21 answers

Working Below Grade Level

I have a second grader that maintains B's but is marked on her report card that she is "working below grade level." When we asked the teacher what that meant, she said that she has to read her the directions again, or give her one on one assistance. Now, silly me, I thought that was teaching.

Could anyone with experience in this area tell me what that has meant for your child and how you dealt with the situation.

Thanks

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Hi B.,
I am C. ,, I Have a few learning difficulities myself , places like sylvin learning certers are a great help for what you daughter seems to need help for , plus they maybe able to help her learn how to read the instructions herseld so she can understand them , Just Please support her , as I can see you are doing ,.We discovered my learning disability when I was in the 5th grade , my parents sent me to a school that stricly focused on children that needed extra help. I thrived there and that was the best thing in the world for me . You can heave her privately tested also . I would love to know how this all unfolds ,,,, and by the way that is a little nuts that the teacher is so unforgiving to offer a little extra help ... sad really

C.

2 moms found this helpful

When I was her age I would have loved a B average, I always struggled with grades until college. I went through all sorts of silly tests and ended up taking atterol for no reason at all. They told me I had ADD and thought that was the best thing for me. It didnt help and made me really hate my mother for having to give it to me. A "B" average does not mean a learning diablilty...what do you want from a child?? As long as she is happy and you are too, I dont think you should worry unless she starts getting worse.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

Hi B.,
I am C. ,, I Have a few learning difficulities myself , places like sylvin learning certers are a great help for what you daughter seems to need help for , plus they maybe able to help her learn how to read the instructions herseld so she can understand them , Just Please support her , as I can see you are doing ,.We discovered my learning disability when I was in the 5th grade , my parents sent me to a school that stricly focused on children that needed extra help. I thrived there and that was the best thing in the world for me . You can heave her privately tested also . I would love to know how this all unfolds ,,,, and by the way that is a little nuts that the teacher is so unforgiving to offer a little extra help ... sad really

C.

2 moms found this helpful

I think she should have explained it better to you. This far into the school year, she should be reading on a level around about 2.7 or so, as in 2nd year, 7th month. The directions on the worksheets for second graders are generally written on grade level, so if the teacher is having to read the directions to her, that is one sign that she is struggling. Take a look a the worksheets she brings home and ask her to read you the directions. After a teacher teaches a lesson, 2nd graders should be able to do a worksheet and follow directions like "circle the best answer" or "underline the main idea". I would ask to see what grade level she is reading on. Her teacher should be doing continuous "testing" with all of her students, and many schools use computer programs that spit back out a range that the student is reading, from the level they can comfortably read on their own through a level that is challenging but they can still read with some comprehension. For example, this time of the school year, an "average" second grader would have a range like 2.5-2.9. They have to legally put reading below grade level on paperwork like report cards so parents understand that they are getting good grades based on reading at their own comfort level, not reading at the level where they "should" be. Third grade is a HUGE leap from second, so you're smart to be looking for a tutor before she falls too far behind

1 mom found this helpful

She has b's but is below average? WTH, personaly I think the teacher dosen't want to help and do her job. I would find another class or school. Just my 2 cents.

1 mom found this helpful

I have homeschooled off and on with 5 of my children for 14 years. Some of the years one may have gone to school, depending on circumstances. This year I sent the last 3 (others are grown) to school. I worked and communicated with the teachers, to no avail. My kids are normal and average for the most part. I found that of the teachers my 6th grader had, most treated him like he was in college. Take notes from the board and then go home and do the lesson, or open your book and begin working. There was no instruction. He changed classes like in Jr High. Very few of the teachers cared or offered any help. I found pretty mucht the same thing with my 4th grader. I really see a trend in schools these days that reflect the attitude that teachers expect kids to be able to know what to do before and instruction is given. If they don't, then something is wrong iwth them, not the teacher.

My advice would be to seek and independant evaluation from a teacher possible from a private school. That is waht a lot of homschoolers do to make sure their kids are on track.

I don't believe every kid has ADHD just because they don't understand the first time something is explained. Although this is the trend for schools seems to be that they will want the majority on meds so that their job is made easier for them. There are 3 different types of learning styles. Cynthia Tobias has some excellent books on this subject that may be very helpful to you. One of my children is a hands-on learner. He has an extremely hard time retaining info by rote memory. He and my other children with ADD thrive in the homeschool environment but seem to get lost in a classroom filled with interruptions and behavior issues.

I hope this info wil be helpful to you. God Bless! C.

