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  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigRedV View Post
    If you need to know how your child is doing, ask the teacher.
    Unfortunately, my experience with "asking the teacher" did not go down very well, and other parents have not had great experiences either.
    When I asked the teacher where DS was up to in reading (as I mentioned before, he has speech issues so we were on the look out for early signs of problems), she said he was doing fine. While she was lovely and polite- "fine" didn't give me any indication to how he's doing. I wanted figures, data, examples. I ended up ringing a teacher friend who told me that by the end of Kindergarten, they expect their kids to be at level such and such, and from this- I noted down what level he was at. This was evidence to me that he was within range of being where he should be.
    Another friend of mine got the same answer and found out the next year, he was well below average and has had a terrible time catching up.

    My teacher friend told me teachers don't like giving out reading level information as they don't like parents to pressure kids. I understand that completely, but the information is for me and not DS to know, and its the only way I can determine if he needs additional help.

  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by SimplyMum View Post
    Unfortunately, my experience with "asking the teacher" did not go down very well, and other parents have not had great experiences either.
    When I asked the teacher where DS was up to in reading (as I mentioned before, he has speech issues so we were on the look out for early signs of problems), she said he was doing fine. While she was lovely and polite- "fine" didn't give me any indication to how he's doing. I wanted figures, data, examples. I ended up ringing a teacher friend who told me that by the end of Kindergarten, they expect their kids to be at level such and such, and from this- I noted down what level he was at. This was evidence to me that he was within range of being where he should be.
    Another friend of mine got the same answer and found out the next year, he was well below average and has had a terrible time catching up.

    My teacher friend told me teachers don't like giving out reading level information as they don't like parents to pressure kids. I understand that completely, but the information is for me and not DS to know, and its the only way I can determine if he needs additional help.
    I can understand your frustration, that teacher was not helpful at all.

    However, a lot of schools are now putting less focus on reading levels because students and parents become obsessed with them. The focus needs to be on comprehension. Yep, 5 year old children can read anything you put in front of them. Fantastic! But do they understand or are they just barking at print? I'd rather my child be on level 5 and have good understanding of reading, than be on level 20 and not be able to tell me what the text was about.
    Reading should be for meaning and enjoyment. What's the point of reading if children don't understand. It happens a lot.
    Last edited by BigRedV; 22-03-2013 at 10:19.

  3. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elijahs Mum View Post
    See as a mum of a non school aged child and not having a clue about all the politics of naplan I would have looked at those results BigredV posted and would think that school was below average and would definitely worry if I had to send my child there? there are about 4 public primary schools in our area and 2 have good reputations and 2 bad, the bad ones have the low naplan scores , but are all in the same postcode
    I bet you not one of them would've been compared with each other for the "like" schools on myschool, despite having the same postcode and probably very similar ses.

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigRedV View Post
    I can understand your frustration, that teacher was not helpful at all.

    However, a lot of schools are now putting less focus on reading levels because students and parents become obsessed with them. The focus needs to be on comprehension. Yep, 5 year old children can read anything you put in front of them. Fantastic! But do they understand or are they just barking at print? I'd rather my child be on level 5 and have good understanding of reading, than be on level 20 and not be able to tell me what the text was about.
    Reading should be for meaning and enjoyment. What's the point of reading if children don't understand. It happens a lot.
    I suppose this makes it rather difficult. I see your point and I would have to agree. Reading something is different to comprehending it. And, I hope to get this information from the Naplan- I'm guessing they'll have texts and then questions on those texts to determine if they can comprehend what they are reading.

    I would be in favour of a test at the end of each year- not state wide, not formal- just a class test, but a test given to the students and sent home to the parents all marked and commented on. That way, I would know if the was struggling with numeracy, or comprehension and could focus a little on that in fun and playful ways.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SimplyMum View Post
    I suppose this makes it rather difficult. I see your point and I would have to agree. Reading something is different to comprehending it. And, I hope to get this information from the Naplan- I'm guessing they'll have texts and then questions on those texts to determine if they can comprehend what they are reading.

