Testing time of the term is once agin upon us. Initially I found it to be a draining time, testing the vast majority of our learners can become quickly uninspiring if you are constantly comparing them to national standards and focusing on 'the gap' between where they are and where they need to be. It's pretty easy to get caught up in the negative "we have a dam long way to go" mindset so instead this time I tried to focus on their results in a new light.
The child who use to whisper sentences to himself before he would dare read them out loud he now reads confidently and clearly even with a teacher he doesn't normally read with, and at two levels higher.
Another learner who cold hardly sit still long enough to read a full book, he can now focus enough to attend to every word of a text.
One boy who has been at the same magenta reading level for the past two years has progressed up two reading levels!
One writer at the beggining of the year could hardly write a sentence, he is now writing stories with a beginning middle and end.
One reader that didn't know their alphabet sounds are now chunking and sounding out blends.
Another writer who was unable to write basic sight words is now sounding out words like; class, black, sharp, licked.
Although we could still brand these learners as well below expectation, I'm starting to realise that this is unproductive towards their next learning steps. Of course we are aiming high and ideally we will reach that level, but for this moment let's just celebrate that they are making personal progress.