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Continued frustration with reading levels and concerns! Any advice esp if you are a teacher.

(14 Posts)
MariamaMay Mon 03-Oct-16 22:09:39

My son has been reading the same level books since about November/December ish of reception. He is STILL reading similar in Year 1. Yes, the books are a little more challenging but its a Stage 2 from ORT (Oxford Reading Tree). I have tried talking to the teacher. I have tried writing clearly in reading record that he is reading all words correctly/often reading fluently/talking with me about story/making sense of story etc! I have then asked if we could take 2 books home instead of one. Was advised Year 1 children had all been moved up. Looked in son's book bag and my heart sank - we still have a Stage 2 book. Groan! Now, someone please tell me - is it OK for a child to have been on the same level for this long? I totally understand its more than reading the words - so comprehension / prediction / expressing an opinion about the book (e.g. what child liked/didn't like). I just don't get it and seem to have failed at communicating this to the teacher. I am concerned as I cannot believe it makes sense for a child to have been reading the same level for so long. And, if they have misjudged his reading ability what else isn't working, e.g. in writing/English/Maths etc.

Any thoughts welcome. Especially from teachers. I currently work in a school and children are moved through levels so the books always hold some challenge. The books my son are bringing home do not pose any challenge. I cannot encourage decoding practice as he can read them easily. I cannot do much in the way of asking him about the story - as there is little content. Although, I do try!


junebirthdaygirl Mon 03-Oct-16 22:19:09

Just get your own books and let him fly on. Do the school book just to satisfy nut do your own stuff at home. Look at the books in your own school and maybe your local library would have them or order some sets from the book people.

irvineoneohone Mon 03-Oct-16 22:21:11

Not a teaacher.
In your post, you mention all the right things about reading comprehension, but how about his ability to read aloud?
Expression, punctuation, intonation, etc?

Seems odd to stay so long on same level IMO, but you say it's more challenging for him, so a bit confused.

MariamaMay Mon 03-Oct-16 22:24:03

He reads fluently, pausing in right places for punctuation. Sometimes great expression. Hard to assess this but he doesn't read in monotone at all. And, I meant the books he brings home are not at all challenging for him. He reads them with ease!!!

pasbeaucoupdegendarme Mon 03-Oct-16 22:25:25

I am a teacher and I would be very concerned if I had a child on the same level for a whole year, and would have had endless conversations with parents about how to encourage progress.

I think you should ask to speak to the teacher and ask her to explain what's going on (nicely, not aggressively obviously!) If he really isn't progressing that's worrying for everyone, and if he is progressing it should be obvious in his reading levels.

Lightsoffplease Mon 03-Oct-16 22:31:09

Judging from what you say, it sounds like they're keeping him down. These says teachers like to bring children up in groups, not based on individual progress, but rather to make their jobs easier

MariamaMay Mon 03-Oct-16 22:31:53

I have tried talking to teacher. I feel bit stuck as to how to approach it having mentioned his reading a couple of times. When teacher said the children had been moved up off reception books I felt relieved ... until I looked in his son's book bag and find stage 2 ORT!!! Son has been able to read, level 4, 5, 6 and 7 (all ORT series)! With 7 he doesn't get some of the subtleties so I tend to not use these now. He recently read an 8 which I had looked through to see if it was confusing - he read this well with just a little support. He was able to talk about the book though did need more help with comprehension at this level. I mentioned he could read levels but still feel teacher and I are not connecting on this. How oh how do I communicate constructively without sounding like pushy parent. I am most concerned about progress not exact level if you see what I mean.

Assamassa Mon 03-Oct-16 22:38:52

Tbh i wouldn't bother having the conversation, sounds like you're hitting you're head against a brick wall and this is holding him back. just get the set of books and go through one a week. Print off the schools guidelines (ours do parent workshops too - alot of reading progression is down to parents here, i think teachers/are stretched with what they can do) and make sure hes understanding & questioning. We had a great set of cubes (sorry forgotten what they were called) but you roll and answer the question for eg what do you think is going to happen next etc

irvineoneohone Mon 03-Oct-16 22:39:44

How about the possibility of him not showing his true ability at school?
Is he shy? lazy?

My ds used to answer everything with "I don't know" at school, teacher thought he wasn't getting it, until she realised he was being extremely lasy.

MrsKCastle Mon 03-Oct-16 22:44:34

Ignore Lights off.

Request a formal meeting with the teacher to discuss concerns. Ask for specific targets that he needs to work on. Ask what the teacher's impression of his fluency and accuracy is .Does it match up with what you're seeing? Ask if they are concerned that he has been on same level for months and whether they are putting any interventions in place.

(I would also ask about his phonics abilities and how they are ensuring that his home readers are closely matched to his phonics skills- ORT are not a great scheme for reinforcing current reading methods!)

Memoires Tue 04-Oct-16 00:00:29

This happened to dd; she just read other books instead and I lied in the reading record. Eventually, I went in with an armful of the books dd was reading at home and said "why is dd reding this at school, when she's reading these at home?". The teacher muttered something about not getting the jokes, to which I responded that dd had got the jokes a year ago and no longer found them funny.

We changed school. That teacher was awful (other things, the reading thing was a last straw).

Feenie Tue 04-Oct-16 07:10:13

What MrsKCastle said. Excellent advice re current curriculum especially.

ROSY2016 Tue 04-Oct-16 11:11:13

from my experience, children not assessed on individual reading. even they can read more challenging levels , teachers keep them to make their jobs easy. my dd has read once with TA since beginning of the school year. children are not challenged and more than average child has to be bored in school because their works are not challenging enough like reading.

MariamaMay Thu 06-Oct-16 20:19:45

Thank you so much for all your replies. I am currently supplementing his school reading books with books from library/the school I work in. I do also plan to talk to the teacher when I can make an appointment.

Thank you pasbeaucoupdegendarme for confirming that as a teacher you would be concerned. I asked the reception teacher where I work and she echoed what you said ... she said if it had been her son, she would have been to the school already! Its hard because the school my sons at and school I work in might have very different views on moving children up.

Thank you too MrsKCastle!

But thank you ALL for taking the time to reply.

I will see what the teacher says once I get to meet with her!!!

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