How advanced is my son (4)? Perspective and opinions please!

(63 Posts)
Cat98 Mon 16-Jul-12 19:39:38

Ok, DS is only just 4 so is in the nursery class at school. Due to start reception in Sept (he will be one of the younger ones in his year).
At school they have said he is working at quite a high level with numbers. I have spoken this weekend to a family member with a 6 year old who is meeting all his targets at school (so not behind) and when I told her what my son is doing with regards to numbers she said it's incredibly high level for his age (more than her son is doing) and that we should "push the school" to make sure he is catered for.. I am very sceptical so I thought I'd get some honest (mn) opinions as to whether he is really THAT advanced.

He can count up to 1000 plus though not sure about 2000 onwards.
He can do simple multiplications (3x5 etc), can do addition up to 20 (9=5 etc), subtraction - same, can count backwards, can count in 2s, 5s and 10s up to at least 100, knows about halves and quarters, can divide even numbers up to 10 by 2. He can also work out the difference between, say, 47 and 52 by counting between the numbers though would struggle with something far apart like 47 and 76.
I think he is bright but not exceptional.
Reading - yes he is above average but can only read simple sentences (the cat sat on the mat etc) - would strugggle with more difficult words though would have a go if they made phonetic sense.

Has my SIL got a point or is it just a case of bringing him on at home (he loves numbers so it's all fun at the moment) and let schol do/think whatever?
SIL says that in reception they will be doing number recognition up to 20 and that would be a waste of time for him.

Thank you

Cat98 Mon 16-Jul-12 19:45:17

Sorry, with the addition that should have been 9+5!

minceorotherwise Mon 16-Jul-12 19:50:31

I'd say that's very advanced. I'd maybe mention to his teacher that that is the level he is at so she can cater to that
I'd imagine the other kids in reception won't be reading either, mine certainly can't and he starts in sept too. His maths is advanced but nowhere near that level either

Hulababy Mon 16-Jul-12 19:50:42

He does sound as if he is doing very well for his age, especially in number work.

Yes - in reception that is what the majority of children may well be working on. But a good school will be able to differentiate for a child. Even at those levels this should not be beyond a teacher of primary school age.

Also reception is about much more than just maths and reading, so in that sense your SIL is not being fair to the schools. He will learn lot more besides - and it will be learn through play so can be done at all levels. For example - if they have a shop some children might be recognising coins or counting pennies in 1s whereas your DS might be looking at adding up different coins up to £1 etc.

Cat98 Mon 16-Jul-12 19:58:16

Thanks for the replies. Forgot to say we are just playing with money a lot at home now (as he is asking and very interested) and we are doing pence and pounds etc. It's the thirst for knowledge he seems to have particularly with maths - reading he doesn't do as much for fun apart form trying to read signs/cereal packets etc. But he always wants to do sums and things.

I agree that there are more important things he will be learning, and there is the fact that he is small for his age and quite emotionally young (I think) so while SIL suggested asking for him to be moved up I was very anti this. He singles out young children who will follow his lead as friends rather than his peers which is a bit concerning..

I will mention to the school if they haven't really noticed, I think we have a parents meeting about half way through the first term so that might be a good time? They certainly don't know exactly what he's capable of. Odd too as DH and I are not maths people!


motherstongue Mon 16-Jul-12 20:23:01

Hi Cat. i have pm'd you.

fruitpastille Mon 16-Jul-12 20:34:53

Children in reception usually only work with numbers up to 20. They might add or subtract small amounts using a number line, fingers or other practical resource. They would count on in 2s 10s or perhaps 5s but probably would not multiply. As your son is a year younger and not formally taught maths i would agree that he is very advanced for his age. The reading is pretty good too but not as unusual as his maths level. It sounds like he will still gain a lot from other areas of the curriculum though.

minceorotherwise Mon 16-Jul-12 20:35:06

My eldest DS was very bright, but the school he went to catered for that so I wasn't too concerned. However, he was also one of the youngest in his year and struggled in the year he was supposed to be in, from an emotional perspective.
I wouldn't look to put him up a year. Social skills are just as key as learning and he needs to be with his peer group or he will be out of his depth

