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Language for Thinking

(236 Posts)
lougle Fri 24-May-13 10:40:33

Poltergoose very kindly sent me LfT and I have been reading through it.

I have a question:

The assessment pages have shaded boxes in the different Language levels (ABC) next to various questions.

Are those shaded boxes indicating that the particular question is not scored for that level? Or that it is? Or something completely different? confused

There is no reference anywhere that I can see, to the significance of the shadings.

PolterGoose Wed 31-Jul-13 08:04:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ouryve Tue 30-Jul-13 23:25:49

I'm not intending to repeat unless he really bombs out on one, Handywoman, and if it's clear that it's the subject matter that prompted him to disengage with a scenario, I'll leave it alone. If your DD is anything like DS1, my hunch would be to do a few and then go back on the premise of seeing if she can beat her high score, after a week.

And a break can be positive and provide time to assimilate - especially when other things are pressing on your minds flowers

My target for DS1, since at half term he would have struggled a bit with the level C questions is to see if he can consistently get full marks (which would involve him listening to all the questions carefully so he either needed no prompts or realised that he'd missed something and asked for clarification). I'll then assess him for module 3 and work out where to go from there.

Handywoman Tue 30-Jul-13 21:41:31


Must admit having a break from LFT as undergoing marital split, annual leave and working out how to get inflexible dd2 to repeat exercises. But more the annual leave and marital stuff!

Having a break is important (our SALT is always saying this) right?!!!!

vikinglights Tue 30-Jul-13 20:39:17


ouryve Tue 30-Jul-13 14:25:30

I don't believe it.

Have finally got around to starting this with DS1, after assessing on to be on the cusp of level C at half term. I had intended to start him on B for a week, but got distracted by a combination of him digging his heels in and saying that reading was boring and DS2 having free reign of the kitchen. Apart from having to remind him that the last question had asked for two things to do for a forgotten lunch, he gave very detailed and absolutely perfect responses.

StarlightMcKenzie Sat 22-Jun-13 20:18:23

DS gets feedback about his performance and it is differentiated but atm an issue with numbers has popped up (not sure where from) and to talk in numbers makes the task aversive as ds refuses to try anything he can't get 100% for.

We're working on that though, but I'm not sure where it has come from, and whether it has come from school (I suspect it has something to do with his DF rating him overly generously with subjective ratings for his piano practising . He enjoyed it for Headsprout so I'm sure we can do that, but I think with LFT he doesn't understand the scoring system and it makes him anxious.

However I share the colours and he enjoys being good enough to do a 'new one'.

moondog Sat 22-Jun-13 20:12:03

Pupil feedback is central to the notion of behaviourally based practice.
That's why a standard celebration chart is so fantastic.
Most kids get that a line going upwards means they are doing great.
If the teacher/therapist adjusts her practice according to the trajectory, then by God, it will go up.

'If the child hasn't learnt, the teacher hasn't taught'
Amen to that.

moondog Sat 22-Jun-13 20:10:04

Gosh, of the scores of kids I have used, and seen use LFT, most love to see the scores! That's a good thing. If they are interested in how they got on, we have struck gold.

Using a colour coded system works so well. We can all rejoice and say 'Wow Luke! Look at all those greens! You are thinking so hard! Well done!'

StarlightMcKenzie Sat 22-Jun-13 20:08:04

I don't share the scores with ds, so that I can remain encouraging. He knows the next day that he did better as he finds the answers both easier and my praise bigger iyswim.

I never say he has got anything wrong, it's just that the next time he did 'better' iyswim.

I will say. That's a great answer, but how about ......, would be even better because............ Often there is a joke to be had in considering the other view points and ds can find it silly, and I can agree though still making it clear that the silly answer is the one I'd like to see the next day iyswim.

moondog Sat 22-Jun-13 20:05:28

That's interesting.
Yes, you need to be explicit but of course you can do that without crushing someone.
You need to teach, otherwise how will the person you are trying to help know for next time?

