Have your children regressed over the holidays?

(47 Posts)
Beechview Wed 28-Aug-13 00:31:13

I thought I'd better do a bit of work with ds1 (yr4) seeing as we've not done much except for reading and going out and about (despite my good intentions) and realised that he had forgotten how to do things that he was doing really well in June/July in maths.

We've got a week or so and I'm trying to think how to bring him back up to speed without doing too much. I'm not pushy, I just don't want him to struggle and be put off.

I looked at the Carol Vorderman Maths Factor site but I'm not too sure about that.

Anyone have any recommendations?

China4Jazz Wed 04-Sep-13 13:21:57

Every child is different; whether you have one or five. As I am raising my son by myself; I have to do that little bit extra.
I know my son and what he is capable of. You are correct in saying they don't need 13-19 times table. I have just asked my son if it has helped him and his reply was "it helps with my fractions and allows me to get the answers quicker".

My son has a very active and challenging mind; at times I am beside myself with calming him down as he gets excited and loves talking and asking questions ( I can't answer them all) so at times; to get my son to lower his heart rate and give his tongue a rest; off to the table he goes.
Not as a punishment; just for his brain to catch up with his body!!

His teacher last year said his grades had slipped and that was down to him! She has told him not to put his hand up to answer questions as he has to give the slower learners a chance!
I cannot allow the teacher to take charge; I cannot sit back and do nothing.
He has had a great 6 weeks; playing, visiting, day trips. But as I say to him; there are 24 hrs in the day; you cannot spend 13 hours playing; what harm has it done by taking out 3 half hours and reading at night?
I have to do the best for my son; his teacher won't!
We spoke about it before hand and set targets; it wasn't sprung upon him.

Harum sounds similar to our holidays grin Think there were times when the DCs could not believe it when yet again I said "Yep - off you go - you can do what ever you want - television, film, garden, whatever". They went mad for the screen for a few days after we go home from being away too - but soon took to doing other things instead.

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Mon 02-Sep-13 21:16:38

No idea as we don't do any school related stuff over the holidays - it's the holidays after all.
If he has then his teacher can deal with it, it's what she is there for after all smile I mean that in a nice way, he's at a good school and I have every confidence that they will give him a good education for the next year as they have done so every other year.

HarumScarum Mon 02-Sep-13 21:11:05

I think a holiday and just doing what you like is just as valuable as school work. We were lucky enough to have a two week holiday in France followed by a week in Guernsey and there were loads of things there that DD wouldn't get to do at home - feeding goats, swimming in a pool every day (she did a whole width without floats and I'm so proud - she's 6 and generally pretty physically incompetent), digging on the beach, collecting shells just because they are pretty, walking in the countryside (we are Londoners), hearing a foreign language and trying to speak it a bit (un pain au chocolat s'il vous plait, nothing fancy!), flying a kite, etc etc.

But but but, after all that improving stuff and after we got home from three weeks away, she collapsed on the floor and watched TV for a week or so. More or less constantly. I don't mind. It's her holiday. She has plenty of time at school to do improving activities and I think nobody posting here is so uninvolved a parent that they haven't given their children opportunities to HAVE FUN in the holidays, which is the most important thing.

DD loved her week on the floor with a pile of cushions watching TV every bit as much as all the more obvious holiday stuff I've slaved away to be able to give her, quite honestly. She's also loved staying up late, staying in bed all day and watching silly YouTube videos of cats/playing Moshi Monsters, eating breakfast in bed and having extra helpings of cereal until it's nearly lunchtime, lying in the garden making up silly jokes about jelly, having her best friend over to play, writing a book about tigers (it makes no sense at all and includes a multiple choice question about what the best name for a tiger is - answer is Olive apparently), going to the park for hours, kicking a ball about, whatever. Whatever your kid likes is their holiday fun and there is no way on this earth I'm ever going to make my child learn their 13-19 times tables, on holiday or not. Or do a worksheet. Or learn spellings or whatever. There's more to life!

DD1 (7) probably not - she is like a sponge, has a horrifyingly and sometimes embarrassingly faultless memory and could probably recite every single fact read/heard/absorbed by osmosis from every activity we have done this holiday. From the recipe for crumble to how many plasticine snails she made this morning. She has read like crazy, learnt to climb trees and make a death slide for her teddies. She has had FUN.

DS1 (5) probably more than I would like. He was slightly behind at the end of YR. But he is a summer baby and stubborn. Try and get him to "get" something before he is ready has never worked. We have read most days. He has drawn lots. And learned how to catch bugs (and let them go again), plant lavender, plant bulbs, ride his bike without stabilisers, stand up to his big sister and make dens. He too has had fun.

There has been stuff available should they want it. We have done the odd castle/museum/farm. But mostly nothing. Mooching.

