To be worried sick about son starting school to young!

(104 Posts)
madmacbrock Thu 04-Apr-13 22:32:27

I appear to be on my own with this.
My son was born on the 29th Aug, and i am dreading school time (his is only 19mths) This is not down to me 'wanting to keep him to myself a bit longer' but all the research i have read that suggests summerborn children (espesially boys) do not do as well as those born in the autumn. He will be smaller than the others, less developed emotionally, physically and mentally. I remeber the summerborn boys from my school years and they were all 'outsiders'
I realise he could start a year later, rather than a few days after his 4th birthday but would go to 1st year rather than reception, that has issues socially! and also seems pointless as he will still be 'behind' all the way through to high school. does anyone know of anyway round this?
I am concidering moving country to a place where the stupid rule doesnt apply or even lying about his DOB, is that fraud? everyone i speak to thinks im over reacting and that the system has been in place for years and he'll cope! Is it wrong of me to want my child to at least have the opportunity to thrive rather than to just cope and get by? confused

youarewinning Thu 04-Apr-13 23:15:15

My DS is late August born.

He's way behind in literacy and way ahead in numeracy.

He's on SEN register as possible learning difficulty in relation to writing skills.

That's about him though and his abilty - not to do with birth date.

He's proof the birthdate doesn't make a difference necessarily. He wasn't socially ready for school but I feel the staggered starts (1/2 day etc) don't help them with this. Having poorer social skills and also having to make friends in less time is a little counterproductive!

ohtobecleo Thu 04-Apr-13 23:16:18

I have a DS born on 30th August. He's just started Secondary and in top set in most subjects. I will say however that I think that summer babies are (generally) a little behind in maturity. My DS had no problem keeping up with the class academically but he has always been smaller than the rest of his class and at least 6 months behind in maturity. But considering that his 2 best friends in primary were early September babies (so a whole year older than him) he did really well to keep up.

Ultimately it depends on the child. I wouldn't worry too much at this stage about something you can't really do anything about. There will be many hurdles along the way and his DOB is just one. Just enjoy him smile.

formicaqueen Thu 04-Apr-13 23:25:20

My DS is summer born and in reception. He is doing very well academically but just gets more exhausted then the older bigger kids.

I think reading and developing a love of reading can be central to thriving at school.

We also had a part time timetable for quite a while.

Trazzletoes Thu 04-Apr-13 23:29:06

It means that the OP is unreasonable to be worried sick about this and dreading it if she chose to ttc a baby that was reasonably likely to be born in August.

EnidRollins Thu 04-Apr-13 23:32:22

My ds is EXACTLY the same age as yours was when starting school. He's now 9, and top of his class. Seriously, you've nothing to worry about. It might seem tiny when they start but they don't suffer in any way. He's the very youngest in the entire Upper Juniors but still in the top groups where some are 10 and literally a whole year older.
Don't worry so much, he'll be fine. smile

noblegiraffe Thu 04-Apr-13 23:33:40

See how you feel in a year. My August baby will be starting reception in September at just turned 4 and I think he's ready for it, he'd be completely bored if he had to stay at pre school another year.

Don't be silly trazzle I have 5 DCs and desperately wanted a September baby (nothing to do with school start dates) and missed all five times! It's hardly an exact science hmm

FannyFifer Thu 04-Apr-13 23:38:12

Does no one else find that really sad about the bean bags & the children having a nap, jings if they need a nap at school then really they are to young to be there. hmm

balia Thu 04-Apr-13 23:40:41

YANBU to be protective of your little one - DS was born in March but prem, and so was a tiny dot. I was horrified by the idea of school - I still carried him around on my hip like a toddler! I couldn't imagine him being able to cope with mealtimes or playtimes with all those huge giant kids. But he thrived - he struggled physically with being very tired/not wanting to go on and off for the first year - but mentally he was ready and he's among the brightest in his class now (year 1). And it forced me (and DH who was way worse than me) to deal with some of the 'babying' issues.

