Book levels in P1-2(32 Posts)
Out of curiosity, for those with kids in the early years of school, what is the level of the books are you getting home to read? I have come to realise for sometime that in England they seem to be moving at a much faster pace. In our school (and in others nearby) books are drip fed and you start P2 more or less on level 4 (we have older Biff and chip books) and you don't move to the more advanced ones till P3. It looks to me that what we read in P3 could be read at reception or Y1 at the most.
Am I right in thinking that? Is that a CfE thing or what?
My dc is on level 5 now and they move up a level as soon as they're ready.
I can't remember specific levels for my Dc but I do remember that books are indeed drip-fed and there's no skipping ahead...even for very able readers. I've no idea what levels they read in England tbh.
Dd1 had a reading age of 10.5yrs in P1 but she read the same Biff & Chip books along with the rest of her group (I'm almost sure they were streamed for reading).
By around P3 they took dd1 and one other child out for separate reading & novel study sessions but tbh it petered out after a year.
This is in Glasgow btw, may be different in other local authorities.
Ds1 is in p1 he is currently on level 4 books from the oxford reading tree
It's hard to tell though as I have no idea of what level they should achieve by the end of p1 and whether I should be concerned or not.
However given the state of education in Scotland I will be keeping a keen eye on this.
England really seem to push phonics and reading (perhaps too much? Who knows?).
Scotland is currently suffering from
- chronic underfunding (still using ancient books with words that are far too hard for beginner readers)
- an absence of a national phonics strategy (far too many schools relying on sight vocab, using outdated PM Benchmarking to assess reading)
- huge variations in teacher knowledge
- lack of a national standard
- too many children to one adult
In England it's quite common to be taught phonics in groups of 6,7,8. In Scotland the vast majority of P1s are taught in groups of 25. Who is going to do better?!
Obviously my experience is very limited, but both my DD were supposed to start P2 at level 4 (nothing to do with ability afaik).
Books were/are drip-fed one every week or two weeks which I always found exasperating especially in P1. Still, I'd you read about children in England, they seem to be miles ahead...
@red, my P1's were smaller (20 and a bit), but it is true that at I have no idea what the approach to teaching reading is... Is it phonics? With hindsight I doubt it...
Anyway, the old Biff and chip are the same as the new ones, or so I am told...
My dd has been a year ahead since she started primary school. She started p2 on level 7/8 and quickly ended up on bridging books between that and p3 by Easter she'd read the p3 books so starting p3 she was reading p4 books within the book bug scheme I think (I'm a bad parent and stopped paying attention). I think it depends on the child. She had an Sen worker (for advance students) who would take her and another child a few hours each week for advanced reading and comprehension. She was benchmark tested by the head as being 4 years above her actual age for reading and three years for comprehension. Instead of pushing the school to up her reading levels we encouraged her to read more challenging books at home. School is for more than just reading imo.
I don't think it's anything to do with politics so blaming education cuts etc hasn't affected her in any way. As p3 has gone on more advanced readers have also joined her reading group as they all improve. We were told as kids all develop at their own pace that some would move faster than others. Some kids in dd's class are still on traditionally p1 reading books and maths.
At my ds school they go into separate reading groups based on what level they are on. Didn't know that they are expected to achieve level 4, what happens to those who are ahead do they get encouraged to progress?
I don't know. Not do I know if there is a rule. All I can talk about is my school and some neighbouring ones.
@tea, I am starting to believe that school is for teamwork and socialising and perhaps learn to listen. All very good endeavours, by all means, but somewhat lacking. Besides I don't think that cuts have anything to do with it. I was just wondering if it was a matter of approach and methodology. I mean, how do they teach to read, phonics? As I said before, in my school at least, I don't think so.
This is one of the discussions I was reading
what happens to those who are ahead do they get encouraged to progress?
Of course, but I have to say that
he had an Sen worker (for advance students) who would take her and another child a few hours each week for advanced reading and comprehension.
This is not at all common in my experience. It should be, but it isn't.
Can't remember the levels that ds had in P1 and P2 (but I do remember Bif and Chip all these years later ).
But all through P1 I was saying ds (who was in the "top" group) wasn't actually reading (as in blending) - he was learning the books off by heart. School said not to worry as some kids (especially boys) are just not developmentally ready to read until they're 6.