Cat98 Tue 17-Jul-12 07:59:02

Thank you for all the helpful replies. I agree putting him up a year would be a no no socially. Also I am not even sure the school would do this. I was wondering with telling the teacher, how do you broach something like that? How do I say it without sounding like one of 'those' parents?!

megandraper Tue 17-Jul-12 08:24:12

Hi Cat - like others, I have a DS starting reception in Sept (but older than yours) and your DS is definitely very advanced in numbers, and a bit advanced in reading. My DS is going on the G&T list in reception (he is at pre-school in the same school) because he has advanced 'articulacy' whatever that may mean - I am not sure exactly how they cater for that, but I think it's just in terms of differentiated tasks at times.

I would certainly have a chat with your son's teacher so that she knows where he is with numbers. It sounds like he has a feeling for and appreciation of numbers. I would also look for ways of letting him enjoy this interest out of school - there must be websites etc. with materials for number games, workbooks and so on. I would see this in terms of letting him enjoy and stretch his interest, rather than 'coaching'.

I think the poster who suggested talking about it in parent's evening halfway through the first term may have a good idea. In the first weeks, your son's focus will be on settling in socially and learning the routine etc. There is so much to learn. Not sure what your school is like, but at ours we can just ask for a chat anytime - a 10 minute appointment somewhere in the day, so if it were me, I'd do that, and just say - this is what he's doing at home, just wanted to let you know, so you can support it at school too.

Sittinginthesun Tue 17-Jul-12 08:29:53

Do you get to full in a sheet about your child before they start school? It is worth writing a note with this info for the class teacher to read.

What I would say is don't get too upset if they don't channel him straight into more complex maths in Reception. Much of this year is really about playing and learning social and learning skills.

Both my boys are quite able in Maths. When DS1 was in Reception, I hardly heard anything about "number time", although his teacher told me at Parents' Evening that he did like numbers.

The real work starts in Year 1.

SarkyWench Tue 17-Jul-12 08:30:35

I would talk to the nursery as they should be sending on info about your son.
The school are more likely to believe them smile

Coconutty Tue 17-Jul-12 08:46:19

I think you should mention to the teacher in the first few weeks what he can do often reception will be number recognition, basic number bonds etc. This will be too easy for him.

I know this year is more like a play school but I think it would be a shame if he didn't progress as he obviously really enjoys numbers.

My Nephew was very advanced when he went to school, was an almost fluent reader, super at maths and he was so bored that he lost interest in school which was really upsetting for my DB and SIL. They did speak to the school but didn't get much help - he moved schools the following year and is okay now but it wasn't a happy time.

PropositionJoe Tue 17-Jul-12 08:51:56

Stick with your instincts, you are absolutely right. Mention it at the parents evening but not before. What difference does it make now? He still needs to learn to make friends, take turns and get changed for PE. And keep doing what you are doing at home, it sounds as though you'll be doing it for many years to come! (Mother of v similar 4yo, now 13 and still v bright)

Cat98 Tue 17-Jul-12 18:28:29

Thanks all. He is actually in the nursery class of the school he will be going to, but all they have said to me is matter of factly 'he's working at quite a high level with numbers', but going on what my SIL said and what most of you have said, they are either playing it down a bit, or more likely (as ds is shy) they don't know quite what he is capable of.

As an aside, today he has wanted to know all about numbers that are bigger than a million, and it has been a learning curve for me I can tell you (only a 'b' in gcse maths level!!) we had to look up on the computer all about quadrillions and decillions and things!

Will you get a home visit from the reception teacher & TA? That can be a very useful chance to let them know (or just let them observe for themselves!) what your DC are doing.

