At the risk of sounding like I think the school doesn't see how clever DD is...

(24 Posts)
Spockster Wed 30-Jan-13 15:27:32

...what can I do if they don't?! They seem to think she is "just where she should be", plodding along in the bottom half of the year for literacy and numeracy (Year 2). But I am really disappointed with her progress bc I think she is bright and should be doing much harder work. I do workbooks, reading etc with her at the weekends and I have spoken to her class teacher, who is very, very young and very, very unfazed. Should I just chill out (she is only 6.5) and wait for her to find her mojo?

alarkaspree Wed 30-Jan-13 15:29:19

What makes you think that your dd should be doing much harder work?

annh Wed 30-Jan-13 15:32:39

On what basis do you think she is bright? What level of reading and numeracy are you doing with her at the weekend? And don't forget that how she performs at home with one-to-one support and encouragement from you may not reflect how she works at school.

Is she happy at school? Or is she bored?

ShakeWellBeforeOpening Wed 30-Jan-13 15:34:31

*what can I do if they don't?*- change school , home ed?

Why do you think she is clever ? Do you think she is just coasting because she is bored ?

What is she expected to get at YR2 SATS ?

wheresthebeach Wed 30-Jan-13 15:56:26

At this stage they are working on the basics...getting those grounded is important for KS2.
Work out where the gaps are, and do extra bits at home with her.
She may well be bright but she may also be with a bright class so bottom half may be working to top half of attainment. IYKWIM

Spockster Wed 30-Jan-13 16:28:08

I don't think she is particularly gifted, but she is not below average, which is what bottom half of a non-selective school will be. She loves doing easy work; she used to gloat at home about how she got easier work than her friends. Now dhe kniws yo dhut up!! She gets all her spellings right at home from the day she gets them until the test, when she gets 8 or 9 because she has been daydreaming. But the teacher won't challenge her more until she is consistently getting them all right in the test.
My hunch is that she has discovered exactly how hard to work without a) getting into trouble, or b) being given harder work. But how to convince the teacher? How to convince DD work will get more interesting as it gets more challenging? Or does it really matter at this stage?

Spockster Wed 30-Jan-13 16:31:48

I don't know how she is expected to perform in SATS; how would I find out? At home we are working on advanced ks1 literacy and numeracy workbooks, and she reads essentially what she wants, generally those awful pony/fairy books. At school she is on lime level which (I think) is the top level before they can choose from the library.

redskyatnight Wed 30-Jan-13 16:36:21

If she is on lime level for reading she is above average. Sounds like she's in a bright class. For comparison, there are just 2 children in my DD's Y2 class on lime level atm so if she would like to move to DD's school she would be in the top reading group.

If you ask the teacher what NC level she is working at (or what she predicts for end of Y2) you'll get an idea as to whether it's just her class that is doing well.

HAve you asked teacher is there are particular areas she struggles with?

learnandsay Wed 30-Jan-13 16:37:48

Is there a way that you can interest your daughter in better performance? Maybe enter her in national writing competitions?

Lots of parents have problems getting teachers to differentiate their children's work on the basis of obvious excessive performance. Lots of teachers don't know how to differentiate. There's a thread going on on TES Primary right now about how hard many find it.

If children who are clearly beyond their current school work aren't getting harder work there isn't much of a case to differentiate work for a girl who isn't excelling with the work she's already getting.

I think what you're really saying is I wish my daughter worked harder at school. And that's a different subject from the one you've posted on.

Spockster Wed 30-Jan-13 17:10:55

Yes; clearly I want her to work harder, but that's not my real problem. In fact I am probably slightly impressed that she had worked out how to have an easy life quite so soon smile
My real problem is how to make the teacher want her to work harder, when it appears that the teacher thinks she is achieving her potential!

pigleychez Wed 30-Jan-13 17:13:48

I kind of know how you feel.
DD1 is in reception. She was reading before starting school. I told her teacher this but it still took for the first half term before she actually realised her abilities.
She is flying along with her reading and is reading books in stages for 6yr olds however the group reading they do (which seems is all they do) is books that are far too easy for her. Books with 3 letter words, Cat sat on the mat.

