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 Post subject: Recognising achievement
PostPosted: Sat Jan 20, 2018 9:19 pm 
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Hi

I was wondering how other primary schools handle this type of situation? My DD's primary school seem to positively avoid recognising any academic success from achievers but recognise those that have eventually learned their times tables in yr 5/6 or manage spellings from the curriculum list in yr 3/4 now that they are in yr 5/6. This recognition can be in front of everyone in assembly or house points or in the newsletter. Yet my DD & others who are set 'challenge' spellings / maths sheets get no recognition of what they achieve. My DD & her friends frequently comment on this - they as a group have worked it out. (as per other posts they worked out the tables where able children are). My DD has come home feeling despondent when this happens. In addition to this, school recognises sporting achievement 'well done to child x who won / came 5th in xx competition'. Is there some policy / theory that you don't recognise academic achievement for making others feel inferior? Sports recognition at my DDs school does this too! Views please. Thanks


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 20, 2018 9:46 pm 
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Try and encourage your DD not to measure her success by whether or not it is recognised by others - as long as you are proud of her it doesn't really matter whether the school do or not.

It happens a lot in life: in secondary school you will get some children being feted for their amazing sporting prowess, even if others think they aren't great, at work you get people who get al the plaudits for doing the minimum, where others are jumping through hoops unnoticed. Teach her about understanding her own self worth. Yes it might seem unfair, but perhaps if she understands that some children may never get to her level, then she can enjoy celebrating their successes with them.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 22, 2018 7:00 pm 
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[quote][/quote]

Thank you KCG, wise words. I'm very proud of her. I do have a bit of a mantra about 'we're all different' in many different ways..I hadn't taken this out of the primary school context - yes it does happen outside of there too (especially at work). Once upon a time, I'd have been competitive with my peers. Post children - I'm of the mindset that we each follow our own path at different speeds as we're all different. I need to replay that to her...thank you for the perspective. It helps.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 22, 2018 8:10 pm 
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You are very welcome!


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 22, 2018 11:50 pm 
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I remember when my child was about 7 she came home and said she wished she wasn't as clever as then she could do the easier work at school and would be finished quicker and have to think less.
When I discussed that with her I explained that for other children doing the "easier" work was just as difficult, maybe sometimes more difficult, for Child A than it was for her doing the harder stuff.
It was an absolute revelation to her. Understandably at that age she'd not really got inside anyone else's head and understood anyone else's reality. We spent ages discussing what that would be like.
I think that conversation and that understanding really helped shape who she is.
Yes she likes getting recognition for her achievements but she's always speaking up for and pointing out the fact that others have put in more effort perhaps for less visible results.
Maybe a chat like that would help your dd understand why some children are praised for things more than she is?


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 27, 2018 8:32 am 
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I don't know if this is the same thing really but we have always taught our children that the reward is in the results. For example, we did not offer bribes or treats for passing exams/getting A*s/coming top in something. I can relate to this really as academic success for me has brought its own sense of achievement, and I know that, as LL says, for me some things come much more easily than they do to others, and it is the same for my children. I think they know how lucky they are in this respect. One of mine had a close friend who had to slog away for absolutely everything and her work ethic was exemplary. She attained modest GCSE results but had to work so much harder than any of mine did for much better results. So who deserves more praise?

It is a shame if achievement is never recognised though. Personally as I teacher I would be looking for things a child found hard (and all of them find something hard!) and praising when that was overcome. Or else looking for children who did kind things or helped others. Praising a child for attaining something they found very easy is ultimately devaluing them - I think it is almost like praising them for being good-looking. But praising a bright child for something else should be easy enough for a teacher to do - that may be sport or art or just being helpful.

The sport thing, though, I must admit does wind me up. The way sporty children are praised above all else in many schools is damaging to both their own egos and those of the less sporty as well, just in different ways. Being in the favour of the PE department is tantamount to celebrity in some schools and I dislike it a lot.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 27, 2018 5:00 pm 
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Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts. It's not easy is it? It seems you can't really win - whatever you do you seem to be being unfair to someone!


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 11:48 am 
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I think you've had some good answers. I'd say at least your school sounds consistent in what it is awarding its certificates for. But, if you look at it another way, it might not be that pleasant for the recipients either. Would you want a certificate in assembly in year 6 saying well done you have just managed your 2 times table? Probably not.

All the schools my children have been to have been very poor with their awards etc in my view as my children have scarcely ever received anything!! And other children had their bedrooms wall papered with them and there was no consistency - they did give them to high achievers for achievement, they did give them to people who were hopeless at things but had persevered and improved, they did give them for kind and helpful acts etc. Ah well. I just think my children were not on the register or were completely hideous all the time without let up (as the let-up should have been rewarded).

They learned a healthy disregard of reward systems from year R onwards. Hopefully, it will stand them in better stead for the future than the bits of paper. Actually, I do remember one of them getting one once and reading out what it was for and telling me it wasn't true.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 1:23 pm 
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mystery wrote:
Actually, I do remember one of them getting one once and reading out what it was for and telling me it wasn't true.

I think our primary school was quite good in some ways. Everyone got one a year at least.
But in reception my ds came out telling me he'd won Star of the Week for being a "fantastic eagle on my own".
When I looked at the certificate a few days later it said he was "enthusiastic and eager to learn".
He seemed quite happy with the first accolade though :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 1:32 pm 
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Sport is an interesting one -
A school I know allowed one child to show a runner's up medal for local football tournament but another child that had won an under 18 county championship was not allowed to bring in the trophy as it was 'showing off'.


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