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What can i do my daughter was in tears about schoolwork

(6 Posts)
Fernie3 Fri 12-Nov-10 09:00:33

My daughter is six, in year one. She has struggled with her reading and writing since she started. She came home yesterday very quiet and about 5 o clock wandered into the living room clutching her teddy bear sobbing her heart out and saying she didn't want to do a busy bees book. This is the first i have ever heard of a busy bees book but from what she said it seems to be a small group of children who get taken out to try and help them with reading and writing.
She isn't upset about this in general but she was crying because she is scared if making mistakes and her teacher shouting at her and she just doesn't like writing and wants to draw. What can i say? I cant say oh ok you dint have to write - because she does!.

Her writing isn't imrpoving very quickly and i was shocked at parents evening to see other childrens work laid out on the table ( they hadn't put hers out ).

When we talked to the teacher she didn't seem the type to shout at the children at all so I think my daughter may be imagining this but nevertheless she is obviously struggling with even thinking about writing let alone actually writing.

She is late today because of the struggle ti calm, her down about the fact she does this busy bee book on friday. My husband took her in and is gogint to mentiong it to the teacher but what can i do to help her?

To be honestni find it incredibly frustrating i don't understand why she cant just concentrate on writing a bit more if she did and didn't get so easily bored with it I am sure it would be fine?

Any advice on this would be very much appreciated.

FreudianSlimmery Fri 12-Nov-10 09:05:02

Why didn't they put her work out with everyone else? If they only put out non-strugglers' work I'd be complaining. Not very good for self esteem is it angry

mummyrex Fri 12-Nov-10 10:50:21

In my experience, moving into Y1 can be really tough - the toughest transition any of my children have faced.

Your DD reminds me of my DD who has very little academic confidence. When she was in Y3 she was afraid to ask the teacher questions or to make mistakes in case she was shouted at. This arose from observing children being told off who clearly hadn't been paying attention who then made silly errors. It was easiliy sorted through taking to the teacher and to my DD. I pointed out that the teacher knew she was listening and would be delighted to help her (which she was).

You do need to talk to the teacher to make clear just how fragile she is feeling (children often don't show it at all in school) and figure out how you can work together to bolster her confidence. And by that I mean she also needs to confidence to make mistakes (ie to TRY). I tell all my childen that mistakes are fine because it is nmistakes that provide the learning opportunity.

Doigthebountyeater Fri 12-Nov-10 12:38:58

Aww, your poor daughter sad. I agree with all the others that you need to speak to the teacher. Can I also suggest starfall.com for phonics practice (it is fun, although American so watch out for the 'z'!) and also if she likes drawing, could you practise her letter formation at home in a kind of Steiner way ie turning snakes into the letter s etc?

zam72 Fri 12-Nov-10 13:19:19

No advice, but complete sympathy/empathy. I have a 5yo DS who's in the exact same boat. Loved reception but y1 has been a bit of a transition. He's always struggled with reading/writing and has actually come on in leaps and bounds compared to his starting point. But he looks at the others work and he's 'the worst at everything'. He says he's too slow and can't finish anything. I try and emphasize that its fine to make mistakes, its all part of learning and he sees me making mistakes at stuff too....but I think its more his nature.

In reception I completely laid off with trying to get him to read/write at home - we did homework but it was a struggle. We've been working on reading a bit more - trying to make it fun. I was watching the Gareth Malone school for boys and it was talking about competitiveness for boys spurring them on. So I bought a little quirky chicken timer and said we would do 5 mins every day. And that seems to have worked a little. Going to try with writing next.

Part of me thinks though that the joy of learning is the key to continued success. Reading and writing are obviously incredibly important too but they will come on in time. Maybe some kids just aren't programmed to learn them that young. My brother had to have the equivalent of 'busy bee' help with literacy in primary school and he's got a PhD in English now. I worry that forcing him to 'knuckle down' now will just foster a poor view of school/learning.

Its so hard to see them struggle, isn't it? Watching this thread for tips with interest!

IndigoBell Sun 14-Nov-10 10:02:37

What are her fine motor skills like in general? Is it possible she hates writing because it is physically hard for her? (as opposed to mentally hard IYSWIM)

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