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Are your children aware of their levels?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by hel185, Apr 21, 2011.

  1. Just wondered as OFSTED asked mine - What level are you on? What do you need to do to get to the next level? Mine are aware of their Literacy target but its quite difficult with Numeracy as there's so many different elements. I'm sure when I was in primary school I wasn't aware of my level at all and I turned out fine! I wasn't even aware of my SATs until I actually sat down and took them on the day. It all just seems really ridiculous now.
    What do you guys think?
  2. tafkam

    tafkam Occasional commenter

    Levels didn't even exist when I was at primary school, and I turned out fine too.
  3. I'm pretty sure that if anyone asked my class what levels they were on they would automatically assume it meant a level on a Wii game!
    Personally I think children should be allowed to be children without levels and targets etc. If they are happy and making progress and enjoying learning then that is what matters.
  4. Mine know. They can tell you their English level and what they need to work on, by looking at their target sheet. My maths group also know as, again, levels and target sheets are in their books. Why do they know? Because SLT expect them to.
  5. reddevil

    reddevil Occasional commenter

    Mine know, because they ask me!
  6. Probably gets more important to most children as they get older. Not so they can really focus on the aspects needed for the next level but so that they can compare with peers! Not nice for the child(ren) at the bottom of the ladder.
    Mine do know levels but that is because they are explicit on the reports. As for the next steps to get to the next level, I find that is pretty much over their heads. As someone has said, in Maths it is so broad that one statement would not suffice.
  7. greta444

    greta444 New commenter

    I agree, it's ridiculous to expect a child to roll off half a dozen statements that they need to achieve to get onto the next level. Mine like to know their level. I tell them on their own but they can't help comparing with each other. I find it'ss especially good for the boys who are so competitive they strive to catch up with their peers.
  8. polly2

    polly2 New commenter

    Every child in my class knows their level, and how to get to the next level - they can tell you what things they need to improve and what they are good at in Reading, Writing, Maths and Science. I am in a school that has just come out of special measures and HMI were very keen on grabbing the chn at random times. For example one of my class went to the toilet and held the door open for the inspector to be asked all about his levels. I agree with the others though, I didn't know when I was at school.
  9. It doesnt matter what we did when we were at school because if we took that attititude to life there would be no progress. Not saying that kids knowing targets and levels is necessarily progress but that comparing to own experience is irrelevant really.
    Think if children are clear about what they are learning and where they are going and how its got to help them move forward in learning rather than just hoping that as they are enjoying it they will improve. Those who feel it makes LA feel bad need to realise that most LA pupils are fully aware of their academic position in the class from a very early age!
    Out of curiosity did Ofsted do this right down to the bottom of the school?
  10. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Mine know their levels and their targets. I feel I should have made the targets more explicitly geared to getting to the next level, but I've not.

    I have year 6 and we have done several assessments this year. There is no way I'd not have told them their results and so their levels. No-one feels bad...what kind of classroom would it be if they did? We celebrate progress and my least able writer is top of the tree when it comes to writing this year.
  11. Mine know their targets, but that is because I teach Year 6 and they are constantly asking me. When I taught Year 4, the children didn't seem as bothered.
  12. My children do know their levels and targets but I make a great deal out of highlighting progress that children have made rather than simply state where they are now. So I tell them how far they have moved up the ladder since a certain time. Works well when boosting certain children (especially the lower ability) when comparing it to the national expectation.
  13. My LA are LA in writing, reading and maths. Some of them are good at sport, some good at art, some have great empathy for others, one is a great actor.
    However, they all know their numbers and that 2 is less than 3 or 4. If the only level number they hear is "you're a level 2" when others only get a measurement of "level 3" or "level 4", the children are bright enough to get the message: "We don't care what you're good at, we're only measuring 3 things and your bottom in all of them."
    My children all know what they have to do to get better. I like them to realise they all have strengths and any talk of "levels" is kept to a minimum. It is, after all, a pretty arbitrary measurement anyway.
  14. I think we have come to a sorry state of affairs when children know their 'levels' and when they ask for their 'levels'.
    For primary children to be thought of as a number and a letter is a worrying thing.
    As for Ofsted inspectors asking children their levels - I think that is disgraceful.
    Just to add, I am not this pink and fluffy woolly person who does not want, or expect, children to achieve - I just think that we are going a misguided way about it.
  15. Well said debbie.
  16. Whilst I can see your point of view, I believe that it is empowering for children to know their levels. They can then target set for themselves and use their target boards to track their own progress. I didn't know my levels when I was at school but I was educated in the 80's and my teacher just ordered us to work through a text book. If we got it wrong, and I did frequently in maths, we were jest sent away to try again.
    I learned how to do maths when I was training to become a teacher! Old school methods aren't necessarily the best! (Although I did learn how to over-use the exclamation mark- lol!)
  17. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I never knew my level, it was pre NC and there were none. but hey it was the late 70s and early 80s and we didn't actually learn anything anyway, so probably best no-one realised.

    When I first started teaching every child wanted to know their score. Generally it was an effort grade A-E and an attainment 1-10 on each piece of work.

    Now they all want to know their level. Not really different.

    To be honest my class do know what they are good at and not good at. Not telling them a level wouldn't actually stop them knowing. But they definitely don't feel bad about being good at some things and bad at others. What on earth kind of teacher would I be if they did? Everyone celebrates just as much when the least able child finally breaks into the level 2s as when the most able gets a 5a. We celebrate doing well, doesn't make anyone feel bad.
  18. I thought the primary function of schools was to prepare children for adult life. Quite what arbitrary attainment levels have to do with everyday life I have yet to discover. The education system is becoming worryingly self-referential.
  19. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    And I thought it was to educate them! In adult life some people are good at some things and others are not. that is how it is. At GCSE some will get all A* and some nothing at all. At A-Level some will get all A and some E. At degree level some will get Firsts and some Thirds. That is real life. Even in their working life, some will be better than others and achieve more. Are you suggesting pretending everyone is equally good at everything is a better preparation for adult life? (Even though, as another poster pointed out, it is patently obvious to all children from a very young age who is good at academic work and who isn't!)
  20. I don't think we should pretend that everyone is equally good at everything.
    I just personally don't agree with telling 7 year old children levels and targets like they are mini businessmen.

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