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What do you want your child to get out of school?

(71 Posts)
Bucharest Sat 12-Sep-09 15:04:48

Having spoken to 5 different mothers this morning (our smalls all start primary for the first time next week) I'm beginning to feel like a weirdo.

Obviously I hope she does well, but for me, well, I just want her to enjoy the whole experience of school....learning new stuff, making new friends.....The others were all looking at me in that Planet Zog kind of way, "ooooooooh, but the teacher is sooooo important, how the teacher makes the children learn, how strict they are....." (to the point that one of them has insisted on her PFB changing teacher (already) as the one he was going to has a Jamie Oliver lithp (and she is worried that her son might pick it up.hmm)

We were talking about doing extra stuff after school, swimming and the like and they were all "oooooooh, you can't do anything in the first year as they are too distracted by their homework and getting used to the regime of school."

Tell me I'm normal to think that a nice swim after school isn't going to destroy my daughter's career chances???

I just want him to not be fucked up by the whole experience, that's all really, would HE if I thought I could do a good job of it, but sadly I don't have the confidence, I hate our schooling system.

grin at 'catching' the lisp.

cat64 Sat 12-Sep-09 15:13:40

Message withdrawn

cory Sun 13-Sep-09 12:13:05

It's the other mums that are weirdos, Bucharest, not you! Thank goodness we seem to have a less aspirational lot round our way.

My own children are already halfway through the school system (Yr 5 and 8) and I have to say that my early hopes have, on the whole, been fulfilled: school has been a place where they have enjoyed finding out about things, made lots of new friends, learned to get on with children that are never going to be friends, learned to cope with adults that have a different style and different expectations. It's been an interesting place; it's expanded their horizons. But it hasn't been the sum total of their life experience over the last 9 years and I would have hated that to have happened.

Tavvy Sun 13-Sep-09 15:49:48

The children I nanny for already have career plans (in writing by mummy and daddy) CV's, and are 'coached in order to maximise their potential.' by all manner of people, some lovely, some money grabbing charletons peddling theories that have no basis in sense or science.
It's very difficult to keep a straight face listening at the school gates.
I'm with you Bucharest - I think your attitude is by far healthier. Hopefully at the end of it all your daughter will come out of it in exactly the way you hope.
The words for what you describe are over zealous and it borders on hothousing which is proven to harm childrens overall development long term.

squilly Sun 13-Sep-09 15:59:53

All I want is for my girl to have great social skills and be a good communicator. Oh, and she needs to have respect for her elders and a good work ethic. And most of that needs to come from us as parents.

As far as what school should give her, it's a social exercise. She needs to learn how to mix with others, how to work as part of a team and how to achieve goals. Having said that, she also needs to learn how to fail, make mistakes and move on. Those are probably the most important three things she'll need in life.

And I thought we only had a couple of things we wanted for her

ABetaDad Sun 13-Sep-09 16:14:39

Bucharest - we deliberatley moved our DSs (now Yr 5 and Yr 3) out of a high pressure very academic very high league table school in the South East of England even though they both enjoyed it and could handle it.

What we wanted was a more well rounded eductation where they could maximise all their talents and enjoy a wide experence of many different academic and non academic pursuits. Academic qalifications matter but not to the exclusion of other things.

Tavvy - we have met parents just like the ones you describe. The hot housing and coaching after school thing just makes us think 'get a grip' and 'take a good look at yourselves'. For goodness sake we would rather out DSs have a good run around in after school care or do gym club, gardening club, or trampoliing club with their friends then come home and do their homework.

Most of all we want them to enjoy it and be settled and happy.

TheDMshouldbeRivened Sun 13-Sep-09 16:19:18

being happy while I get a break (for dd)
. the boys, who were HE'ed, went back at 13 and their goal is to get some qualifications. They see the happy thing and the socilisation thing as something that happens away froms chool.

Acinonyx Sun 13-Sep-09 16:26:41

I do think it's odd that people see school as a good place for social learning. It's really such an unnatural social environment - I'm sure there are good or better ways to learn social behaviour.

Since dd has started school, however, and I am not going to home-ed, then I do hope she can navigate that social labyrinth and perhaps it will help with the equally bizarre and unnatural enviroment that is some work places.

But I wouldn't send dd to school specifically for that. I do have learning aspirations for dd - but for reception - these are focussed on practical issues like toiletting, dressing for PE and cuttingup her own food.

Overall, I want her to have a positive experience of school both socially and as a learning experience.