DD (just finishing reception) spent her home visit reading the TA a story out of the book they'd brought with them grin

I'm told that DD has been doing NC work ie work aimed at year 1 upwards rather than the reception EYFS stuff in both literacy and numeracy for most of the year, the maths things off the top of my head have been working with numbers to 100, number bonds to 20, counting in 2s, 5s, 10s, odd and even numbers, lots of measuring, estimating, also word problems, 2d and 3d shapes, comparitive volume, sequencing things from lightest to heaviest/smallest to largest etc.

DD loves the concept of infinity, which I find a useful sideways tangent to questions about what number comes next when I don't know the answer grin

Sorry, I forgot to say - all of that work has been done within her reception class with the support of the TA or teacher, she's not been put into year 1 for anything as far as I'm aware. So I would definitely expect that school should be able to differentiate appropriately for your DS.

Mathsnamechange Tue 17-Jul-12 23:02:46

Namechanged so can't be accused of stealth stuff

My 2 DS's were both doing this sort of thing at this age. They are now 18 and 19 and have been top in maths at whatever school they have been at ever since. They are academic all rounders but both are particularly good at maths.
What may surprise you is that they were not given any extra or extension work up until they started GCSE. We lived abroad and for most of thier education they were not even in streamed classes. They have gone to local state schools since we returned from overseas but this hasn't hindered their achievements in Maths. They both mostly self taught themselves in class.
We never had them tutored in anything ever and didn't get them doing extra work at home. They certainly never went to Kuman. The only academic extra curricular thing they did was to play chess. Something they loved and something they were good at, but even this they only did on a recreational basis even though they played at National competitions. ( Serious child chess players didn't look like they did much else too me. )
We have lots of puzzles, books and games at home, including computer games which I think helped them enjoy mathsy types of things. Ultimately though, I think some people are born with an innate talent for maths and it doesn't much matter how they are taught. The main thing is that they enjoy playing the language of numbers.
So my advice is, don't worry about it too much, maybe get him playing chess and lots of other fun puzzles, buy a few maths puzzle books and enjoy. grin.
I imagine he will be bright across the board. If you are good at Maths your options are endless. I have also always made sure that they dont just think of themselves as being good at maths. Obviously I like the fact they are good at Maths but I don't want it to define who they are.

Mathsnamechange Tue 17-Jul-12 23:04:33

ruedawakening. If your DD loves infinity just wait til she discovers 'imaginary numbers'. They are really cool!

hellymelly Tue 17-Jul-12 23:15:18

Maths wise that is very advanced for 4 and I would say gifted at maths. I have a bright dd a year older than him and she can't do all those things. My older dd is really good at maths (she is year two) and can do all that, and looking back could have done that at 5/6, but not 4 I don't think. Certainly does sound as though he will need extra number work to keep him interested.

steppemum Tue 17-Jul-12 23:29:49

my ds is like this with maths, very innate understanding of how numbers work. he was playing with number ideas from an early age. He loves sudoku, and you can get kids sudoko books from tescos. He also like logic puzzles, when he was small he liked dot-to-dot that went up to really high numbers and so on. Chess is a great idea.

Your ds does sound pretty advanced, a good school will pick up on that and teach him at his level, but if he is shy, it may take a while before that comes out, especially if he is busy making friends etc.

Floggingmolly Fri 20-Jul-12 19:34:40

It's not really relevant, but how did you find out he can count up to a 1000?
Why would anybody do that?

MrsFaffnBobbocks Fri 20-Jul-12 19:52:58

It does sound as though he is potentially gifted at maths, and will be one of the more able children with reading. He might be working at year 2 level for some aspects of maths, but not all.

I would avoid moving up a year early. He will be young for the year group, and there will be lots of developmental areas that will be supported in Rec, social is one aspect. His emotional development might not be as advanced as his maths, or eg his fine motor skills etc.

Definitely outline to the school what he can do. They may choose to assess his skills earlier. ( They should do this within the first half term). A confident teacher would presumably rather know.