    I would be in favour of a test at the end of each year- not state wide, not formal- just a class test, but a test given to the students and sent home to the parents all marked and commented on. That way, I would know if the was struggling with numeracy, or comprehension and could focus a little on that in fun and playful ways.
    You could ask the teacher for a copy of a running record she has done.

    http://www.readinga-z.com/guided/runrecord.html

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    Teachers should be doing assessments regularly, after every topic. Your child's teacher should also have an assessment folder for your child. Ask to have a look at it.
    Last edited by BigRedV; 22-03-2013 at 13:06.

  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigRedV View Post
    Teachers should be doing assessments regularly, after every topic. Your child's teacher should also have an assessment folder for your child. Ask to have a look at it.
    This is a perfectly reasonable request. All teachers should have data, assessments on hand which they can talk to.

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    I never said it was that you were not putting the work in...i said it was a political statement to not give them the chance to see the format of the test until 5 minutes before they have to do it. Teachers work incredibly hard and the end all and be all is NOT naplan. I have never said that and would never think or say it...my view is that it is PART of our system and I will never send a child into anything unprepared if I can easily avoid it.

    Fine don't do a worksheet...do some examples on the board. Get the kids to make up their own questions and answers for maths or english. If you already do all the writing (which i said earlier that I assume that you do) then it is a non issue.

    You seem to think I am saying that naplan is the only way to assess progress but I am not. Teachers do not always give out info as requested...sometimes due to lack of time and sometimes for probably 100 other reasons....but, as a parent, this is not helpful.

    I love the idea of cooking them brekky and making it fun and special...if you see it that way...then why not give them the benefit of having seen they format before they walk into the room?

    For some of the examples given...they child who (due to anxiety) scored well below capability...this shows his/her teacher that they need some help with stress. Finding this out in year 3 is a good thing as it gives them (and the parents) time to help them with it. If they are a high performing student, they may well want to apply for scholarships and it is much better to find out in Year 3 instead of when they sit that first selective entry test.

    For the child who guessed all the right answers...this seems far fetched but I guess they could be lucky.

    No, at Uni I have not covered Naplan at all. We have covered a lot about the National Curric and in discussions it has come up. My opinions are a combination of my education training and being a parent (my son sitting Naplan this year and my niece sat it last year along with many of my friends kids).

    My view is that either extreme view is not in the best interest of the kids...that it is part of our system and so needs to be integrated into the Year 3 curric, not allowed to take over it, but part of it. It is about balance, just as much as the parents choosing schools need to be balanced in how they use the info, the schools need to be balanced and fair in how they deal with it in class.

    Tamtam - you describe my ideal situation...it does not take over but examples are given in class so that they don't walk into the room having never seen it before. My objection is that BRV is saying that the 5 minutes before they do the exam is all the kids get and that all that matters is they can colour in a circle...i find this overly harsh.

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by River Song View Post
    For some of the examples given...they child who (due to anxiety) scored well below capability...this shows his/her teacher that they need some help with stress. Finding this out in year 3 is a good thing as it gives them (and the parents) time to help them with it. If they are a high performing student, they may well want to apply for scholarships and it is much better to find out in Year 3 instead of when they sit that first selective entry test.

    For the child who guessed all the right answers...this seems far fetched but I guess they could be lucky.

    The child wasn't anxious at all or stressed, he does not have anxiety. He simply wanted to make sure he got the answers correct. An assessment from me would be a true indication of his abilities. Labelling him with anxiety would actually be detrimental for him.

    I take offence to you suggesting the child guessing the answers right was far fetched. It has actually happened to me twice in my teaching career in two very different schools. Once at an aboriginal remote community where English is their second language and once at a main****** school (the example I was referring to). I guess they were 'lucky'. Proves that NAPLAN has to be taken with a grain of salt and teachers assessment and judgement is far more valuable. It is one test on one day.

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    For anyone who wants to use NAPLAN as an assessment tool/collective judgement of where their child is at, just thought I'd let you know that you and the school won't have access to these results until around 4-5 months later... So all the data on where to help or support your child based on that paper is (hopefully) irrelevant by that point and they are ready to learn new things. Another reason why many teachers place little emphasis on it-it is not so much a tool for schools but rather for the government.

  11. The Following User Says Thank You to tootsiegirl For This Useful Post:

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