Year 1 Phonics Check: Analysing individual student reports transcript

Rebecca McEwan:  

The section you've all been waiting for, analysing individual student reports. Let's make a start. 

As I said, some people might be looking to work along with this analysis today, if you've been able to print out that word and code complexity tool for the Phonics Check and your student report.  

If not, just strap in and watch how the process works. You will be able to come back to the recording once you've organised all of the reports that you need.  

If you're working along with me today, then you'll need access to the individual student report and the details report that I showed. You'll also need a printed copy of the Year 1 Phonics Check analysis sheet as you can see on the screen. 

And a green and an orange highlighter, or a Zoom or textas or crayons or whatever you have handy at the end of the school day. I was always one to grab the Zooms. 

We're going to start on that details report that we looked at. Our first step when we're analysing individual student reports is to identify that student's strengths, as shown by their Phonics Check results. 

If you're looking at your online report, you would select that ‘Got it!’ category, and that will bring up all of the words that the student was able to read correctly. If you are using the printed report, you're looking for that green bubble that says ‘Got it!’. These are the words that you'll focus on first.  

The next thing to do is take your green highlighter and your word and code complexity continuum for the Year 1 Phonics Check, and you're going to highlight all of the words that the student was able to read correctly underneath the continuum, so that we can start to look at the patterns of that student's strengths.  

I'm going to do that now for my example student, while those of you who are working along at home start to do the highlighting for your student’s report. 

I grab my green highlighter and here we go. I'm just cross-checking those ‘Got it!’ words with the words on the continuum.  

As I'm going, I'm starting to think about the patterns that I'm seeing. First off, I can see that my student was able to read all of those CVC words, which are also pseudo words, and that means they really were using their decoding skills.  

We've missed a word there. I think you might have seen that on the previous screen too, so the student misread the word ‘tram’ as ‘trum’.  

We're up to consonant digraphs and looking at which of these words that student decoded correctly. We've missed ‘phope’, but ‘queen’ was decoded correctly. 

Do note that if any of the words have an asterisk, that means they're also in another category. So, I'm going to look for ‘queen’ in the other category here, in our vowel digraphs, because it has the ‘ee’ digraph.  

‘Chin’ and ‘press’ were read correctly, but not ‘charb’. ‘Charb’ is also in another category, and I'm starting to think about was it the consonant digraph or was it the ‘ar’, r-controlled vowel that that student had difficulty with,  

None of our split digraphs have shown up in ‘Got it!’, so that's telling me something again.  

Then we have ‘scram’, ‘splam’, ‘glips’, ‘floost’. Just ‘keeps’ is showing up here. ‘Floost’ was in two categories, so I've highlighted there. ‘Keeps’ is also across in morphology.  

That completes the words that my student was able to read correctly. 

Hopefully you've had a chance to highlight on yours as well, but again, don't worry if you are taking a little longer, this is a first time for you. You can always come back to the recording if you need to as well.  

I've highlighted the words that my student was able to read, that ‘Got it!’ category, which is helping me to look at their strengths in terms of decoding. I can see quite clearly that they've shown strength in that CVC category. I can see also most of the words are highlighted in the simple words with adjacent consonants, so their blending is developing, and in the consonant digraphs, where we can see most, except ‘phope’ and ‘charb’ were represented. ‘Phope’, the consonant digraph in ‘phope’ is the ‘ph’, which is also an alternative spelling, and so often is taught later. That might have been the difficulty, but I notice both of those words are also asterisked, and that means they're in later categories as well. Perhaps that was the difficulty. 

We also see some strength showing up in our complex words with adjacent consonants. That's again telling me that the student was able to blend more than those four phonemes together.  

We have some green in our vowel digraph category. What I notice here is that they're all the double digraph vowels, so the ‘ee’ and the ‘oo’.  

So, these are some of the strengths our students, or my student, is bringing to their decoding.  

Let's move away from the strengths for now and start to think about our student's needs that are represented on the Check. We're going to go back to that details report, and now we're going to look at those ‘Not yet’ bubbles and also the skipped words, so any that were skipped, perhaps because your student was struggling or because they were not able to give an answer.  

Again, you can be scanning your comment section as you go through these. We're going to do the same kind of highlighting, but don't get too caught up in your comments yet because we will circle back to those after we've finished the highlighting. 

You can select ‘All’ to see your ‘Not yet’ and skipped words. Don't select ‘Not yet’, because that won't show up any skipped words, so you might miss some.  