I think it's great - he's obviously had lots of support and encouragement, and this should stand him in good stead for school. Confidence to try new things and a love of learning are key.

redwhiteandblueeyedsusan Fri 20-Jul-12 23:26:48

reading is top end of normalish.possibly more.. maths is bloody brilliant though. I suspect the views you get will depend on what, or whom we are measuring against.

youonlysingwhenyourewinning Fri 20-Jul-12 23:33:59

Wow. He sounds incredibly bright to me.

Llareggub Fri 20-Jul-12 23:43:58

My son is pretty good wit numbers although not like yours. He has just finished reception and when he started used to like doing sums on my iPad before bed. He could do division and multiplication in his head and can tell the time. What has been frustrating is that he just won't do it in school, and spends all his time outside in the construction area, building stuff. So his school report doesn't reflect what I know he can do. So don't panic if he doesn't do any of this in reception, I think it is an important year for just learning how to learn and that sort of thing. My son has loved it.

RedHelenB Sat 21-Jul-12 18:52:41

I think there will be opportunities for him to continue on with his maths, I have done no maths work with my son beyond the worksheets sent home form school & listening to him tell me what he knows & discovered that he had place value to the thousands & could count in tens a long way!! If the interest is there then there will be opportunities to learn at his level & tbh quick number bonds to ten underpin so much mental maths work that it won't be detrimental if he does cover what he already knows with something like even to just quicken him up or help with the difference between 47 & 76 (should know it ends in 9)

Cat98 Sun 22-Jul-12 10:02:08

Thanks everyone. Floggingmolly - I know it doesn't sound like fun but when we are walking to school, my son sometimes wants to count! Just count. He loves it. So he knows certainly up to 1000 from that!
I think he will be like your son in school llareggrub - so many fun outdoorsy things to play with which I know he loves, and when they do maths things in small groups (how they like to teach at his school) - he will be too shy to speak up. I think I will mention it but like you all say there are other important skills he will be learning in reception.
Whoever mentioned fine motor skills - yes these could do with work, he can't do up his coat zip for example! Though his writing Is pretty good.

cornflakegirl Tue 07-Aug-12 13:58:10

I would agree that putting up a year is not particularly helpful. My DS1 had numeracy and literacy with older classes until recently (just finished Y2) and I don't think it's been good for him socially (hence stopping it).

Agree with RedHelen about getting secure in techniques. DS1 grasped mental calculations quickly, but didn't necessarily know what calculation he was doing, which makes it tricky to extend to harder calculations. (So, he could divide 20 by 4, but might not be able to divide 18 by 4, because he didn't just know it.) So stuff like number lines will help him extend what he can do innately.

There are lots of things you can do at home to keep him interested and stretched at maths. DS1 really loves the BBC Bitesize website - I'm good at maths but not necessarily good at teaching, so this is good for expanding his knowledge without me stretching him too far. He also sets himself maths puzzles to do. And we play board games, which help with problem solving and logic. Mainly we just encourage him in his love of numbers.

The one thing I do find, with him used to finding things easy at school, is that he's sometimes reluctant to try a problem that he doesn't immediately know how to solve, even if he does actually know all the techniques that he needs.

Cat98 Sun 16-Sep-12 10:25:02

Just wanted to thank everyone for the tips and advice, and provide a mini update for anyone who is interested!
He is a week and a half into reception and enjoying it. His teacher said to me as I picked him up on thurs that 'he's done really well with his maths today, brilliant!' when I asked him what he had done he said he had to 'stand on' numbers and he was asked what was 1 more than 6, and 1 less than 8 etc. he can do this no problem obviously. But I wonder do they know that he can actually answer qs like 'what is 3 less than 98' etc.. Probably not! But I guess they have noticed he's pretty good anyway. I certainly won't mention anything else at this stage, would you agree?

