DD struggling to learn poem.

(7 Posts)
AngiBolen Tue 19-Mar-13 20:51:11

DD bought home a poem yesterday evening and told me she had to learn it off by heart to recite in the school Easter church service on Thursday. (At first I thought it was just DD, but it's her whole class)

We gave it a good go last night, and she managed to learn the first four lines - there are 16 lines in total, and the language isn't very child friendly.

Today she came out of school anxious about learning the poem, as her class teacher told her (and some other children) to stand up in front of the class because they didn't know the poem. Apparently the teacher has said anyone who doesn't know the poem tomorrow will stand up in front of the school. - Now I'm quite sure this wouldn't happen, but DD is now very anxious about this. I've had to calm her down a lot so she could even learn the poem. (She is generally an anxious child, and works herself up about little things - DH and I are working on this.)

We gave it a good 2 hour go this evening. She's still not 100%, but has tried really hard. Obviously she's now worrying about having to stand up in front of the school tomorrow. I've told her it's fine, she will know it perfectly for Thursday, and yes she would look a bit silly standing in front of the whole church not knowing it, but she will know it by then, and will be fine.

Am I being precious in thinking it's a bit mean of the teacher to say the children who don't know the poem tomorrow will have to stand up in front of the school? This is typical of this teachers style, and it's making DD anxious, and me worn out. Would you bring it up with the teacher?

DorisIsWaiting Tue 19-Mar-13 21:37:39

How old is your DD?

I think the teacher is unrealistic expecting a 16 line poem to be learnt by all children in 4 days, surely she realises that children all learn differently and at different speeds.

personally i would bring it up with the teacher and if no joy the head this is bullying type behaviour from the teacher which surely can not be effective in bringing out the best in the class.

MidniteScribbler Tue 19-Mar-13 23:42:11

Not sure how old your DD is, but it's pretty crazy to expect any child to learn a poem by heart, and completely unnecessary. It's natural that nerves will get the better of even the students who have learnt it by heart anyway when asked to stand in front of the rest of the school. At our school, when asking students to stand in a group and sing or recite something, someone will be in the aisle of the church or auditorium with cue cards that are big enough for the students to read. I'd be asking if this could be implemented instead.

AngiBolen Wed 20-Mar-13 07:28:22

DD is 7. DD now tells me the poem was given out on Friday, but she forgot to bring it home, so I can see why the teacher is annoyed.

I'm really scared about bringing it up with the teacher in case DD becomes one of the children the teacher isn't kind to. DD tells me there are a few, very nice DC IMO, that the teacher is unkind to. - The only reason I can think the teacher might not like these children is their mothers are the middle class assertive ones, who would bring something like this up.

Bunbaker Wed 20-Mar-13 08:04:20

Set it to music. DD can't remember her Guide promise, but she was in the school production of Joseph recently and knows all the songs off by heart.

GooseyLoosey Wed 20-Mar-13 08:10:09

I was going to suggest doing it with rhythmn, then it's like learning a song.

Your dd is under too much pressure from this teacher but I can understand your reluctance to intervene if she has a reputation. You can approach the teacher in an easy going way and just say your dd is finding it difficult to learn - you spent 2 hours doing it last night. Does she perhaps have any tips for learning poems?

AngiBolen Wed 20-Mar-13 08:24:58

Putting it to music is a good idea, if I can figure out a tune!

DD has put lots of rhythm into it, which is helping.

I've put a not in her school diary saying DD has practiced hard, but still not word perfect, and is worried what might happen in school today.

We'll keep plugging away at it tonight. I think it's good to rise to a challenge.

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