Teachers are constantly assessing, as they ask questions in lessons and lean over shoulders to read work in progress. We place great pride in this style of formative assessment during lessons that support the next steps in learning.
At Bousfield, we make sure our teachers keep up-to-date with the latest developments in teaching and learning. Central to this is having a whole-school ‘growth mindset’ learning culture.
This places a great emphasis on learning by mistakes and we make much of ‘good mistakes’ in lessons encouraging resilience and a positive attitude to meeting challenges and learning from them.
Regular assessments are made of each child's progress and these are used by teachers to plan the next steps in learning. Children are strongly encouraged to enter into a daily dialogue with their teacher about how they have found each day’s task.
Formal termly assessments are also conducted in English, Maths and Science, and the next steps in learning are shared with parents at termly parent/teacher conferences. In addition, parents and carers receive a written Annual Report in the summer term which summarises their child's overall progress and attainment.
Primary School Assessments
Standard Assessment Tests (SATs)
We also value summative assessments, where the children are tested against national standards called Standard Assessment Tests (SATs). The SATs' content mirrors the content of the National Curriculum exactly and focuses on the core subjects - English, Maths and Science. These are conducted at the end of each Key Stage of learning.
Teachers can compare how well each child is doing with their peers, both in their school and across the country. They can also measure how much each child improves from one Key Stage to another.
These are conducted in all government-funded primary schools in England and the school follows the Government's Guidance for these tests.
SATs are made up of a combination of testing and teacher assessment judgements. Students in Year 2 and Year 6 take these tests in May.
For more information
Reception - Baseline assessment
Children who start Reception in September 2021 will be the first group to take the new Reception Baseline Assessment (RBA) during the first six weeks of the autumn term. It is not a test, but rather a baseline measure to track pupils’ progress during primary school and which children are likely to need extra help.
The teacher-led one-to-one assessment is 15 minutes and focuses on communication, language, literacy, and maths. Children will be asked to answer questions verbally or by pointing at or moving objects.
Year 1 - Phonics Screening Check
The Phonics Screening Check tests children's knowledge of phonics with a mixture of real and nonsense words at the end of Year 1. All students in Year 1 in England must take the Screening Check.
Conducted in June, this screening includes 40 words and non-words which are divided into two sections – one with simple word structures of three or four letters, and one with more complex word structures of five or six letters.
These are “short, light-touch assessments” that take about four to nine minutes to complete. It is a pass or fail result and those children who fall below the pass mark get extra help. Pass from past papers were 32 out of 40 words read correctly.
Year 4 - Multiplication Tables Check (MTC)
In June 2022, it will be the first time Year 4 children will take a formal test of multiplication skills in all English maintained schools.
By the end of Year 4, children are supposed to know their times tables up to 12x12 - under the current National Curriculum; and this check helps ensure that children get the support they need if they are falling behind.
Based on Maths Mastery - knowing basic facts to build maths knowledge and learning - they check tests whether they recall their multiplications accurately and quickly. Children will use the computer for an onscreen check to take this test for no longer than 5 minutes. Children will have 6 seconds to answer each question in a series of 25.
Department for Education Video
We choose to use optional tests at the end of Years 3, 4 and 5. Schools in England are not required to conduct these tests and focus on English and Maths.
These results are then kept in our digital records enabling us to set targets for each child for the following year and to ensure progression throughout Key Stage 2.
All children from Year 2 upwards do a Reading and Spelling test at the start and end of the year, and those who score below their chronological age, are re-tested mid-year to monitor progress. These results are reported to parents.