I worry she's not being encouraged enough. Like its easier for the teacher to let her plod along with everyone else. Really havent gelled with her teacher so find it hard to question. On the last parents we got speel about her needing to be an all rounder not just good at one thing.

I continue to encourage her at home and just hope her teacher next year is abit more pro active.

Spockster Wed 30-Jan-13 17:14:38

The school has a reputation locally for pushing the kids and teaching them a year ahead of NC, so I don't think it's a general issue. Could be wrong though. I am probably just a typical professional parent with a competitive nature, who can 't understand why her kids aren't the same... I think I was desperate to be best at everything at 6!!!

Lonecatwithkitten Wed 30-Jan-13 18:01:34

Have you considered the cohort she is in. Not every class is the same she maybe above the national average, but below her class average.
Sometimes the difference between children in the class can be very great for example in DD's year group of 29 children (Y4) the top children are just finishing the year 6 curriculum and the children at the bottom end are just completing the year 3 curriculum, but one third of the children are in this top group. So there are children who any other year group would be at the top for Maths who are currently around the middle.

learnandsay Wed 30-Jan-13 18:10:30

What do Y5 children do in school all day if they've entered Y5 already having finished the Y6 curriculum?

pointythings Wed 30-Jan-13 18:24:13

learnandsay there isn't really a Y6 curriculum, there's just the stuff relating to the next NC level <pedantic> <apologetic>. So if they've completed what they need to do for NC L4, they move on to NC L5. This happened with DD1 and is currently happening with DD2, who is expected to end Yr5 on a low L5 in maths, high L5 in reading and writing. In Yr6 they will simply carry on building on this work.

A good school will work with secondaries in their area to provide appropriate differentiation for very able children.

The OP's DD definitely sounds above average, but as has been said could just be in a very strong year cohort.

kilmuir Wed 30-Jan-13 18:47:10

What is the relevance of the teachers age got to do with it?
She does sound bright, but maybe so are rest of her peers.

Spockster Wed 30-Jan-13 19:50:06

Young teachers don't have as much experience as more mature ones in general (!); she didn't have an awful lot to suggest, I didn't mean it in a dismissive way.
I feel a bit better now; but if they are a bright year, all the more need for her to progress well (11+ area unfortunately). She is progressing in some areas, her reading has come on since last year, but not writing or numeracy. She loves school, friends, teachers etc, I am very grateful for that.

pointythings Wed 30-Jan-13 20:19:23

I'd have to disagree with you, OP in dismissing young teachers - in both cases, the teacher who picked up my DDs as bright were in their second year after qualifying and they were very effective in managing good differentiation for them.

Possibly stupid question - are all comprehensives in an 11+ area necessarily dire and is it therefore essential to get one's DC into grammar school? Honest question, as I am not in an 11+ area and don't understand the system.

Spockster Wed 30-Jan-13 20:32:18

Not necessarily dire. But the top third aren't there, so things seem to be skewed to the lower ability kids (in Bucks anyway)

Spockster Wed 30-Jan-13 20:33:26

I wasn't being dismissive. DDs young teacher was not helpful and did not inspire confidence. That's all.

pointythings Wed 30-Jan-13 21:01:07

Yes, but the fact that your DD's teacher was unhelpful and did not inspire confidence may well have had nothing at all to do with her age and rather more with her competence...

If it's true that the comprehensives in your area are geared to the lower ability children and do not cater well for their particular top cohort (the ones who did not make grammar school but are still above average) then that's a real shame - schools should work to bring out every child's potential. In a way this makes me glad I don't live in an 11+ area - we do have a few selective private schools, but we also have very good comprehensives which cater well for able children as well as those who are not so academic. I know how lucky we are.

LiegeAndLief Wed 30-Jan-13 22:08:59

If she is at a normal state school, is on lime band in Y2 and is "plodding along in bottom half of the class for literacy" she seems to be in a very advanced class.

There are very few children in ds's Y2 class on lime band and those that are seem to be a fair way ahead of their designated reading age.

Spockster Wed 30-Jan-13 23:01:57

That is very reassuring. Reading us probably the most important thing at this age I think. Thanks everyone, I will lighten up.

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