1 mom found this helpful

B.,

My daughter is in the third grade, and she too is having a difficult time with reading comprehension. She maintains A's and B's, but she is considered "below grade level." She's is given tests thru out the year on reading comprehension and scores low. She also has to have her work explained to her more than once. Her teacher explained to me that what she is reading is just not clicking in her brain, and she wants to test her for a learning disability.

I understand my daughters frustration, because I too, need directions explained to me more than once, sometimes 3 times before it "clicks."

I want my daughter tested for learning disabilities, because I know she struggles in certain aspect's of learning, and if she is approved she will qualify by law to have someone come in the classroom and give her one on one assistance and her test are not timed, and she can be given test in a quiet area.

I have also enlisted the help of an outside tutoring company that is just wonderful. They consulted with her teacher to get incite on her problem area's and she had her first session Friday, and she already feels much more confident. The tutor is working with her on learning strategies and how to eliminate answers to pick the one that makes sense, it is a much different approach that just seems to make sense to my daughter and it just "clicks."

I will be using the tutor twice a week until fcat, and then just once a week to help so she does not have to struggle like she has been. You really do have to make sure your children do not get left behind in school and fall thru the cracks, Because it really affects their self confidence level. I saw the signs early on, and thought...she's just going to have to work a little harder than most of her peers, and yes she will, but, I realizied I'm going to have to work a little harder than some moms as well and invest alot of time with her. I now have her do her homework with me and work her brain with flash cards. It really makes the difference. She is a very bright little girl and very capable of accomplishing anything. she just needs a little extra help to realize it.

Hope this helps.

K.

1 mom found this helpful

I think the post below mine is right on. I have been training to become a teacher and the reading levels were discussed in class. It was described just as the other post said.

As for getting high grades, yet still reading below grade level, I don't think that's all that far fetched. All people have strengths and weaknesses, and just because a child is weak in reading doesn't mean grades will be low. For example, I have memory and organization problems which could make schoolwork very difficult. I work very hard to compensate by going over info repeatedly, working much longer then others have to, using methods that help me retain info, highlighting and going over important info again, studying a lot, etc. By compensating I am able to keep very high grades in spite of my problem areas, but that doesn't mean those problems should not be attended to.

Do keep in mind that there are other reasons for inability to understand instructions, other than just reading. That can be one issue; there can also be issues with processing, comprehension, etc. I would ask the teacher what her reading level is, how far behind she is. If it's not that bad I would just spend some extra time at home working with her. Choose books that interest her and are a little above her reading level. If her reading levels are pretty low I would ask about testing her again, and if they don't agree get it done privately. As another person mentioned it is better to try to catch her up early. It can be very hard on children seeing they are far behind all the others.

I am reading a book right now called 'Reading David.' It's about a boy with dyslexia and all that him and his mom go thru in dealing with the many issues that exist with this learning disability. It's written by his mother, and has some portions written in the child’s view. It is very informative, and really shines light on some of the problems that can happen with the child, parent, teachers, schools, testing, getting help, etc. Anyway, I would recommend this book, especially to anyone dealing with children with learning disabilities (not just dyslexia.)

1 mom found this helpful

dont get me started. the process of teaching to SOME teachers has apparently become annoying. There are great ones out there, but you are going to have to fight for whatever it is she needs. not to sound discouraging, but you have to be firm and stay strong on her defense. In your world, she IS the most important student in that room, and if shes not getting what she deserves, let someone else know. Sorry, dont mean to sound negative, buut I had to do it, and guess what? It worked! You may think about switching to a charter school. My kids NOW go to a private one, NOT a city owned, and the curriculum is UNBELIEVEABLE! Good luck sweetie.

1 mom found this helpful

Hello! I am a mother of 2 boys that both have stuggled with reading. My oldest who is now an honor roll student in 6th grade, really struggled in third grade. We had a heck of a time during FCAT time. If 3rd graders don't pass the reading portion of the FCAT, they can't move to 4th grade. Being that your child is receiving B's that's for what level she is reading on, not what she should be reading at. My son's school had after school tutoring that allowed him some more individualized reading with the teacher, and that really helped. Plus reading every night at home for 15-20 minutes a day, on a subject or something really interesting to him or her, really helps too. I am going through the reading problems again with my 2nd grader now.. Best of Luck... Just keep in contact with the school and counselors as much as you possible can, that will make any questions and requests a lot easier to deal with..

1 mom found this helpful

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