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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 4:54 pm 
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I've just been to my daughter's Parents' Afternoon and am feeling very stressed. Apparently they are on their third phonics scheme! I'd be grateful if any primary teachers out there could tell me whether they think there is any benefit in this?! They started with Jolly Phonics, then did something else and are now on something else maybe?? Look, Say, Read?? I think this is incredibly confusing for a child in Year 1!!
I was also extremely irritated as when I raised something the response was, "Ah, so your daughter has a problem with this" to which my reply was, "No, I do!"
I also raised the issue as to why in their high frequency spelling lists all of the words begin with capital letters...
Possibly worse than all of this is that the teacher appeared to know very little about what my daughter could do. She started by saying she was very happy at school to which I replied well I left her in tears this morning as she didn't want to be here. :(
A miserable mum. :cry:


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:36 pm 
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I'm sorry you're having a difficult time with your school and it's horrid having to leave your DC crying. Yr 1 seems very different from Yr R, less play etc. It took my DC a while to adjust. Yr 1 was also when DC learned to read because they did practically zero in yr R. Did your DC respond to Jolly Phonics. They use that at my DC's school, together with Oxford Reading Tree and it seemed very structured, so I knew what he was supposed to be covering even if the teachers were pretty flakey.

Also, check out the attached, which am now looking at with DC2, who will start school next year. It's quite fun, with some good, if repetitive, games. It just helps reinforce anything that might be going on in the classroom, but in a less formal way. I ended up buying a lot of the books myself so that I could help my DC when he came home with the same book he'd read the month before :roll:

http://www.letters-and-sounds.com

Parents evenings this early in the school calendar are an incredible waste of time, IMO. They are really there to flag up serious behavioural/ learning issues (if you're lucky). I never learn anything I didn't already know from them.

Sorry, I'm not really helping! Just trying to say, you're not alone!

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:50 pm 
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Location: East Kent
Letters and sounds is brilliant! Google Letters and Sounds and there are loads of really good resources, online games you can play and ideas for games. I thoroughly recommend it.

We use it from Yr R onwards and it seems to have been very succesful, last year's reception class were very keen writers and readers and were happy to have a go. Maybe the Class teacher could give you an outline of how they approach their reading so that you know how to help at home.

There is a big change from reception to Yr 1. Reception class comes under Early Years Foundation Stage, along with nursery, playgroups and childminders and although formal teaching starts it is still very much about social skills, knowledge and understanding of the world and physical skills. Yr 1 is the start of KS1 and the National Curriculum and although there is still a lot of play and discovery the teaching becomes increasingly formal.

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Parents/Pre ... /DG_171007

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Parents/Sch ... DG_4015959

try www.phonicsplay.co.uk There is a subscription charge for some things but there are plenty of free resources.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 10:29 pm 
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Look say read doesn't sound like a phonics scheme of any sort! Maybe they have given up on synthetic phonics and gone back to the whole word method of learning to read.

It is very irritating when they do appear to know almost nothing about your child. This has happened to me at certain points - and I've got parents' meetings this week so I'm gritting my teeth ready for it as quite often I come back feeling very disappointed by the whole thing.

Spelling lists with capital letters - are they typed or in the teacher's handwriting? Such a rubbish thing to do. What did the teacher say? It's probably just someone in the office who is using a list in Word and it is automatically capitalising the first word on every line of the document after an "enter" at the end of each previous line. Are the lists otherwise useful? At our school we rarely get high frequency words on spelling lists - I do wish we had more of them, but not with capitals.

Most weeks in early primary I have ended up re-writing some school spelling list or other because it's in a confusing order, or it's in unreadable handwriting or such like.

Did they give you any concrete idea of their view of your child's progress e.g. NC sublevels in core subjects or anything like that?