We're back at our tool and we're going to use the orange highlighter to highlight any of those words that the student was ‘Not yet’ able to decode. If you want to differentiate between what they were ‘Not yet’ able to decode, so they've made an error on, or words that you've skipped, then you can put a circle around the skipped ones instead of doing the highlight. I did the whole Check with my student, so I'm going to go ahead and do the highlighting across. That's really going to be the remaining words on the Check. 

You have some time to do your highlighting or you'll be watching as I do highlighting for my student. 

‘Phope’ and ‘charb’. There we have ‘phope’ again. ‘Charb’ was across in the r-controlled vowels. ‘Stribe’, ‘wove’, ‘stroke’. That's again that really clear pattern coming up in our split vowel digraphs. Actually, two of the words in those complex words with adjacent consonants are also represented with split vowel digraphs. ‘Drank’, ‘doil’, ‘woats’. Some vowel digraphs certainly showing up. Trigraphs, and then a number of our words with complex morphology, as well as our r-controlled vowels. Finally, those multiple syllable words. 

Again, no panic if you haven't got all of yours highlighted yet. This is your first go and you can come back to the recording.  

We're going to have a look at those patterns of the student needs now. If we look from left to right, which is the approach that we should take when we're trying to pick up the earliest mistakes, then we can start to see some of the early errors. If we're teaching using a systematic synthetic phonics approach, the green wave should come across the continuum, in terms of our students picking up those simple skills and that simple knowledge before moving onto the complex. But we're looking back now and we're seeing what were those gaps that were coming up. What are the needs that the student is showing us that they need some intervention for or some extra instruction for? 

First, we have ‘tram’ as a difficulty. Earlier on those comments we did see that was an ‘au’ or /a/ /u/ confusion. The next category we found ‘phope’ and ‘charb’ in this example student. They are both in that consonant digraph group, and the ‘ph’ is certainly a consonant digraph, but we notice that there's also a split digraph represented and ‘charb’ has ‘ar’. I also note that ‘chin’ was highlighted as correct, so the student has been able to use that ‘ch’ digraph. I'm thinking the ‘ar’ is likely the difficulty, that r-controlled vowel. 

Analysis is not always black and white, so I'm talking through these difficulties and making cross-references to other categories. As a general rule, you will look for the first category that has two or more difficulties represented. However, thinking about those explanations of ‘phope’ and ‘charb’, I'm going to look up at the next category as well. Here we see a really clear need. None of the words that have a split vowel digraph in them were read correctly by this student, so we can be quite sure that this is an area of need for instruction for this student. But we're not going to ignore the rest; we will come back and look at those as well. 

You can stop there. You don't need to go all the way through the continuum and pick up on every single little difficulty. That can be quite overwhelming for you as a teacher to think, where do I start? The place that we start is the earliest need, because if we're teaching with a systematic synthetic phonics approach, we're really ensuring our students are mastering early skills and that early knowledge before we're going to continue with the more complex instruction.  

Once you've pinpointed that need and perhaps some outliers like my student as well, we're going to look at our notes and we're going to try to understand exactly what it was that that student faced difficulty with.  

Here we have that list. Again, you'll notice I've only included those early words. I'm not going to get bogged down with the difficulties later on, although, I will look at them for interest. My instruction is going to be at the earliest point of need, so this is where I focus my attention. 

We have ‘tram’ with the /a/ /u/ confusion. What I know from my instructional knowledge is that actually has been taught in class, so that's showing up as a gap in knowledge for this student. It's been taught, but they haven't quite consolidated it.  

‘Phope’ was read as /p/-/h/-oppy, so some sounds and then some blending, but not recognising the digraph and having trouble with that split vowel digraph. What I know from my instructional knowledge that I've taught in the class is that we haven't actually reached ph in the progression, so this is not something I'm going to be particularly concerned about for this student at this point because we will teach that down the track.  

‘Charb’ was read as ‘charab’, so difficulty with that ‘ar’ as we predicted. Again, that's not been reached in the progression. You saw how far down the continuum it was, and it's actually further on in our progression as well, so we're not going to worry too much about that at this point. 

‘Stribe’ was read as ‘stibby’, so we're having difficulty with that split vowel digraph, the ‘ie’, and also with some blending. You can see that the ‘r’ was dropped from reading ‘stribe’ when they read ‘stibby’. ‘Wove’ was read as ‘wovvy’, so that's that split vowel digraph, and ‘stroke as ‘stroka’. The student is trying out a few different approaches to reading those words with the split vowel digraph that they're not actually realising that belongs together and they're assigning some different vowel sounds. As we saw in that continuum, the split vowel digraph is that really clear need that our student is showing us.