That's why I loathe the touchy feely throw it at the wall and see what sticks and God forbid we get explicit and actually try to measure and define' attitude endemic in education and the 'therapies' <shudder>.
It doesn't help anyone.

lougle Sat 22-Jun-13 19:56:38

Thanks moondog. So I need to be more explicit with her, instead of thinking 'what a bizarre thing to say.' That is very helpful.

I do that, a bit. I need to be more systematic and make sure that I am encouraging her, not crushing her.

On another note, people, DH is starting to reflect on his own behaviour! DD2 didn't respond at all when I told her that she had done x and it was upsetting. When I challenged her on it she said 'ok'. I said 'DD2, we normally say sorry.' She said 'sorry' and carried on doing what she was doing. DH was frustrated, then the penny dropped. Finally, he has seen why after 11 years of marriage I still get frustrated when he just gives a perfunctory 'sorry' if he hurts me grin

He has also realised that he relies on concrete definitions as DD2 does. When he was 21, he spent a good couple of weeks on crutches that a friend gave him. DD1 broke her ankle last week and I said 'she said she heard a crack.' We were talking about his injury and he suddenly said 'that's why I didn't go to hospital. I didn't hear a crack...' I said 'What??' and he told me that he had been told that if you break your ankle you hear a crack. He hadn't heard one, so he didn't go to hospital, even though he still couldn't weight bear after 2 weeks!

Language for Thinking is helping him to reflect on his areas of difficulty as I discuss DD2 with him, probably because they are so similar. I have tried so many times to discuss him with him and got nowhere. It's like DD2 is his 'video evidence'.


moondog Sat 22-Jun-13 19:08:04

Nice to hear how everyone is getting on.
Lougle, I'd go over more socially acceptable responses as part of the 'debrief'. You acknowledge her logic and plausibility but point out that most people would think about x,y or z.
I'd be marking answers like that as a 2. Ultimately the 'mark' is less important than you making a written or mental note of what she says that is quirky, helping her to render it less quirky and then reassessing to see if she has taken that on board.

Homophones/homonyms are concrete things.
Higher level language issues aren't.
That's the difference.

lougle Sat 22-Jun-13 17:58:03

He's a smart cookie!

I know I've said it before, but I just can't understand how DD2 can grasp the difference between a homophone and a homonym, identify them in everyday speech as she talks, yet can't describe something as simple as gardening club.

StarlightMcKenzie Sat 22-Jun-13 17:54:06

btw, DS is currently playing minecraft. Now I haven't got a clue what the game is about but I know you are supposed to dig for minerals and avoid being eaten by zombies.

But what is ds doing?

He's putting signs up by all the trees, labelling them, like they do in Kew gardens apparently.

I never knew he was paying attention to anything in Kew gardens except the promised ice cream at the end. confused

StarlightMcKenzie Sat 22-Jun-13 17:50:51

I would mark it down tbh, because whilst she is correct logically, she isn't socially.

Logic is fine but only if the social circumstances say that it is iyswim.

You're marking her understanding of what you are asking her, and that includes the unsaid stuff just as much as the said stuff.

At least, that is how I judge it because I think the unsaid stuff needs to be learnt too, so it needs to be marked as a gap to fill.

lougle Sat 22-Jun-13 17:34:41

Star grin

I am in a quandary. There are times when DD2's answer is very unconventional and misses what I think is the intention of the question, but her answer is logically correct. What score does that get?

2 examples:

Q: How did Ahmed knock over the paint?
A: "I don't know, because you didn't tell me."

Logically, I can't fault this. It doesn't actually tell you in the scenario. I'm sure the intention is for the child to say something plausible ie. "He might have been looking around instead of concentrating and knocked it with his arm.", but she is actually right. So, does it get a 3 or a 0?

Q: "What other things could you do in an art lesson?"
A: "You can accidentally knock the water over."

Well, yes you could. The question is clearly intended to encourage the child to talk about the types of 'art' they could use in a lesson (paint, clay, etc.) but you absolutely could knock over a pot of water.

That's the trouble. She is logical. It is just a bit...vulcan grin

Q: "What could be in the box?"
A: "A rosette."

Wellll...yes. In fact it could be anything that is small enough to fit in the box. It's unlikely to be a rosette, but I can't say it's not.

