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what would you do?


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So a brief history, the first ten years of my working life at the pre-school I was assistant and had no say in planning so we had a culture of fluffy duck syndrome, WORKSHEETS!! a specific older children session, no outdoor play etc and basically no fun, im sure you can all imagine. SO when I then took over as leader things changed a bit, I have a wonderful team and we have worked together for a couple of years now, they are wonderful people and do wonderful and exciting activities with the children but there is one area where we seem to be at a little bit of logger heads.

we follow the letter and sounds booklets and activities and do phonics, well a letter sound a week as this seems to be a pace that works well for us at the moment. we do a few phonics games etc each week. And while I have been thinking that we need to do small group work based on ability to a certain degree another member of staff wants each to have a work book. I have to say that that scares me a tad, she want to do an activity a week with them and keep it in the work book so the parents see what they are doing, now this sounds like work sheets as we do obs, videos and pics of phonics stuff that goes in their tapestry so I think this may be extra work and not down a route that appeals to me!

what do you all do? do I let her do it and find out herself that its not fun? I know there will be the odd child who will enjoy it out of the group. oh I don't know.

many thanks in advance!

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I think you must be in my setting!!

We have similar issues, and to be honest sometimes- when reading newly released Ofsted reports, I 'think' maybe we should be doing something along those lines. .........Then I think about worksheets!!! and think no-way!!!

We have a stash of old worksheets (previous manager loved them)- that after almost 5 years are coming to an end, these are in a free access tray and sometimes some of the children like doing them - they either go home at end of session, or the child may choose to put it in their book themselves.

What I do allow though is - if someone finds an interesting type worksheet we have one or two copies which are laminated and the children access freely, or even as a keyperson focus activity. for this they use dry wipe pens- they my then be kept for parent to see at the end of session, or if of any real 'value' observation wise - they may be photo-copied or photographed.

Also on the very last few weeks of the summer term the children leaving for school work on transition books - we have a folder of about 12 sheets, and each child works through.... although this is very much at the child's level and some children will do all 12 sheets and others maybe only 1 or 2. These are all totally the child's own work, and (with parents permission) are passed straight onto the school.

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I'm in a school Nursery and generally stay away from worksheets and often colouring in sheets (they do sometimes serve a purpose?!)

At this time of year we do one small group phonics activity a week and one large group phonics activity a week. On top of this we do rhyming stories, action songs, nursery rhymes, phonics warm up in P.E., add sounds to core stories etc. Usually in January we start doing phonic groups 3 times a week focusing on ability. However Phase 1 phonics is not progressional apart from aspect 7. Although the strands are. E.g strand 1 first, then strand 2, then 3. We spend longer with less able on each aspect.

All the activities are practical activities non involve worksheets until they start phase 2. Then it's

minimal.

At this time of year I think it is too much to do lots of small group activities and personally I think there does have to be quiet for listening games?

X

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To be honest if you are doing phase 1 in nursery you won't need worksheets at all - it's all oral discrimination and blending segmenting.

Lots of that and children will be very reday for phase 2- 3+ in reception.

If you need to do phase 2 with children then you can do writing of letters etc on wipe off boards so it's all ephemeral.

cx

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We only use RWI letter sheets in line with what the literacy and SMT want everything else at early phase 2 is on wipeboards or magnetic letters.

What do other's do in terms phonics. I reduced how many small group activities I did as I thought it was too much. I hope I'm doing enough.

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We dont do worksheets, and we will not be doing worksheets. There are a few laminated sheets of dotted lines in zig zag shapes etc. We help children form letters of their name, if they bring in a magazine which is, usually anyway, packed full of worksheet type stuff and they want to do it we will obviously let them and help them if they ask. We like the spot the difference type puzzles in them or matching shadow shapes. All our adult activities are practical ones, so plenty of photos to explain what is happening. The children have their own scrap books into which they may stick anything, write anything, draw anything in.

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I need to add - my comment were on worksheets as focused activity, and nothing to do with Letters and Sounds.

 

With regards to L&S.-

We just do very basic Phase 1 activities- like the games at circle time.

After Christmas we do letter sound of the week, following the L&S order.

We also do Jolly Phonics singing and actions as an activity at circle times.

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Each child has their own a4 book here which we do drawing around hands, mazes, rhyming games, matching games and a wide variety of things in that stays here. Not ever worksheets but there might be a photo to talk about or a picture from a story that week to prompt discussion , very much led by the child, they don't have to do it but they often ask to do something in it queuing up! Generally they do something with their key worker in it once a week and it's nowhere near as 'serious' as it sounds!

 

With regards to letters and sounds we do an aspect a week with a short activity each day linked to that aspect, purely practical and in small groups!

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Now wondering if I'm doing enough. We do something phonics related everyday through stories and rhymes or singing phonics but only 1 small group activity until after Christmas. Just felt that with focused activities which we do in small groups and story and rhyme time it was all too much too soon. Maybe I need to do more?

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I'm in a school nursery and we do phonics every day. We split into 2 groups based on ability. Some of the 'older' ones who have been with us since January are ready for phase2 but slowly. We were Ofsteded a couple of weeks ago and they wanted to see our phonics and the inspector asked why i wasn't doing letter sounds in phase 1!!!! We did explain it but he was very clear that if we felt they are ready we must move on! He was also quite critical of the phase 1 animal sound stuff as he felt linking instrument sounds to animals over complicated it!!

We've seen a positive impact in Reception and consequently Y1 and 2 from starting it at the children's pace.

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HI

We do focused activities in small groups after register then free flow, then phonics half way through the s session followed by free flow before T4W and story at the end. We used to do small group and phonics the other way round but found having the small group first made it work to link it to activities during the session.

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