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Do children starting Reception need to be able to do this/ (academic)

(63 Posts)
upwardsandonwards33 Sun 25-Jun-17 17:21:06

My dd's nursery really does not push reading, writing at all. It's mostly about the play. I don't mind this really but friends who have children in different nurseries but going to the same Reception class as dd, say that their children are able to read CVC words. They aren't lying - I know their children.

Should a child be able to at least do the following by Sept entry into Reception:

- recognise and say simple sounds- all the basic A-Z sounds.
- form correctly lower case letters
- form correctly numbers 0-9
- hold pencil correctly

DD is bright but does not want to do much with me so I am not pushing it too much but I could do five mins a day if it is a help.

I am aware that once in a class of 30, the teacher may not necessarily give too much individual attention so am willing to do my bit.

grasspigeons Sun 25-Jun-17 17:23:35

They will start from the beginning, so those able to do more will consolidate what they have already done

itstheyearzero Sun 25-Jun-17 17:24:19

No. They need to be able to get dressed/undressed independently, go to the toilet on their own and carry a tray. The rest comes when they are at school. Your friends are talking nonsense!

margaritasbythesea Sun 25-Jun-17 17:25:08

Not in my experience, no.

If you're worried I would think pencil holding and the ABC song would be helpful.

PacificDogwod Sun 25-Jun-17 17:26:19

They don't need to be able to do anything academically.

If they are socially/emotionally ready, that's great.
If they can recognise their own name (on a bed), it's a help.

Why on earth do people cause such anxiety by suggesting 4 year olds needs to be 'academic'?

I hope she has a great start at school and really enjoys herself smile

OlennasWimple Sun 25-Jun-17 17:27:25

Being able to take their own cost and shoes on and off, recognise their name and use the toilet independently are much more useful for starting reception successfully

GraceGrape Sun 25-Jun-17 17:27:38

None of those things will be expected. The children who can already do it will most likely spend time going over it again.

Don't bother about the ABC song. They will learn letter sounds before letter names.

Scroobius Sun 25-Jun-17 17:28:59

No. My daughter can recognise her numbers and some letters and would be able to form them correctly but definitely not all. She also "reads" pictures to tell me a story. I'm not worried about her starting school and I'm an infants teacher.
If you wanted to do anything academic I'd try the holding a pencil but she'll be much better served being able to fasten her own zip, organise her things a bit and play with other children. School do the rest.

xyzandabc Sun 25-Jun-17 17:29:52

No, that's the basic things they start with in reception. It's helpful if they can recognise and maybe make an attempt at writing their name but even that's not essential.

As others have said it's better to ensure they can go to the toilet and wash hands by themselves, put coats, shoes, wellies on, use a knife and fork etc

Scroobius Sun 25-Jun-17 17:30:59

Oh and my daughter's nursery have taught her the ABC song and it's really annoying because she doesn't understand that E is the name of the letter but 'eh' is the sound. I can only see that making phonics learning harder.

Yayne Sun 25-Jun-17 17:34:41

Nope, mine wasn't interested in the slightest and it'd have just put him off. He learnt it absolutely fine during reception and is on exactly on the same level or even a bit more advanced now. Still not hugely keen, he puts in minimum effort, but seems ok for now

QuackDuckQuack Sun 25-Jun-17 17:37:30

Our nursery didn't push that stuff as they knew that the school likes everything done a particular way, so it's best not to teach the wrong thing.

mrz Sun 25-Jun-17 17:43:52

*"*^*Should a child be able to at least do the following by Sept entry into Reception:*^
- recognise and say simple sounds- all the basic A-Z sounds.
- form correctly lower case letters
- form correctly numbers 0-9
- hold pencil correctly*^*"*

Speaking as someone who taught reception for many years!

BoraThirch Sun 25-Jun-17 17:46:11

I'm a nursery teacher.

Holding a pencil correctly is good but none of the other stuff matters.

