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Letter formation


Guest Anje
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Hi, as pressure mounts for reception children to achieve a 3 in writing, does anyone start teaching letter formation in Lower Foundation? Ours currently come up writing their names and cvc words but their formation is not right. It then is very difficult to un learn the bad habits! Don't want to force writing too early, any thoughts?

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I think you could be developing writing patterns to encourage correct letter formation as a feature of many activities, in sand and paint etc without "forcing" writing. Also outside, with water etc.

Foundations of literacy had lots of good ideas and so do many writing schemes. Also Featherstone Little Books.

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We do lots of air writing and tracing on each others backs, Mr ABC does says about lightsabre writing (have tried this with my son a very reluctant summer birthday leftie- its great!) I agree with Susan, Foundations of Literacy is a good resource.

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Thanks, will have a look at that. I just feel to be getting mixed messages from Ofsted about expectations in Early Years. It seems to depend on the team you get as to what they expect!.

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Yes, a 3 is what we are aiming for in my school. The children who achieve it are working within national curriculum levels. i plan for that usually in Summer term 1. I have 6 children at that level this year.

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The children who work on those levels cope well.Some of the lower end find our big write session a bit stressful and this is what i feel i need to fight against. Some are simply not ready! Let them be children...

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We are very careful in our school as to who we give a 3 to. They do have to really show they are well above expected. Although there is no imposed link between the profile and ks1 levels, if the children are to stay above average they have to get at least a good 2A or a 3 for the stretch target. This puts a lot of pressure on KS1 staff and the children hence the ever more formal approach in year1.

I'm in Nursery and have a group of 7 who are doing phase 2 phonics including correct letter formation. I then have about 6 children who can form letters well, recording some sounds in words. The rest of the children can copy some letters beginning to do this correctly. We use RWI so the ditties help with letter formation. I am careful in Nursery to do lots of fine motor activities and writing letters with different media or in different materials. If we push writing too much you can end up with some strange pencil grips which are hard to change (I had this problem with my own child who was made to write his name nearly every day in Nursery!)

Green Hippo x

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