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Early Learning Goals

(26 Posts)
DizzyMum Sun 06-Jul-08 16:33:47

My dd has just brought home her first report from the end of her reception year. I am wondering if I should be concerned because she has not met all of the Early Learning Goals. At the parents evening last term the teachers told me she was dong well and was on target to meet or exceed all the goals, so I'm also a bit cross (more than a bit cross actually) that until now I wasn't even aware everything was not going well.

Mumsnetters - advice and views on not meeting Early Learning Goals please. I am meeting her teacher on Tuesday to discuss this.

avenanap Sun 06-Jul-08 16:36:19

If she's happy then I wouldn't worry. Children all learn at different rates. The goals are a pile of crap anyway, merely another excuse to stress parents out and make them want to compete with each other. They shouldn't be testing children at this age. They should be left to learn by playing.

peanutbutterkid Sun 06-Jul-08 16:39:05

wHich of the ELG has she not met (list here)?
My gut feeling is to trust teacher assessment over standardised tests.

nell12 Sun 06-Jul-08 16:41:01

I think you are doing the right thing in talking to her teacher; she may be just a few steps away from achieving all her ELGs... If it was only last term that the teacher said all would be fine, I am sure that there are not any real issues. It may just be that your daughter has "plateau-ed" this term and come September she will be steaming ahead again.

Try not to worry, if your dd is happy at school then that is half the battle won.

OverMyDeadBody Sun 06-Jul-08 16:43:57

I don't think it matters at all if the ELG's aren't met.

All children are different and learn at different paces, if she is happy, confident and enjoys learning then there is absolutely nothing to be worried about.

I'd only be concerned if she was way behind and this was affecting her ability to enjoy school and get the most out of it, and if the delay where significant I'd want to rule out any specific reason for this such as a special need.

mrz Sun 06-Jul-08 17:18:44

"There has been some confusion about what a “good” score is. Nationally, the data tells us that many children are only scoring 5 scale points for the linking sounds and letters, writing and reading scales. So in the context of national results, a score of 6 points or more across all areas of learning indicates that a child is working securely within the early learning goals. When thinking about the individual, we need to consider their starting point. "
www.standards.dfes.gov.uk/primary/faqs/foundation_stage/1145599/#1152439

There are 9 scale points in each of the 13 areas the first 3 are Stepping Stones and are often achieved in nursery/pre school. Points 4-8 are ELGs. Point 9 indicates a child who is working consistently above the ELGs (within NC levels 1-2c depending on the point) very few children achieve all ELGs.

education.guardian.co.uk/schools/columnist/story/0,9826,1228437,00.html

mrz Sun 06-Jul-08 17:20:54

I should add there is no expectation on any child to achieve all 117 points.

DizzyMum Sun 06-Jul-08 22:53:11

Thanks to everyone for their responses, especially mrz with the Guardian article which made me feel much better. All parents of reception children should be given a copy of this article.

gingernutlover Mon 07-Jul-08 10:26:20

hi i am a reception teacher

only a few of mine have met all the ELG's most do better in one area than others just like they will all through school. If they have got a 7 in an area thats pretty good, although obviously you get the very bright ones who get 8 or 9.

I am suprised that the teacher actually said to you that she "was on target to meet or exceed all the goals" this is a really dangerous thing for them to do as by the end of the year, if that child has plateauxed or had problems in some other way they will have parents demanding (quite rightly) to know what has gone wrong. So i think you are quite within your rights to ask what has changed - peobably nothing major or anyones fault but worth asking

the ELG's are done by teacher assessment, there is no test for reception aged children so the report is written by somone who knows you child really well I would think

some schools use software caleed "e profile" and this will write end of year reports which you add you own bits too, these reperts do specifically mention the waords "has met stepping stones/ELG's" so it might be your childs school uses these.

Oliveoil Mon 07-Jul-08 10:31:06

I have no idea whatsoever about ELG

I do know that my upset, crying, sensitive dd1 from last September now runs into school and is a "joy to have in the class" according to her teacher

the latter is enough for me

gingernutlover Mon 07-Jul-08 11:22:23

yay for you and your dd oliveoil grin thats fantastic and as you say that is the most important thing, plenty of time to get bogged down in scores etc later on

but i can understand dizzy mums concern over being told somthing and then the report saying different and I expect the teacher will explain it when they have thier consultation

some of the ELG's are complete rubbish though, and that guardian article has some very true statements in it. Having said that we have massive files of examples an dvds to watch to show examples of children who have met the goals or stepping stones the judgements really are based on the examples and the evidence you have for the children, also the early years curriculum reflects the goals so teachers will have been teaching these things all year and should have the evidence.

HonoriaGlossop Mon 07-Jul-08 11:31:05

I think these goals are silly. The only goal for a reception child is to settle in to school, eg go to school happily.

If they do that by the end of the year then they have done well, the teacher has done well, and they are in a state of readiness to enjoy learning.

That's all that matters!

