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How to handle parents evening

(59 Posts)
mrsseed Mon 12-Sep-11 16:57:10

So its the start of the school year and we have a parents eve in a few weeks. We are just starting on the G&T trail and want to avoid any problems others have encountered.
She is only in year 1, do you have any advice for us. Do we go with the' is she settling in' like we did in foundation, or go for the' we know she is exceptional, what are you going to do about it style?
p.s. Before any skeptics condem me, this isn't me just thinking she is exceptional, she is top of year(out of 80) and we were given foundation observational scoring to prove it. I just wasnt to learn how best to handle it, cause if she gets bored, she will become a trouble maker which is a bigger problem!

ragged Mon 12-Sep-11 17:07:45

What are they doing to extend her?

What does she need to work on? (Just because she's bright at some or most or even all academics doesn't mean everything about her school experience is perfect or she can't improve)

You need to be clear in your own mind about where you're going with this. Do you want her to keep accelerating away from her peers, or would you be happy (would she be happy?) to let her (for her) relatively plateau at the usual academic subjects, and extend her intellect sideways, and into other areas. There isn't a lot to be said for doing GCSEs at 11 and then being bored for years before she's socially mature enough to go to college and Uni, so most people would opt to sideways extend rather than encourage very big gaps to develop between a Gifted child & their peers.

Then again, very gifted children may not be happy any other way, they may just need to accelerate away from their peers.

Only you know your child.

mrsseed Mon 12-Sep-11 17:29:40

Thank-you, thats exactly the sort of advice I needed

dearheart Tue 13-Sep-11 10:50:57

I wouldn't assume that the school won't extend her. I have found my dd has been brilliantly catered for as far as the work goes. She has a real excitement about learning, and finds ways to extend herself in the work they are given - so she was using interesting adjectives, speechmarks etc while some kids are learning to write a simple sentence.

At this age, it is relatively easy for a good teacher to differentiate the work, I think, though obviously it depends on how bright your dd is. Mine's strong point is literacy - it might be harder for the teachers to manage the very bright ones in numeracy I guess.

munstersmum Tue 13-Sep-11 11:21:15

Collaboration rather than confrontation tends to be the more productive approach. If the school gave you scores previously presumably you already have a tentative dialogue started? Give the yr1 teacher a chance to volunteer information about how things are going. Your DD is top of the year but others may not be far adrift? In DS's class there is a cluster of kids with an aptitude for numeracy. DS will happily coast (teacher's opinion) but we know he's on their radar. Is DS happy is always our main concern.

EyeOfNewtToeOfFrog Tue 13-Sep-11 11:44:53

Agree with previous posters. Ragged hits the nail on the head about sideways extending - many people find that works great.

I would say - be lead by the situation, rather than have an agenda in your mind (sorry, that's not meant to be nasty - typing in a hurry). It all depends on that mix of personalities, chemistry and fit between your DD and teachers/school. If the school are coping fine, and if your DD is happy you can relax & do nothing. Just be vigilant for problems (with G&T kids it's likely to be the social side of things, not just academic issues) and do extension work at home and at the weekends. You sound like you're doing the right thing, thinking things through before taking any action smile

And come back here (or the NAGC forums) for more support if any problems arise. Hope not though!

mrsseed Tue 13-Sep-11 20:18:28

Thank you, we will listen to the teacher and play it by ear this year. and keep up the days out and after school activities to keep her stimulated. Afterall its still early days and things change although I suspect she has her dads brain and this will continue. Maybe see you on the NAGC forums!

Colleger Wed 14-Sep-11 12:13:31

I am a mother with two gifted children entering teenage hood. One probably more exceptional than your daughter as his marks were top of 1 million, and I would say chill out. The school will never cater for your child fully. View school as a social situation for your daughter and do extra work with her at home. That way you will never be disappointed or OTT about the whole thing.

Lizcat Thu 15-Sep-11 13:42:52

Not wanting to rain on your parade, but there is also a good chance that several children will catch up/ overtake in the next year or two. I have noticed that in DD's class YR 3 there have been so quite dramatic changes. My DD showed a little spark in maths in year 1 and then literally came from nowhere in year 2. Saying that extending sideways is really great her teacher last rapidly moved her sideways when it became clear that she had a strong grasp of units and tens. So she did similar sums to the others, but with first hundreds, then thousands and finally tens of thousands she also introduced me to a Graham.
I am also sitting back this year a little as the first maths homework that came home was number sequencing in hundreds, but I'm sure the teacher will work out very quickly what DD is really capable of - particularly as 3 house points are avaliable for every exceptional piece of work and DD is very competitive.

newtermnewname Thu 15-Sep-11 16:12:34

Psst! Lizcat! What's a Graham? confused

seeker Thu 15-Sep-11 16:19:48

How do you know that his marks were " top of 1 million", collager?

