Primary 3 advice
Posted by reh5
I've been offered a job working with P3 starting in August. I have some experience, but anything you can suggest and all advice on this age and stage would be welcome:
- fantastic ideas;
- stage of development knowledge;
- resources to use;
- how much to expect of them;
I'm really excited but nervous, I want to swim not sink.
Posted by glitzandglam
I think P3 are the best year group! They are so much fun, young enough to be babied but old enough to work independently.
In terms of advice, it depends on the type of school you are in - a lot of schools in Scotland now (I think) are trying to push more learning through play, right up until P3. This is similar to the way the English system works. When I taught in Scotland, it was a very structured P3 and your class may well be the same.
We used Nelson Spelling for phonics and kids worked through the text books, same for grammar using their grammar books. I don't like this way of teaching, working from a textbook all the time, but unfortunately it was part of the core work we had to do. Whether it is still like that, I don't know.
I found that in P3 you are training them for upper school. I spent forever training them how to write in a jotter, how to take a new line if they couldn't fit a word in, how to lay out sums. A good P2 teacher will have taught these skills, but if they are "learning through play", which I think most P2s in Scotland are doing, then you will find that they may have no idea how to work from a jotter! This is something they will need to learn.
Whiteboards for kids to write on are invaluable, as are phonics and high-frequency word games for them to play when they finish work. I found that lots of kids couldn't spell common irregular words and I used to spend time once a week constructing sentences with these words, sometimes doing dictation for the more able. Again, if your school is pushing play, this type of thing may not be what they want you to do.
Favourite topics of mine are houses and homes, sun, moon and stars and children of other lands.
When I look back, I feel my class was very structured and they were working from maths workbooks and textbooks in language far too much. But that's the way it has always been in Scottish primary schools, whereas in England they don't have any workbooks or textbooks.