Fri 12-Feb-16 13:14:15

I got 50% which is more than I thought, I did one on the BBC or Guardian last week and did terrible.

I was never taught many of the terms used in those questions and was surprised at how difficult these tests are for 10/11 year olds. Luckily DD2 is only in Year 4 so has a couple of years to learn them - I just hope it doesn't interfere with her enjoyment of reading and writing.

teacherwith2kids Fri 12-Feb-16 13:24:34

The thing is, that site has selected the more difficult - and more obscure - questions for its test. The full paper is here:

www.gov.uk/government/publications/2016-key-stage-2-english-grammar-punctuation-and-spelling-sample-test-materials-mark-scheme-and-test-administration-instructions

and you will see that many of the questions in it are much more straightforward, and much more relevant.

Minispringroll Fri 12-Feb-16 13:25:40

100%...I teach Y6, though. blush

Dungandbother Fri 12-Feb-16 13:30:42

70%
I'm a Journo and have great grammar.

I only didn't guess one, the adverb. I know what that is as DD had it in homework recently. Yr4.

For the rest I used my common sense and looked at odd ones out type scenario because I haven't a clue what the descriptors mean.

BreconBeBuggered Fri 12-Feb-16 13:34:10

I got 50%: 'above average'. Hurray, go me, etc. I cannot for the life of me see what most Y6 children will get out of this other than a vague impression that grammar is something you only have to learn for exams. Utterly counterproductive.

DiamondAge Fri 12-Feb-16 13:37:12

But how much more useful is all the other stuff? How often do you use the things you learnt in primary school lessons on a day to day basis except for reading, writing (including grammar), some basic maths and drawing (maybe)?

This year DD's learnt about: improper fractions, measuring angles, less common 2 / 3D shapes, about Celts, Romans and Anglo Saxons, labelling plants and how magnets work etc.
On a day to day basis she won't need to bring any of these things to mind as an adult unless she specialises.

Is knowing that 'although' can be used as a subordinating conjunction less valuable than knowing that 28/7 is an improper fraction that can be turned into mixed numbers? People place different values on types of knowledge / skills so it's going to be hard for any national curriculum to please everyone.

I think, as a parent, it's always hard when you realise you'd struggle to help your child with a primary school topic (I'd struggle myself, a lot of these terms seem like gobbledegook to me right now). But like so much that's taught at school you learn it and then forget large chunks when you never need to use it again ... I mean when was the last time you needed to measure an angle with a protractor (not that I've forgotten how, trigonometry on the other hand blush)

SquirmOfEels Fri 12-Feb-16 13:43:10

I'm sure there's a research paper in this, but systems analysis on language is great for coding. The rules and functions are quite similar, as is the need for accuracy in application.

maizieD Fri 12-Feb-16 13:47:05

I'm with the OP on this. It's too technical and will do little to enhance children's writing.

neolara Fri 12-Feb-16 14:00:29

I agree with Diamond that lots of what kids learn at school isn't used in adult life. I guess learning facts about Anglo saxons or labelling plants is probably not going to be that relevant to lots of people, particularly now that it is so easy to gather info from the Internet. Imo, what kids should really be learning is skills to equip them for the 21st century. Considering how the world has changed over the last 20 years, we probably don't know what life will be like in 20 years time but we could hazard a guess about what might be more or less important. Being flexible. Coping with change. Working out what's reliable info among a sea of unreliable info from the Internet. Working collaboratively with others. Good communication skills. Computer programming. Healthy eating.

There's always a balance to be had between teaching kills and facts. I think we should be helping our kids more to develop skills that they can apply to a range of different contexts. It's not that facts and labels are unimportant, but in an era when at the press of a button we can find out pretty much anything, I think rote learning of facts becomes less important.

SansaClegane Fri 12-Feb-16 14:25:50

I got 70% - I guess the fact I learnt Latin, French and German has something to do with this.

I agree though that just knowing what grammatical elements are called will not improve anyone's grammar or writing ability!

mercifulTehlu Fri 12-Feb-16 15:11:23

Agreed, Sansa, but talking about things in sensible way, using their proper names, is what kids ought to be doing when they are learning things. They do so in maths, science, geography etc. Grammar is no harder than any of those things. It just became deeply unfashionable to teach it, and for some reason people have decided that grammatical terms might scare parents young, impressionable children. They seem perfectly happy with words like 'tectonic plates', 'copper sulphate' and 'matrices', but 'subordinating conjunction' and 'past participle' are terrifying.

It's quite hard to explain to a child what is wrong with his or her sentence if you're saying "well, you know that umm, thingy word. The one that does this in the sentence... You know, the kind of word you use when you want to say..." etc

SansaClegane Fri 12-Feb-16 15:52:35

Maybe it's just the test then... It gives the impression that the only thing which matters is knowing the descriptive terms!
I do think it's right to learn grammar properly, and the terminology to boot, but end of KS2 still seems quite young for that?
As a side note, it's a shame that not many if any state schools still teach Latin as IMO it's perfect for learning grammar, and gives foundations for learning many other languages.

Feenie Fri 12-Feb-16 16:01:15

I'll think you'll find that most primary school teachers think it is just beyond the maturity of many, if not most, children. Not that anyone ever listens to us when setting the curriculum. I certainly take this view, and I have notoriously high expectations.

TrulyTrumptious Fri 12-Feb-16 16:06:08

A teacher friend told me that 25% of the knowledge needed for this test is taught at KS1. So if 11 years old seems young then think of what it is doing to the 6/7 year olds.

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