I have long been an advocate of children taking their work books from one year into the next and to use these, enabling expectations in September to be similar to those from July, based on simple comparison of the work in the new class with earlier examples. This was a structure that I expected within my own school when a HT, occasionally copied by colleague schools. It avoided the occasionally articulated “I’ll get use to them by half term.”
For many years, there have been studies that showed between year expectations may be different, sometimes significantly so, with inter-school transition having the greatest drop. I spoke about this at Beyond Levels #LearningFirst Bath.
Teacher standard 2 is progress and outcomes. In September, in any year, a blank book does not provide a baseline, so a child can seek to depress a teacher expectation, should they be so minded. There is a “truism” that there is a drop off in achievement during the summer holiday. This approach tests that assumption.
To have previous examples provides a simple baseline expectation that may not be provided by written or oral reports. At it’s simplest, it can be as easy as having one piece of work stuck into the workbook as an aide memoire, but, to have extended examples could provide a greater reference point, for both teacher and child, enabling early interventions (TS6&5) to seek to regain earlier achievement levels.
It supports teacher decision-making, but also saves money on books… what's not to like?