They wanted to play Peter Rabbit/Dogs/Star Wars/Moshi Monsters in the garden.
Holidays are for fun. And the weather has been amazing this summer. Made the most of it.

They have learnt lots this summer. Mostly that sometimes there is time in your childhood years to just "be".

pointythings Mon 02-Sep-13 20:51:04

If regression is such a huge issue, why didn't my Yr7 going into Yr9 DD get any holiday homework, and why won't DD2 get any when she goes from Yr 6 into Yr7 next year (changing schools)?

Learning is not just about carrying on with times tables, spelling, writing and worksheets. Going out and seeing history, nature and the world around you is also learning, and far more important IMO. No-one looks back on their childhood and says 'Damn, I wish I'd done more worksheets in the holidays'. Do they?

Good parents will provide learning in all kinds of interesting forms and their children will thrive.

insanityscratching Mon 02-Sep-13 20:45:32

I expect a lot of children have spent the holidays chilling out and enjoying the sun. I know dd has.
No need whatsoever to learn 13x and above tables because I'd imagine schools would teach them to multiply x by ten then multiply x by 3 and give the total or at least that's what dd does.
We've had a great six weeks dd has picked up new skills like touch typing and playing a keyboard, cross stitch and decoupage which are useful and fun even if not academic.

Sahmof3 Mon 02-Sep-13 20:44:39

Thanks HarumScarum, you've made me feel a lot better!

HarumScarum Mon 02-Sep-13 20:35:00

Honestly, I suspect the rest will do him as much good as anything else. I know my DD has really benefited from some down time. TBH, I'm liking his spirited defence of holiday time there. I know if someone gave me a six week holiday I wouldn't be doing any work to keep my hand in!!

Sahmof3 Mon 02-Sep-13 20:25:14

HarumScarum, not only has he refused to do any school work all summer, he has also refused to practise his violin and do any form of sport. He categorises these activities as work also! I am now feeling really guilty for not forcing him, especially after reading this thread and realising that he has almost certainly regressed. I just couldn't face the arguments, plus in some ways I agree with him. At least he'll go back to school well rested!

MirandaWest Mon 02-Sep-13 20:00:04

I have no idea if mine have regressed. Don't feel like they have but I suppose I would say that to assuage my guilty conscience (not actually that guilty it has to be said).

Do need to get them to bed earlier and get up earlier before Wednesday - earlier bed tonight and were going to bounce out of bed early ish tomorrow....

girliefriend Mon 02-Sep-13 19:54:49

I was wondering this as dd is going into year 3 on Wednesday, we have done reading every day but i still think even thats not as good as it was then end of last term confused

She has had a brilliant summer though, been to lots of different places and generally had a really good time.

On the advice of this thread she went on the bbc bitesize site for half hr the other morning.

HarumScarum Mon 02-Sep-13 19:43:43

>> he flatly refused saying that it is the holidays and, therefore, not a time to be doing any work!

I have to tell you, I'm with your son here! Also, I absolutely cannot see the point of learning 13 to 19 times tables.

Sahmof3 Mon 02-Sep-13 19:29:58

I think my soon-to-be Year 4 son has regressed, we've done absolutely nothing for the last six weeks, but there will probably be others in the same situation. I did suggest doing a bit of maths a couple of times, but he flatly refused saying that it is the holidays and, therefore, not a time to be doing any work! I couldn't be bothered to argue, which makes me feel a bit guilty and lazy actually.

I was really impressed with what China said she has managed to do with her son. Would love to know how she managed to get her son to work like that (plus I've never heard of anyone learning the 13-19 times tables...feeling a bit stupid here). Any tips welcomed!

AYoung Mon 02-Sep-13 16:04:02

At the end of last term, my DS had a rather disappointing school report. Despite being rather disappointed, I wanted to give him a fun holiday, so he has done very little work. Now the new term is upon us and I can tell that he is anxious that he'll fall behind. My DH and I are a little nervous too because the 11+ isn't far away and it's very competitive around where we live (Putney/Wimbledon). DS's teacher last year suggested that I work with him, but I don't want to alter our mother/son relationship. To make matters worse, DS's best friend has been coached throughout the summer and I can tell that DS is feeling uneasy about it. I've always had mixed views about tutoring, but DH and I have decided that we need to find a tutor, if only to help DS's anxiety.

Fuzzymum1 Mon 02-Sep-13 12:57:50

DS3 is 6yo and has resisted most suggestions of 'doing maths' etc. We've baked and talked about adding up ingredients etc, time for cooking and when it will be ready etc, he's written shopping lists and postcards but mostly he's played out in the street with his friends, running about and getting plenty of fresh air. We've been for walks, picnics, been to the transport museum in coventry (free and well worth a visit), visited family and friends, been to the butterfly farm at stratford on avon - we've done fun stuff mostly and we've talked about the things we've seen. He reads almost every night in bed - at least one but often two chapters of famous five or similar.

