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to think my daughter has gone backwards since starting reception? Do you do work at home with your reception child?

(21 Posts)
retrorita Tue 26-Mar-13 10:29:33

When dd1 left nursery she knew her alphabet, some phonic sounds and could form her letters correctly.

This was a mixture of very good teachers at nursery and work we did at home - fun based activities, not structured learning as such.

Since starting reception I've done a lot less 'learning' with her at home. There are less hours now she is at school all day and she also gets very tired. So I thought letting her relax and have fun was important. I also thought she would be doing enough work at school so I wouldn't need to be back it up at home just yet.

Not long ago I had parents review with her reception teacher where I was showed her work. Her teacher said she can't form some letters correctly. This was a surprise to me as I know she could do this when she was at nursery. But I could clearly see from the work that some letters were formed incorrectly. Letters which I had worked with her previously to show her how to write them.

Since then I've been doing a bit at work with her at home. And I've realised now she can't write her alphabet in order anymore.

That said, she has come on in leaps in bounds in other areas since starting school. her phonics and reading her very good for example.

AIBU to think she has gone backwards though and I am going to have to do work with her home?

Do you do work with your reception children? Do you use workbooks? If so, which ones?

My DS (late August baby so youngest in class) came out of reception year not knowing much at all but I wasn't worried. He was 5 when he went into year 1 - in some countries the kids don't start school until they are 7 or 8!

I didn't do that much work with him at home, maybe just going over some key words and phonics, thats about it really.

He is in year 6 and is where he should be.

Seriously, don't worry - your DD will be fine. Reception is still pretty play based, she has years and years of schooling ahead of her.

specialmagiclady Tue 26-Mar-13 10:58:29

Don't think you should worry if she has developed in leaps and bounds in other ways. Nothing with children is really linear. Their brains are developing in different ways at different times. It may be (as with my son) that she could do stuff with someone standing over h making encouraging noises, but left to he own devices in the busier environment of a classroom, with less adult supervision than in nursery, concentration goes a bit and letters are less well-formed.
Also re the alphabet thing, far more important to be able to use them to make sense. After all, very little use for writing out the alphabet even in educational setting, let alone in real world.

retrorita Tue 26-Mar-13 11:04:33

I think that's what it is special, the busy classroom is distracting.

We do reading every night which helps with the phonics.

I just want her to do as well as she can.

She will do well but just remember she is only little. Make you you don't do overkill with the stuff at home, sometimes it forces them the other way and they lose interest altogether.

SkinnybitchWannabe Tue 26-Mar-13 11:07:06

My ds didnt learn much in reception. tbh my middle ds may as well never have gone!
I don't do alot with them at home (I've never agreed with homework when they're young) and all three are thriving, eldest in top sets at senior school.
Don't be worried smile

Pandemoniaa Tue 26-Mar-13 11:08:08

I think you are almost certainly worrying too much. She's only in reception. School is a new experience and, as you have said, in other areas she's coming on in leaps and bounds. Far better that she gets a rounded education than can merely demonstrate that she can form letters for the sake of it. The classroom may be busy but then that's going to be the case at school. It doesn't mean that she won't do well but she's learning a whole range of skills now.

EssexGurl Tue 26-Mar-13 11:16:56

Are they teaching writing in the same way? DS school use cursive script so if kids have learnt to write separate letters they often struggle to relearn how to write. School explicitly told us that they didn't want children to be taught reading or writing as they had their own methods. They felt it hindered children to be taught one way per school then something else at school.

That said reception teacher never realised DS was not forming his letters properly. It took Y1 teacher to notice and give him extra lessons to catch up.

littleducks Tue 26-Mar-13 11:20:43

I had this with dd. She most ceratinly was treading water in reception with a few areas where she went backwards. It irritated me as much as I tried to stay relaxed about the whole thing. I dont think i dealt with it well, it certainly affected how I approached sending ds to reception (basically I did nothing with him and he was in daycare nursery instead of preschool which also did less). The school has a very mixed intake so seems to try to level things out in reception.

DD started reception able to read and write all her letters correctly, she would write little notes to her friends with some words like names learnt by heart and others sounded out (so either right or 'phonetically plausible'). In reception she started mirror writing and reversing letters, the school wouldnt correct it saying she would self correct in time. I didnt think she would as she is also learning to read and write in arabic which goes R to L, at home i would prompt her to use English or arabic 'mode' before she started.

Anyway to cut a long story short school said it wasnt an issue for all or yr R and yr 1. I was worried as her letter formation became slack, she would draw letters that looked ok but was going clockwise for example. Then suddenly come yr 2 she had to have extra handwriting homework etc.(time consuming boring) to intervene [cross] I am sure that could have been avoided if tackled earlier. It dented her confidence a bit but now near the end of yr 2 her handwriting has improved and the reversing has stopped.

