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Guided reading group 5 levels below current school reading level - does this matter?

(23 Posts)
EarthboundMisfit Thu 14-Apr-16 19:55:45

My Y1 DS is sort of 'on his own' with his reading level according to his class teacher. He is on White level, although like many children at that level he reads 'normal' chapter books happily at home.

In the class there are lots on orange, and 3 'free readers' who joined YR already reading well, but apart from my DS no one is in between, apparently. This seems a bit odd but it's what the teacher said...she was quite apologetic.

There is a special guided reading group for the 3 children who are free readers. I think they are all identified as very intelligent. They go to another part of the school and study chapter books. My DS is not in this group, and understandably so. He is in the next group...but it means they study books at L5.

I don't think he has any issues with comprehension etc, and is able to discuss content at quite a high level I think (when we read at home he chats independently and answers questions on characters, themes, author's intent and use of language as well as inference, prediction etc).

Should I be concerned he is missing out at school or just leave things as they are? Thanks.

Ferguson Thu 14-Apr-16 20:37:01

I'm a retired primary TA, and not up-to-date with current expectations (which have probably risen in recent years) but I don't think you need be unduly concerned he is 'missing out'.

Assuming his writing (content and handwriting) is OK, also Maths, ICT and all the other academic subjects, and PE, drama, music etc, there is a LOT more to education and learning besides reading, though that is the 'cornerstone' of course.

See how it goes, give him plenty of support (but not stress), and I'm sure he will be OK. After all, this is only Yr1, with probably another ten or fifteen to go!

EarthboundMisfit Thu 14-Apr-16 20:42:21

That's great. Yes, he's doing fine all round, teacher said he would get expected for some things and exceeding for others...I think. I'm not really up on the terminology.

It's a nice relaxed environment at school and they seem to fit in lots of variety and fun which surprises me.

It's just the way the teacher was talking about this special group, it sounded like they were halfway to writing essays on the imagery of Romeo and Juliet, which made me panic! grin

mrz Thu 14-Apr-16 21:17:06

As a Y1 teacher I'm not sure why he is being included in a group so far below his reading ability. Does his understanding match his ability to read white band books?

catkind Thu 14-Apr-16 22:25:35

Because there isn't a group at his level mrz.
Interested in answers as our school also seems to want everyone in a group doing the same thing and DD wildly ahead.
Hopefully the teacher will be asking him more challenging questions with the l5 books but still, that's a massive lag.

mrz Fri 15-Apr-16 06:16:36

So hear him read individually in a guided group of one

EarthboundMisfit Fri 15-Apr-16 07:07:11

As far as I can make out, his understanding is good. I don't know exactly what they want, but his teacher commented on how good his comprehension was at parent's evening.

EarthboundMisfit Fri 15-Apr-16 07:09:16

The only possible issue I can think of is that he can sometimes over-complicate things when working out someone's motivation. He's not wrong exactly, it's plausible, but he's over-thinking it a bit.

Finola1step Fri 15-Apr-16 07:13:19

I'm with mrz on this one. Could he possibly go to the Year 2 class once a week for guided reading with a White Level group?

I also see it from the Orange Level readers side. Might be tricky for them having someone in their group who is able to understand the text far better than them.

EarthboundMisfit Fri 15-Apr-16 07:25:27

Well, I've been dwelling on it and the thought that he could possibly go to Y2 was what made me wonder if it might be worth speaking to his teacher again. It's not a school that mixes the years except for 'fun' activities.

irvine101 Fri 15-Apr-16 09:05:55

Does the teacher know that your ds happily reads chapter books at home?
Can't he join this super group instead?

EarthboundMisfit Fri 15-Apr-16 09:57:56

I think she's on the ball about where he is, so if he's not in the group I imagine there's a good reason why. I think I will chat to her again.

Witchend Fri 15-Apr-16 10:01:18

I wouldn't worry too much. It may even help him a little. Dd1 read Harry Potter in year 1 at home-and they only did guided reading in year 1. I mentioned that she was finding level 5 ORT a little boring, expecting the teacher to say something along the lines of "yes it's very easy, but we'll be moving on quickly", when by her response I realised that the rules were they had to have 6 in each group and they had to stick by the level of the lowest, so they would be on it for some time. (this was a long time ago now and things had changed by the time dd2 came around)

Actually I think it was quite helpful. Because she was reading harder books at home it meant that it wasn't effecting her ability, and it gave her opportunity to concentrate on the understanding and picking things up from the books that if she'd had to think more of the reading matter she wouldn't have.

I refused to read them with her at home, and the teacher was totally supportive of that.

irvineoneohone Fri 15-Apr-16 16:15:42

I think if the teacher can't put him to higher level group, he should have one to one with teacher maybe? Orange is very easy and short compared to white level. It could be a problem if he feels it's boring.
My ds was in the same position in KS1, but his comprehension wasn't so good, so it wasn't too bad to be with lower level books. Your ds's case seems different. Also ds's yr2 teacher gave me a huge list of questions I can ask him when reading at home to compensate.. Maybe you can ask your teacher for similar things? Anyway, my ds didn't suffer so much, and just keep reading what he liked at home help him progress steadily.

EarthboundMisfit Fri 15-Apr-16 17:29:33

I have started him on read theory this afternoon which he enjoyed. Hope that will help.

catkind Fri 15-Apr-16 18:01:43

Our school don't do "groups of 1" either. They say because they don't want kids to feel excluded. Not sure what my preference would be tbh. Going up a year can be socially awkward too unless there's general mixing.

mrz Fri 15-Apr-16 21:08:23

We have never done guided reading which solves the problem of trying to push children into best fit groups

irvineoneohone Fri 15-Apr-16 21:12:46

We have been doing readtheory over a year and half now. DS has progressed so much.

jamdonut Sun 17-Apr-16 16:29:23

I'm quite surprised that they haven't put him and the free readers in one group...he's very nearly a 'free' reader, if he's on white, so I would have thought it would make sense to stretch him a bit? Or, better still, put him with a year 2 group of white readers.

EarthboundMisfit Sun 17-Apr-16 22:06:12

I'm going to ask the teacher. He ended up on early high school level comprehension with Readtheory...its only one website but he enjoyed it and clearly has good comprehension so perhaps he does need a little more challenge than band 5.

irvineoneohone Sun 17-Apr-16 22:26:50

You can try these websites as well for more evidence of good comp.

These are both free interactive sites.

EarthboundMisfit Sun 17-Apr-16 22:34:41

Thank you!
I'm happy to defer to the teacher, but this DS LOVES his schoolwork so I want too help him enjoy it as much as possible.

EarthboundMisfit Sun 17-Apr-16 22:35:06

Sorry for the autocorrect.

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