Would you talk to the teacher? Head? Or just leave it? Support at home?

(19 Posts)
RedPoppiesAndSpots Thu 07-Jul-16 16:35:58

DD is in Yr5. Just got her school report. Mostly is pretty much as expected (broadly expected attainment at PE/D&T which reflects the effort she is putting in - and what I know of my daughter). Handwriting also could be better - but she does struggle with this (left handed).

However. When she was at the end of Yr2 she was at a previous school. Where she has been on the gifted and talented register - with particular emphasis on her reading/English. School reports up until this point had always indicated she was still trying brilliantly, attaining well above expected.

This year? Well - yes, effort for reading/writing great. Attainment "Working within or broadly within the standards expected for her age." Ie bog standard in the middle.

Comments made for next steps are:
Reading: To ensure she always refers to the text when answering questions and to answer questions fully
Writing: To vary simple and complex sentences for effect.

Now, I trust the teacher. I think the moderation/assessment in the school is pretty good. So I am not questioning the "results" or grading as it were. What I am worried about is the drop in her attainment level. What in previous years has been her absolute strength (particularly the reading) is now, well, not.

We saw some comprehension work she had done mid-year - she tends to rush the questions and make silly mistakes. SO you could say it is not a total suprise.

But should I talk to the teacher? My bright as a button DD seems to be slipping. I know that there has been a lot of focus on maths at the school (previous SATS were poor there so lots of resources thrown at it). I also get the impression that little is done in class wrt reading.

DD is a total bookworm

Arghhh...sorry, stream of consciousness going here.

Do I say something to the teacher - how can I support DD? How can I get the school not to let her progress slip from being on the G&T (albeit a different school) to "average".

Advice very gratefully received.

RedPoppiesAndSpots Thu 07-Jul-16 16:36:16

Oh god, sorry that was so long.

irvineoneohone Thu 07-Jul-16 16:48:30

I think it's quite easy to be highly able in KS1, since a lot of children are still learning to read and write. In KS2, I think it really start to show natural ability more clearly.
My ds was way ahead in literacy in reception and yr1, but since YR2, a lot of children start to catch up. Now he is still ahead in yr3, but I doubt it's going stay this way for long because his interest is more towards maths/science/computer.
He still reads a lot, but it may not be enough to stay on top.
Try these sites if you like.

www.readtheory.org/ reading comprehension.

pobble365.com/ for writing inspirations

teacherwith2kids Thu 07-Jul-16 16:54:45

I also think it might be worth thinking abut whether the change is due to the higher expectations of the new curriculum. The requirements for each year group is now higher. Thus children who were previously 'well above expected' are now 'at expected levels', not because their performance has dropped but because the 'expected level' is now harder. The requirements are also slightly different, with for example a much higher focus being placed on grammatical correctness, spelling etc in writing, so IME slightly different children are doing well against the new standards.

We held an information evening for parents about this well in advance of reports, to make sure that all parents were aware of it.

teacherwith2kids Thu 07-Jul-16 16:55:45

Apologies for my grammar: requirements ... are.

RedPoppiesAndSpots Thu 07-Jul-16 17:02:21

I am aware that the new curriculum is "tougher" and wondered if that may be it - but her attainment levels are "working at a great depth" (ie higher) in all other subjects (so bar PE/D&T and the Writing/Reading).

So I think that is what worries me. If it was just her settling into the new gradings of the tougher curriculum then all the gradings would be lower.

But it is not that. What were her previous best, best, best subjects are now the lowest and only low ones (sorry am discounting PE/D&T).

mouldycheesefan Thu 07-Jul-16 17:12:37

My niece was way ahead of most others in reading at ks1 but of course with reading what happens is the others catch up! So you may start school being the only one that can read, or be way out in front but reading is one of those things where the gap narrows and being a good or excellent reader becomes the norm not the exception and the special status that comes with being an advanced reader gradually erodes.
I think you have answered your own question really, she isn't reading the questions properly and so is making mistakes, could be overconfident ' I am great at this so I can rush through it' , most kids are guilty of that at some stage.
In terms of my niece, she found she has a talent for something else and isn't bothere any more that th days of her being the best reader are gone! Your dd has many talents I would focus on them.

RedPoppiesAndSpots Thu 07-Jul-16 17:19:11

Tbh I don't care where she is compared to others - I care where she is compared to her potential. So having other talents is great - or you could say her other abilities are being maintained. But the ones she was excellent at from YR to Y4 now are average and we just accept it?

