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Am sad for DS2 - he has been put in a lower maths group

(13 Posts)
franklymydear Fri 18-Sep-09 21:03:01

than the top set, it seems (well he says and I haven't spoken to school yet) to make room for another child. He says the work is too easy now but he still gets the homework from the top set.

He has been in year 4 for 2 weeks. He had assessments at the end of last year and was a level 4b in maths, teacher said he was the quickest in her class. I know this child who has taken his place on the "top set" was a level 3a because mother and i are friends.

I am not level-obsessed, I actually hate sats. But I'm really not comfortable with this woman teacher - another friend had a child in her class last year and she dropped levels over the years, and lost enthusiasm

I don't care which group he's in as long as he is happy and interested. But maths is his thing, and he's upset and I just want to rip the stupid teacher's face off for putting him back into the anxiety where he vomits and stops eating

franklymydear Sat 19-Sep-09 08:21:51

it was too reasonable a title wasn't ti?

should have been something like AIBU "to go and slap DS2's new teacher for putting him down a maths group?"

colditz Sat 19-Sep-09 08:25:08

Just go in and ask them to put him back where he was happy and able and learning.

My inner cynic says he has been shunted because he can be trusted to 'coast' and still get a good grade - but that's not best for him.

Go in and nag them about it. Again and again and again.

plimple Sat 19-Sep-09 08:46:35

Has he been put lower to help the less able? Tell him he has until he can move back up again. Is he given the higher level work and just sitting in the lower class? Is he the only one to have moved? Bit odd isn't it? Speak to the teacher and get to the bottom of it and insist on move back if no good reason.

franklymydear Sat 19-Sep-09 08:47:03

he doesn't want me to talk to the teacher

pigletmania Sat 19-Sep-09 09:02:39

I am afraid that if you want this sorted frandly you will have to. Just sit down and talk to your ds, reassure him that you will not go there guns blazing and start shouting(as some kids are worried about that), and that you just want to have a little chat so that he will be happy again. If he has the ability and he is unhappy in the lower group where he will not be challenged enough, than its not good for him, he is the one who wil loose out in the long run. Might come demotevated and not do the best that he can for himself.

gorionine Sat 19-Sep-09 09:10:18

I think you will have to talk to the teacher too. If by knowing the other child's mum you are sure your DS should be on that table too. If it happened the way you say it had (being moved to make space for another child rather than not being at the right level for the top table)it cannot be right. Surely they can add another little table to accomodate an extra child in the group? or have 2 top tables (happened in DD1's class)I think Pigletmania summs it well.

justagirlfromedgware Sat 19-Sep-09 19:49:52

It happened to my DS when he was in year 4 too, being put down to the one-below-the-top table ('twas very frustrating for him as maths is his best subject). Colditz' suspicions make a lot of sense. Year 4 is when - I think - the schools start the build-up to the dreaded SATS. In our case I spoke to his teacher and she had an explanation that satisfied my summer-born DS well: he liked to ask more questions than the much older boys in the top table; he still was doing the toughest work, so he was getting the best of both worlds. In my heart I suspect it was also politics of promoting the "high flyers" of the class (*an appalling term - fume*, but I'll leave that for another story), but this did seem a good explanation as far as DS was concerned.

FWIW we also decided after that to get him a fortnightly tutor to focus on his maths. Counter to normal practice: to work on him in his best subject. The impact on him was amazing as he gained enormously in confidence, working with someone one-to-one and doing work at home before it was introduced in class, which built his confidence across the board. (He's now in all top sets in year 7).

Rafaella Sun 20-Sep-09 22:10:14

If it's any consolation, please don't worry what set your DS is in in Yr 4. Now that my 4 DCs are all at secondary school, I can safely say that their sets at primary school, and also their peers, have not been reflected by how they have done academically in GCSEs/A Levels. My DS got moved down 4 sets in Yr 6 - at that time she didn't have a good grasp of the basics - and she got A* maths. Many of the 'high flyers' of Yr 6 ended up average, many of the ones 'never going to amount to much' have done incredibly well with strings of A* GCSEs. What matters is going to a good secondary school and for the child themselves to want to do well. You say you're not level obsessed but why are you comparing your 8 year old's 4b with someone else's 3a? It means nothing. What does sound worrying is that your DS is vomiting and not eating through anxiety because he has gone down a set - is it the school that is making him feel bad about himself?

purpleduck Sun 20-Sep-09 22:15:58

My ds was all over the place in Y4 - he is bright and able, so we just had lots of talks about doing his best.

In our school the top 2 sets do mostly the same work anyways.

unavailable Sun 20-Sep-09 22:27:44

"I just want to rip the stupid teacher's face off for putting him back into the anxiety where he vomits and stops eating"

If your son is showing such distress because he has been put down a set whether it is justified or not should be secondary to why he is so upset about it. Could ther be a connection between how he feels and your reaction?

ingles2 Sun 20-Sep-09 22:30:47

mmm.. If he's getting homework from the top set, than he is in the top set.
Maybe they just have 2 tables now and he doesn't realise?
The actual work might just be easy because they are going over yr 3 work to make sure everyone is up to speed.
I would be very wary about going into school and making a fuss.
I also think it's dangerous to make assumptions on a teacher based on the performance of one child you know.
Infact the tone of your post sounds like you're ready to hate this teacher from the off. Make sure you don't let this show.

ingles2 Sun 20-Sep-09 22:31:56

agree unavailable... worrying that he's so anxious.

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