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*Worried* normal educational level for a 9 year old?

(8 Posts)
Martha1 Tue 15-Sep-09 14:19:17


I moved in with my partner and his 9 yr old about 4 months ago and I'm worried that his 9 year old seems to struggle with seemingly basic mathematics. The other day he asked me for, "a 50p, a 20p, and a 20p" and had no idea that this added up to 90p; and was baffled when his dad explained that with the 10p already in his hand that made £1. Should he know this? His dad another time asked what 5+2 was and he guessed 52. I'm really worried that we should be doing more to help him if this isn't normal? Can anybody help or offer any suggestions? Thanks.

NormaSnorks Tue 15-Sep-09 14:27:11

It does sound as if he's struggling a bit. I have a 9 yr and a 7 year old, and these sorts of questions are more the sort of things my 7 year old would do.

First course of action would be to chat to his teacher and find out what they think/ if they have any concerns. If so, is he getting extra help at school, and what can you do to reinforce that.

A lot of 'maths' is day to day stuff like money, measuring etc. Try to involve him in any activities (baking, shopping etc) which can help him test his skills?

jicky Tue 15-Sep-09 14:34:24

Does sound as if he is quite a long way behind - this seems like the sort of thing they teach at the end of year 1, so assuming he is now year 5 he really ought to have 'got it' by now.

Talk to the school, can't imagine they think this is normal, and should be delighted that someone is prepared to help him catch up and will give you guidance.

PortAndLemon Tue 15-Sep-09 14:43:29

What is his reading, vocabulary, general knowledge, etc., like -- i.e. does it seem as though his numeracy is way behind his ability in other areas? There is a learning disability called dyscalculia that could be his problem, and if so there are specific techniques that can help him to cope a bit better (although if he does have dyscalculalia he's never likely to feel completely at home with numbers). This is definitely something that should be raised with the school if they've not already expressed their concern to your partner.

Martha1 Tue 15-Sep-09 14:58:00

Thanks for your replies As far as I'm aware we've had no contact from the school, although he is registered to his mum's address so I assume she'd know better than me. As I'm not his mum I worry that I seem like I'm interfering. However, I've never seen him do any homework and I'd hate to see the poor kid struggle until its too late to do anything about it and he falls too far behind. He seems pretty switched on in most respects - his speaking, language etc are fine but I wouldn't feel right talking to him about school as he still doesn't know me particularly well and I feel like its not my place. Also, I don't want his dad to think that I'm in a roundabout way raising concerns about his parenting and having him take offence its a tricky one!!!

Martha1 Fri 18-Sep-09 12:17:28

Spoke to DP about this and the little one is now getting extra help at school. I've asked his dad if we can start doing homework etc with him after school cos I want him to be prepared as possible for comprehensive in 2 yrs time; his dad however couldn't see how we'd ever get him to stay in long enough and it wouldn't seem fair making him work when his elder brother was out playing!!!

Hopefully the extra help in school will do him some good

paranoid2 Fri 18-Sep-09 17:16:35

Hi My DT2 struggles at school and has a statement because of his attention difficulties and associated moderate learning diffs. He struggles with most things with maths being his weakest subject. he is just 8 but he would be able to do what you said. I think the 5 + 2 thing is something more worrying than the money thing . I think money is a tricky concept for children to get and if they struggle at all with maths it will probably mean it will impact this area. I think schools spend a certain amount of time on money concepts and then dont look at it again for a while.Not suggesting your partners DS had learning diffs, it may be that he just struggles with Maths and everything else is fine which is not so concerning. However I would get it looked into before it becomes a bigger issue.

I think its lovely that you are concerned and willing to do something about it

mathanxiety Fri 18-Sep-09 18:12:59

Perhaps he missed some school through illness at a crucial juncture and never caught up? It's easier to patch over language skills you missed through absence than anything you missed in maths. I missed long division one winter and multiplication and division of fractions the next year, hence my name on MN. sad

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