Beginning of P2 he had 6 weeks 1:1 with the depute head before we mutually agreed to move him to the middle reading group. He eventually "got" reading when he was about 6.5 (as the school predicted) - around Easter of P2.
It took him until about P5 to move back to the top group (he was between groups for quite a while) but since then has proven to be a strong and reliable reader.
He's been in the top set at English since he started at secondary and (now 16, in S5) has just sat his English Higher, for which he should get an A (he says it depends on how he did on his close reading ).
I suppose what I'm saying is that it is not the levels per se that matter. It's getting them to read and to continue to want to read. The school was great in supporting us - and encouraging us to get him to read whatever interested or enthused him. This included "Captain Underpants" and "Super Daiper Baby" books - and
especially being able to pick up the paper to find out for himself the scores and reports for the football team he supported. (Nowadays, he spend his time looking up rugby and cycling stories on-line )
No recent knowledge - my youngest is in S3 but for my younger two CfE was in place so I can't imagine it's changed that much.
My experience in another West of Scotland area is completely different from yours. Class sizes approx 25 with around 6 pupils in 4 reading group levels according to ability (with movement between groups). In the more able groups, new ORT book every couple of weeks. Two of my 3 were early able readers and had a couple of sessions per week with the DHT and the rest of the able readers. I can't remember the ORT levels they were on but I do remember the able group reading the Iron Man and Fantastic Mr Fox in P2 (as we had to make models). Additional help was also given to the kids who struggled - one of my daughters friends (youngest in the year) struggled to get started but with additional help is an avid reader and in top English classes at secondary so similar experience to Pretty Bird's DS.
If you are concerned speak to your DCs class teacher or the Head Teacher I've also found staff very approachable at primary school. At home we rarely read the school books together - maybe once in the 1-2 weeks so I could tick the homework sheet. However we did read other things together.
i've got recent knowledge - my DD is not top set, by the end of P1 they had just moved to Level 6 ORT, they stayed on that for a very long time in P2 and they're now on Level 8, DD still in the second set. This late in the year I doubt they'll move levels again.
My DD could easily read another couple of levels up (we do at home) but doesn't get pushed much - they said they could only move her on if they moved the whole set on and no more room in the top set.
In my P2 class the best readers are on Oxford Reading Tree Stage 6, then another group at 5, 4, etc down to a couple of individuals who are virtually non-readers.
My daughter was an excellent reader and in P2 read with P3s and got extra sessions with the DHT for comprehension. When she went into P4 she was lumped together into a group of 9
as the teacher couldn't be bothered to find individual tasks for her.
Sadly this is an all too common problem and she still remembers it 20 years later
I see it does depend on the school a lot, although judging from the replies here and what I read about England, that over here they move faster.
On a more general point, do they actually use phonics in tour school, @Danyella?
My DS2 is in P2 and on ORT Level 10. He gets two books a week, a level 10 ORT and (I've just checked) a Treetops book which is level 12. He's in a group of about three pupils. His teacher says he's quite able.
However, DS1 was probably at the same level last year in P4, and he's in the second top group, consisting of five pupils, in a class of 30.
Arkadia they use Fast Phonics. Each week they have a "phonics lesson" which imo is too advanced for the majority of the class. They learn 6-8 spelling words per week which bear no resemblance to the phonics lesson sound for that week. I know but this is the way it's always been done. This is my first year at this stage and I'm struggling to see the relevance of it.
cripes weebarra who is this teacher that sorts out 2 books a week and a treetops book? They sound impressive. We don't bother with the 1 book a week DD brings home as she's already done it in school and it's not challenging her.
No idea what scheme they use in our school but ds is in P2 on level 8, about to go on to level 9 and start, what he calls, chapterbooks after that.
I'm happy with his reading - they were split into groups, there is movement between the groups and in the last 8weeks he's suddenly really "getting" reading and trying to read everything and anything. His teacher is now getting his group to read 2 books a week.
His handwriting however is a different story and speaking to parents in other schools in the county they all seem to have abysmal handwriting.
I am glad to see that nobody knows about phonics then, it isn't just me :D
@weebarra, the stinginess with which my schools hands out books drives me demented (less so now, but in P1 - P2 I just couldn't understand it). It's not that they are not there... they are just tucked away Perhaps they have to be shared among all the classes, but still, they could organize a much faster turnaround.
@Mrs, don't get me started on the handwriting. After all, how can you control your handwriting if they ask you to write on paper that is not suitably lined? But that's another story.
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