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Assessing Writing


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:o hi,

i've been a member for a while now and this is my first post. i've been trying to get my head round something but am struggling and thought.....i know just the people to ask...you folks. i hope you can help.... xD

i am a reception teacher, and i've been collecting samples of the children's writing at various intervals as required by our literacy co-ordinator. at present i've been 'levelling' the pieces according to the stepping stones/ELG's rather than just putting a meaningless w for working towards. should i be doing this or should i be using the P-scales. my understanding was the P-Scales should be used for SEN children making very little progress on the profiles. am very confused....please help. i would be very grateful to know what others are doing and what you use.

thank-you.

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Hi

You're right p-scales are for sen children who are working below level one of the National Curriculum. If the children are in Reception they are still part of the Foundation Stage curriculum and so should be using ELG's. P scales should not be used for FS even wuth sen children. However I think it would be best to check with your HT. There has been a recent thread on this subject you may want to take a look at.

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Hi funnyf and welcome to the Forum! :D

 

As mousebat mentioned, the p scales have been discussed recently in a couple of conversations. You can find the last one here, and it has a link to the second one contained within it. :)

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I've got a useful sheet at home thta splits the ELGs and SS into level W1-W5 thtas what we use for assessment for literacy numeracy and science...its difficult and i do assess on the FSP too but to keep in line with the rest of the school it works. tey are on my home computer i think! I'll add them tomorrow as i'm still at school waiting for governors meeting at 7.30pm,..supposed to be working!!

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thank you all for your reassurance! sarah it would be really useful to look at your sheet.

i think i started doubting myself because the Key Stage co-ordinator (who has just moved down from yr5 will very little knowledge about foundation stage) kept asking ....are you using the p-scales? well shouldn't you be?...and i was sure they were for SEN children but just needed some back up. i can now go back and tell her i AM on the right track!! :o

thank you steve for the link, i will check it out.

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I too have recently had a conversation with my HT about using P scales he also was talking about using them for all children is this a new trend?

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Hi and welcome. I'm afraid I'm going to have a bit of a rant now..........................

 

I wish P levels had never been written. HT's think it will give them something to track progress against, which they have to do and I understand, but you can do that equally well with the FS curriculum. FS children are not SEN and are not W's. I have one school I support where the HT wants predictions of attainment at the end of R, using NC levels. I could do that for her not even knowing the children- probably All w and maybe a 1c. But that is the problem- they can't accept that the FSc does not give you correlation to the NC, and they're trying to make sure that children are learning. For my previous school I would indicate which children were mainly at blue or Green level say and then in the pupil progress reviews I would see how many had made progress to the next stepping stone. My head got a numerical figure e.g. 15% are now working at green level compared to 10% before so was happy. The FSC is not always hierarchical, but is broadly developmental so this seemed like a reasonable solution to the issue. I would also say that at the end of R if a child was achieveing the elgs then they are broadly in line with national expectations. If they are still in the stepping stones then they are below national expectations. At that point I might just accept the use of P levels to track continued progression against the new set of national curriculum criteria if the school wasn't evolved enough to continue using FSC in Y1. I personally don;t think children should be assessed against the NC in Y1 until at least half term when they've hada chance to actually work against it fora while and teachers can gather some real evidence, not a scrappy, one off "writing sample" where they're all w again anyway.

 

Phew. :o

Cx

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Well put catma.

I also wish p levels had never been written and sadly many Heads are putting a lot of pressure on reception teachers to assess children against these at the end of the year so that the year one teachers can use the information better to make end of year predictions. Noone else in many schools has any clue about what the 'scores' in the FSP mean. So if you say child x scored 8 in wriitng at the end of the year, a reception teacher (and anyone else completing the FSP) would immediately have a picture in their head of what that means in trems of what the writing skill sof that child might look like.

 

Noone else would have a clue!

