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Any experience of big gender balance inequality within year group?

(16 Posts)
Dusteverywhere Fri 19-Apr-13 16:26:55

Not sure if I've phrased that correctly, but- found out DD's reception place earlier this week. We got third choice in what appears to be quite an oversubscribed area this year. We are pleased with the school itself, no real worries there and some people have been far less fortunate.

However found out a couple of days later that as it stands at the moment, there will be 2 girls and 10 boys in her year (its a small school). They are mixed with year 1's- not 100 per cent sure of mix, but again I think fewer girls than boys.

In her current nursery (which is big) there are more girls than boys.

Any experience with this? I am quite worried to be honest. I keep thinking- what if the other girl leaves? There is no reason at all why DD shouldn't be friends with and play with boys but in her mind, at the moment, everything is about girls, girls, girls and she loves her group of 'girl' friends.

I hope this makes sense, I would feel just the same btw if I was sending my DS into a year with only one other boy...

Dusteverywhere Fri 19-Apr-13 18:01:12


acrabadabra Fri 19-Apr-13 18:05:30

I went to a very small primary school. Most were composite classes. There were y girls (incl me) & 9-10 boys. I was very good friends with them both all through primary and high school (we were put in same class when we moved up, along with a couple of the boys).

We played with the boys sometimes and also with younger and older girls depending on the composite mix.

The only issue I remember was at sports day, one of us would have to run with a younger girl for the 3 legged race. Your dd wouldn't have a problem though.

I personally liked it. I was much more comfortable around boys in high school/young adulthood and didn't go 'boy crazy' when the hormones kicked in grin. In fact, neither did my 2 friends, now you've made me think about it.


acrabadabra Fri 19-Apr-13 18:06:34

That should be 3 girls.

BeerTricksPotter Fri 19-Apr-13 18:09:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Dusteverywhere Fri 19-Apr-13 18:21:12

Thanks both. Acrabadabra, would love it if DD had the same experience as you. Interesting about the lack of boy 'craziness' in teens lol. Big plus point lol.

Beertrickspotter- I think widening the friendship pool is key. Do you think your DS has had fewer invites to play/ parties than 'normal' if you can gauge such a thing? I know that is not the only aspect to consider but I do think primary school is a lot about socialization. Did the boys from other year groups include him in this kind of thing?

BeerTricksPotter Fri 19-Apr-13 18:31:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Dusteverywhere Fri 19-Apr-13 18:39:54

Thank you! I think the reception teacher pays us a visit before sep- would it be a good thing to mention to her as one of our concerns?

BeerTricksPotter Fri 19-Apr-13 18:47:09

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

deleted203 Fri 19-Apr-13 18:51:00

You could mention it...but she cannot manufacture small girls out of the air so that there are more friends for your DD smile.

DS3 has 4 boys in his class and 14 girls. Appreciate that this is slightly better than just having 2 - and all the boys play together in a group now. TBH it didn't bother them at all in Reception, Y1, or Y2. They happily played with the girls or in mixed groups. It's only really this year when they have hit age 7/8 that the boys have decided that they don't play with girls and they stick together a bit more. This is mainly because small boys still want to play rough and tumble games/football and the girls seem to want to practice JLS dance routines. Up til this age their interests pretty much coincide.

Dusteverywhere Fri 19-Apr-13 19:16:24

Sowornout- had a good chuckle at the thought of the teacher frantically conjuring up little girls left, right and centre smile.

I'm sure being a small school they are practised at helping to develop friendships across the classes so hopefully that will happen...

I will try to relax and look forward to September with DD- easier said than done...

acrabadabra Fri 19-Apr-13 19:35:32

Agree with BeerTricks about cultivating a wider social life outside school.

I grew up in a small village. The only other kids around outside school were the ones who bused to the catholic school. But, we all played together out of school hours and in the holidays.

My best friend is the girl who lived next door to me when I was wee smile. She went to the catholic school and is a couple of years older. We live hundreds of miles away now but we go on holiday with our families every year.

Lemonsole Sat 20-Apr-13 22:02:38

Wanted to add a positive note or two here. My dd is one of five girls in a year group of 18. I've noticed that the girls learned very quickly that, when the inevitable friendship issues arise, they have to work hard to resolve them (the LSAs are great here) because they have to "live" and work together. They can't ignore the problem and zoom off to pick other friends from the non-existent other class. They have learned to be a lot more tolerant of difference and less picky than children can be with large year groups. I worked for a long time in a boarding school, and it seems similar to how boarders learn to be.

On a practical level, our girls don't seem to get anxious if there isn't anyone from school at ballet, swimming, etc, as they've always had to get used to making friends out of school. I despair when friends pull their kids out of activities "because she will be the only one there from school". So it's not all bad! After all, plenty of top professions are male-dominated, so being used to being in a minority may work in her interests one day...

Dd loves Brownies, as girl-only space, even though we had always hoped that she would be a Beaver.

Two is very few, though - but one of the loveliest things about smaller schools is how willing the children are to make friends and play across year groups. We don't spend our whole lives with people born in the same 12 month period as ourselves - good to get real from the outset!

lougle Sat 20-Apr-13 22:07:03

DD1 goes to Special School. The SS population nationally is around 75% boys and DD1's school is no exception.

In her class there are 3 girls, 7 boys. There are less than 30 girls in the entire school.

She has a fantastic time grin

LapinDeBois Sat 20-Apr-13 22:17:41

We're in sort of the opposite situation. DS1 is one of the 12 boys, 4 girls in his Reception class. Probably easier than being in the minority, but still not ideal - I just prefer the idea of a more mixed environment, plus it does mean that the atmosphere can be a bit boisterous. He's quite a sensitive soul, and I'm not sure it suits him all that well. Having said that, I'm also surprised by how little he mentions the girls (previously he'd never particularly gravitated more towards boys than girls, but he does seem to play with the boys much more at play time). I'll be quite glad when he's in the mixed Y1&2 class, as the year above is much more gender mixed. But it's not a serious concern - the school is wonderful and he's very happy.

Dusteverywhere Sun 21-Apr-13 07:57:36

Thanks for the reassurance- all comments are very welcome! As its a mixed age class there is at least a bit more of a spread there, albeit still very boy-heavy. It is very true that we don't spend our lives with those born in the same 12 month period as ourselves and I love the thought also of dd learning to be more careful and tolerant of her friendships. As she gets a little older I will definitely be looking at groups and activities which widen the base.

I think my main worry is the change for her and her happiness. She has spent her nursery years with a girl-heavy group. She also has older half-siblings who are teen girls. I think this has all contributed to her becoming more aware at an earlier age of what she perceives being a girl is 'about'. It's hard to phrase properly but although not encouraged by us at all, she rejects things- some toys and such for example, as being 'for boys', blue is a boys colour, boys don't feature in her nursery chat, is all about what she and the girls have done. etc etc. Added to all of this is the fact that she didn't get a place in the school that we expected (which is a much bigger school with a large intake) and while we are pleased that a place in a really good school, it's a big change for us all.

But I have been reassured by the comments here and I guess if dd is really unhappy later on we have the option to move if really necessary.

Thanks all.

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