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AIBU to think Alien-themed exercise at school should have been thought out?

(55 Posts)
MoanyM Tue 23-Jan-18 09:57:16

Yesterday my kids went to school to find that aliens had broken in, in the middle of the night, there was police tape everywhere, a special assembly held so they would be able to watch the footage and then look for clues etc.

The problem is - my 4 year od is autistic and I could not get him down last night at all, he was too frightened to sleep until midnight. Both my children were worried about aliens coming back into our own house - intrusive thoughts etc etc. They are both literal, sensitive and on the anxious side, but are not unusually jumpy or neurotic and I don't believe that they would have been the only scared kids.

AIBU to think that school should have thought about the impact on reception year kids, or on children with special needs? Would your kids have been unsettled by this? I just think that 4 and 5 is too young for this sort of exercise.

Enb76 Tue 23-Jan-18 10:00:11

Most kids would be fine with it but they should have thought about the impact on your children and risk assessed it.

Our school at the same age the same thing but they told the child who might need help ages in advance about exactly what was going to happen so it was less distressing for them.

Iamagreyhoundhearmeroar Tue 23-Jan-18 10:03:37

This was posted before... What are the chances of two totally separate schools doing the very same exercise, unless it's Department of Education advised or something?

Iamagreyhoundhearmeroar Tue 23-Jan-18 10:04:07

It sounds fabulous, btw

Singlebutmarried Tue 23-Jan-18 10:04:59

We had the same except it was Goldilocks who’d broken in.

Somenkids were fine, some weren’t.

Also ask your school if they’re going to to the ‘emergency protocol’ drill

They did this over all years at our school and had the kids hiding under desks etc.

VileyRose Tue 23-Jan-18 10:05:10

My kids school done this!

Mine loved it.

Bunchofdaffodils Tue 23-Jan-18 10:07:19

Hmm, sounds like parents should have been warned beforehand.

Pengggwn Tue 23-Jan-18 10:08:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MoanyM Tue 23-Jan-18 10:08:57

where was it posted, Greyhound? Think it's a part of an immersive learning strategy, It sounds like great fun doe older kids, but really, I don't think that it's appropriate for KS1 at all. There was at least one other child in my sons class who was very upset.

It raises concerns for me regarding their handling / understanding of my sons SEN

Amanduh Tue 23-Jan-18 10:10:48

We did this. Kids loved it. It was a follow on from a story for book week.

SteelyPip Tue 23-Jan-18 10:11:27

My son's school did this last year (when he was in Y2) He loved it because he had sufficient maturity, but would have been very disturbed had it happened in Reception. (He is on the spectrum.)

feesh Tue 23-Jan-18 10:12:49

Our school did this and we live in the Middle East! My sensitive son was a bit upset about it, but not enough that I felt the need to raise it as an issue. However, I could see it being an issue for even more sensitive little ones.

MoanyM Tue 23-Jan-18 10:12:53

It wasnt the imaginative play aspect he found stressful.

He is very literal and was worrying all night about aliens breaking into our house. He is sacred about aliens coming back into the school.

Also, transition to school has been very carefully managed and he has settled in well, it needs to remain a safe place for them all.

I would have kept him off yesterday if I'd known about this beforehand - might sounds excessive but its very hard to calm an autistuc child who is so scared he is visibly shaking.

SteelyPip Tue 23-Jan-18 10:13:45

I forgot to say I would be annoyed too and see it as a lack of understanding of his SEN needs. Maybe ask for a meeting with the class teacher and SENco and agree together how this kind of activity will be handled in future. Once it's written into his IEP, there should be less likelihood of it happening again.

GrabbyMcGrabby Tue 23-Jan-18 10:14:37

The alien thing is definitely very fashionable ATM. it's fine if your kids realise it's not real. Mine would've had nightmares but fortunately was sick the day they did that.


My LO was v upset at being made to watch the Lego movie in reception. Too scary and wasn't able to leave the room.

Pengggwn Tue 23-Jan-18 10:15:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

user1495884620 Tue 23-Jan-18 10:18:30

Greyhound , there is probably a lesson plan posted on a teaching forum or resource website somewhere. They may even be able to buy or hire the resources from an outside company.

MoanyM Tue 23-Jan-18 10:20:42

Ah, sorry Pengggwn, yes!

The problem is, it takes very little effort to plant the seeds of intrusive thoughts into my children's heads, and once it's there, its hard to shift.

For example, our fire alarm went off once and he was terrified of any beeping noise for at least six months - Tescos became a nightmare....

So I am hoping this isnt the start of a new issue

But that aside, 5 is just too young!

HamishBamish Tue 23-Jan-18 10:22:48

My DC's school did a similar thing. They had an asteroid land on the playing fields and they had to conduct an investigation. I can see how it could be frightening for some children.

clumsyduck Tue 23-Jan-18 10:25:15

Dcs school did the same though not with aliens so i think must be a national thing . I think aliens at that age could maybe be a bit upsetting if they don't understand they are not real

feesh Tue 23-Jan-18 10:27:30

Also, just to warn you, this has pretty much become a termly thing in our school (last week there was a mystery dinosaur egg), so you might need to address it with the school sooner rather than later

greathat Tue 23-Jan-18 10:30:36

5 is not too young! It sounds like great fun. But the school should have given you advance warning due to your child's SEN. My son's school had dinosaurs visiting a couple of weeks ago. Dinosaur footprints in the playground!

AWhistlingWoman Tue 23-Jan-18 10:30:39

Aw, it’s hard when they take things literally. We didn’t have aliens breaking in but my Yr1 DS was convinced that they were REALLY going to Antarctica for a school trip and was devastated when it was just ‘pretend.’ He was also angry that the teachers had ‘fooled him’ as I had repeatedly tried to persuade him it wouldn’t be a real trip to no avail!

MoanyM Tue 23-Jan-18 10:31:56

I wouldn't have a problem if it were elves, santa, that sort of benign magical concept. (why does it have to be a break in? why not stumbling across a tea party or something? why instrusion?)

But Aliens is a step too far, and my children know that space is a mystery and that we don't know everything about how the universe works and they believe that aliens could exist.

MiaowTheCat Tue 23-Jan-18 10:32:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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