StillSquiffy Tue 18-Sep-12 10:20:59

I would mention it, and would use some of the really good websites with your son to practice on, but I see no reason whatsoever to 'push the school', unless your DS shows signs of being really bored, or not enjoying what he's doing.
DD is exceptionally bright and her teachers are all very aware of it, as it became apparent when she was still in nursery. Whilst they bring her along at a fair old clip, they are quite deliberately (and with my approval) not 'pushing' her, as neither they nor we see any real benefit. If she does start to get bored it will be a different matter, and we're waiting for that moment, but for now she skips to school, races through her homework in a heartbeat and goes out in the garden to play. We could race her through the maths and the reading levels, but see no point to this. I'm happy that she is only a level or two ahead of the class in ORT, rather than miles ahead - it'd do her no good and potentially a lot of harm for her friends or anyone else to 'differentiate' her.

will think differently of course, once scholarships are in the offing

CakeBump Tue 18-Sep-12 10:25:47

I'm a year 2 teacher and the times tables, numbers up to 1000, halves and quarters, division by 2 and 10 etc are the sorts of things we cover, and some of it would be extension work even then.

tbh I've had a fair few 7 yr olds who can't grasp this stuff, so I would say that yes, your 4 year old sounds very bright.

CakeBump Tue 18-Sep-12 10:26:48

Looking at your last post, I would speak to the teachers as unless he volunteers what he knows, reception teachers are unlikely to pick it up as they won't be looking for it.

purplehouse Tue 18-Sep-12 10:37:22

I think you should mention the maths, it sounds like he is extremely bright in this area and they may not spot this because they won't be looking at some of the things he can do.

For reading, it will be easier. Children have an appropriate book for their personal level so he will just get one that suits him.

It is a maths issue really, the reading is at a very good "normal" level and they can easily deal with it. It will be very easy for them to spot as well because there is writing everywhere and he will presumably read things that he sees.

BrainSurgeon Tue 18-Sep-12 10:38:25

Wow! that's pretty damn cool! My DS is 4 on 2 weeks and just started Reception, he can count to 100 and do additions/subtractions by 1 and I thought he was quite clever wink

Agree with CakeBump, speak to the teachers but personally I would say wait a bit longer - perhaps until half term - to see if they figure it out. You will be a lot more credible once they had some time to know your DS a bit better.

BrainSurgeon Tue 18-Sep-12 10:38:54

Sorry meant 4 AND 2 weeks not on

BrainSurgeon Tue 18-Sep-12 10:40:18

Oh and reading / writing already? sounds well advanced too. DS can only write the first 2 letters of his name and can't read words yet...

GobblersKnob Tue 18-Sep-12 10:44:52

He sounds very similar to ds at the same age. We chose to do nothing about it really in terms of school until he was in year three and started Junior school. Up until then we just supported him at home, fortuntely dp is extremely good at maths so it isn't a problem.

He is eight now and luckily the school he is at is rather good at maths teaching and has had a lot of pupils do well, he has 2 hours of one to one tuition a week within school as do a few other pupils.

They have had several children tke their GCSE before they are eleven. I don't know if ds will be at that level, he has a lot of other interests and we don't really push him in any particular direction.

Cat98 Tue 18-Sep-12 14:52:09

Thank you.
I think there's a parents evening at the end of this half term so I'll mention it then - how do you say something like that?! Seriously - how should we word it without sounding like a pushy parent?

We have also been doing some estimating lately as a friend who is a teacher asked how his estimation is and we didn't have a clue. He estimated that he has 100 cars (he has 92) and he estimated 20 quavers in a packet - sounds about right we thought (we didn't count them!) Have tried with a couple more groups of things and he is quite good at it I think. Though again, if friends hadn't said stuff and I hadn't asked on here I would still just assume top end of normal, a bit like the reading. Speaking to parents I am pretty certain there are at least two or three others at a similar reading stage, allbeit September/Oct birthdays, so I am not worried about that side of it really.

Cat98 Tue 18-Sep-12 14:53:00

Oh and brainsurgeon - when I say "writing" he can write his name and write CVC words, that's it, so not writing pages of prose or anything!

BrainSurgeon Tue 18-Sep-12 15:03:34

grin @ prose - give him a couple of months and he'll get there wink

To answer your question, I guess I would try and approach it from an "asking for advice" perspective? (sorry I'm not very good at giving examples but hope you get what I mean?)

