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High Ability Reader/Writer....help please!

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by giggles_88, Feb 13, 2012.

  1. Hi all, I am looking for some advice. I have a 4 year old child in my reception class who can already fluently read, mainly recognising words by sight and sometimes decoding words (usually in his head) that he does not already know by sight. He understands the text he has read and will talk to me about things like emotions he saw, what happened at different points in the story and why they happened. We are working on his creative thinking with reading as when something isn't concrete he is much less confident (e.g. what might happen next)
    He can write neatly, correctly formed letters and uses finger spaces, capital letters and full stops. I am trying to challenge him further by asking him to add more information into his writing such as describing words and adding 'and' to make a sentence longer.
    I have only ever worked in reception and never come across a child like this before. What else do I need to do to challenge him further without putting him off reading/writing, he is still emotionally just a little 4 year old boy. I make sure all the activities he does are on the same theme as the rest of the class, but differentiated to suit him, as he is quite shy and I don't want him to feel different to the other children.

    Thanks in advance for any help or advice you can offer!
  2. Just moving this back onto the first page again, surely someone has some advice.......please? [​IMG]
  3. choralsongster

    choralsongster New commenter

    I had a child like that last year, mainly reading rather than writing. The first step I would take is to complete a formal reading assessment, so if necessary you can provide and assess accurately. It will ensure the decoding, comprehension and speed all play parts in the reading process, and if one area is at a lower age, you can focus on that.
    With regards to writing, carry on doing what you're doing, but also talk to the Year 1 teachers, and compare the writing with that of their classes. They will be able to suggest further ideas to extend the learning.
    Good luck xx
  4. Thanks so much for your reply. I have been to see the year one teacher and literacy co-ordinator. I'm desperate to do the best for this child!
    Thanks again [​IMG]
  5. Leapyearbaby64

    Leapyearbaby64 New commenter

    The level he is working at is not hugely unusual. I'd check his knowlege of PGCs particularly complex code, as he may have learnt a lot of words by heart and need some gaps filling. Read Write books are very good for this as they have a code table at the front. Do a reading age test to make sure he is on the correct level of books to offer a little bit of challenge and a range of genres. With writing, it sounds like you are doing a good job as far as AI is concerned. You don't say what his CI learning is like. Some academic children are quite passive learners who expect an adult to ask them to do things. Is he using his writing in CI?
  6. Thanks for your advice. Yes, he does use his writing in CI activities and writes for a number of purposes, but isn't a child who creates stacks of writing to take home as there are other areas he prefers.
    I hope this is not a silly question, but by complex code do you mean sounds such as 'ay' 'ai' and 'ae'.
    Thanks again for your reply [​IMG]
  7. I have a 4 year old child like this, we tested reading and comprehension age - both over 10 years. She choose books to read for pleasure, I encouraged both fiction and non fiction. Somertimes she writes a book review or answer some questions about the text. In the classroom when she independently writes in the role play, writing, computer area she write what she calls silly writing. She says it is like everyone else! I encouraged her to write using all her knowledge of phonics. She works with year 1 in my class but writes at a better standard. Using CL,FS etc. We try to encourage a wide range of writing and an enjoyment for it. [​IMG]

  8. I would be looking at other areas that they are maybe not confident in - unless they are the same in everything. Often children like this haven't got as good social skills, or shy away from messy creative activities. I would try to get them to be able in all areas. Encourage them to write a story then role play it with friends or with puppets/ small world the opposite to what you would do with reluctant writers.
  9. I also have a child like this in my class. Her reading is way beyond the other children and she is able to write sentences. I encourage her to use punctuation in her writing and she sometimes uses exclamation marks,in fact an apostrophe appeared last week! This is all learnt at home however this this girl is still emotionally a little girl and although she is able to do all this, she plays in the home corner and often plays alone. In the writing area, she would rather choose the pencil control sheets rather than the writing task I may leave out. She waits for teachers to ask her to do things rather than choose to. I just noticed eapyearbaby64 that you mentioned child initiated. As the child in my class doesn't show this at all and is pushed alot at home to achieve and not 'play' do you have any advice how would you tackle child initiated for a child like this? As other posters have said, when I do a writing focus I sit with her on her own and we focus on writing sentences and descriptive words. She also does a guided read on her own with related tasks. However, she doesn't want to be doing all this writing and reading all the time, she chooses to play in the home corner more than come and do some writing. Can't help but think she might be put off as she clearly does alot of 'work' at home.
    Thanks if you have any ideas :)

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