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Reports - personal comments

Discussion in 'Primary' started by zeps, Jan 30, 2011.

  1. zeps

    zeps New commenter

    I find report writing such a chore. Nearly 30 to do and churning out things for discussion at parents evening.
    I get the literacy and maths comments, it shows their ability and progression throughout the year (plus this is easy to cut & paste for ability groups). But, the comments about the child's attitude is a real tough one. Of course there is the statement bank of things you can use (although having them for 2 years or having siblings makes me extra careful).
    I just find it hard and time consuming that I have to sit here on a Sunday afternoon and think about how the child works in my classroom. Writing these takes ages per child and at the sacrifice of my own family time. Hmph, feeling grumpy.
    Weren't we trying to save our Sundays?
     
  2. zeps

    zeps New commenter

    I find report writing such a chore. Nearly 30 to do and churning out things for discussion at parents evening.
    I get the literacy and maths comments, it shows their ability and progression throughout the year (plus this is easy to cut & paste for ability groups). But, the comments about the child's attitude is a real tough one. Of course there is the statement bank of things you can use (although having them for 2 years or having siblings makes me extra careful).
    I just find it hard and time consuming that I have to sit here on a Sunday afternoon and think about how the child works in my classroom. Writing these takes ages per child and at the sacrifice of my own family time. Hmph, feeling grumpy.
    Weren't we trying to save our Sundays?
     
  3. Why are you doing reports in January?
    Anyway, have you tried writing your exact thoughts about each child and then translating into formal speech?
    e.g. "David never finishes his work and tried his hardest to distract others. He was good in the play though and always makes me laugh with his comments. I wish he'd knuckle down a bit more with his work so he'll achieve. One thing he said recently "the best thing about his term has been the homework". Was suprised - probably because he could choose to do a making project instead of doing any writing!
    Turns into...
    David enjoys a practical way of learning. He prefers hands-on activities to writing, which he still struggles with somewhat, and his projects and topic work this year have been tremendous. This was demonstrated in his excellent homework which he mentioned he really enjoyed. He is happy in the class and makes friends easily. His social nature and ready wit have brought smiles to our faces every day, although he does need to learn when entertaining others is appropriate and when it is time for everyone to work hard on the lesson. He also has a great stage presence and his part of "Head Bunny" in the production was played to perfection. Well done David! Target for next term: to concentrate on producing an agreed amount of written work in order to achieve his true potential.
    That took about 5 minutes.

    P.S. If you do do it this way make sure the parents don't get the original script!!!
     
  4. inky

    inky Lead commenter

    R$eport-writing hs always been one of the duties that a teacher has had to accept with good grace.
    I find the 'statements' far more painful than the comments I make up mlyself.
     
  5. What he said
     
  6. Or she!!! [​IMG]
     
  7. tafkam

    tafkam Occasional commenter

    I've never found it so. In fact, I usually find it the easiest, and most informative part to write.
     
  8. We will be doing ours next month. Our 'big' report is mid year too.
    Means that the summer report is a final progress report for the year and we have the summer evenings to enjoy whilst many teachers slog away.
     
  9. I also meant to say that I don't mind the personal comments at all - an opportunity to actually show that you know the children that have been with you.
     
  10. lardylegs

    lardylegs Occasional commenter

    I just do edit and replace with last year's reports, depending on what children match, eg. Tylanol is exactly like Riazepam, so just use their report, which I have saved, and cut and paste the names, while tweaking the topic references. 10 minutes per child, tops.
     
  11. inky

    inky Lead commenter

    Back in the old days when I worked in a three-form-entrance junior school and reports were done by hand with your Best Pen and a bottle of red at the side and there was no such thing as a statement bank, I always used to slot in an extra report for a non-existant child. It used to be a bit of a game: would the HT spot it or not?
    Best statement heard to date: He knows that he is a boy.
     
  12. hammie

    hammie Lead commenter

    and with a mid year report, the parents have time to help/make their child improve their weak areas before you hand them on.

     
  13. Only 30? I'd be glad for 30, lucky you! I teach about 450-500 different over the course of a week and have to write reports for about 250 of them!

    I know what you mean though, it does get hard to find something to write about each child without being repetitive or making broad statements. I'm assuming that you're a Primary school teacher, so you get these kids all day every day so it should make it easier for you, I would hope. I see the majority of my classes just once a week for 1 hour, there are a few classes that I see twice, but no more than that.

    You don't have to sit and do them on a sunday afternoon. You could either come in before school earlier or stay a bit later, and get 1 report done a day.
     
  14. inky

    inky Lead commenter

    A great liberating moment in any teacher's career is when the penny drops that being repetitive doesn't matter because a] parents don't often compare reports and b] they accept that teachers use stock phrases and always have done. Relax. You're not writing a novel!
     
  15. ROSIEGIRL

    ROSIEGIRL Senior commenter

    In my experience parents are usually bothered about Maths and English and the Social/Personal bit. They're not usually interseted as much in the Geog/History/RE stuff and that's where I save a bit of time by having a few stock phrases which I mix and match. And yes, the comments are pretty repetitive.
    I concentrate my time and effort on the important bits.
     
  16. Always make sure that you know the parental friendship groups though! [​IMG]
     
  17. Sillow

    Sillow Senior commenter

    I have stock paragraphs for BA, A and AA for Lit, Num, Sci and ICT, but will cut/add bits if that child is above or below the rest of their group for a particular concept or something. The rest of the report reads pretty much the same (topics studied etc.) and the personal statement box is completely original. Even if parents do compare, they'll see that no two reports are completely the same. It's normally about 30mins per child, if that. I managed not to do any over the summer half-term last year!
     
  18. zeps

    zeps New commenter

    Thanks all. I know it should be taken with good grace which would be fine if they didn't take up so much of my time I should be spending with my own children. Believe me, the later into the night it gets to write them then the longer they take as I get my own brain in gear.
    If only it did take 10 mins per child! Cut & pasting old reports is fair enough if you didn't have the same children again, sadly i do this year. But, it is a good place to start.
    We are writing them now as we have parents evening. It is not all subjects, just the core.
    Still ploughing through. Be glad to see the back of them for this term!
     
  19. Milgod

    Milgod Established commenter

    If you only see them for an hour or two a week, why are you writing 250 whole reports?
     
  20. greta444

    greta444 New commenter

    Cannot believe that some teachers think it's okay to substitute one name with another. The parents and children deserve more than that.
    Report writing is one of my favourite times of the year. A time to reflect on what has been acheived and to celebrate success. I have a family too but try to do one report a night when they're in bed. I spend about an hour on each one.
     

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