Cat98 Tue 18-Sep-12 15:05:11

Thanks, yes I do know what you mean. Very helpful smile

ISeeThreadPeople Tue 18-Sep-12 15:05:43

My dd is a year older than your ds but started reception at the same age iyswim.

DD, like your ds, was and is a clever cookie. She could read and write before starting school and her maths was at a v similar level. It never occured to me to worry about school 'stretching' her, simply because we chose a school we loved. We liked the atmosphere, the teaching staff and the focus on each child as an individual. They don't bother with G&T (I don't think dd is g&t btw) but they do like to stretch sideways where necessary and every single child in the class, to my knowledge, was stretched at an appropriate level. And often without knowing about it.

DD ADORED reception. She did so many projects, made brilliant friends, played and played and played and her teacher stretched her academically in ways dd wasn't even aware of. She's in y1 now and reading chapter books, understands percentages and is obsessed with division, asks to do more complicated sums etc. She writes 'books' and illustrates them, writes poetry and songs, plays shops an awful lot (she likes the calculations), gets books out of the library every week, an even split between fact and fiction and she keeps a diary. We go along to museums and open days and anything really. Whatever might spark an interest.

I think the thing I've learnt is that a bright child is often very self-motivated if you give them the opportunity. I think personality plays a part, but dd very much likes to self-direct her learning. She is interested in birds atm for example so we made a bird feeder, read up about garden birds, took photos, drew pictures etc and did some planting of things which would attract more wildlife, all the time learning about associated stuff like photosynthesis and pollenation.

Lonecatwithkitten Wed 19-Sep-12 16:53:07

I have found that being good at maths is nice in KS1, but it isn't really rated until KS2. The focus seems to mainly be on reading in KS1 and this is definately what other parents see and rate children by.
However, come KS2 the emphasis seems to shift to maths. DD whilst being described as a gifted mathematician at the end of year 1 has never seen herself as one of the clever ones until she arrived in KS2. Now she is able to see where she stands compared to older children and is able to appreciate that her Maths ability is more than something nice, but actually something really quite unique and special. She hasn't suffered from the lack of emphasis in fact I think she has benefited from nothing being made of it until she was really able to appreciate how special it is.
The observation I would make is that he should get a lot out of the measuring and 3D shape aspects of maths in KS1.
I don't speak of DDs achievements to anyone beyond my family and this is something I am very glad of. No other parent at school has any idea where DD is working and this again is a good thing as she gets no negative vibes about being good at maths - something I suffered from horribly.

Cat98 Wed 19-Sep-12 19:18:39

It certainly seems like ds is self motivated at the moment though I am not sure how long it will last! (it didn't with me...)
I certainly don't talk to many other people about what he can do, it's only really been close family members or friends with children of different ages when the subject has come up (I haven't blabbed about it to any of his peers' parents because I wouldn't want comparing or to sound smug!)

He told me tonight that his teacher asked him today "what is double one" and he said "I don't know"! Hmm. When I told him that "doubling meant "times by two" he got it straight away and we did doubles up to 100 taking it in turns. But his teachers will not realise what he can do - he just didn't know the term "double"!

Cat98 Sat 29-Sep-12 09:43:06

Another update - met with ds's teacher yesterday and have come away feeling reassured and very happy that he is in such a lovely school smile!they have noticed some of his abilities (though didn't know the full extent of the maths but I told her a couple of the things he's been doing at home) and she said she already differentiates - will give ds a different but similar task for example so stretching him sideways I guess.

She also told me some more about her teaching ethos and I am very happy and relieved, I'm sure he's in the right place! He happy too which is the main thing. She said 'it's a good class this year, but your ds especially stands out'. They do a lot of learning outside which ds loves and he is clearly confident with her as he was chatting away to her, which is a surprise as he can be very shy.
Thanks for all the advice!

