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We have been given a new target setting cd rom to use at school. We all have to set at least 3 targets for children in reading, writing and numeracy. The disc only goes as low as level 1 and does not cater for the foundation stage yet we have been told we still have to use it. I know this is probably an obvious question but where do you get your targets from. Do you just use profile of Foundation stage guidance statements?

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We had to do this last year and for part of the year before, with targets tying in to whole school targets eg. multiplication and division!! Fortunately this year, with the support of Lit and Num co-ordinators it has been decided that they aren't really appropriate for FS and that we're working towards out own targets ie. Foundation Stage Profile. If you have to set targets, and you're free to choose your own I would just select from stepping stones and early learning goals. Good luck.


Harricroft xx

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Can I be rather contentious though and say that hasn't that taken rather a lot of words to say what we surely all do anyway. 'The assessment process in Early Years begins and ends with each child:

What types of activity engage and motivate this child?

Is it best to plan the provocations for learning outdoors or indoors?

What are the most appropriate next steps in learning that will best support, extend and

develop this child’s skills, knowledge and understanding?'


It's hardly breaking news is it, or am I missing something? xD


I'm all for target setting but I think that's for the adults to see where a child is and where they might reasonably be expected to get to in the future. It worries me all this involving very young children in setting their targets. The bits where the document mentioned this seemed very wooly to me, although, to be fair, I have read it at high speed! Is is just me or is it a bit much to expect 4/5 year olds to play an active part in planning/recognising their next steps when they're busy having fun making holes in the sand or seeing how tall they can make a tower? What happened to the 'children don't distinguish between play and work and neither should practitioners' train of thought? Perhaps the children could say 'I'm having great fun playing in the role play area but I must remember to do some writing so that I can meet my target'. :o


Sorry, that's all horribly negative, I know. None of the above is meant as a dig at you, Catma - thanks for your time and trouble in posting the link :) .


This is going to be one of those posts that I will worry about having posted at 2am this morning but what the hell...

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Hi! It's not appropriate for you to be setting targets based on level 1 NC for your Reception Year children. The Primary National Strategy has produced guidance on target setting for Foundation Stage - 'Improving outcomes for children in the Foundation Stage in maintained schools - Process based targets in the Foundation Stage'. In this it states "Foundation Stage Targets must derive from the Curriculum guidance for Foundation Stage".


I recommend you get a copy of this and share it with your Senior Management Team, you can download it from www.standards.dfes.gov.uk or phone DFES Publications - 0845 60 222 60.


Hope that helps



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The link Catma provided is about ISP and how it works in reception.

We have been an ISP school for 2 years now and are in our 3rd year. Some of the schools in our LEA took part in the pilot mentioned and because of this we have had training and all ISP FS classes in Herts are encouraged to write their targets in this way. This is my first term doing it this way.

It is much better now, before the age related targets used to come from Year 6 and get watered down to reception - not ideal! Now our planning is done by us as a FS and although is on the whole school theme for that half term is done using the stepping stones and ELG that are leading up to that theme. So now our targets are wider and the children achieve them at their own speed and level, we still have challenge for them of course but it makes our assessment and analysis easier.

We can also recognise that all areas of learning in the Fs have an influence on Literacy or numeracy targets.

Hmmm... that's not wonderfully clear but I have attached an example to show what I mean.


Liz x


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Moose - you're quite right, it is what weve been doing - as an ISP consultant with nothing to go on for the foundation stage this is exactly what I developed by myself way6 before this pilot study and publication. I think though that what is blindingly obvious to those within this phase of working is not always so obvious to others so it does lay out the fundamental principles of linking it all to whats happening. If that stops targets in school derived from Y6 outcomes then I'm all for it.



There are two docs - one linked to ISP specifically with a long winded title which was an earlier version and this one which is more recent based on developing ISP work in various boroughs but developed with FS regional advisors in the lead.

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