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 Post subject: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:12 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 10:14 am
Posts: 938
I know it's probably an over reaction, but I feel very sad as my little girl has just been moved down a set in both Literacy and Numeracy. This, in itself would be fine, if it's the right set for her to be in, but she's always - in our opinion!- been advanced and even the Head frequently says she's bright as a button. I do appreciate that this is entirely the teacher's decision but I felt so broken hearted for her when she told me yesterday that she wasn't in -- group anymore and she was the only one to be moved.
My DH spoke with her teacher this morning to ask if this was true as we hadn't been told anything and she's been in the top sets through Reception and Class 1 thus far and was told it was based on end of term assessments and beginning of term performance. They only went back on Wednesday and we moved house on Tuesday and didn't even take her spelling book in never mind learn them! My husband explained this but it seemed completely irrelevant to the teacher which seems unbelievable. What's more, this is just a temp teacher and the normal teacher comes back from maternity leave in six weeks so why make a change now? Now I feel incredibly guilty as I know for a fact she's with some other children who can't even write a sentence whilst she writes little stories at home, complete with full stops and capital letters. I had already mentioned to the class teacher that her written work at school seemed very scrappy in comparison with her work at home.
DD is a perfectionist and the teacher said she says she can't do the maths, but when she explained what she couldn't do to my husband he thought it was ridiculous as she clearly can eg very basic stuff like sequencing the missing numbers etc. The whole thing doesn't add up with what she's does at home- she actually asks for mental arithmatic sums to do in the car- but what I find most distressing is this change when she's just moved house and assessment which to me seems rather unfortunately timed...
I now feel that maybe I should do some 'fun' story work at home so that she doesn't sink to the lowest common denominator which I know she will. I'll then chat with the usual teacher upon her return and see what she thinks.
Also, she's a great little reader, but when the teacher asked her to read she sounded out all of the words, not just the tricky ones. At the end the teacher asked and she said oh yes, it's and sight read the ones she asked...
I'm sorry to whinge so much , thanks for letting me vent! I just feel so upset about it. I certainly don'r want her to feel stressed, which I think she does with maths, but am so dissappointed that she isn't with comparable children for literacy.
I'm trying to console myself with the fact that her brother was in fact moved down for Maths and ended up attaining a medal in the National final of the PMC. :lol:


Last edited by ourmaminhavana on Fri Jan 06, 2012 3:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:47 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:22 am
Posts: 3664
I really feel for you as I've been there myself. My 2 children who are still at primary have been moved up and down , up and down like a yoyo and I've never really understood why.Sometimes it's just been on the strength of one test . Because I'm doing a lot with DS2 at the moment due to his 11 plus I've had to stop reading so much etc with DD and she's now been moved down a group for reading ...I'm not sure why this always happens if I'm not doing extra at home but there you go. So, my advice would be to have a chat with the teacher ...you may have to wait for the old one but that is a whole term away...and if you get no joy then just do bits and pieces at home . All my children have lurked at the bottom of the class at one point which is distressing for us...and also for them ...I can remember being worried about coming bottom in tests when at primary and deemed dim....but they all made it back up eventually and did have extra confidence in their abilities.

Do you know who your DD sits with in class ? Is she talking and not concentrating ? What's the rest of the class like ? Are any disruptive ?

Re. the bit about your DD being as bright as a button. I've come to realise that is the important bit. I felt all my children had/ have a spark to them and although at times they didn't seem particularly academic they still appeared " bright " and I'm proud of them and the sort of people they are ...sometimes the other stuff just takes longer ..but it's always there under the surface and you might find in a couple of weeks she is moved back up.


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 Post subject: Re: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 1:20 pm 
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ourmam
ok I think I am right in believing your DD is still in year 1, if so, my advice is step away from the "sets" mentality for a child that age. Although there should be some assessment going on, putting young children in sets is ridiculous. Do you mean that the children work in groups or have tables to sit on for some learning areas and your DD has moved tables? This may be so but take it with a pinch of salt and do not dwell on it at all. Your anxiety will transfer to DD and there really is no need to worry about this. Children in Y1 should still be learning through play and such things as maths and writing should be coming through self initiated writing/maths activities perhaps in the role play area or writing area. Many children do not "perform" at school especially if they are not confident or not comfortable with the teacher which may be the case with this cover teacher. The only reason I would intervene or enquire further would be if the children ALWAYS work in groups and your DD is missing out on her friends. If this is the case then there is something wrong with the class/school to be honest because this should not be happening.

Don't waste any more time and energy on it and concentrate on settling into your new home and having a lovely cosy time with DD. If you feel happy with your DDs development and don't have any concerns then forget this. And try not to compare your DD to any other children (hard sometimes I know) but "there be dragons" in those waters so keep out!

Your DDs abilities will show themselves over the Primary years so don't worry.

