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Daughter may have been moved up two years in maths without discussion

(22 Posts)
Micksy Mon 19-Jan-15 20:47:34

I'm not sure how I feel about this. My reception age daughter has been working with a higher year group for phonics. I was told when she started that they had mixed age groups for some things. They told me when she started working with year 1, and then I just took her word for it when she told me was being moved again to year 2. I wouldn't have thought she was working at year 2 level myself, as her reading isn't amazing. I'd imagine she would pass the year 1 phonics assessment, but only just. However, from what I gather, RWI strongly encourages working in ability pairings, and the school knows the ability of their students far better than me, so I'm reasonably content with them selecting the groups without talking to me. From what I understand, it's only for a short period of each day.

However, today my daughter has told me that she is now doing maths with year 2. She says its hard because they are doing 2 and 10 times tables, and she is no good at them (she can count by 2s, 5s and 10s). She says she can't add 20 and 20. I'm pretty sure that she can grasp the concepts if they're explained to her and she was soon doing 30+40 in the bath, but I'm not really sure how I feel about this. I don't think she has a solid understanding of place value and I don't really fancy her picking up half the picture.

This seems like a bigger thing to do without speaking to us than the phonics. How much of the day is she now spending with year 2 (if that's where she is)? Is this really a good idea? Is it normal practise to do this kind of thing without discussing it with us? The work definitely sounds more complicated than reception, but does this sound like year 2 work?

Her reception teacher seems very nice, but is not likely to have much time to discuss this with me in the morning. I don't know when the next parents' evening is. Do I ask for a meeting after school? What kind of questions do I need to be asking? If she is learning times tables, I'd like to know so I can support it at home. Her homework is from her reception teacher, so she is writing the first letters of words given a picture: nothing that is actually linked to anything she is doing with the higher year groups.

Is this a good thing, or a bad thing? I just don't know. Do I have any say in the matter, and should I exercise it if I do?

rootypig Mon 19-Jan-15 20:50:17

Is this a very long stealth boast?

Yes, if you have questions or concerns, make an appointment with her teacher, go in, and discuss it. confused

When you know the facts, then there might be room for some marvellous MN opinions. hmm

stealthsquiggle Mon 19-Jan-15 20:51:41

It's only a good thing if she enjoys it - if she is struggling or feels lost then no, it's not a good thing. It's also not a good thing if it's not part of a plan which you are bought into - for example, if she were to continue, what would happen when she got to Y5 and her maths buddies had all left?

Definitely needs discussion IMO (and I have a DC who moved ahead of his year group so I am not dead set against it)

Quitethewoodsman Mon 19-Jan-15 20:51:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

benfoldsfive Mon 19-Jan-15 20:54:44

You need to talk to them and actually find out what is going on .

My ds (year 3) goes into the year 6 class room with the higher ability in his class and the mirror class for all his maths lessons. The year 6 teacher is a specialist in some areas of maths so they are teaching the term. He is older so able to explain what is going on.

Passthecake30 Mon 19-Jan-15 20:55:01

I have a reception and a yr 2 child, yours does sound like she is capable of yr2 maths compared to the ability of my yr2 ds. Mixing the age groups sounds like a good thing if it's just for a short while, so long as it doesn't pull the more advanced yr2's down?

benfoldsfive Mon 19-Jan-15 20:56:11

Should add year 6 are being taught pe buy his teacher, so not in the room. He isn't doing year six maths grin

nonicknameseemsavailable Mon 19-Jan-15 21:05:50

it could be that some yr2 children are being brought down to work with some yr 1 and R children rather than her going up to Yr2. I would have thought that sounded like Yr1 work. My Yr1 child is doing things like that but she is just in the normal class.

Micksy Mon 19-Jan-15 21:06:36

I wondered how long it would be before "stealth boast" came up. Well done rootypig, first post!

For those whose kids were moved up for a particular subject, is it normal to discuss this with you first? Did you get a say in it?

RedCrayons Mon 19-Jan-15 21:17:04

My DS has been doing maths with the year above since year 1. There was discussion in as much as 'this is what we're doing and why'. They weren't asking me, just keeping me informed. They know better than I do, what he's capable of.
If he was struggling and telling me he's unhappy then I would approach them, as I did with my other DS when he was moved up a table.

Definitely approach the teacher to clarify what's going on though. Sometimes the DCs are not the most reliable sources!

benfoldsfive Mon 19-Jan-15 21:21:06

I think it is more likely to be as nonicknames has suggested.

Micksy Mon 19-Jan-15 21:49:08

Thanks for all the responses. I needed to work out how I felt after an initial indignant rush of "They should have spoken to me about this."