I'm not criticising you for caring, BTW, DizzyMum, I'm just saying that the goals are just another sign of an over-regulated system which takes the focus away from where it should be, eg on the child settling in to school.

FluffyMummy123 Tue 08-Jul-08 14:33:04

Message withdrawn

singersgirl Tue 08-Jul-08 14:35:19

Only one 9, Cod? grin

FluffyMummy123 Tue 08-Jul-08 14:45:32

Message withdrawn

ChasingSquirrels Tue 08-Jul-08 17:39:17

Just got our reports today.
Couple of people were looking at them in the playground - and wtf is all this stepping stones and early learning goals. The bloody thing needs a glossary.
I just read the comments in bigger type that were obviously about MY child, rather than being generated from a series of tick boxes.
No number scores on ours.

katsing Fri 18-Jul-08 13:04:27

I'm glad I found this thread. I've been looking after information about this after I received my son's nursery report today, the last day of school. In it it says he's not achieved the stage expected in personal social and emotional development and communication, language and literacy. We were also told that everything was fine and there were no problems with him at parent's evening a few months ago. I will try and talk to the teacher and find out what happened, but this is going to be really hard on the last day of school..

I really don't know how to deal with this.

katsing Fri 18-Jul-08 15:31:00

Apparently he is a quiet child who is not able to talk to the whole class at once (he's 4). That's one of his problems. I'd appreciate some comments about this. In my view this is not a lack of social development or whatnot, and given some encouragement he would definitely be able to give a talk in front of the class. I would expect the teachers to make sure that kids at least reach the stage expected of their age instead of just reporting it as lacking at the end. Am I being unreasonable?

mrz Fri 18-Jul-08 18:19:18

I really think it is silly of nursery teachers to judge children at such an early stage. Obviously if there is a real problem discuss it with parents but please give children a little time before starting to give targets. (another 10 years or so would be nice IMO)

Orinoco Fri 18-Jul-08 22:05:27

Message withdrawn

katsing Sat 19-Jul-08 08:35:08

Orinoco - that's a very constructive suggestion that I'll try encourage him to do.

Looking forwards to having my son home for the holidays at the moment

VanillaPumpkin Sat 19-Jul-08 08:52:48

By Katsing:
I would expect the teachers to make sure that kids at least reach the stage expected of their age instead of just reporting it as lacking at the end. Am I being unreasonable?

A little.

My dd got a 3 for her PSE dvpmt bit (and mostly 8's for the rest). Hers is for the opposite reasons to your ds. She is very loud and confident, but does not listen well to others etc.
She is five. These are skills she has to learn. We are well aware of her lack of listening skills <sigh> {grin]. But the teachers (and me as a parent) can't make her perform in this way. It can only be encouraged. Does that make sense?

I am just thrilled that she can sit through assembly, get her dinner, line up, get changed for PE, enjoys school etc etc. That is what reception was about for me. The rest is a bonus, but I am aware that perhaps it is too easy for me to say that as she is doing fine with reading too so I am not dismissing your concerns iyswim.

I sort of wish there had been no scores. It is all the parents have spoken about. I have had five tell me their dc's scores, and one ask out right what dd got. (I told them the 3, and said did ok in the rest). I certainly don't want dd to be aware of them either.

mrz Sat 19-Jul-08 09:43:31

By Katsing:
I would expect the teachers to make sure that kids at least reach the stage expected of their age instead of just reporting it as lacking at the end. Am I being unreasonable?

What if the expectations on children this age just aren't realistic?
Lots of young children just aren't that mature in their thinking Some of my class won't be five until next month!

~Takes into account the ideas of others
~Talks and listens confidently and with
control, consistently showing awareness of
the listener by including relevant detail
Uses language to work out and clarify ideas,
showing control of a range of appropriate
vocabulary
~Considers the consequences of words and actions for self and others
~Understands that there need to be agreed
values and codes of behaviour for groups
of people, including adults and children,
to work together harmoniously
~ Has a developing awareness of own needs, views and feelings and is sensitive to the
needs, views and feelings of others

katsing Sat 19-Jul-08 12:53:28

@Vanillapumpkin

Yes, I see what you mean However if we know that he is a bit "too quiet" in school we can maybe encourage him to speak up a bit more at home. I'm sure that would help! We did not get scores - the results were split into "above normal for year", "normal for year" and "working towards normal for year".

@mrz
I can't honestly say I can do those myself 100% of the time and I'm way older than 5! blush Somehow though most of the kids in the class seem to have reached those milestones? Is he just unlucky to be in a big class like this or what? I wish I didn't have to start comparing to others so early, but that is what I've been presented with. Am thinking of changing school eventually, to be honest.

VanillaPumpkin Sat 19-Jul-08 13:07:06

It is that word 'normal' isn't it? I don't think that is a very helpful way of putting it.
Our school issued the scores and then had to send an additional letter out explaining them. I am sure they wished they had just sent the written report.

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