Bunnyjo Sat 06-Oct-12 09:43:24

My DD sounds very much like your DS at the same age - she is now 5 and in Yr1. She's a late August born and, before starting school, she could count way beyond 1000, add and subtract 2 and 3 digit numbers, knew her 2, 5 and 10x tables and could do more abstract things like tell the time to the quarter hour. I knew she was bright, but didn't think it was anything out of the ordinary. The school quickly noticed she was very bright, both with literacy and numeracy and she had a fantastic first year in school - they differentiated the work well and she made excellent progress.

Mid way through reception, she announced she knew what the biggest number in the world was; I expected her to say a million or suchlike, but she said 'It is infinity and it looks like a bow, or an eight on its side... But it isn't really a number, it's just bigger than any other number and means it goes on forever! I saw that Professor talking about it on the television.' She meant Professor Brian Cox!

She's now been streamed into the Yr2/3 class and she's thriving. She does, however, have 2 left feet and cannot do sporty things for toffee grin.

I am realistic, though; she is ahead of all her peers at the moment, but these things have a habit of levelling themselves out. As long as she continues to love school and make progress, then we will all be happy. Whether she is the brightest at the end of Yr6 (or Yr11/13 for that matter), does not matter.

Cat98 Tue 13-Nov-12 17:19:56

Wow bunnyjo that sounds great!
We had parents evening the other day and I was gobsmacked, as they not only "spotted" ds but noticed lots of things I hadn't even thought they might! They told me he is very advanced and that he is now working on the yr 2/3 maths targets. They also said they did a standard language comprehension test with him and he scored "in the 99.9th percentile for his age"? (does anyone know what that might have been?!
Like you I am staying realistic however, as I know it might level out, but I hope they continue to bring him on and not let him stagnate.

anitasmall Sat 17-Nov-12 16:32:19

Hi Cat98,

My daughter is a bit like yours. She is in Year 1 and is in HA group both from Maths and Reading. She is very tiny and the youngest in her class so for her going to year 2 is not a solution. I already accepted that the British education system is only free child care. I rather try to spend more time with her playing music (recorder, Kodaly method) or taking her to sport activities (music, fencing).

anitasmall Sat 17-Nov-12 17:01:13


My daughter knows exactly the same things that yours. All the class was assessed and then they told me she is very advanced...

However! I am not convinced that she is G&T. In her class she is not the only child that knows how to add and take away 2 digit numbers and knows the 2,3,5,10 times table. We can not compare this generation with ours.

anothercuppaplease Thu 22-Nov-12 16:30:46

DS was similar and he is now in year 1, and he is doing great at school, he loves it, he is not bored, he gets extra homework (different from other children, in maths especially). When we checked his literacy and maths school work at parents' evening it was clear that the work he is doing is different from the some of the other books we saw, both in maths and in literacy - I mean the teacher gives him more difficult and challenging work. We have never had to ask for it, it just happened.

We do extra work with him at home, focusing on understanding of maths rather than just learning times tables for example. We use numicons and the old fashion cuisenair rods to explain maths concepts. He is already asking questions about percentages, about negative numbers, etc. Such as 'are there any numbers smaller than zero' and 'what is the smallest negative number', and it's funny if we ask him if he's hungry he'd say 'I'm 80% hungry'. He is also asking questions about fractions (what's half of a half of a half for example) and he will know the answer if we ask him 'what's a quarter of 14' he will say 3.5.

He can now add (most of the time) two digit numbers such as 75+34 in his head and can count in threes backwards, his party trick!

learnandsay Mon 26-Nov-12 10:56:35

I'm not sure how much help the nursery report is likely to be in this context. If it's the one I'm thinking of it's structured around the EYFS goals. So if your child is say great and physics and can build working rockets, the nursery won't mention it because EYFS doesn't have a section about rockets.

And if you're lucky Reception will have activities for a four year old who can count to 1500 and divide any number by two. But it's also possible that they won't. Mainly because they've never seen such a child before (or not many) so they simply don't know what to do with one.

