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  1. #1
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    Default Naplan

    Just had a parent/teacher interview with DS teacher yesterday (he's in Yr 2) and she has said that he can probably start doing the Naplan test books on weekends/holidays etc. I'm just wondering if this is a bit early to start preparing. I do want him to do it (I like knowing where he is at so I can assist in areas he might be struggling in) and I do think it's a good idea to get him to do some similar tests before hand, after all- he's probably never really been in a test environment before where he can't ask questions etc. But a year out? Really? What was your experience? Did you use these test books?

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    It's entirely up to you.

    I won't be bothering with my children as I don't want to put too much emphasis and pressure for one test.

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    Completely agree with BRV.

    Personally I wouldn't do it for DD1 as she gets enough homework as it is and she probably wouldn't enjoy the additional work. It's quite early in year 2 to be starting prep for a test in year 3 I would have thought?

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    It's not like the tests impact on their future, it's indicative, rather than qualifying.

    I wouldn't give added pressure to a kid that young, I already thing the NAPLAN testing method is unnecessarily gruelling for that age.

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    I wouldn't. The test is over a year away, and as Blissed Out said it doesn't have any impact on individual children's future. I think way too much emphasis is put on NAPLAN, especially at the grade three level.

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    I don't necessarily disagree with the Naplan test. I don't find the school reports very informative. They are so focused on being all about effort, which is all well and good. That's all I want from DS, but I need to know if he's struggling with numeracy. It wont matter how much he tries if he doesn't "get it", and those are the areas that I might be able to work on with him to make things a little easier for him. There's nothing worse than sitting at your desk and the teacher is jabbering on about adjectives and your still back at nouns and verbs cause you just don't get it. That's when they just give up- I probably would too.

    For example, I approached DS Kindergarten teacher wanting to know how he was going in reading (due to previous speech issues). Her answers were very vague and she said that they don't like to focus on the levels as it puts too much pressure on them. But, that's the only way I can determine if there might be a problem. Yes, the teacher tracks their progress but he doesn't have the same teacher year in and year out. I track his long term progress so I need to know these things as well.

    So, I do hope the Naplan will give me some indication of where he is at, but it's not something I want him to feel pressure over and I don't think he's the kind of kid who will. I'll likely tell him that it's just to show me what you've been doing in school for the last 3 years because I'm not there everyday like you are. But it might give me a clearer indication that I might need to request more Maths in his homework from his teacher.

    Ideally the teacher would already know this, but I'm not about to sit back and rely on someone else because we don't get a do-over and going back to learn the foundations of something is going to create much more stress.

    But- yes, I think a year is a little too early. Might leave it until Term 3 or 4. 1 term should be plenty of practice.

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    Surely over the next year he'll learn more things that will help with Naplan testing... but right now?

    If your son is quite advanced academically and enjoy educational challenges then I'd do it, but otherwise I wouldn't. DD is also in Grade 2 and I've got her doing Year 5 Naplan pre-test books, but only because she's a big nerd who loves spending her time doing that stuff and gets angry and annoying if she's not mentally occupied. If she wasn't so intent on challenging herself academically and keeping her brain endlessly busy, then I wouldn't do it. It's not to prep her for Naplan anyway... it's just for her own amusement really.

    As I said before, would he learn more during the course of the year to actually help with Naplan tests? I mean, he might know how to do certain mathematical sums right now, but by the end of the year he will... so giving him a test geared towards older children who have been taught more might just make me feel overwhelmed and worried about this intelligence. Like if you started a year-long course, and got the final exams on your first day. You'd be all, "WTF? Do most people know this already? Am I that dumb? ARGH!" and stressed. I'd rather not do that to a child, personally.

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    Ugh. Will start by saying that I feel VERY strongly about this.

    NAPLAN is supposed to be, as BlissedOut says, indicative. The whole point is that it gives the school an idea of where their students sit in their abilities/progress, and this can help them to direct their efforts. It can also help with directing funding to the schools most in need.

    I despise the use of NAPLAN tests/results for anything else. The idea that kids should STUDY for them? That a class or school should have their results publicly available? It makes me incredibly angry. Granted, there are positives to having a school's academic results available to the public, but I think they're outweighed by the negatives. Particularly when they're quite simplistic results.

    The main problem I have with NAPLAN testing at the moment is that there is this whole mentality that it's important, that students need to study/practice for it. Some schools/teachers put an enormous amount of time and energy into improving NAPLAN results (specifically, rather than all of the associated skills) and some don't at all. As I see it, that rather defeats the point of the testing. Some schools are going to have better results on the tests because the kids are used to those kinds of questions/situations etc, and others aren't.

    Sorry, that became a bit of a rant... and rather disjointed. Personally, I wouldn't have my child practice for it at all. I'd have them sit the test, but wouldn't encourage them to think that it was in any way a big deal.

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    i don't think the OP was talking about studying for them...it's more about them understanding the format of them.

    The stuff they test on is pretty easy and i let my son have one of the books when he was in Year1 (his older friend had one and they gave it to us) and he worked through a few of them. He is now in Year 3 and I might buy one of the books for over the holidays (we always do some form of school work in holidays...just 30 minutes a day...nothing major) so he can refresh his memory.

    It's up to you...it is certainly not something that they need to "study" for but i feel it is a good idea that they have seen the format a few times so they know what to expect. We made it for fun, never scored him...often worked on a question together if he asked for help.

    It's not about the test or the practicing but how you talk about it that matters imo

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    I don't like the idea of forcing kids to study for them, although the NAPLAN format is really tricky for those poor year 3 kids, especially if the haven't used it before. Most of it is multiple choice which is a skill they need to learn ( which the school hopefully will be teaching) they always have two answers that 'seem' correct as well. It is really confusing for the kids as if they aren't taught to look at all the answers first most will just put down the one they see first that 'seems' correct. Therefore getting the question wrong. I think if you have a child who thrives on homework and is always looking for something else to do its not a bad idea to buy one of those workbooks for them to do. Or if you have a child that struggles with new formats and might need that extra one on one time. However if they don't enjoy homework that they already have I wouldn't be doing it. Reading, sight words and Maths facts are the most important at this age, focus on those.


 

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