Also, don't forget that just like all kids are different, schools are too - go check them out, it might make you feel more relaxed. Plus kids make huge leaps in development at all sorts of times.

Now, don't take this the wrong way - are there other things you perhaps feel more strongly about than other people? Is it possible you might be over-reacting to this for any other reason (depression/anxiety etc)? Because considering lying about his b'day/moving is a bit extreme, and you sound like a generally rational and sensible person.

BackforGood Thu 04-Apr-13 23:40:51

Yes, YABU. From your boast, your ds is certainly reaching all developmental milestones, and is advanced over "average". It is pretty likely he will continue in that vein throughout his school years too. There is a statistical correlation between younger (Summer Born) children and those who aren't ready to start school the Sept after they are 4, but the influence of the home is MASSIVE. Even going with the correlation, it evens out before they get to secondary school.
Enjoy your ds now - don't hit him with negative vibes about how he will do poorly at school because of his birthdate - or that might become a self fulfilling prophesy.

madmacbrock Thu 04-Apr-13 23:46:35

Ds was planned Trazzletoes, he was actually planned for over 5 years and choose to be concieved in december and was ironically born a week early. Im not really sure i can be classed as Unreasonable on those grounds.
It is however nice to hear about other DC who are summerborn and doing well and thanks pombear you are def on my wavelength.

stressyBessy22 Fri 05-Apr-13 00:00:41

it is not correct to say it evens out by secondary school.there is still a statistically significant difference at gcse

madmacbrock Fri 05-Apr-13 00:03:29

I have to also say that Im not crazy or depressed, im not a helicopter parent i let him make mistakes, i wasnt boasting either just trying to stress that his development is not causing my concern, if you must know he has never once slept through and enjoys biting the dogs ears! It is just that I seem to keep comming across this research and it alarms me that people just sit back and accept that prehaphs there child may not do as well as they could. Maybe Ds will grow up to be a vet or a toilet cleaner i dont really care either way I just want to ensure that he gets the same chances as everybody else smile

99problems Fri 05-Apr-13 00:04:23

I was really concerned about this, ds is born late June and has speech and lang delays and is generally 'immature'. He's currently in reception and will be on an IEP (individual education plan) by the end of the year, meaning he will get lots of support hopefully in Yr 1. Whether this is due to his summer birthday I'm not sure.

My ds is also massive for his age (99th percentile, aged 6-7 clothes and tallest in class!), I call him my gentle giant lol. But the teacher and speech therapist have said to me it's easy to forget he's a summer born and expect more of him based on his height.

My ds is behind in literacy - can't read/write yet and many of his peers, particularly girls can. BUT in my experience working in schools this is standard despite age, teachers sometimes need different approaches in their teaching to boys and girls imo.

I think the trick is to get them simply enjoying what they are learning about, so instead of pushing my ds to read, atm at home we are focusing on me getting him interested in books, choosing fantastic stories and bringing them to life. I made alphabet cookies, we play lots of online games for phonics etc... And the teacher said he's come on faster than she intially expected.

Good luck OP, I am sure your ds will be fine, this time last year I felt the same as you. Make sure you establish a good relationship with teacher too, I meet with ds' once a term to catch up on where he's at and what we can reinforce at home. Also best advice is don't panic if/when talking to other parents saying their kid can do xyz, ok my ds can't spell 'cat' but he can build fantastic things, is fearless in parks/monkey bars etc and is a bright kid.

Pancakeflipper Fri 05-Apr-13 00:07:11

Stop worrying about it now. One of my siblings is a 31st Aug baby. No Jan starts for our Primary. And they are very successf and renown in their career. They are totally barmy but brilliant.

Pancakeflipper Fri 05-Apr-13 00:09:09

I have noticed its often noticeable during KS1 the birthday difference. But during juniors it lessens and by secondary- they are defined by what they are good at.

