When they enter college, more than a quarter of students do not have the expected level in French, recalls the Ministry of Education, in a press release published in early January. And “barely one in two pupils can read a text with ease and the degradation of spelling has become worrying”, continues the note.
To remedy this, the Ministry of National Education has decided to introduce new measures to “raise the level of students”.
“Teaching recommendations” for CM1 and CM2 teachers, trainers and inspectors on “the regular practice of dictation, the daily practice of writing, the regularity of mental calculation” must thus be the subject of a circular this Thursday . Some of these recommendations have already leaked, notably in the Parisian, France info et Le Figaro. Here is what Pap Ndiaye’s “spelling plan” should contain.
Pap Ndiaye wants CM1 and CM2 students to practice writing “at least two hours” every day.
He also considers it necessary “that students automate grammar and spelling rules”. For this, the Minister plans to increase the use of dictations, an “essential” exercise which must take place at least once a day for CM1 and CM2 students. This “daily practice” of writing aims to achieve “firm, regular and legible handwriting”. The ministry also recommends avoiding “texts with gaps”.
The text also provides for a strengthening of “decoding”, namely the ability to read words quickly. In CM1, pupils “who cannot read a text with fluidity and expressiveness, at a speed of around 90 words per minute” will benefit from “specific daily practice, for at least four weeks”. In CM2, the objective of 120 words per minute is cited.
The Minister also adds other guidelines: young students should be able to read at least “two long texts”, of at least 1000 words each, every week.