This paper attempts to analyse why the government are working so hard at ensuring all our primary children are reading by the age of six. The importance of this and the effect on children, teachers and society. It is well documented that reading is one of the most important abilities students acquire as they progress through their early school years. It is the foundation for learning across all subjects, it can be used for recreation and for personal growth, and it equips young children with the ability to participate fully in their communities and the larger society (Campbell et al, 2001)
We will look at key issues and research which underpin the government literacy policy and ways in which it can be improved in school. In particular we focus on the extensive research between poor literacy attainment and behavioural problems within the primary setting. We trace the early literacy support programmes and how they are practised in the class room setting. We address the theoretical views on how language acquisition and literacy are interwoven. We look at the role of the teacher and school, and how policy and practice can smooth the progress of child literacy attainment by age of 6.
Title and Abstracti
Research in to reading difficulties and behavioural problems2
How does this affect the individual, parents, teachers and society5
What impact does it have on the school6
Analysis and critique of evidence base8
What challenges does it impose on the teachers
and what effective teaching methods are considered best practice8
How does policy compare the theoretical research10
Why do other countries not deem early literacy as important as the UK12
David Cameron’s conservative educational policy put his party on a collision course with the teaching profession, when he announced in November 07 that virtually every child in the country will be expected to read by the age of six under a conservative government. Cameron wants pupils to sit a reading test at the end of year one, and the target will be for all-bar those with serious learning difficulties, to pass. Their policy to scrap the key stage one testing, which was quite controversial, has already been enforced. His policy to concentrate on the absolute foundation stone, which is an ability to read, has yet to be enforced. He wants 90% of our children reading by the age of six, the other 10% with acute special needs will be given additional help (BBC News Nov 2007).
It is also been observed that most children will naturally read by the age of six, as they progress though the foundation stage and key stage one. The problem arises with the children that do not progress so easily. At the age of four and five most children are less aware of their peers, they are more interested in their own ability to do. Yet as they turn six their awareness of others and their abilities become more interesting. This in-turn leads to the less gifted children realising that they are not as bright as other children, which can leads to them feeling disheartened and inadequate. Consequently this may lead to the less gifted children giving up and becoming disengaged, which can cause behavioural problems. Therefore if the teacher can help these children early, perhaps the achievement gap will not be so noticeable,...