The Literacy as a Social Practice perspective offers a robust yet open-minded framework for thinking about young children’s experience of being taught to read and write in school. It allows children to be seen as literacy practitioners, working with texts in a social world. Foucault’s tools and concepts on discipline do not quite capture the effects of this schooled literacy discourse on the children’s literacy practices. An important aspect of Amber Class children’s classroom experience was their engagement with a complex, multi-layered social context. The children understood that the judgements drew on particular aspects of reading and writing, such as how ‘hard’ the books they read were, the kinds of words a child might use in their written work and their ability to spell words ‘correctly’. The children’s active work to engage with the many layers of their classroom experiences ensured that classroom life could proceed smoothly and everyone could get through the day.