And mid year she was rushing questions - but by now there is no improvement? And her previous strong abilities now average. Surely there are questions to be asked?

I think you are right. I am answering my own question. I need to speak to someone about this to get an explanation

Gazelda Thu 07-Jul-16 17:20:15

I'd have a word with teacher if I were you. Explain your thinking, that DD Was G&T I that subject but seems to have slipped. Let the teacher give context to the result and ask her for suggestions as to what extra support might be appropriate at home.
You'd kick yourself if you didn't raise this now and just assumed 'teacher knows best' (although he/she probably does!).
It doesn't hurt to want to understand your child's progression.

Gazelda Thu 07-Jul-16 17:20:44

X-post

RebelRogue Thu 07-Jul-16 17:30:36

We had this chat with teachers and the head teacher today. Basically they said don't expect exceeding,as that mostly means they're working at a year ahead level. Also that expected is a very broad range,so your dd could be at the top of the range which is great,but not quite advanced enough for exceeding. I think the changes in curriculum are responsible for the "drop" in her achievements,but there's nothing wrong with discussing with her teacher to find out exactly what's going on and out your mind at ease x

Fairuza Thu 07-Jul-16 17:35:35

Isn't gifted and talented just a certain percentage from the class/school rather than against national expectations? So quite common to be a quick developer, particularly with reading, when little and 'top of the class' but it evens out later. Some children will be streets ahead of the rest of the class in reading levels when they are 5 or 6 but completely average when they are 9 or 10.

PicInAttic Thu 07-Jul-16 21:14:59

Keeping a 'Gifted and talented' register isn't a statutory requirement any more so many schools don't keep one in the same form as previously. When we did keep one though, the expectation in our LA was for top 10- 15% of children within the school to be G&T. This often meant that when children moved schools and became part of a different cohort, whether they were classed as G&T changed!

In your case though, I would definitely go and talk to the class teacher. It may be the change of expectations but is probably down to the careless answers. Assessment in the new curriculum is based on 'total fit' rather than the 'best fit' of levels which has had significant impact. There may be a few things you can focus on over the Summer which will set your daughter up brilliantly for the new year and which, once sorted, will let her progress quickly. Equally, she may have been an early starter/developer and the rest of the class have caught up. Talking to the teacher will help you know which.

RedPoppiesAndSpots Thu 07-Jul-16 23:21:56

Thank you Pic and everyone else. I think Pic has summed it up with that second paragraph. If it is just everyone else has caught up then that is cool. It is just the not really being sure why the drop which makes me think ???

Careless answers need working on imho, natural levelling with her peers is fine. I need to know which is the main cause and therefore what (if anything) to do to help.

I have emailed her teacher to ask for a quick catch up explaining where I would like clarification/some guidance on how to help her.

blaeberry Fri 08-Jul-16 22:58:03

When dd was in P1 a new girl joined - she had been several levels ahead of the class at her previous school so was rather surprised to find she was not even in the middle at dd school. It was a different cohort in a school where a lot of parents also encouraged reading pre-school.

However, we also went through a stage where dd was finding her texts too easy and didn't need to focus on them but skimmed read instead and her comprehension went down. It was only (after complaining lots) when they assessed her and her group and moved them up four levels that her comprehension counter-intuitively improved.

Primaryteach87 Fri 08-Jul-16 23:01:26

There have been A LOT of changes in what 'expected levels' are meaning it's much harder now. Now in lots of schools those meeting the expected levels is a minority of brighter children!

Primaryteach87 Fri 08-Jul-16 23:02:39

But totally fine to ask how she can improve etc ...just really do consider the curriculum changes and make sure your dd's confidence isn't knocked.

RedPoppiesAndSpots Sat 09-Jul-16 09:11:21

I emailed the teacher at it has been a mixture of all the things. Mostly the new NC upping the targets. A little bit of others catching up. A little bit of the careless mistakes.

She gave me some great feedback and guidance for DD - and very quickly too - which meant that when DD got to read her report (and was, as I expected, surprised and disappointed with the grades) we could help her understand why, and what to do. She took on board the comments and agreed they were fair - and is keen to practice some stuff over the summer.

It has been a great learning thing for DD - that just because she finds something very easy doesn't mean she will be good at it if she rushes it. And by slowing down/thinking about her reading a bit she will also improve her writing. And best to find this out now, rather than her GCSE year.

Her teacher has been brilliant.

And thank you for all your help.

Brokenbiscuit Sat 09-Jul-16 09:27:17

Sounds like a good outcome, OP. Good luck to your dd next year.smile

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