She was held back on the red books for most of reception but this was easier to deal with. We read them and then other stuff at home too. She is now on gold which is fine for her age and will read some harder stuff at home.

retrorita Tue 26-Mar-13 11:21:04

The only letter that is different is the letter 'K' Essex.

bollywoodfan Tue 26-Mar-13 11:23:24

My ds is in reception. We have a newsletter every week detailing what they are learning and what 'homework' to do at home. The homework is not compulsory & sometimes we don't do it, but mostly I do try to fit it in. I have got workbooks from whs smith which are really good, but I let him choose if he wants to do them (he does them whilst playing teacher so does them out of choice, I would never force him).
Tbh I will not be relying on just the teacher/school. It is competitive out there and all the parents I know are doing extra work with the kids at home. I probably will get extra tuition for him when he is a bit older too, as we would like him to do the 11+ and get into the grammar school. It is a free grammar school so really hoping he gets in as can't afford private fees!
So yes, we do do some extra work at home and so does everyone else that I know!

retrorita Tue 26-Mar-13 11:24:34

Do you wish you had done more at home and listened less to school littleducks?

retrorita Tue 26-Mar-13 11:26:39

Wow bollywood - I didn't know so many parents were doing extra work at home. Sounds like that is standard in some areas.

littleducks Tue 26-Mar-13 11:37:45

Thats tricky, I am not sure! Dd is still doing fine academically and is a bright girl, although tough to watch her struggle with the extra handwriting work it has actually taught her a life lesson about having to work for things and perserverance that I think was good for her. I certainly didnt get that till much later on and it came as a shock!

I try to do lots of educational but fun activities, museums/planatariums etc.and increase their world knowledge.There are workbooks kicking around but I never suggest they do them, sometimes they will and I will mark them and praise them, sometimes they play schools and do them.

I wouldnt do extra stuff on school days but I do keep them reading in the school holidays (especially the summer) and I will correct them if they write things wrong even if school doesnt (including letters that look right but have been formed incorrectly). I also correct spellings, again the school doesnt in context but does have weekly spelling tests from yr 1.

It is a hard balance and I dont think I have gt it right, in fact i think i have done too much and too little at different times.

bollywoodfan Tue 26-Mar-13 12:34:55

Our school is outstanding and they seem to push the kids quite a lot with phonics & numeracy. I think it borders on 'a little too much' but some parants still aren't happy and think its not enough! We are told by the teacher & ht to work at home and they are already doing yr1 work now.Obviously if the kids are ahead in their targets it makes the school look good!

retrorita Tue 26-Mar-13 14:05:03

I wouldn't have a clue what yr1 work is? How do you find out?

DD1's school was also rated outstanding.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Tue 26-Mar-13 14:07:16

I've had the same thing OP and I am doing work at home but ONLY as long as DD enjoys it. The moment she loses interest I stop.

My Mum did bugger all with me when I was 5...I was an able reader and have a very good degree. I'm not going to stress too much. grin

Mrneedy Tue 26-Mar-13 14:15:35

I'm leaving it to the experts for now, but keeping a close eye on it

They do have a lot to take in, they learn the lower case, upper case and the sound. and then the writing too!

I wouldn't worry about knowing the alphabet in order, they learn the letters in a completely different order. I know teachers who roll their eyes when a child comes in singing ABCDEFG!!

blueberryupsidedown Tue 26-Mar-13 14:26:45

From what I know (I have two children, in y1 and y2), what children can produce at school - in a distracting environment, following instructions from one teacher to 30 children - is very different from what they can do at home on a one to one basis. Both my boys have nice handwritting, with correct spaces between words and capital letters, full stops, correct letter formation, etc at home when doing homework, but when I visit school and see the work that they are producing at school, I can say with some certainty that what they do at home is much better. I spoke to the teacher about this and she said that it's completely normal at that age. Their are many distractions at school, and they have to get on with it on their own. It's normal. If you keep on doing what you are doing at home, I am sure it will settle. Many parents have similar concerns than you in Reception and Y1.

bollywoodfan Tue 26-Mar-13 14:29:08

OP the national curriculam targets etc are quite easily available on education sites. They show you what children should know by the end of reception, yr 1, 2 and so on. I'm sure you could google it.
The books in wh smith have all the levels for the key stages too.

retrorita Tue 26-Mar-13 20:32:33

Thanks Bolly will have a look.

That makes a lot of sense blye

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