 

But one of the other problems is that I dont think we have had a cohort of children who have passed throuigh using the FSP and also finished KS1. Im thinkng that wil happen this year? So we dont actually know as yeat how a score on teh FSp relates to a KS1 SATs result. Once we do, I think there will be guidlesines whihc will then be used to create the predictions that our schools and govt craves. This may be along the lines of for example FSP-9...KS1 level 3, or FSP 4,,KS1 level 1c etc etc. If nothing comes along nationally, we will look at doing our own. Not because we want to but because we are pressured to have some numerical yardstick to beat our teachers up with.....oops sorry I mean measure our school and our teachers' success. (perf managment for example)

 

but of course we can always hope that all this number crunching will be abandonned by then!!

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Oh I do agree with both of you!

In my last school I had to track SS/ ELG numerical totals re FSP to make forward predictions for the children when in yr2 ie SAT levels. This is so not what I understood the FSP to be for! My objections were over ruled.

 

And why should teachers success be measured against pupil progress, surely the main variable is the nature of the cohort itself. Several years ago I was throwing up my hands in horror at the "new children's visit" that had just taken place. This group of children caused us considerable concern throughout their time in infants and SATs results were poor but it was not for the want of trying as all sorts of things were introduced in an effort to enhance their experiences etc.

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thank you all for all this feedback, it's interesting how so many heads are thinking this way. i wish the QCA would produce a document that clearly explains to heads the use and value of the profile and it's scores because other than foundation stage practitioners i don't feel many people appreciate, let alone understand them.

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Exactly Susan! :( .... and it doesn't help when you're a young teacher.....they think i don't know alot!!! xD

lucky for us we have the forum and the wealth of knowledge here. :)

ooh i do like using these smilies!! :o

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just me again! :o

 

just wanted to beg.....sarah if you don't mind please could i get a copy of the sheet you talked about. i would be very grateful.

thank you :)

hope you all have a good week. :D

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Hi Funnyf

 

I can't find the sheets that i was talking about on m y home computer anywhere...I have no idea where i saved them...If you send me your address on a personal message i'll post you a hard copy cos that's all i can find at the mo!! I keep looking on the compuetr at work for everyone else!! Ive just used the LIteracy one for assessing writing with Recpetion and the poorer Year 1's

 

Sarah

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Sarah, these sound like a really useful resource and Im sure we would all appreciate them. Any chance that you could send a hard copy to Steve, please and perhaps he can make them available to us all in the members section?

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Sue

 

Where do i need to send them to get them to Steve??? Sorry forgot to look for them on computer at work today...just a little bit stressed i'm moving house on Friday hopefully get my head and brain back after that!

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi!

Just to add to the other replies - i have a document that was published by Kent that is called 'Tracking devlopement in Writing' I use this alongside the FSP, it runs from the start of the foundation stage and goes write up through the National cuuriculum levels, my KS1 colleagues continue this as the children progress? If you would like a copy let me know

Sara

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Hi Sarah

Sorry I missed this somehow, hope your move has gone ok.

You can email the documents to Steve -- via his member details, or contact Steve via the the "about us" menu.

 

Sara, your writing tracker sounds good too, I'd certainly be interested in seeing it, please.

You can post it or email to Steve as above.

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apologies for not replying sooner am in the process of having my kitchen refitted....need i say more!!!! :o

thank you sarah and sara, it would be really helpfull if you are able to send them to steve.

thank you,

funnyf

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I will be sending a hard copy of the Tracking Writing - also a Tracking reading - however i don't think this is as easy to use- to Steve asap - hope that they are helpful!

Sara :D

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It's really nice of you to share your forms etc with all the members here :D

You can send them to:

Steve Edwards

The Foundation Stage Forum

1, Southdown Avenue,

Lewes, BN7 1EL.

 

And magically they will appear for all to see :o

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Just for the record, my school is looking to go down that route too!

 

Though it has been stalled for now as I stressed my serious reservations about having to assess to the P scales in the Foundation Stage. Not sure how much was taken on board though, I got the impression it's still going to go ahead.

 

They just need something to predict SATs (ya-boo-hiss) results at the end of KS1, and like has already been mentioned, this years Y2 cohort will be the first to have been through the FS with the profile. So hopefully, someone will use the results to draw up some kind of clever fandangled table for SMT to predict SATs from the FSP!....... hopefully

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