DS being discouraged from going outside to play(10 Posts)
While I'm not under the false impression that DS is a saint, he is well-behaved, polite and motivated at school - at any rate I have never been told anything to the contrary.
Since September, he keeps being taken at the end of lesson to the learning support room which houses 'play / dinner club' (it just happens to be in the Ls room; it isn't linked to SEN in this context as far as I know.)
I'm unhappy about it because of the food (carb heavy and sugary - very buttery toast and shortbread) and also because his friends aren't there and he doesn't like it.
I've asked the teacher and she got a bit defensive, saying that it was to encourage him to mix with a variety of children.
Any primary teachers shed any light ? ... I am a teacher but secondary trained. He is year3
Is there any reason for it? (Has he had issues on the playground with other children? Is he meant to 'support' any children there?) To be honest, I'd ask the teacher.
I have in the past kept children in because of issues outside with others (i.e. after a full week of them getting into trouble every single breaktime, they needed a break from getting told off...and things needed to calm down outside, esp. with the lunchtime staff). They were allowed to choose two or three friends to stay with them, though, and either go on the computers or play with the Lego in my classroom. It was simply to give them a quiet space, away from the others, who were winding them up. It was something I had discussed with the children, though,...and had informed their parents about. Once they (and I) felt that they had managed to get a hold of themselves again after about two or three days, they went back out.
It's a very strange idea to keep him in and give him sweets. (Are they worried that you don't feed him properly?) I try very hard to make sure the kids in my class go outside...and get the space and opportunity to run around and burn off energy.
My dd is regularly "invited" to fun club, which I think is to help Dcs that have problems mixing in the playground, I think she is there in a supporting role for a friend, but it could be for her own good too as she is painfully shy. And there are also lots of sweets and biscuits involved. In fact that's how I found out she was going, she kept on boasting about all the sweets she was getting at school to her brother. She appears to be happy to go to it, though the main draw is definitely the food. Dd is overweight and it is the sweets/biscuits and lack of running around that concerns me, plus a bit of openness and some communication from the school wouldn't hurt either. I have asked her teacher, the SENCO and the deputy head about it and got no clear answers so far, either about the capacity in which she attends, why she needs to go and would they please stop giving her extra treats! I asked the deputy head about this just before Chrismas and she was probably too busy to look into it, she's generally very good, so I will remind her about it tomorrow but if no answers are forthcoming within a week or so I'll be making a formal complaint about the sweets and missing out on exercise and asking to be told why she is going. She already misses several play times due to various interventions for maths and writing, playtime is important too!
I have asked and got a vague answer along the lines of 'it's a nice place' - I asked if DS could choose if he wanted to go or not and was reassured it was always his choice.
However while this is technically true it seems to be being done in such a way where DS finds it difficult to say no - the ta will say 'are you coming to the club now then!' and then 'oh go on, come on now, come along with me!'
It's strange. To my knowledge he's had no social or other issues and he has a duly healthy lunch box!
It is frustrating.
I know one of my children was occasionally used to accompany another child (they used to use different children each day) who has a disability and was unable to go join the other children. she complained a couple of times to me that she didn't like it because she wasn't with her friends but it was only a few times I think and I told her it was so she had a chance to get to know this other child. we weren't told it was happening but it was fairly self explanatory and wasn't an issue.
HOWEVER in your case I think I would be sending in a letter formally asking to be informed why, what, how often etc. Either it is because of an issue involving your child in which case you need to know that he is shy/scared/naughty whatever OR he is there to accompany someone else in which case you should be told and the accompanying child should change in my opinion. It would sound to me like it is some sort of social interaction group but they tell you if this is the case.
I am shocked at schools dishing out treats to be honest. Most schools are now proud to have some sort of healthy eating award mark thingumy so why any school would be discouraging exercise and encouraging sweets is a mystery to me.
anyway whilst I know playgrounds are noisy and can be intimidating couldn't they do some sort of activities in the PE hall or something instead of sitting eating?
They have computer games (I know!) and the food isn't sweets but just toast and shortbread and crumpets but just a bit much!
It's largely because he doesn't want to go so I wish I knew why he kept being persuaded to.
I suspect you're right but I don't know why DS is being pushed into going.
I genuinely (as a teacher and former SENCo) don't think that I would go down this route without first explaining to the parents:
a) what the reason was.
b) why the child had been chosen.
c) how long it would be happening for.
d) what the aim of the intervention was.
I would be asking for a meeting with the class teacher in order to better understand what was going on. If that doesn't get you anywhere, write a formal letter to the headteacher, with a copy sent to the chair of govs for good measure.
Unfortunately I'll have to bring it up with the head then as I have asked his teacher about it a few times and always got vague responses. DS is left to it for a few weeks but then starts being 'encouraged' to spend play inside.
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