TheDMshouldbeRivened Sun 13-Sep-09 16:29:19

ds2 told me today that there's a huge difference between home ed kids and school kids. He's 14 and has been at school a year now having always been HE'ed. He said school kids tease each other by saying mean things and pretending its a joke and to stay part of 'the group' you have to laugh and tease bacck. With his HE friends he said that never happenend and they chat away about stuff without needing to score points.
I thought that was rather sad.
But he chose to go to do his GCSE's.

Quattrocento Sun 13-Sep-09 16:36:04

Oh I want my children to enjoy their schooldays and make lots of friends and have fun generally.

<and get 10 A*/A grades at GCSE and 4 A*/A grades at A level and get a place at a thoroughly good university>

squilly Sun 13-Sep-09 16:49:53

LOL Quatrrocento. How did you guess the subtext to my original post?

I think that the socialising aspect is particularly related to work, Acinonyx. It's where most of our kids will end up spending a huge portion of their lives, so getting geared up to socialising with people they don't like, doing things they don't necessarily enjoy and being forced into routines that are far from natural is all preparation for the work place.

I did think about HE, and it still fascinates me when I read about it, but dd is an only child and I'm not that academic, so I suspect school is a much more broadening experience.

ingles2 Sun 13-Sep-09 16:53:07

I want my boys to have the chance to fulfil their potential, make some good friends and have a happy experience.
Particularly Ds2 who has some mild special needs.

BonsoirAnna Sun 13-Sep-09 16:54:18

I want the children to get a good grounding in a wide range of basic skills, leaving me to broaden their horizons and take them further smile; and to make lots of friends and to enjoy themselves and to learn to function effectively to their own advantage in an institutional context.

throckenholt Sun 13-Sep-09 16:55:43

I want my kids to have a love of learning, be inquisitive, and have the skills to know how to go about solving the problems they face at any given point.

I want to them to have fun as well.

Acinonyx Sun 13-Sep-09 16:58:36

I wonder of some of the idiocy you see at work is a consequence of the Lord-of-the-Flies experience of peer-group packs at school.

To play devil's advocate a bit further, I don't think it's enough that school is a childminding service or preperation for the social working world. It should be a positive learning, educational experience and has utterly failed if that is not the case.

I couldn't stand to home-ed myself I'm afraid so I do hope dd's school measures up!

slowreadingprogress Sun 13-Sep-09 16:59:24

My ds is in year 3 and I can't really think beyond primary at the moment. What I want for him is to feel valued for just being him and I want him to do some things he will always remember - just the normal things of school like fairs, plays, singing carols, watching the christmas decorations sparkle while you forget to listen to assembly, nature walks etc etc etc etc

He's perfectly bright enough and will learn what he needs to, when he needs to I believe. It's the atmosphere and the feel of school that I want to be fun for him.

TheDMshouldbeRivened Sun 13-Sep-09 17:01:54

home edding is waaaaaaaaaaaaaay easier than dealing with all the hassle of school you know grin

Acinonyx Sun 13-Sep-09 17:06:04

Totally selfish reasons I'm afraid - I'm somewhat wedded to my work. I'm no great fan of the education system though and if I thought things were really going a pair-shaped for dd I'd reconsider.

lucykate Sun 13-Sep-09 17:16:38

dh lectures at a university, and do you know what the best skill he would want from his students to have come through school with?. common sense. he is amazed how many students at degree level seem to lack the most basic of skills. eg, the students had to each paint a small area of wall white in order to display work, some went straight down to wilkinsons, came back with trays, brushes and white paint, while others didn't have a clue what to do.

BonsoirAnna Sun 13-Sep-09 17:19:39

lucykate - that isn't "common sense", that is "having basic painting skills".

I have basic painting skills because I saw my mother parents painting the house right through my childhood. When I first got a flatshare at university I repainted my room right away - I knew exactly what to do, albeit with a couple of telephone calls home.

If you have never seen your parents paint the house, why would you have acquired those skills?

colditz Sun 13-Sep-09 17:22:50

I want him to get a good education and mix with his peers. I'll sort the rest.

slowreadingprogress Sun 13-Sep-09 17:23:29

of course that's common sense! You don't have had to have seen people painting houses to know that if you want to paint a wall you need to go out and buy some stuff to do it with. I get your point lucykate.

BonsoirAnna Sun 13-Sep-09 17:25:47

I would have thought it common sense to know that skills are acquired smile

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