Concentrate on some fun and if your DD seems to be upset, have a couple of nice friends round for tea and make sure you tell her that the "groups" at school do not matter a bit and they are always swapping them about.

I am not dismissing your anxiety as I know from experience that little things can sometimes be worrying for us parents but also my answer comes from experience too (as a parent and someone working with young children and having been a teacher too). Enjoy the young years, I miss them now mine are teenagers and nearly a teenager! and at that age the temptation to compare and stress over sets is worse and I am following my own advice after getting anxious myself about this very thing last year!
Wishing you happiness in your new home.


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 Post subject: Re: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 2:25 pm 
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Ourmam, I too would be feeling upset about this but I completely agree with Scarlett and mum23*. DC do seem to progress in fits and starts, a bit like their height! You know your child; I'm sure she has the 'spark' Scarlett describes otherwise you wouldn't be on this site. I think support at home is essential when you're dealing with sometimes patchy provision (like maternity etc) at school and, in classes of 30, there just isn't enough time in 1 hour lessons to concentrate on everyone.

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 Post subject: Re: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 3:25 pm 
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When I think back to how I was convinced DS1 had some kind of learning difficulty and compare that to what I know now...I do cringe ! The funny thing was recently I met up with a lady who I hadn't seen since our children were 5 and when I told her about Ds passing the 11 plus she commented that it was no surprise as he was such a bright boy...this was her view whilst I was panicking because he was refusing to work preferring to roll around in the sand pit. You just need to find out the real ins and outs to what is going on and then persevere yourself to produce that well rounded, sparky girl you know is there ! :D


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 Post subject: Re: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 3:31 pm 
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Last edited by Belinda on Thu Nov 01, 2012 2:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 3:32 pm 
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Thanks so much for empathising Scarlett and Fatbananas. It's unlikely she could move up as she'll be doing different work!
Thanks very much mum23. Yes, my DD is in Year 1 and has moved tables to do all of her work with a different group of children. I agree with you re the sets mentality and thought of that when I wrote my original post, I'm very much in favour of learning through play. However, if they are being setted at least those who can count to 20 in Reception and those who can't recongnise a single number can be helped at the right starting point and as long as this is done in a 'fun' way I think that's OK.
Of course I haven't indicated any problem to my DD at all, quite the contrary. I've said how nice it will be to sit with one of her other little friends for a change, although she herself is aware that no one else on her table has been moved which I find very distressing.
No, I don't compare my DD with other children and am very happy with her ability and more importantly, her as a lovely, delightful, little person. :D
My concern is really that she will be set different work and therefore won't be able to change groups, unless I find out what they're doing- not the easiest of things- and do it with her at home. Also that she is having this disruption just at the time she has moved house and six weeks down the line she will have a new teacher!


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 Post subject: Re: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 3:42 pm 
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Thanks Belinda our posts crossed!I'm actually quite anti 'formal' learning at home but we're constantly playing word games etc in the car going to and from school. (I'm an ex English teacher and my DH is a Science teacher!She's just watched the Christmas lectures with him, at her request I might add!! :lol: )
I think she'd sink as she'd want to fit in with the group so if they weren't writing in sentences I don't think she would either. :(
She was bi lingual when she first learnt to talk as we were living overseas and I have no worries about her intelligence, although funnily because she was such a 'good speaker' with a huge vocabulary (in English and Spanish) I did wonder if when she went to school we'd suddenly find out that she was dyslexic or something!! That sounds really silly, but she just seemed unstoppable! That wouldn't bother me in itself either, I just want her to be satisfying her ability.
I think I'll ask how I can support her learning at home and clarify what the teacher feels she has difficulties with. Today the teacher said to my husband that DD has found it hard to keep to the routine the last couple of days. Not quite sure what she means, but it's hardly surprising as she moved house the day before they went back.
You're right Mum23 I must curb my feelings before she gets home.


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 Post subject: Re: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 4:22 pm 
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Another thing I've found is that children ( or mine at least ) really do develop in fits and bursts and your DD might suddenly soar ....and then I'm sure the teacher will give her appropriately set work .My DS2 was moved down in maths a couple of months ago for sketchy reasons and of course I felt a bit churned up over it especially as he's supposed to be doing the 11 plus but I just decided to not turn up blubbering like I usually do and work with him at home...the result is that he is now top of the class in his maths and his teacher hasn't stopped raving about his sudden improvement. I'm not even a teacher , so just think what you can do with your DD ! Have you asked if there are other reasons apart from one test ? my DC were often moved down to give them more confidence in their abilities...as they would be at the top of that group.She may not copy the other children...they might copy her !


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 Post subject: Re: Year 1 upset
PostPosted: Fri Jan 06, 2012 4:40 pm 
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Last edited by Belinda on Thu Nov 01, 2012 2:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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