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Grouping The Children In Reception


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I am due to start in a new school next week in Reception, having previously spent last year in Y3 and four years prior to that in Reception.

 

My previous school had a nursery attached so I got a pretty good idea at what level the children were at and I would group them before they started with me in September. I like to group them for ease of moving around the classroom and routines. I always make self registration cards with a picture of the group they are in and their name underneath. This is so they get use to seeing their names and they learn which group they are in.

 

Now I want to start the self registration from day one so they get into ther routine but the school I am moving to does not have a nursery and the children are coming from all over the place. I don't therefore have a clear fix on ability and can't group them that way. I don't really want to wait a couple of weeks before I start the self registration thing. Now reading around I have found many don't group children at all and some group them in mixed ability groups. I am thinking of doing this and perhaps revisiting their groups at the end of the Autumn Term to see if I do want to group them by ability.

 

Sorry this is a bit long winded, but what do you all tend to do? I want to establish the routine straight away and don't know whether to mix them or have ago at guessing on the little that I have seen of them.

 

Any thoughts please?

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Ive always kept my groups flexible and I have tended to group by ability to aid my differentiation. However, I have never used a self registration process and although I have grouped pretty early on with a large class group to aid movement round class etc I have also found I can afford to wait a few days and start groups within the first couple of weeks or it can be too much too soon.

 

Hope that makes sense.

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Guest ornahayes

I agree - I know which of my class have come from the onsite nursery (although I haven't seen any formal records - I have asked!) On this basis I'm going to randomly group until half term (when we start phonics properly). I find groups make it easier for transitional times during the routine. I only really use the 'ability' aspect for phonics sessions - and even then my TA has known me to move chd who need a little bit more support regardless of which group they are in.

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You can start the day to day routine stuff straight away, as self registration doesn't require knowledge of what group you are in necessarily - start with names and add the groups later.

 

I would definitely advise a period of time to observe and get to know the children, they have a lot of change to contend with and will not be operating at their previous best. The organisation has a duty to minimise the number of things they need to worry about! Groups I would put in the not immediately necessary category!!

 

Lots of exciting new resources will engender a period of exploration and maybe "flitting " by children who are normally very focused, or even reticence in the normally bold if it's all too much, so you need to give them a period of adjustment before they will show you what they can really do well. Too early and we can risk under assessment of true ability.

Organisation needs to flow with the needs of the child so rushing to organisation that is really to support adults I would argue is hasty.

 

 

Cx :o

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Thank you for the responses - some very wise words here. I think I will hold off on the grouping then and simply have their names to self register with. I am slightly worrying after a year out from Reception that I am not going to know what to do, so it must be so daunting for someone going into Reception that hasn't ever taught them!!

 

Thanks again everyone.

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