As some might know, I’ve been parachuted into a secondment in Year 2 at a school near me to help them out. So, although assessment and science are my babies – for now the focus is on Year 2!
I got so much out of the Lewisham Year 2 Assessment benchmarking conference yesterday, thanks to Tara Parkhouse, Lucy Ellis and Phil Hopgood. It seems clear that in using the interim frameworks teachers need to read the ‘small print’ and take note so that they get the best out of all this for their pupils – time to play the game! Forget the levels and those prized level 3s and focus on the detail of the framework.
To begin with, note the use of all those qualifiers: most, many and some. These are really important in understanding the attainment standards properly. To quote from the interim framework for writing:
… where they have been used, they have consistent meaning with ‘most’ indicating that the statement is generally met with only occasional errors and ‘some’ indicating that the skill/ knowledge is starting to be acquired, and is demonstrated correctly on occasion, but is not consistent or frequent.
Here we can see that the distinction between ‘most’ and ‘some’ is really important and will mark the difference between emergent and secure acquisition.
The one that stands out for me is the handwriting descriptors. We have this idea of that level 3 joined handwriting we can’t shake and when you see ‘diagonal and horizontal strokes’ in the same sentence with ‘join letters’ you might just think ‘joined handwriting’. However, on closer inspection the word ‘needed’ changes everything!
…..using the diagonal and horizontal strokes needed to join letters in some of their writing.
This means that children at expected don’t need to have joined handwriting; however, what they do need to be doing is in SOME of their writing showing the ‘kicks and flicks’ of the cursive script in their letter formation:
For those children working at greater depth, they still don’t need to join their handwriting, but need to show use of those ‘kicks and flicks’ in MOST of their handwriting. Like this, handwriting practice is key in order that the children move on from printing.
So just some ideas going forward! And below is the framework with all those sneaky words circled!