LittleMissCrappy Sun 25-Jun-17 17:58:03

As a childminder, I try to follow the Early Years Foundation Stage and I have to say that I do teach letter sounds, the correct way after having received specific training, and recite numbers up to 10, number recognition, putting numerals 1-5 in the correct order, counting backwards from 5 to 1. Also teach some shapes, 2d and 3d, some measurements, (shortest, longest, heaviest, lightest, etc.). I do all this through play and games, puzzles, planned activities that are fun and interesting.

It's all in the EYFS. Nurseries have to follow the EYFS, so do childminders. A school-based nursery would be integrating all of these in their games as well.

CrazedZombie Sun 25-Jun-17 18:02:10

If this is a state school - no.

If this is an academic private then there will be higher expectations.

As people have said, the expectations centre around self-care rather than academic.

mrz Sun 25-Jun-17 18:03:51


ragged Sun 25-Jun-17 18:15:18

Can she wait her turn, feed herself, eat when it's lunch & not daydream all the hour, entirely self-toilet, dress self, follow instrucitons, keep hands to herself (mostly)...?

Some of the best advice I ever got from MN was about those things for starting school.

Caroian Sun 25-Jun-17 18:39:57

As other have said - no. The point of going to school is to.... well, learn this stuff!

That said, some children will be able to do all of those things. My son started reception as a fairly fluent reader. But that is simply because it was his thing, something he was ready for. Lots of children won't be ready until much later because every child is different. There is nothing at all to be gained from pushing a child to do things they are not ready for. They will get there when they get there.

Totally agree with all the other stuff - getting dressed/undressed, wiping bottoms properly, carrying a tray, follow instructions, listen, take turns etc etc

BoraThirch Sun 25-Jun-17 18:44:31

There's a huge range of development and interests in a Reception class - some might start reading and writing sentences and some (like my August born DS1) will barely be speaking in coherent sentences grin. But by the end of the EYFS most will be writing, reading, adding, subtracting and all the rest.

Smartiepants79 Sun 25-Jun-17 18:44:41

No. Apart from maybe the pencil grip.
If they do then great but this will all be taught.
The social stuff is much more important - toileting, eating, dressing etc.
along with reasonable behaviour.

upwardsandonwards33 Sun 25-Jun-17 18:52:25

Can she wait her turn, feed herself, eat when it's lunch & not daydream all the hour, entirely self-toilet, dress self, follow instrucitons, keep hands to herself (mostly)...?

Yes she can pretty much do this. Buttons and zips we need to work on. Tmi but she can self toilet no 1s but not no 2s so I need to work on that.

NeverTwerkNaked Sun 25-Jun-17 19:00:42

My son had a gloriously feral childhood till he started school. I don't regret it, he quickly overtook the children whose parents had been diligently "teaching" them and is happily top of the class now and loves school.

Charmatt Sun 25-Jun-17 19:17:00

The self care skills are the most important, and being able to carry their own property - there is nothing worse for a Reception teacher than having to find 30 water bottles or PE kits because the children never carry them themselves so don't remember them.

As for the ABC song - please, no! It just sets them back on their phonics development.

Holding a pencil in a tripod grip would be helpful and recognising their own name. Otherwise the academic stuff is best left to school.

sirfredfredgeorge Sun 25-Jun-17 19:17:53

Far from needing to do those things, I'd actively discourage - sure kids can be taught to read before, they can even show an interest and be "ready", but it's still a waste of time - in that the time can be spent learning other things - learning to read doesn't build vocabulary at that age as much as simply talking for example.

If you teach them academic work such that they get lots of praise, and feel clever among their peer group, it can then start being a lot more demotivational when everyone catches up - reading just being a skill that most kids acquire.

Or if they would still be ahead (because the early acquisition of skills was down to a basic advantage) then school becomes much harder as the differentiation means they're always an outsider, or it becomes boring.

Build fitness, vocabulary, problem solving etc. leave the simple skills that most acquire to the place most people acquire them.

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