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What to do, dd needs a quiet working environment

(10 Posts)
Dancergirl Fri 14-Sep-12 22:46:17

Dd is 9 and has just started Year 5. She's academically very bright but with this comes lots of other traits - v emotional, lots of ups and downs, feeling that she doesn't 'fit in' etc.

Her teacher last year wasn't fantastic and I felt dd didn't have a v good year. One of the things dd found v hard was trying to concentrate in a noisy classroom. There seemed to be a fair amount of chat, children working together when it was supposed to be an individual task etc. Roll on this year and dd was happy with her new teacher and he seemed to be better with discipline. The first week was fine but now this week, dd has been complaining again to me that the general chat makes it hard for her to concentrate.

I don't know how much of the problem is her though, she's never liked a lot of noise and will spend hours at home reading quietly in her bedroom. If dd3 is chatting, singing etc, she finds it v hard to tune it out.

What can I do to help her? How quiet should it be in class when the children are working independently?

lionheart Sat 15-Sep-12 09:05:16

Perhaps ear defenders would help in certain situations.

AChickenCalledKorma Sat 15-Sep-12 09:23:50

DD1 is the same. She absolutely LOVES her piano lessons, because it's just her and one teacher and she can hear herself think. Going back 30 years, DH's mum tells me that he used to have permissions to go and work alone in a little side room to his classroom because he found it so hard to concentrate in the big classroom!

I'm reading a book at the moment about the characteristics of people with introverted personalities ... and how the modern working (and school) environment is not very well geared up for them at all. I have no idea what the solution is, but she certainly shouldn't feel like anything is "wrong" with the way she likes to work. We are all wired differently - some children will focus better with a "buzz" around them - others need total peace and quiet. Unfortunately, the educational establishment seems to have decided that lots of group work and discussion is the way to go, which is not conducive to concentration if you are a quiet person who likes to be able to hear your own thoughts.

If it was me, it's possibly something I'd bring up at parents' evening, along the lines of "DD does like a very quiet working environment at home. How do you think she manages at school? Do they get much chance to work in quiet?" But quite honestly, it might be something she needs to learn to manage. And she will breathe a huge sigh of relief if she ever manages to choose a job where she gets her own office!

cansu Sat 15-Sep-12 13:22:30

Most primary school classrooms are noisy as the current thinking is that children should be working in groups, helping each other and trying things with their peers. I really sympathise because I know there are some children who would probably have enjoyed learning in a more traditional primary classroom where it was quiet! I think that unless you can find somewhere with a different eths (more likely to be private or church school perhaps) she will have to cope with it. If it was a case of rowdy behaviour ie poor discipline you might be ale to do something about it but I suspect it is more the normal primary noise. I work in a junior school where classrooms are quieter places and I have to admit I was surprised by the noise level in my daughters y1 class. It wasn't poor behaviour though just normal noise.

totallypearshaped Sun 16-Sep-12 01:10:50

This is interesting for me as I went into talk with my DDs teacher about this very thing on Friday.
My DD can't concentrate at all if there are chatty girls around her, and feels like she's falling behind as she can't seem to do the work set if it's noisy: they seem to have no trouble...

The teacher was understanding, and will accommodate my DD in a smaller table near the edge of the classroom - not one of the bigger tables in the middle.

I hope it works out ok for all our DCs.

Personally I hate lots of noise, and work in my own lovely big office, with classical music playing softly, so the apple doesn't fall far from the tree!

AChickenCalledKorma Sun 16-Sep-12 09:48:58

(tongue in cheek) - you can also look forward to when they do the Victorian topic. The day that DD1's teacher dressed up as a Victorian teacher, made them all sit on individual desks, facing the front, and work in silence was absolute bliss for her!

(I'm also hoping this means that she'll do pretty well if Mr Gove gets his way about moving back to traditional exams. No test anxiety here ... she loves test days because everyone stops chattering.)

totallypearshaped Thu 20-Sep-12 00:07:51

Snap Korma, my DD loves tests too. They mark each others in silence also!

Seeline Thu 20-Sep-12 10:05:07

My DS had problems all through primary with concentration. OK - he isn't the quietest of kids so probably generated some of hte disturbance, but was equally dragged into others disruptive behaviour. For hte last 2 years his teachers have allowed him to move himself somewhere quieter if he was having problems eg a side table away from the main work tables, a desk in the corridor or even to the school office. THis has worked quite well. At the end of last year his teacher remarked that they had started practising for SATs and she was amazed at the amount of work he produced in the (quiet) of a test situation confused I do wonder about the modern methods used in primary teaching!

Dancergirl Mon 24-Sep-12 11:00:21

Thank you, glad to hear she's not the only one!

It's a tricky one, I did suggest to dd that she asks to move somewhere quieter but she's reluctant and doesn't like to make a fuss at school. Plus I would worry about her feeling the odd one out.

Will see how things go anyway.

I'm like this too!

clam Mon 24-Sep-12 11:22:58

She could come and work in my class! I like it quiet too! Although if it's a collaborative task I have to grit my teeth and put up with it. Although even then there's no shouting allowed.

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