SquirrelNuts Fri 05-Apr-13 00:13:34

YANBU i was born late in the school year and did better than all of my jan/feb born friends. But with DS ive been dreading it since it dawned on me he'd be just be 4.1 i find out in 7 days time what school hes got into, ( which im very nervous about as theres only 1 school i want him to go to) im still unsure whether to send him to school or keep him in nursery.

Our daughter is 28th August. She loves school. She gets to be with friends, constant stimulus [Mummy sometimes has to do house jobs], has nice dinners, meets lovely grown ups, does teacm sports, gets to go on trips. Her teacher was very aware of her young age [youngest in the school...] and supported her adn us accordingly,

She is now in year 1 and is still a happy bunny and at all milestones.

Totally normal to worry, we did but don;t feel it will automatically be dreadful

podgymumma Fri 05-Apr-13 00:43:52

He's 19 months.

How do you know he's going to be smaller than the others, less developed emotionally, physically and mentally confused

piprabbit Fri 05-Apr-13 00:55:44

There are so many variables that you really can't assume that his birth date will have a negative impact on him.

Some children will not have attended nursery, they will be learning to cope with the social skills and rules.
Some children will not speak English at home, they will have their own struggles.
Some children will have issues around food, or toilets, or doing up their own coats.
Other children will have disabilities (that may not even have been diagnosed).
Your DS might hit the ground running, love the school, adore his teacher and thrive.

Put this to the back of your mind for another year or so and just enjoy him. There will be plenty of time to look at your options a bit closer to when you apply and when you've had a chance to visit local schools and talk about your concerns with them.

Booyhoo Fri 05-Apr-13 01:07:24

i worry about this too.

I'm in NI and the cut off is the 1st of july. my ds is an end of may baby and at almost four still has quite unclear speech and is far more immature than his brother was at that age (never mind stage of education). he is due to start primary in september and although i can choose to hold him back for another year, he has already been at the feeder nursery for a year and will be moving up with all his classmates so i dont want to make him feel different by being the only one leaving 'school' (nursery) and then not doing anything for a year. there is no reception class just p1. i think i'll send him to school as planned and if any problems arise i'll deal with them as and when. the p1 teacher and TA are fantastic (ds1 went there too) so i have no doubts taht tehy will be on top of any issues.

5eggstremelychocaletymadeggs Fri 05-Apr-13 01:11:48

Yanbu my eldest two are aug and july born. They were not ready for school just after they turned four and its one of the reasons we chose to home educate for a while.

They started school aged 9 and 6 in yr 5 and yr2. They are now in yr9 and yr6 and doimg brilliantly, ds1 is predicted a's for gcse and ds2 has been.put in for higher level sats. But they werent ready at age 4.

You could wait smd let him.start after easter or send him on a part time basis for a while until he is 5.

Ds is late August and he started reception just 4 days after he turned 4 there was him and another boys with the same birthday. The head said she keeps a close eye on the late summer born children as they can sometimes struggle to keep up. He and his little friend did really well, he loved it even though he was exhausted at the end of each day, he managed to keep up all the way through to High school and was still 17 when he went off to Uni. Don't worry too much the teachers are used to having all ages, and know that some are only just old enough to go to school.

Trazzletoes Fri 05-Apr-13 06:05:58

OP. I was just saying (before you clarified that you actually were not worried sick) that if it were something that concerned you that much, it would be unreasonable to be SO concerned about a characteristic (date of birth) that you could easily have given him a reasonable chance of not having by not ttc that month.

But you have since clarified that you aren't as terrified as your OP makes out. So my comment turned out to be irrelevant.

Trazzletoes Fri 05-Apr-13 06:15:17

Oh pombear of course it's not an exact science! But I don't think I'm being silly...

Date of birth is the one thing in childbirth that there is a small degree of control over and HAD it been as important as the OP had initially suggested, I was saying that it would have made more sense not to ttc that month. Presumably she wasn't aiming for an exact date in September, but if you are due at the start of October, there is a chance of an August baby, of course, but significantly less than if you are due in the first week of September.

But as per my last post, that is irrelevant now.

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