Bless her.

StarlightMcKenzie Sat 22-Jun-13 10:23:18

'DS, what colour did you make your wings for the school play?'

(I need to get a marching t-shirt)

DS: 'Lots of colours. One is red, one is blue, one is purple, one is red, one is silver......'

Me: 'How many wings do you have?'

DS: '2' (concrete answer to concrete question).

Me: 'Oh, so what colour are they?'

DS: 'One is green, one is gold, one is pink, one is......

Me: 'You've got 2 wings!?'

DS 'I already TOLD you!'

Eventually stupid me worked out that he is saying what COLOURS he had painted his 2 wings. One COLOUR is pink, another colour is green.........

vikinglights Sun 16-Jun-13 07:32:25

glad she's recovering well

hope the return to school is as smooth as possible

Handywoman Sat 15-Jun-13 07:58:44

Oh vikinglights you don't know how brilliant it is to hear the same thing happens elsewhere!!!!

So relate to those 'interesting moments' too. As you say it's not a true regression. It is just the need to have language in use to keep it structurally in check.

In true dd2 style she managed this response (we managed to re-visit the spilled paint scenario. After the oft-repeated question 'how can you tell he feels X?' dd2 replied 'because of the expression on his face'. Erm.... top marks anyone? She sure can surprise, that dd2!


She is recovering well thanks peeps although has been pretty prone to anxiety and going back to school will be interesting

vikinglights Sat 15-Jun-13 06:41:39

hope your dd is feeling better Handywoman.

I've sometimes felt that if DD2 spends too much time 'thinking in her own head' as opposed to actually having a diologue where communication is required her language use gets more random. Almost like she knows what she's talking about so there no need to use language in a way that anybody else can follow, and then these random constructions sort of 'stick' so we get apparent language regressions when she hasn't been engaged in enough dialogue.

It feels a bit like she needs constant reinforcment/feedback to promote the 'standard' language patterns above her own constructions.....

Mind you that is very DD, she does have a tendency to opperate along the lines of 'that may be how you do it but I'm going to do it MY way' leading to many errm interesting moments, like the discussion about why is was important not to cycle in the road with your eyes closed........

lougle Fri 14-Jun-13 21:57:32

Hope she's recovering, handy.

DD2 had to tell her teacher that she had made a mistake in choosing her peers for next year (she did this last year too - beforehand she knows who she wants to write down, but at the last minute she writes down the nearest people she can see).

She walked into the classroom and said 'I putted the wrong names down!' Her teacher was doing the 'desperately trying to catch up with the conversation' thing and I had to step in and explain.

It's so DD2. She's thinking about something, so everyone else must know what we're talking about...

Handywoman Fri 14-Jun-13 20:51:06

dd2 has been off sch this week (following her ear op). And reminded me of how her language level dips when she is not, erm, using it quite as much. Some e.g.s:
(on the slide): mum, can you help me for some reason?
(telling me her next teacher is the current Y4 teacher) the one who teaches year four, at now
(about stones found in the park): I found them automatically
Nobody can explain why this happens.

vikinglights Fri 14-Jun-13 20:06:28

DD2 wasn't hugely enthused tonight but she was engaged, there was NO falling back on the sofa or any other such variations, which is a huge improvement. She also had a go at answering all the questions I asked grin

She also thought she had lost the LfT book and her response was 'oh no, its the best way for me to learn english, what can I do now' which was heartwarming (so long as we ignore her response when I suggested the solution might be looking for the book wink)

lougle Fri 14-Jun-13 19:54:01

Ooh yes, I see your point. I think I could do that. We had fewer silly movements and eye rolls and dramatic sighs, so they could definitely be counted if I was videoing each session consistently.

moondog Fri 14-Jun-13 19:25:44

I'll let you off in that case Lougle as harder to quantify that. wink
If it was a teacher though, I would urge them to think of how that could be measured-fewer episodes of turning away or attempts to derail the discussion maybe. Helpful to think like this as it stops one from sliding off into murky area of value judgements and stick instead to the facts.

Hope you work something out Handy and that you get on ok Claw.

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