Lizcat Thu 15-Sep-11 16:26:00

A Graham is an unimaginably large number and an upper bound on the solution to Ramsey Theory. Actually now I write it down I am a little shock that a year 2 knew about it.

newtermnewname Thu 15-Sep-11 16:45:25

My neighbour's cat is called Graham.

Perhaps they named him after the unimaginably large number of presents he leaves in my garden.

Colleger Thu 15-Sep-11 17:28:24

Because of his IQ which was given in number and percentage terms. He's still a disinterested lazy so and so, so it means nothing!

exoticfruits Thu 15-Sep-11 19:11:20

If she is exceptional they will tell you! I shouldn't worry.

madwomanintheattic Thu 15-Sep-11 19:20:40

um. well, someone has to be top of the year group. it doesn't necessarily follow that they are gifted. just that they have the highest ability out of the limited areas looked at in the foundation stage. <shrugs>

but yes, collaboration rather than confrontation is the way ahead. however genius the kid is, fetching up at parent's evening and spouting 'we know she is exceptional, what are you gonna do about it?' is probably not going to win friends and influence people.

am roaring at newterm, though. grin

it's always best if teachers work out for themselves how bright a kid is tbh. you can prod them a bit later if they haven't let her access the right free-readers or whatever your particular beef might be.

lol, colleger. being a bit unmathsy, i'm unable to put the decimal point in the right place. what would your iq/ percentage score have to be, to be top of a million? grin genuine question. lord knows where the dcs got their brains from. clearly not me. (and completely agree about meaning! grin)

exoticfruits Thu 15-Sep-11 19:26:27

If the DC is exceptional it won't be missed.

mrsseed Fri 16-Sep-11 08:49:52

Must confess I was curious about how to know the top of a million thing, but didnt like to ask - a curious attitude on mumsnet I know!.
I know things can change, which is why I havent taken up the advice of the school and pre-school to get her IQ tested, just couldnt see what she would gain from it (Apart from a proud mum (and dad!), who wouldnt be able to tell any-one anyway - and who dont need a test to be proud). Just, maybe innocently, want her to enjoy learning and the school environment for the moment, so even if others catch up, I dont want her switched off when they do. Stretching her brain is also important as its the only way I can get her to eat a decent meal and go to bed at a reasonable time. She does lots of physical excercise too and that doenst work as well as brain exercise in that respect!
From the remarks in her homework book and reading record I suspect the teacher is catching on quick, so can play softly softly catchy monkey at parents eve.

Colleger Fri 16-Sep-11 09:11:50

I would just do it all at home. There are lots of resources out there. To save disappointment, don't expect anything from the school and that way when they do something good it will be a pleasant surprise.

P.S. It took me years to get to this point so I'm not being blunt, just trying to help others see through the fog at an earlier stage. We are programmer to think that school is the great learning place. It is a stifling place and you have taught her more in 5 years than they will in the whole of primary school!

madwomanintheattic Fri 16-Sep-11 16:23:09

colleger, i do need to know about the top of a million thing! it made me roar, and i think it would just brilliant to be able to reel off on mn. i need to know how to work it out - so we can have a g&t chart with dd2 at top of 90/975/ 4250, or whatever. v funny!

seeker Fri 16-Sep-11 16:33:35

The top of a million thing would put you in the top 0.00001% of the population. I think. Not being anywhere near there myself! Is that even measurable?

madwomanintheattic Fri 16-Sep-11 16:41:51

no clue. but i reeeaaaaalllly want to know. i think it's hilarious! (am not pisstaking, colleger - i truly truly think it's brilliant. much more scientific than 'top 10%' grin)

in most tests, you get bracketed, or put 'above whatever' but not seen anything that gives % to that level. i do know they recommend anyone with an iq of higher than 135(ish) gets more in-depth testing if you really want to narrow it down, as it gets less accurate past that point - maybe that's the detail?

am truly fascinated. and as i said before, not mathsy. well, i can be if i concentrate, but that's waaay too abstract unless i sit and work it out, and i can't correlate the iq thing to %. not a scooby.

exoticfruits Fri 16-Sep-11 16:50:43

Apparently having an IQ of 160 puts you as 0.01% of the population and to be one in a million you have to have an IQ of 175/180+
Has this been measured? Who has measured it?
I googled it and the got the numbers here
The top 2% of the population have an IQ OF 130+ (which generally is every MN DC, unless they have SN (that are not G&T SN)-and if they don't they get a tutor grin)

seeker Fri 16-Sep-11 17:08:56

And the top 2% is 120000 people. I think.

madwomanintheattic Fri 16-Sep-11 17:12:50

grin
wow! 180+!

yy that's def extended testing category... although i do note with interest that the footnote suggests there may be many more at the higher levels than predicted in the table...

i still can't 'do the math' though. wink

thanks for finding that - fascinating! i've seen hoagies and stuff before but didn't remember the numeric bit at all.

<hides sn g&t kid and proffers the nt-ish version/s>

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