The 2016 teacher assessment exemplification materials are now available for Key Stage 1 and 2 in English, mathematics and science. These exemplification materials have been published by the Department for Education to support teacher assessment of each pupil at the end of Key Stage 1 and 2.
Shareen Mayers reveals why the new writing standard might not be as scary as we had expected …
After much anticipation, the long-awaited writing exemplification materials were published a few weeks ago. For some, the expectation of the materials seemed more like the equivalent of the old Level 5, and many teachers (but not all) were very anxious about this. I am hoping to put you at ease by demonstrating that the new standard might not be as high as Level 5. While the use of punctuation (e.g. semi-colons, brackets, etc) and some sentence structures are clearly Level 5, pupils need to use semi-colons in a list and not for two independent clauses to be at the expected standard. I am pleased about this because teaching the wider usage of semi-colons and expecting all pupils to use this in their writing is a real challenge.
Within the writing exemplification collection of work, there are two examples of writing at the expected standard – Morgan and Leigh. The examples from Leigh have caused the most controversy because Leigh is clearly a borderline pupil. Leigh is using some aspects of the ‘greater depth’ standard but has too many gaps to be given that standard. However, Morgan isn’t working at the greater depth standard at all but is still being given exactly the same standard as Leigh. It is like comparing a good school and a good school with outstanding features – both are still ‘good’ schools. Continue reading →
This post has been shared from Michael Tidd’s blog which you can find at: www.michaelt1979.wordpress.com
At my school we’re increasingly using the school website and Facebook pages to communicate with families, particularly aiming to reach those who are not so easily able to attend after-school meetings and events.
I also sometimes wonder if parents meetings don’t end up being overly long-winded because we feel that if we’ve dragged parents into school then we ought to make it worth their while coming; nobody wants to travel 20 minutes each way for a 5-minute meeting. But sometimes, 5 minutes is enough.
I have updated the videos I made last year to explain the KS1 and KS2 tests to parents. As there is an option about using Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling tests in primary schools, there are now two versions of the video for KS1 (one with, one without the GPS tests).
Please feel free to use these videos on your school’s website or social media channels, or in parent meetings etc. There are MP4 versions available to download. Continue reading →
The Department for Education has released a guide with information for schools on how they will calculate primary school accountability measures. The 2016 performance tables will reflect the calculations used.
The DfE this week praised English primary schools for the continued progress of children. The performance tables, published on 10th December, indicate that 90,000 more children are leaving primary school with a ‘good grounding’ in the essential subjects compared to results in 2010.
Over on his blog, deputy head Michael Tidd has conveniently summarised the DfE’s latest instalment of information on statutory moderation requirements for 2016. It includes the new earlier dates that Teacher Assessment judgements must be submitted:
Thanks to deputy headteacher Michael Tidd for this article
No sooner have we finished one set of Key Stage assessments, than attention inevitably turns to the next lot! But things are a little different this year. We’ve had minor tweaks before, of course, but usually with a little more notice. Summer 2016 is looking to be rather different.
So, what do we know for certain – and what still remains unanswered?
Schools have been volunteering to trial Reception Baseline Assessments, which will take place for the first time in 2015. Most schools are likely to take part from 2016 when the EYFS profile becomes optional, although in theory there’s no compulsion to use a baseline at all. However, schools who don’t use one will find themselves being judged purely on attainment in 2022 – which is not as far away as it seems.
We don’t yet know…
How the outcomes of the tests will be compared, with schools completing one of several completely different tests (of which the DfE are still yet to confirm the final approved list).
Key Stage 1
The phonics test remains in Year 1, and for those who do not reach the required standard again in Year 2.
The big changes are in Year 2 where a new grammar test will be introduced alongside new versions of the reading and maths tests. All of these will produce a scaled score instead of a level outcome. Teacher Assessment will still be required for all those areas as well as speaking & listening and science. Continue reading →
Thanks to Deputy Head Michael Tidd for researching and writing this article, which we hope will be a great time-saver for our readers!
From September, we will once again have all children in our primary schools working on a single National Curriculum. We’ll also be just months away from the first of the new style of National Curriculum Tests for Key Stages 1 and 2. Now the final frameworks and sample tests have been published, there are some minor changes. However, other changes are much more notable, so here is a quick reference guide to the new tests. We’ll start with Key Stage 1 in this first article but ensure you return to the Rising Stars blog for the Key Stage 2 instalment next week.
Key Stage 1
The big shift for all the tests at KS1 is the return of annually updated tests. Although teachers will still mark the tests internally, they will no longer have the choice of old papers to use; new tests will be produced each year, meaning unfamiliar content for every cohort. Of course, the tests also see the final removal of levels, with scores being given as a scaled score for each subject instead; 100 will represent ‘the expected standard’.
In maths, the first major change is the introduction of an arithmetic paper. The first paper will have 25 questions, each worth one mark, requiring use of discrete arithmetic skills ranging from knowledge of number bonds to simple fraction work. This paper will make up almost half of the total available marks, further emphasising the focus on number and calculations in the new curriculum. Continue reading →
On 29th June, the Department for Education published the final key stage 1 and 2 national curriculum test frameworks and sample papers for 2016, which will be used primarily by test developers and the Standards and Testing Agency throughout the test development process.
As this year’s National Test cycle draws to a close, we asked Y6 teacher and Upper KS2 Phase Leader Dave Witham from Plumcroft Primary School for his feedback on the difficulty and content of this round of tests.
Although Dave’s children reported tough questions in the level 6 GPS and Reading papers, on the whole, the impression was of a fair set of tests to accurately assess a child’s progress, strengths and weaknesses.
Level 6 (GPS, Maths and Reading)
Grammar Spelling and Punctuation
Proposed changes to the GPS paper (Plumcroft Primary took part in the trials!) didn’t materialise and the short answer paper was ‘more of the same’ from level 3-5. Spellings were very challenging and we’re still building a list of examples for the children. The writing element was very predictable and nothing to really challenge the children if they are a strong and solid level 5 writer.
The children struggled to get through the reading paper, although this was expected as it’s a tough ask in the amount of time given.
As usual, all the information was presented and ‘disguised’ to really sort out the truly gifted mathematicians; however again, a fair test.
Level 3-5 (GPS, Reading, Maths and Mental Maths)
Grammar Spelling and Punctuation
The GPS paper threw up few challenges and the spellings covered were representative of suggested patterns. Continue reading →