A to Z Teacher Stuff ~ Teacher Resources, Lesson Plans, Themes, Tips, Printables, and more
advertise
Go Back   A to Z Teacher Stuff Forums > TeacherChat Forums > Elementary Education



Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 09-27-2008, 08:45 AM
rara_avis20 rara_avis20 is offline
Rookie
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 5
New York
1st Grade Teacher
1st Grader reading 6th grade level

I have a mother concerned about her child not being challenged. We haven't even been in school for a month, and I'm still testing all of my kids. I have this one little girl who, in 1st grade is reading at a 6th grade level. The mom thinks she might want to try to move her kid on to 2nd grade. Frankly, the kid is advanced all around, and I don't think 2nd grade will "challenge" her either. Has anyone had any experience with this big of a difference in ability? I think I'm capable of meeting her needs, but how do I convince the mother??
Reply With Quote

 
  #2  
Old 09-28-2008, 10:02 PM
bonneb's Avatar
bonneb bonneb is offline
Fanatic
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,528
Northwest
Preschool Teacher
You need to talk with your P about this. And stick to your guns. Popping her into 2nd will not challenge her, and it could really harm her socially over her entire school career, always being younger than her classmates.

Meet with your P, get a plan, then meet with the mom. Ask her lots of questions, like what exactly is she concerned about, and does she have any ideas in mind? Then tell her some of the ideas you have.

I have seen over the years that most of the time, a first grader "reading on a 6th grade level" MOSTLY doesn't mean much. Over time, the child will level out, and her peers will catch up with her. Does she actually have 6th grade comprehension???

I know that parents get so excited when their young child is reading. It is such a thrill. But there is a whole lot more to education than reading. There is social maturing, learning to be part of a group, learning to challenge yourself, learning critical thinking and imaginative writing, learning how to present what you have learned, how to apply your learning to new situations, never mind all the math, science, and everything else that might be short changed by bumping her up.

Good luck! It is a peeve of mine when parents push their kids up the grade ladder. I just have never seen it work well in the long run. I had a student several years ago who was immature, but had been started early in school because she could read. She is now in jr. high and still lagging behind all her classmates in all other areas, and her reading has not progressed as indicated by the silly first grade scores.

What tests have you given her?
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 09-28-2008, 10:03 PM
trayums's Avatar
trayums trayums is offline
Fanatic
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,508
Connecticut
3rd Grade Teacher
I agree that 2nd grade isn't the answer. Obviously if this child is really reading and comprehending at the 6th grade level, you willneed to differentiate for this child, but this is what we do for all kids. I would really beinterested to know if she is REALLY comprehending on a 6th grade level?
What assessments have you done?
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 09-28-2008, 11:21 PM
SuzieQ SuzieQ is offline
Companion
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 107
California
1st Grade Teacher
Just because they are able to say the words they recognize from a sixth grade text doesn't mean they can understand or comprehend it at that level. In order for that child to read at that level they must be able to comprehend it and prove it through summary, retelling and relating it to text, self, or experience. My own students can read chapter books but comprehend what they are reading at the same level as a sixth grader, I highly doubt it.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 09-28-2008, 11:28 PM
mmswm's Avatar
mmswm mmswm is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 6,185
The land of fun and sun
Former math teacher
I must step in here. I was that child. My parents moved me up the grade ladder and I suffered horribly for it. I know they only wanted the best for me, but, as has been said, there's so much more to school than reading. I read well and had scary abilities in math, but I was immature. I would have been immature even with my peers, but it was even worse a grade level ahead. Academically, the one grade level didn't do much anyway. I had teachers who created lessons just for me and I was challenged that way. High school was even worse. I was taking Calculus (12th), Western Civ (10th), Chemestry (11th) and 10th grade English/grammar (they didn't start lit until 11th grade), all while I should have been an 8th grader. To top it all off, I was at a boarding school, which can be a VERY lonely place if you have no social skills. I think I may have been able to handle high school better if I wasn't so friendless and completely lacking in social skills to begin with.