I'm also leaning towards them having cross year groupings, and it not necessarily being a year 2 group, just a group with year 2s in it. I wouldn't be amazed if it was a couple of instances where she was just not taken back to her own class at the right time.

I don't think its a particularly high achieving school, sitting somewhere slightly below the national average. In fact, its probably a prime example of position in the class not matching position nationally. I think I have to see that they are doing their best to provide her with challenge at the right level within their capacity and have very positive intentions.

I'm thinking I'm going to go in with, "DD tells me she's working with an older group in maths, do you have a couple of minutes to tell me about it, because she isn't very clear." Then if it is true, I think I will ask, "How long each day will she be working with older children" and "Is there anything I can do to support her at home."

Whatever concerns I have about later down the line can wait until I've seen how she gets on with it. I'm not getting any negative responses from those who have been through this, and it seems a nicer approach than her skipping a year, which I think I would probably refuse.

TeenAndTween Tue 20-Jan-15 12:00:38

It is of course possible that the y2s are doing y1 work. So although sdhe is 'working with y2s' she is actually 'doing y1 work'

Endler32 Tue 20-Jan-15 12:20:54

Is it a small school? My dd's are in a small primary which has mixed classes so children can easily access maths at a higher level, children are never sent to work in other classes though, my dd1 is working at a high level ( only 2 children in her year working at this level ), her teacher provides her and the other child with harder work, they sit on a separate table and are given their work to get on with whilst the teacher sorts out the other children in her year group, the same happens with literacy.

DeanKoontz Tue 20-Jan-15 12:26:38

my ds has been in and out of these kind of groups, and also occasionally in 'booster' groups when his progress has stalled for whatever reason. I'm not usually informed.

ANewMein2015 Tue 20-Jan-15 12:32:44

I was wondering if it was a small school. Ours does rwi/rml and groups for maths but the teachers are more than able to differentiate within the year groups, especially at the levels you're talking about.

I'd be a bit concerned if they couldn't.

(And a fast learner in yrR is very different to a "slow" learner from yr 2, so although they may be covering the same topics its not an ideal mix...)

My daughter is one of the faster ones (yr1) yet in a low achieving area. Yet she is still set interesting books, doing comprehension and little research projects when some of the others are doing phonics. I only know because she tells me, the teachers haven't!

DropYourSword Tue 20-Jan-15 12:42:04

I think hat you should trust that the teachers and the school know what they're doing. If they informed every parent of every little thing they'd have no time to do their actual job!

Poppytoffee Tue 20-Jan-15 13:11:44

I'm a teacher in a primary school (currently on maternity leave, hence why posting in the middle of the day lol) and it sounds like your ds' school are very on top on things. They have identified that your child is slightly more advanced in her maths and are trying to ensure she is able to make the progress she is capable of. We have done this sort of thing in the school I work at. I'm sure if you phone the school and ask for an appointment , the teacher would explain more fully to you the reasoning and what you can do to help your child. At least that what I would dosmile

I agree that maybe they could have kept you more informed, but I'm sure that haven't kept you out the loop deliberately.

Micksy Tue 20-Jan-15 13:27:01

Thanks for all the comments. I went and spoke to my dd's teacher briefly. It's not year two, it's year one. She started doing phonics, got to know the teacher. They're extending it to maths, but keeping an eye on her to make sure she's not getting stressed. If she's okay with that, they'll try literacy as well but shell definitely still be spending most of the day with her age group.
Thanks for the reassurance that this is all pretty standard. It's a two form entry, but this sounds like something they do quite routinely.

GoogleyEyes Tue 20-Jan-15 14:07:35

OP I know this is standard in a lot of schools (though not in the one my dd1 attends, where they prefer to differentiate within the class and not move them up to other years) but I do think it's worth checking out what's going on. And (for the future) what they do for more able children I upper KS2, where they can't just go up a year or two.

Rootypig the OP has responded graciously to you. Personally, I thought your dig about stealth boasting was uncalled for. People with academically able dcs

GoogleyEyes Tue 20-Jan-15 14:09:06

Bother, posted randomly in the middle of a sentence:

"people with academically able dcs are allowed to seek support and ask questions as much as anyone else."

rootypig Wed 21-Jan-15 02:52:13

For heaven's sake, the OP had no idea what was going on, and now she does, it's not what she spent five paragraphs worrying about. I have no quarrel with the idea that those with academically able children need to seek support. It was just a long and overwrought OP when, as most pointed out, the teacher's clarification was indicated.

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