He's now well rested and excited about going back to school - his teacher popped in to collect the class rabbit this morning and he told her he couldn't wait to get to school tomorrow - I think that is a sign of a well-spent summer holiday.

pointythings Sun 01-Sep-13 21:52:09

I don't really think children regress as such in most cases - I think it's more a case of certain skills and knowledge not being as instantly accessible as it is when they're at school. Schools know this, they will recap and bring children back up to speed again very quickly. The knowledge isn't forgotten, it just needs to be brought back to the surface.

Mine haven't done anything academic at all - they have read a lot because that's what they do, but that's it. DD2 has a compulsory scrapbook to do by Thursday but will do that over the next 3 days and that's quite enough.

I never did any academic work during the holidays when I was at school, and since things are apparently so 'dumbed down' these days I refuse to believe that it's necessary now.

Paddlinglikehell Sun 01-Sep-13 20:38:00

Dd went to Venice, Naples (Pompeii), Dubrovnik, Malta (pretended she was a knight!), all on our two week holiday on a cruise. She played on the beach, did Geocaching (learning about the compass and coordinates).

We have been blackberrying, made a pie following a recipe and various cakes.

We sent Teddy into space today in a spaceship made of masking tape and twigs and he visited the planets in order.

We went and dressed up in a National Trust house, swanning around like it was our house, we made bread as a kitchen maid.

We also went zorbing with friends at a theme park and she kept off a 30 ft tower on a zip wire, in a leap of faith.

No formal learning - I don't expect she learnt anything these holidays!

Talkinpeace Sun 01-Sep-13 16:23:30

Kids learned to order their lunch in French (I'm bilingual but dashed to the toilet at the right time)
Kids learned to snorkel
DH and DD learned that they like grilled oysters (they leave the raw ones to me)
We all had a fascinating day of Normandy Beaches for DS and much of the history books make more sense having been there
The Bayeux tapestry was great

and since we got home they have done loads of music and a few chunks of bitesize (KS4)

brains cleared and ready for refilling to the brim in the first weeks of term

HarumScarum Sun 01-Sep-13 16:15:57

No idea, really. DD has learnt to swim, written loads of stories, done lots of artistic activities, collected shells, been to masses of parks, climbed, run about, learnt to operate a zipwire, read several longish books, done a bit of Mathletics (by choice, I didn't ask her to), earned a fair bit of money by doing my filing and learnt to whistle. I expect she will be OK. If she has regressed, no doubt she'll get back up to speed once she starts school.

Elibean Sat 31-Aug-13 22:17:34

Regressed....hmm. dd2 has learned to swim like a fish, grown a couple of inches, asked to do some maths a few times (she wants to catch up with her older sister, it's purely sibling rivalry), has done the reading challenge, done a bit of piano practice.

dd1 has done the reading challenge (picking fun books all the way), played Squeebles a few times, learned to knit, done very little piano, some cooking and lots of sightseeing.

I think they've come on quite nicely, overall smile

teafor1 Sat 31-Aug-13 20:55:24

I had my son do a page a day from a math book. He wasn't quite getting it and I wanted him to be up to the "expected" standard when entering Year 1. He is way too tired during term time to do the extra work so 10-20 min a day during the summer worked out well for us. He has come on really well this summer with it all. I'm not a teacher but looking at the national curriculum I would say he is just about at the expected standard now for numbers. We also kept up with the daily reading.

BarbarianMum Sat 31-Aug-13 20:31:24

Probably.

Having messed around with various models over the last couple of summers (a little every day, projects etc) I now go for consistent hard work in term time and a total break in the summer (other than reading but that's pleasure not work even for the 5 year old).

So we've done lots of outdoor stuff, day trips, arty stuff, lazing in the park stuff but nothing academic. To be honest they were so knackered by the end of last term I couldn't bear to. But next week it'll be business as usual.

Flicktheswitch Sat 31-Aug-13 18:55:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

tiggytape Sat 31-Aug-13 18:39:15

Probably!
I'm another one who doesn't agree with keeping formal academic work going through the holidays though.
I don't know many adults who keep their hand in at work every week of their annual leave for fear of forgetting all they know and, of all the successful adults I have come across, not one of them achieved their top results by poring over workbooks each summer as a child. It was unheard of until fairly recently in fact to do so.

I guess we've done some accidentally educational things and quite a lot of outdoor activities and the DCs have both read their own books (though I can't see DS's current preferences appearing on a Year 7 reading list any time soon!). He’s always been in the top sets despite possibly having to shift up a gear at the start of every year but after a long rest he's all set to go again. I suspect if tested at any point in August, his levels would be lower than at any point in June but the key thing is that across the year, he makes good progress so a bit of a stop and start doesn’t seem to do any harm and is more than outweighed by the mental benefits of a complete rest and fresh start.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now