The transition dip


Group of children reading with a teacher

In many schools, there is a dip in progress in Year 3. This is most likely to be because children take time to adapt to the different demands of a Key Stage 2 curriculum. Teachers' expectations of what is required to meet the levels also change.

For example, a bright child may achieve a level 3 at the end of Year 2. When that child is still on a level 3 at the end of Year 4, parents are often worried that their child hasn't made any progress.

This worry is generally unnecessary: in order to achieve a level 3 in Year 2, a child has to over-reach the Year 2 expectations.

But in Years 3 and 4, children are taught the whole level 3 curriculum and are assessed against its more demanding standards.

A similar transition dip occurs when children transfer from primary to secondary school.

And again, it is most apparent with high-attaining children who seem not to continue making progress at the same rate as before. 


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Last updated: about 3 years ago