Please, tell this mom from somebody who has "been there", that skipping a grade is one of the worst things you can do for the child's overall development, at least in my opinion.
__________________
The light at the end of the tunnel has been turned off due to budget cuts.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 09-28-2008, 11:41 PM
SuzieQ SuzieQ is offline
Companion
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 107
California
1st Grade Teacher
My dad skipped fourth grade and to this day he feels that it had a negative impact on him socially. His parents adopted him and they were not the ones to push this but rather the teachers.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 09-29-2008, 12:13 AM
bonneb's Avatar
bonneb bonneb is offline
Fanatic
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,528
Northwest
Preschool Teacher
My own DD was an early reader. Her K teacher suggested that she was gifted ( not sure that is accurate, though she is lovely!). The school handled it by scheduling her into reading, writing, and spelling in the classroom with the grade ahead. All the rest of the day she was with her peers. They did this for her from K-8th grade. It was a good solution. And she actually was not gifted as the definition implies - her skills in most academics were high, but not outstanding from her peers. Maybe this would be something to discuss with your principal as a last ditch solution. But as you stated, second grade is not going to solve this. And she sure can't go into sixth grade!!
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 09-29-2008, 03:48 PM
rara_avis20 rara_avis20 is offline
Rookie
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 5
New York
1st Grade Teacher
Tests

I've given her the John's BRI (Basic Reading Inventory) -- it has graded reading lists, then graded passages and comprehension question. According to this test, she both reads and comprehends at a 6th grade level. I've started doing running records with her as well to determine her specific reading level, rather than just a grade level, but it's taking a long time since she is such a good reader.

The mother called my principal today, and she in turn came to talk to me. I told the principal about the tests I gave her and she immediately thought we should put her in 2nd grade. She asked how I could possibly meet her needs in my 1st grade class. I told her that when we do guided reading, I would probably have her on her own and have her do things with chapter books and focus on comprehension, rather than reading skills. You see, the school hasn't done guided reading in a very long time, if ever. It was my idea to go with guided reading this year...and it took a lot of convincing to win over the principal and the other teachers. I'm almost the only teacher there who knows what it is....that makes it even more difficult for the kid to move up to 2nd grade...what if that teacher doesn't know what to do with her??

Anyway, the principal called the mother after talking with me and apparently told her that moving up to 2nd was an option. SO, we're all meeting on Thursday morning to discuss things. I know the girl won't have trouble with the work in 2nd grade, and that seemed to be my principal's only concern. No one seems to be worried about social issues. Not to mention, the 2nd grade class is not the brightest this year, and they're immature -- so I really don't think she's going to be any more challenged.

Call me conceited, but I kind of think she'd be better off in my class...I'm a certified literacy specialist and I know how to differentiate (unlike the other teachers in my school). Argh! It's just so frustrating!!
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 09-29-2008, 03:55 PM
bonneb's Avatar
bonneb bonneb is offline
Fanatic
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,528
Northwest
Preschool Teacher
Can you do a little research regarding the detriments of bumping kids up a grade to present at the meeting? Get the second grade teacher on your side? Convince the mother that she will do just great, her self esteem will soar, she will learn to be a peer helper, she will be allowed to mature with her age group, and spend her childhood at the top of her class???

I think it is just horrible when parents do this to their kids. What is the rush?
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 09-29-2008, 05:08 PM
Jem's Avatar
Jem Jem is offline
Phenom
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 4,324
Northern CA
5th Grade
I'm in a similar situation. One of my third graders is extremely advanced in her reading skills. I'm also trying to convince my principal to go to a guided reading/workshop model. I've given this child 'The True Confessions of Charolotte Doyle' for us to read together. We'll do ONE chapter a day (she could read the whole thing in one night), and then discuss it and do projects with it. It's her own independent project. I wish I could do that with all the kids...
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
1st, 6th, grade, grader, level, reading

Thread Tools

Forum Jump

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off




Mr. Rebates

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:33 PM.


Copyright © 1997-2010 A to Z Teacher Stuff, L.L.C.  All Rights Reserved.
Use of this site signifies your agreement to the terms of use.
Questions, comments, and suggestions: Contact Us
Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.