Worried about Y1 DS's self esteem(5 Posts)
DS (6 in Dec) has recently started to say things like: "I'm rubbish at everything" and "Everyone else is cleverer than me" and "Why aren't I on the clever table anymore?"
He had a great Reception year. Was popular with the teacher and always got praised for good work. He told me he was on the "clever table" and we had no concerns about his progress.
He's now 3 weeks into Y1 and has moved table 3 times already. He is now on (what he calls) the "not clever table". He says everyone has harder reading books than him (he's on band/level 6). And that he can't even do PE properly.
I've been downplaying his worries and trying to tell him he's doing fine. But by chance I was in his classroom today and saw some examples of the class writing on the wall (about their holidays) and nearly every other child had written several sentences full of details and he'd only managed to write "I went to the beach and dug lots of holes." from this single exampl he does seem to be lagging behind.
Not sure what I'm asking really. Should I be concerned by his apparent dip in performance? How can I bolster DS's self-esteem? How should I approach this with his teacher, if at all? He's so young to feel bad about himself and I just want to cuddle his worries away!
Aw, I have no advice but your post made me feel so sad - for your DS of course but mostly for you. Could it just be settling down into the new year & adjusting to the new expectations?
If it helps I have similar issues.
dd found reception year 1 quite a leap.
shes on level 6ort now and shes start of year 2 so level 6 start year 1 sounds like hes good reader,
I gather tables change all time.
The important part is ensuring his self esteem intact and hes getting support where he needs it.
I would speak to teacher as wish I had spoken up last year
I would approach this with the teacher, because it's important for them to know this sort of thing. They need to be aware that a child is lacking in confidence. In year 1, level 6 (assuming ort) is good, may not be the top group in his form, but in some forms it would be.
My dd1 used to write very stilted short stories, that looked poorer next to others. There was a very simple reasoning. She liked everything to be spelt correctly. The fashion at that time was the children had to spell everything themselves and shouldn't be even given hints/corrected afterwards.
So she stuck to words she could spell. She would write: "The dog was spotty and had four legs." And others in her class would have written. "The dog had butifl blk spots on his bk and likesto eet fud in a boo boal and has a cola with flwers on and likes to fch sics and balls in the pak"
Once she learnt to use a dictionary her writing improved no end, and was writing much more, and with a much bigger vocabulary.
At the same time, sometimes children do get strange ideas as to where they are in the class. I was approached by a friend who knew I was helping with guided reading. Her daughter had told her that she was the worst in the class at reading (year 2) and was so embarrassed that others might see her book. She was in fact in the second group (out of 5) and at the top end of that.
On the opposite scale I remember being aware that another child who always told her dm that she was in the top group. I had more than one embarrassing conversation with her dm when I was aware for various reasons that her child wasn't in the top group and she was telling me how wonderful it was her child was and saying how sorry she was that my dd wasn't in the top group with her. It was coming from the child, as my dd believed every word she said and would tell me that too.
It's also possible that in year R there was a larger "clever table" and that's now been split. Or possibly the teacher noticed he seemed to be lacking in confidence, and decided that he'd be better at the top end of table 2, rather than bottom of table 1.
Can you not practice writing stories with him at home, especially silly ones that he enjoys writing? I tell my daughter that she's the best reader in the family. (I have no idea how well or otherwise her classmates read.) And it has gone to her head. The other day when I claimed to be the best reader in our family she got quite cross with me and assured me that she was. I also make reading mistakes and my daughter takes great pleasure in correcting me and explaining why we have to read every sound in a word, etc, etc. I don't think it's all that hard to boost a child's confidence and I'm pretty sure it serves great dividends.
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