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 Post subject: Instilling concentration
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 8:20 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 08, 2010 1:03 pm
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My year 3 DS needs some help/ practice in 'how to concentrate'. I know he's still young but he's producing very little written work at school, maybe a paragraph (he's in the top set, but definitely towards the bottom). He says it's very noisy in his class (I've tried to address this with the teacher but to no avail). I looked at his literacy book yesterday. There were lots of 'excellent story plan' (which means he's improved because he was struggling with those at the beginning of year 3, making plots so complicated) and 'fantastic vocab' and 'great similies' etc. etc. but underneath these comments were always the words: 'try to write some more'.

Can anyone help, please :|

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 8:47 am 
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He does sound as if he ticks all the boxes otherwise and quality must be better then quantity ! My year 3 DD is the opposite ...she likes to fill up pages and pages with random ramblings ( like me, perhaps ! ) and this was highlighted in her report .However I'm not too concerned as her reading and maths is fine and the writing will come. Take heart in the fact that DS2 was only a level 1 in writing in year 2 and is now a 4a although some pieces of work are tipping him into level 5 . It does all suddenly click...try and get him to move on to another few sentences perhaps...is he getting tired out writing i.e is his hand aching ? DS1 used to complain of that although he will still write 2 words instead of a page if he can get away with it !

I would be more concerned why he can't concentrate ....my DS takes himself off to other classroom if he can't focus which does annoy me that he has to be the one to do this, but also feel pleased he is mature enough not to join in but still want to get on with his work.You'll just have to discuss with him what it is which he finds disruptive and measures he can take to screen out the noise..hard I know at his age. In DD class the girls who just get on with it are sat next to the more disruptive boys who are then split up from their similarly rowdy pals. What's it like in your classroom ? DD says she wants to be a teacher as she gets in lots of practice telling off this poor boy who has to sit next to her..I notice he gives her a rather wide berth whilst looking completely terrified :)


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 11:20 am 
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Thanks Scarlett! He does complain that his hand aches! When we're at home, he produces really good, whole, stories of about a side of A4 (is that enough?). We break it up into beginning, middle and end and do one section per night. But each section can take anything from 20 mins to nearly an hour depending on which section of the story it is (the first section always the longest)! They have 40 mins in a classroom. He sits next to a girl he detests (she's always talking to him, or singing :shock: , or telling him his writing's messy etc etc.). He's been moved once ... from another girl who was far worse :shock: :shock: ).

But he also does seem to distract himself with a nail that needs chewing, or a ceiling that needs examining. I tell him that if he just focussed it would all be over with much more quickly, but that doesn't seem to motivate him! :roll:

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 12:18 pm 
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Well first of all, thank your lucky starts that he's in the top group despite only writing a paragraph. He'd have been banished to the bottom group at the start of year 1 at our school. It would seem that the school is sensible enough to see through the problem and that although he does only produce a paragraph he could do more.

Next thing is to consider whether it really is a problem that he only produces a paragraph in literacy lessons. If he is literate and he can write at home, and he can write in an exam, and he can write in geography and history lessons this tells you that either a) he doesn't want to write the stuff he's being asked to write in literacy lessons or b) the group he is with for literacy is too distracting.

There is no longer an externally marked written task at KS2 for our lot. Instead there's a grammar, punctuation and spelling test, and writing is teacher assessed. I'm not quite sure what the teacher assessment means. Perhaps level 5 story plans are sufficient!

I'm sorry that hasn't really helped. However, if he can concentrate and write stories at home, albeit with some daydreaming in between words, he sounds fine. You'll never work out what takes place in those school literacy lessons where nothing gets done; a whole academic year has gone by and I have not solved this mystery concerning my year 1 child.


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