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SATS booster classes - diabolical liberty

Discussion in 'Primary' started by minnieminx, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. manc

    manc New commenter

    Go for it minnieminx - let's get all the kids doing tests so that one or two aspergers kids will be happy.
    Bit of a sledgehammer to crack a nut, I'd say.
  2. manc

    manc New commenter

    You seem to see the world in black and white, minnieminx. I'm sure you like children. So do I. And that is why I am opposed to children going to school in holidays and missing out on family life.
  3. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I wonder, is it equally 'diabolical' that some of our children are at a football camp (to which they were 'invited') this week? Or taking art courses in the local secondary school? Or doing drama at a local church? Or music workshops in the local university (again an 'invite on'y' Easter school).

    Teachers from several local schools are giving up holiday time to run/supervise/attend all of these. Children are attending them instead of being at home or out playing. If another alternative is a maths or English class then that just adds to the options surely? One isn't worse than any other.

    Some children genuinely do like tests, and not just to please the teacher. Some children do like school more than home. Some children prefer to be at school with their friends than chatting to said friends on FB. Some parents have to go to work and so cannot create family time in the holidays. For some children being in school is the nicest option and if there are teachers happy to teach/organise/manage it then surely that is a good thing?
  4. I think the issue here is that schools (and thus children) feel under such pressure to perform well at SATs because they will be judged harshly if they do not achieve certain expectations.
    Schools are often the safest place for children and where many feel happiest because of a lack of continuity and structure in their lives. If these children have the opportunity to go in the holidays as opposed to being in a horrible home environment then that must be positive.
    There seem to be two separate issues here, both sad.
  5. manc

    manc New commenter

    I agree. But it is not the teachers' job to [provide child-minding services for the unloved - sad though their lives may be. I think there is a big difference between a voluntary football school and a 'booster' class for an upcoming exam. One is providing fresh air and is extra-curricular, and the other is a manipulative way of using emotional blackmail by dressing up cramming for exams as 'fun'.
  6. As a teacher, when I read this, I automatically think 'Oh, no, that's terrible' but then I stopped and realised that I actually loved this kind of working as a child. And, yes, I loved tests too. Not sure if I still do though. There must still be children like this but I don't think they're in the majority. I can only think of a few I've taught who felt similarly.

    I don't think my comments here are particularly helpful to the debate but I just wanted to share!
  7. zugthebug

    zugthebug New commenter

    unfortunately easter school not an optional choice - PAF decided (based on last years apaulling 92% L4+) that we needed a booster school for easter - money came from LA
    and we could 'buy in' and expert to run sessions (still needed a member of staff around) or we could run it ourselves but had to use materials provided. some members of staff choose to run it, paid the daily rate for a supply teacher and had 8 children turn up for 4 days (children were border L3/4)
    as class teacher i chose not to participate and had no pressure to. i was not the right person for the job having slogged through 6 weeks of term with marking piling around my ears the last thing i wanted was to spend another 4 days doing it.

    will it make a difference? who cares - they won't be turned around in 4 days but if it boosts confidence then fine
    yes it is political but not every school does it voluntarily
  8. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    Crikey, if you think 92% level 4 is appaling[​IMG] !!!
  9. manc

    manc New commenter

    I hope there was no compulsion for pupils to attend. Perhaps parents should start withdrawing offspring from the tests. Not that they will. A lot of parents like the level 5 kudos attached to their offspring - giving them oneupmanship when they meet other parents in the supermaket aisle.
  10. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    Of course, it has to be said (well, maybe not but I'll say it anyway) that anyone who says our littluns do sats (whatever the spelling) is talking total rubbish.
    But, then, everyone knows (at least, that's what I'm told on Primary) that saying kids do sats (or Sats or SATs or SATS or whatever) is using ignorant, simpleton language.
  11. gogojonny

    gogojonny New commenter

    Textbook work is great - particularly in maths. Kids know exactly what they have to do and they work at their level. Sense of achievement when they finish a page, and the excitement of turning the page to find out what the next task is.
    I actually believe in Maths that kids should do this for 2/3 years - then differentiate the groups to tackle the low ability, middle ability, high ability. Kids don't do enough practice and sometimes they need a page of 20 sums to do, with perfect setting out and working out each and every time.
    Anyway totally off topic...
  12. gogojonny

    gogojonny New commenter

    Back on topic....
    Without sounding judgemental:
    How many competitive sports matches do the Year 6s play in a year.
    Is there an annual school drama production each year.

    I understand things like this are out of your hands, but maybe just maybe if we let kids be kids then little things like achievement in Maths and Literacy may suddenly improve. Little Johnny refusing to write a page but wants to play football for the school team, there's your incentive.

  13. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    which demonstrates how little you know about KS1 levels of attainment and learning.

    But for older children, yes they do love this kind of work. It is simple and straightforward, no trickiness, no thinking, no effort. They get told it is good work, just because it looks neat and nice. What's not to like? OK for HT and SMT and the teacher it isn't great because no-one is actually learning anything, except for handwriting, but let's not worry ourselves about that too much.
  14. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Far more than the number of SATs papers they sit. Far, far more. Not all children play in every match, but pretty much all children play in several matches.
    They produce a production and Christmas and in the summer for school and work with the local secondary school for a summer musical as well. All children involved in all of these productions.

    Your point is?
  15. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    We are in the Football league, the Rugby league ( we won this year!), the netball league, the cricket league and the rounders league, we take part in the local athletics festival, swim twice a week ( from reception through to year 6) and have both lunchtime and after school swimming clubs-we have our own pool. As I have only 17 year 6 children anyone who wants to compete can do ( and pretty much has to!) We have a summer production in school and perform at the local theatre in conjunction with a group of similar primary schools and this year we are singing in the county cathedral too.
    But we manage to fit some work in too!
  16. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    LOL Think we must be in a total minority here.

    Apparently all primary schools teach only to the test. All we do is subject our poor darlings to maths and English practice tests and cramming sessions all day every day for months on end. We sacrifice all other subjects on the altar of sats.

    Or so the clueless ones will have us believe!
  17. markuss

    markuss Occasional commenter

    And they're not even sats. Bunkum altar propounded by the clueless.
  18. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    *grins* I know. But it is quicker to type sats than to type NC tests.

    And it annoys people... and I'm in an irritating mood.
  19. manc

    manc New commenter

    It's just a shorthand, markuss. Get over it: you pop up every time someone uses the term. What is your actual opinion of them, regardless of nomenclature?
  20. I actually don't think I have to reveal the amount. It was certainly worth my while to give up 5 mornings of my holiday.
    I can't believe the amount of negativity on this thread. It almost seems to be an issue if children want to learn instead of sitting at home on their x boxes. It also seems to be an issue if teachers want to help them to learn. I actually went into this profession because I quite like teaching and helping children to improve. The salary is a bit of a bonus.

    And as an aside for all those who think that year 6 teachers are all about Sats...I believe that sports and drama are just as important. Hence taking a group of year 6s to a rugby tournament and getting through to the county finals...all before Sats. We play rounders whenever we can get out, and drama takes up one afternoon a week with a specialist drama teacher. And guess what...I still teach Science, history, geography, ICT, PSHE, RE. They have Mandarin lessons once a week, and are quite rounded small people.


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