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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2015 8:39 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:35 pm
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DD is in Y4 and currently working through mental arithmetic 5. I know its very common for children at this age to make silly mistakes. Its very evident in my child. Over the last few weeks, I've noticed that not only are there a number of silly mistakes but it almost makes me think she day dreams when she does a paper.

An example of a question is:

Quote:
By how many is 1.4 million greater than nine hundred thousand.


Her calculation was 2,400,000-900000. I mean, where did the 2 come from???

What can we do...its massively demoralising for all of us. She gets on average 28/36 and of those 8 mistakes, they're generally silly mistakes and a handful of these incorrect answers 'day dreamed' from nowhere.

Any advice?


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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2015 9:02 pm 
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She's only. Year 4, this is very common, don't worry about it.
If you really want to, gently so her if she wants to rethink the answer to question x and if she doesn't spot the mistake, take her step by step through it. But treat carefully, she is very young and if ts becomes in any way perceived as criticism she may dig her heels in and refuse to try at all. It's really very common and it will naturally improve.


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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2015 9:51 pm 
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We all think our children are special and highly intelligent but the day dreaming might be a sign of a superior intelligence.
https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/th ... -knowledge

Even if it isn't we all daydream sometimes.

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In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years.

Abraham Lincoln


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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2015 9:54 pm 
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Try some more interesting maths problems like those on NRICH - www.nrich.maths.org - stage 2 problems.

Sometimes work that is 'routine' can cause children's attention to wander and she is still young.


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PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 6:39 am 
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I know very well a young lady who daydreamed through the whole of primary school, much of secondary school and in the sixth form had to be 'woken' by teachers several times for gazing out of the window. By all appearances never really concentrated on anything. However, her results testify that she must have been listening after all.

Don't worry. Daydreaming is common and your little girl is still very young. The 2 came because she wrote it down instead of 1. She probably was thinking of more interesting things to do than a mental arithmetic paper...


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PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 8:41 am 
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Is this schofield and sims? She is very young, it might be worth doing a section of the paper rather than all at once. I have found breaking the sections up was more beneficial, as most children's attention isn't particularly long !! I personally like the bond 10 minute tests for this. It's worth understanding you won't be able to iron out all silly mistakes that's part of being a child, however you can minimise them through practise in short bursts. If she is struggling with a specific topic it might be worth going over that with her at the weekend, doing it together in a relaxed way, I found this very helpful with my own DD. Dollyxxxx


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PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 8:50 am 
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I can totally relate to this experience, as my DS is the same. He is able to work out complex problems and words but dont know what happens with simple ones. Sometimes I do lose my patience, but then step back and think he is only 10 years old. So not to worry, many of us sail in the same boat:-).


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PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 9:02 am 
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Agree with dollydiplomat if this is schofield and Simms she is very young as it takes a lot of concentration. She is also on book 5, my ds was not on that until later in y5, so perhaps you are expecting too much of her. It is also quite boring and the shorter 10 min tests suited my ds with nearer the exam doing full papers and going over his weaker areas.

My ds made silly mistakes right up to and including in the exams. The first easier questions seemed to trip him up, he would like your dd add a number or misread what was being asked for. He seemed to be looking for complications when the answer was very straight forward. We made him slow down and really focussed on the style of the exam for the school we really wanted and that seemed to pay off.


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PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 3:55 pm 
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Location: East Kent
I remember from my Speech and Language course, they said that a child of primary age can, on average, only sustain real, undivided concentration for 1 minute per year of age.


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PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2015 4:23 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:35 pm
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Thanks for all the replies.

Yes it is schofield and sims. I accept that its impossible to iron out all silly mistakes. We felt she was ready for 5 because its at her level from a technical perspective. She's not getting them wrong because she doesnt know how to do the questions.

I will try your advice and break down into smaller sections. Based on your feedback though, when does the concentration level get to a point where they can sustain a 1hr paper (cos thats what the real exam is all about) without making toooo many silly mistakes? Is it when they're in Yr5 and hit the age of 10? I guess its different from child to child but it'll be interesting to hear if/when you observed a change in your child's concentration levels....

thanks again.


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