I’ve been preparing some students for the KS2 English exams and I can take solace from the fact that I have used some KS3 material so they won’t be as intimidated by the difficulty… However, I’m fairly convinced that destroying a child’s confidence early on by making papers so difficult, won’t result in a greater confidence in the subject, nor improve standards in the long term.
It is true that it is important to stretch children, but having read with children with low levels of literacy before, in my experience it certainly does not encourage children to keep reading everyday when illiteracy is crudely highlighted by an exam.
When I took these KS2 exams, I barely knew what they were about and took them with a light heart. Now, I think it’s become necessary for kids to have pressure, when it shouldn’t really be a concern. Yet sometimes there is excess pressure put on children. It really isn’t good for them in the long run. Some children just aren’t ready for that weight of expectation.
Jonathan Strange – An RTG Tutor