Would you speak to school?

(17 Posts)
Toonoisy Wed 23-Mar-16 13:20:04

Ds is 8. A few months ago he told me he had no one to play with at school, because all his friends were playing football and he didn't want to.

I spoke to his teacher and an approachable TA and asked if they'd noticed whether he was struggling with friendships. They both said not but said they'd observe him, they also explained that each class has an allocated day to play football, so they wouldn't be doing that every day. They fed back that having observed him at playtime he was playing with others and they told me who.

I might add that ds has never really taken to playing football, I've taken him to a couple of different clubs at his request, from what I've seen he's struggled to follow what's going on and he's ended up not wanting to go back because other children have laughed at him. Yet he's got all the enthusiasm and loves kicking the ball around in the garden and will happily play with another adult for ages.

More recently when I've asked him what he's done at school he's told me he's played sports with his classmates,so I just assumed he was happy and joining in.

Last night we were chatting about his day, he said he played football again, I asked who was on his team, just general chatting.

Anyway he's now told me that he wasn't on anyone's team. That the two captains pick teams and no one ever picks him. He said he's always standing there once the game has started and he asks who's team he's on and which way they're shooting and they all ignore him. So he just runs up and down. In his words he might as well be invisible.

I asked who he plays with on other days and he told me that he has to go round asking if he can play until someone lets him.

I feel so bad for him. I take him to clubs after school so he can socialise. He gets invited to quite a few parties at school. I've invited a couple of kids over but it's never been reciprocated.

Overheardintheplayground Wed 23-Mar-16 13:23:29

Please do speak to the school. My Ds has had similar issues and it is heart breaking. He has joined a group at school that focuses on play skills and it seems to have helped.

curren Wed 23-Mar-16 13:24:39

Speak to them again and tell them what he said.

There isn't a lot they can do unfortunately. I doubt he would feel happy if people are forced to play with him either.

May be a bit more supervision of where they play football may help.

Ask them about what he is like in the classroom, does he mix with kids inside?

Nicesunnytuesday Wed 23-Mar-16 13:29:30

I was that child. I'm so sorry for you both. I would speak to whoever is responsible for pupil wellbeing at school (in Ds school there is someone specific who is generally accessed via the senco). He may benefit from some self esteem building if the school offers this at all (ours does but you have to ask).

PaulAnkaTheDog Wed 23-Mar-16 13:31:49

Oh that's made me so sad. sad Definitely talk to the school.

MadamDeathstare Wed 23-Mar-16 13:35:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Toonoisy Wed 23-Mar-16 13:39:42

Thanks.

His teachers always tell me he's well liked at parents evenings an in his reports. He's bubbly and sociable, whenever we go to the park he will make a friend. Whenever I pick him up from school there's always lots of children shouting goodbye to him, but it doesn't tie in with what he's telling me

The only thing I've noticed is he's perhaps a little immature in some ways.

MadamDeathstare Wed 23-Mar-16 13:39:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Toonoisy Wed 23-Mar-16 13:42:48

I will definitely speak to school, they break up today so I'll do it after the holidays now.

I told him to perhaps just play with someone else instead of football, but he's adamant that he wants to join in. I know he's friendly with a few of the girls who don't play football, but he says they don't always let him go with them.

madamginger Wed 23-Mar-16 13:43:15

My DD was like this in infants. Her school initiated a friendship bench, where you could sit and people would come over and play with you.
She's in yr4 now and has a lovely group of friends. She's in a very boy heavy class, 24 boys and 12 girls!

teddymou Wed 23-Mar-16 13:45:31

Have a word with the teacher and mention to her what your ds said about not being picked to play football. Teacher could have a word with class about including everyone. Your post made me so sad

MrsHathaway Wed 23-Mar-16 13:46:28

My children's school appears to have banned football for a while, for similar reasons. They're playing huge games of bulldog instead, where you know exactly what team you're on without having to be included or told, and children of all abilities are included (speedier children chase speedier children and slower children chase slower children, because they're actually enjoying running about and winning is much less of a focus).

Yes, I'd speak to school, with as much as possible keeping "this is DS's understanding of what happens" at he forefront of the conversation.

Beeziekn33ze Wed 23-Mar-16 13:49:11

Madamginger - friendship benches or 'bus stops' usually work well. In secondary school my GD was one of several children in Y8 who volunteered to be 'buddies' so no one need be alone. They were given a distinctive tie to wear.

duckyneedsaclean Wed 23-Mar-16 13:52:28

My son is often tells me that he didn't play with anyone, that his friend has a new friend now, that so&so wouldn't let him play. His teacher says he does play with said children though. And like your son, the other kids seem friendly enough at hometime.

It's hard isn't it, I wish I could secretly watch what's actually going on sometimes.

agapanthii Wed 23-Mar-16 14:06:25

My mother often retells a story from my schooldays. I told my mum that no one played with me and I was all alone. Because she was so soncerned about my happiness, she took to walking past the school at playtime and lo and behold, I was always playing with someone , even though I told her no one would play with me. She does not think I was making it up.. it's just that kids were sort of playing together but no one was taking my hand and directly leading my play, in the way perhaps I played with my mum or older sister. So in my mind, no one was "playing with me".

Your son says he is running up and down near the football, so it's a good sign that he's not sitting on a bench all alone and his teachers all say he is playing with others too. It;s probably just not in the same way as his one on one play.

lalalalyra Wed 23-Mar-16 14:12:14

I would mention it to the school because they may not realise with him running about around the game that he's not actually playing.

claraschu Wed 23-Mar-16 14:20:09

When my son was slightly younger than this he would tell me long involved stories of unfair football teams at school. I was so concerned that I did actually go look in at playtime (after helping with the reading in his brother's class). What I saw was about 20 children running around madly kicking several different balls in a very lively and chaotic fashion. In my son's head, there was a football game going on (probably complete with referee and off-side rule), in reality, there were a bunch of little kids running around shouting. This was early KS1 though...

If your son seems happy and has lots of friends, I might not worry too much.

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