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 12:24 pm 
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Thanks all for letting me vent! Attmepted to see the Head this morning, but he was probably hiding so will try again this afternoon. :lol: Thanks, too for the links. I'll double check what course she's currently on.
I completely support phonics teaching, however it's the idea of having three different schemes in just over a year that concerns me. Surely this would be confusing?
Yes, I'm sure the typed spellings have been auto corrected on the computer. The teacher actually said yes, she'd noticed that they were wrong, but as she's a maternity cover she couldn't change them.
I agree that the Parent Afternoons are too early for the teachers to know much, but she seemed completely clueless. When pushed she said my DD was in the top maths and literacy sets, as she was last year, but beyond that nothing.
I agree that it's a huge leap from the informality of the early years to Year 1, but it's no consolation when my little one is crying and clinging to me and really doesn't want to be there. Although the teacher did reassure me that she was quite happy when I'd gone (and so was my DD :lol: )
Thanks Yoyo, but I don't think that I really need strategies to teach her to read. (I used to volunteer to listen to readers at school and was also an English teacher).IMHO she's a great little reader, but lacks confidence as she hates it if she gets anything wrong, which is the same with her written work... Incidentally the teacher listened to her for the first time all term a few days ago!Admittedly the TA had listened a couple of times too!
I'm concerned that obviously she isn't going to be abl to spell cuboid, square, sphere etc, but has to write them and they are then corrected. It's very demoralising for my little perfectionist! I think the sad thing is at home she actually loves to sit writing her own stories (which are several sentences long) and also asking me for sums to work out!
Thanks for listening! :)


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 1:32 pm 
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Quote:
the teacher did reassure me that she was quite happy when I'd gone (and so was my DD )

:lol: :lol:

It sounds like she'll be fine with you behind her. How fantastic she writes her own little stories. Wish my DC would! It is galling when school seems so ineffective. Sometimes I think it would be more efficient use of time if I home-schooled (were it not for the effect this would have on my sanity, not to mention DC's!!)

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 1:58 pm 
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Location: East Kent
Quote:
Maybe the Class teacher could give you an outline of how they approach their reading so that you know how to help at home.


just thinking you might be have been able to get some sense out her this way!(teacher not your daughter)

not sure why a cover teacher can't alter or retype a spelling list?

Hope you get things sorted, it can be really frustrating, I remember banging my head against a brick wall with Miss Yoyo, who was reading stage 5 ORT at school and Matilda at home, but still had to plough through every book on the level before moving up. I had told school she had been on stage 9 ORT in her previous school, but I think the teacher was a bit deaf!


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 3:20 pm 
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Thanks Yoyo, I've PM'd you.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 3:36 pm 
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Agree with yoyo123, Letters and sounds is great and most of us use it now.
You do still have to have some look and say for those many words in English that cannot be sounded phonetically. I wouldn't worry about the use of different schemes, children will take something from each. I use 3 different schemes in Maths because some are better for different topics and because individual children learn in different ways. Sometimes you need to try more than one thing before you find the best method for a particular child (working as an HLTA at the moment so I get to do in depth with individuals). Also, if something new and better is developed, it is foolish to stick with an old scheme that may be less effective.

A maternity cover teacher should really be taking a grip on her class and resources, as she will be there for months. There is always a reluctance to rearrange someone else's class, but when a resource is plain wrong she should have the confidence to change it. She should prioritise the needs of the class over a perceived offence to the teacher.

I agree with yoyo123 about the frustration of dealing with some teachers. My DD was reading free reading books by the end of reception. We had the same nonsense about the reading scheme. Fortunately it took me not so long to persuade. I just put the books she was actually reading in her bookbag and sent the reading scheme ones back unread.

The parent's evening so near the start is really just a check as to how you DC has settled in rather than an academic analysis. It is wrong that the teacher did not seem to know your DD though.
It is very common for a child to make a big fuss for Parent at drop off then be instantly calm once they have gone. It is their way of showing you that they want you more than school - how important you are to them.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 8:43 pm 
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Ourmaminhavana, I can share your frustration after parents' evening too. Fine with older child, but year 1 rubbish. Her books were a heap of rubbish, she could do more at home in half an hour than she'd done in 6 weeks at school. Child is excellent reader, but teacher keeps on telling my child that she must read the "scheme books" at home as well as whatever she wants to read at home. Most of the scheme books she brings home are not very good, and she gets bored with them. She was an enthusiastic self-starting reader during the summer holiday and this has gone off the boil now she is being told she must read these books. I can't see the point of a five year old having to read two books at once. The books she has been choosing at home are eminently suitable so I don't see the point.

Aaaaaaaaaargh.


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