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Should I let one of my twins move up a year and let the other stay behind?

(20 Posts)
Nancy10 Wed 24-Jun-09 09:49:26

I have 5 year old identical twin boys, currently in Reception. The school have suggested that one moves up to year one in September but the other stays in Reception. The school feels I should allow my more capable twin to flourish on his own independantly and my younger twin to learn to stand on his own 2 feet and not rely on his brother.
But all the children in his class will be going up except my son who will be with the new children and on his own to make friends all over again. He has some very good friends in his current class and I'm worried about his confidence if he is made to stay behind.
There is no time scale for how long he will have to stay behind.
I don't want to insist he goes up and he struggles to keep up with the work but at the same point I don't want him to feel like the odd one out!

BonsoirAnna Wed 24-Jun-09 09:51:05

It would be better for your twins to be in the same year (the right year for their age group) but in different classes. Would this be possible?

LIZS Wed 24-Jun-09 09:55:44

It seems a pretty unusual strategy, is it a small school with oen class per year ? Unless there are significant learning issues they would probably prefer to move up together.

throckenholt Wed 24-Jun-09 09:57:49

I have id twin boys who are in year 1. They are in the same class and I can't imagine how they would handle this sort of situation. There is already a lot of rivalry between them - and I can guess the one who moves up would crow like mad at his brother's expense.

But - I would seriously talk it through with the school and the teachers - ask how it would work, how long - would it be a temporary arrangement ? Why do they think it would help - what do they think it would achieve. Would an alternative be to move up with the peer group and have some targeted intervention.

They might thrive being in their own peer groups - but it might not work at all.

If it does happen you need to spin it so it is a positive thing for him and not "staying behind".

Nancy10 Wed 24-Jun-09 09:58:59

No, it's a very small village primary school. I don't think that by being with children younger than him will spur him on. And how long do I let him stay behind for? His brother has done everything before him, walk, talk, ride a bike etc. So thats just the way they are. I wouldn't be as concerned if more children were staying behind, but I think it's a bit unfair him being the only one!

BonsoirAnna Wed 24-Jun-09 10:00:25

Are there no other school options at all?

Fennel Wed 24-Jun-09 10:05:29

I think it's the fact that no others are staying behind which would worry me most. And as you say, what will happen next year?

Won't they be in different sets if they do both go into yr 1, that's normal in most schools for yr1 I think, so they would be separated for most work.

throckenholt Wed 24-Jun-09 10:26:14

hmm - ours is a very small village school too. I think they would probably do it that he moves up to year 1 but goes into reception some of the time.

How big is the year group ? If it is small then I would think maybe they should just be able to handle the ability range within the normal lesson differentiation and give him some more support.

Definitely talk to the teachers - talk about the social concerns as much as the academic ones.

PortAndLemon Wed 24-Jun-09 10:28:53

No, absolutely not, not if no others are staying behind. I think it would be counterproductive.

Polgara2 Wed 24-Jun-09 10:48:38

No I agree with P&L if no other children are staying behind then definitely not. What would that make him think of himself, that he is not good/clever or whatever enough to join his brother and the other children. Definitely not a good idea.

Nancy10 Wed 24-Jun-09 11:00:37

Thanks for all your replies. There are so many things to consider and its not all to do with the academic side of things!
He's happy at school but that may change in September if all this goes ahead. The good thing is I have to agree for it to happen and so do Ofsted. It's just making the right decision for him.
I am hoping over the Summer holidays he will mature naturally anyway!
18 months ago, they hardly acknowledged other children or adults, so socially and emotionally they have come so far. But the school don't seem to think of this.
At the grand old age of 5, learning is still very much on the learning through play side of things. They are so pressured! So I'm going to insist they both stay together and maybe for reading, writing, maths he joins the reception but for the rest of the time he's with his proper year group!

mummyrex Wed 24-Jun-09 11:47:39

Well done - it sounded like a terrible idea to me

Littlefish Wed 24-Jun-09 12:13:30

Y1 should still have a large element of play based learning.

They should each be taught according to their own ability. If the school feels he will find Y1 challenging, then they should be looking at their own practice, and how they can support him better.

Socially and emotionally, I would definitely not recommend splitting twins in this way. (I'm a teacher and former deputy head).

paranoid2 Wed 24-Jun-09 13:32:39

I have twin boys too, non id now aged 8. Dt2 struggles a lot and Dt1 is tearing ahead. Definitely wouldnt like this at all despite the fact that it may benefit Dt2 to be a year behind especially as they are summer born and premature and should really be in the year below anyway. I split my boys in Yr2 as Dt1 had a tendency to watch out for Dt2 all the time and wasnt allowing himself the space to develop himself.
5 is still very young . i would insist that they are kept together

MrsGuyOfGisbourne Wed 24-Jun-09 13:55:52

What a shocking suggestion - what is the school thinking of? If say half the children were staying behind, fine, but not if he is the only one and his brother is moving up! Can't imagine any worse way to damage a child's confidence, and would not be goof for his brother either. I would expect the school to identify what help he needs in Y1 and offer it.

Bramshott Wed 24-Jun-09 14:05:32

Would they be suggesting that he stays down if he were not a twin?

shouldbeironing Wed 24-Jun-09 14:06:48

I agree with your decision to keep them together - with support/different groups for some academic subjects. Not only would being the only one held back be of concern for a singleton child but for an identical twin I cannot believe it would be helpful except possibly in extreme cirumstances. Perhaps you should talk to someone at TAMBA - they have educational consultants and so on who can advise on the impact this would have on twins.

Rubyrubyrubyinthegame Wed 24-Jun-09 14:08:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

seeker Wed 24-Jun-09 14:11:41

Before you make any decisions, ask the school what will happen at Secondary Transfer. I know it seems ages away, but you need to be sure that the 'staying down" twin doesn't have to miss year 6 or something to get back into his peer group. It's VERY unusual to stay back a year in a state school - you need to be very sure of all the implications.

lal123 Wed 24-Jun-09 14:22:29

my twin brother and I were separated into different year classes at primary school. It was a very small country school where a number of classes were taught together (P1- P3 and P4-P7). I can't even remember what stage we were separated, but it certainly did us no harm.

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