Magdalena45 Fri 04-Jan-13 00:51:39

Worked in nursery, reception year 1/2... This is VERY advanced for maths. Really.

madwomanintheattic Fri 04-Jan-13 04:03:03

Old thread, Magdalena.

Magdalena45 Mon 07-Jan-13 23:36:25

Oh, sorry

FriendlyLadybird Fri 11-Jan-13 22:28:50

In my experience, the teachers are used to dealing with children with a wide range of abilities and different levels of knowledge. Just make sure that he admits to what he can do. When my DS started Yr1 they went round the class to see how far each child could count: DS, who had got the hang of counting and therefore could potentially continue counting indefinitely, decided that 23 was a good number to stop at.

hardboiled Sat 12-Jan-13 23:01:57

When we checked his literacy and maths school work at parents' evening it was clear that the work he is doing is different from the some of the other books we saw, both in maths and in literacy Anothercup, does your post mean you were actually looking at other children's books at parents evening? And then comparing them to yours? hmm

Madwoman, what's wrong with bumping an old thread? I've never understood the criticism someone gets on Mumsnet if they bump and old thread...Am I missing something?

anitasmall Tue 15-Jan-13 19:10:28

I highly recommend to everyone to check other children's books. At our school one TA's children's work was appreciated this term. My daughter complained a lot about her: not attending, not listening, behind...When I complained at the school that she was awarded a present for her achievements the school went on about her qualities. Than I pointed out that I have seen her books they weren't so happy.

gfrnn Fri 15-Feb-13 16:13:57

Hi, I am in situation with some parallels, and shameless enough to bump the thread.

The child in question is 3.6. He suddenly "got" addition and subtraction in the space of a week just before Christmas. Recently asked him how many fingers does everyone (3 of us) here have, and it took him 2 seconds to come up with 30. Then asked how many would there be if his brother and grandparents (i.e. 3 more) had been there, and after 2 more secs he answered 60. Started reading at 2.5 and is now fairly fluent at around ORT 8 / purple band level. This afternoon he called his DM in to show her he had spelt "electric" with scrabble tiles. Sang happy birthday, in spanish, to DM aged 2.10 having picked up some spanish at childminders.

He will be starting reception in September as one of youngest (August birthday). School choice is not yet set in stone as we have at least 2 potentially viable options. - one independent, one state: both local and seem good, but neither academically selective. Other than general thoughts/perspectives, I would be interested in hearing from anyone with a child with similar tendencies who has started school (or others with relevant experience) regarding what problems might come up and what qualities they would look for in a school to help us pick between those available. thanks in advance.

anitasmall Mon 18-Feb-13 19:45:18


Your child is very bright. However there are more and more children who can read before Reception class. Picking up foreign languages easily at this age is also normal. If I were you I would teach her foreign languages (Spanish, German, Russian...), singing-musical instruments (recorder), I would take him/her? to swimming lessons, ballet...

FrameyMcFrame Mon 18-Feb-13 20:17:43

My DD was abysmal at maths and slow at reading in reception year 1/2 but at 11 she's now in top sets and doing really well at maths and English, achieving results way beyond those expected for her age and plays the piano and violin very well.
Im just adding this comment for those parents who don't have the obvious child prodigy, children can be late developers but as parents we have to guard against children being labelled by schools. I think this practise is damaging for both the very bright children and the children who take longer to get there.

DD was consistently put in bottom sets, it started to affect her self esteem, sets within classes can start to become self fulfilling prophecies. Problems start when children don't match up with the expectations of the teachers.

DD didn't start to flourish academically until she got away from the teachers who had labelled her slow to a school where all the children were pushed to the best of their abilities, not just the obviously bright ones.

anitasmall Fri 22-Feb-13 19:29:05


When we parents search for good schools we consider so many things but not this labeling issue.

I am glad that you mentioned it.

signorapacino Fri 22-Feb-13 19:53:17

Yes definitely advanced. I'm surprised nursery haven't said more to you as can't see most other kids his age being able to do that.

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