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What to do about y5 daughter struggling

(19 Posts)
user1464025599 Mon 23-May-16 18:58:40

Hi I'm after some advice! My daughter currently in year 5 at school has really been struggling with spelling and maths in particular. I really dislike the current education policies and way that the curriculum had been narrowed to teach to SATS etc and wish it could be a broader education. However I accept that unless I home school her or move her to alternative type of education that's unlikely with the present educational climate politically!

So I also have concerns that she may have dyslexia ( her dad does ). I took her to a private dyslexia tutor recommended by a friend for a pre assessment. She recommended private tutoring with her but I'm a bit reluctant to 'buy into' the system and get my daughter to do more of the same type of lessons and home work. Any advice?!

TeenAndTween Mon 23-May-16 19:22:50

I'm no help at all on the spellings front, though you could try Apples and Pears. We did it for a summer with some success, but couldn't continue once term started again. Something clicked for DD2 in y6 and she has improved quite a lot this year, but no idea why particularly.

With maths, I have found using physical objects really helps. e.g. rearranging 12 blocks to form 1x12, 2x6, 3x4 shapes or using coins to do column addition. You kind of need to do the lowest level stuff she struggles with and work upwards. And cooking. How far behind is she?

mrz Mon 23-May-16 20:20:38

You could try the Power of two book for maths

user1464025599 Mon 23-May-16 23:15:02

Thanks I like the idea of physical blocks etc for maths she is freaking out about her times tables mostly and she is in a special group for maths which is back to basics in arithmetic but her teacher thinks it's not actually helping that much🙁

mrsmortis Tue 24-May-16 09:54:49

Would something like the times table club on help? I think with something that you really need to just learn like times tables the little and often approach is good.

I'm sure that there are apps and things available as well.

Ferguson Tue 24-May-16 19:22:50

This is really aimed at younger children, but she may gain something from it:

Practical things are best for grasping number concepts - bricks, Lego, beads, counters, money, shapes, weights, measuring, cooking.

Do adding, taking away, multiplication (repeated addition), division (sharing), using REAL OBJECTS as just 'numbers' can be too abstract for some children.

Number Bonds of Ten forms the basis of much maths, so try to learn them. Using Lego or something similar, use a LOT of bricks (of just TWO colours, if you have enough) lay them out so the pattern can be seen of one colour INCREASING while the other colour DECREASES. Lay them down, or build up like steps.

ten of one colour none of other
nine of one colour one of other
eight of one colour two of other
seven of one colour three of other
then of course, the sides are equal at 5 and 5; after which the colours 'swap over' as to increasing/decreasing.

To learn TABLES, do them in groups that have a relationship, thus:

x2, x4, x8

x3, x6, x12

5 and 10 are easy

7 and 9 are rather harder.

Starting with TWO times TABLE, I always say: "Imagine the class is lining up in pairs; each child will have a partner, if there is an EVEN number in the class. If one child is left without a partner, then the number is ODD, because an odd one is left out."

Use Lego bricks again, lay them out in a column of 2 wide to learn 2x table. Go half way down the column, and move half the bricks up, so that now the column is 4 bricks wide. That gives the start of 4x table.

Then do similar things with 3x and 6x.

With 5x, try and count in 'fives', and notice the relationship with 'ten' - they will alternate, ending in 5 then 10.

It is important to try and UNDERSTAND the relationships between numbers, and not just learn them 'by rote'.

An inexpensive solar powered calculator (no battery to run out!) can help learn tables by 'repeated addition'. So: enter 2+2 and press = to give 4. KEEP PRESSING = and it should add on 2 each time, giving 2 times table.

There are good web sites, which can be fun to use :

amidawish Wed 25-May-16 08:49:55

if she doesn't know her times tables well i would just focus on that for now. It really holds them back. Percy Parker CD is good if rhymes help her remember eg the sixes rap.

Ferguson Fri 27-May-16 19:22:46

And to help with her spelling, the Oxford Phonics Spelling Dictionary clarifies a lot of the things children can be confused over:

An inexpensive and easy to use book, that can encourage children with reading, spelling and writing, and really help them to understand Phonics, is reviewed in the MN Book Reviews section. Just search ‘Phonics’ and my name.

TwoLeftSocks Fri 27-May-16 19:28:25

Have you discussed dyslexia with the school? They should be able to get someone in to assess her for that, or dyscalculia, dysgraphia or any other specific learning difficulty.

TwoLeftSocks Fri 27-May-16 19:29:31

Specifically mention that her dad has dyslexia as it's often hereditary.

FlouncyMcFlounceFace Fri 27-May-16 19:38:26

We use mathswhizz for DS yr5 and DD yr R. It works out £10/ month if you get a year subscription with a discount code (something like parent2016).

I particularly liked whizz after we did a free trial because i can look over the work the DC's have done when they've gone to bed. I can see what they're finding easy and hard. Yet i don't need to be in their faces whilst they're working.

It has quite a clever system of allowing them to accelerate through exercises if they're finding it easy and if they're getting a few wrong they do more at the same level, if lots are wrong it steps back a bit without telling them that its making it easier for them. As they gain confidence the level then becomes gently more challenging.

Theres an inbuilt rewards system and they earn points for work done and can decorate the work space and buy virtual pets, who need virtual feeding by buying more virtual food that you need rewards by doing real work to gain.

It might be something to consider even if just for the free trial as it gives a parent report of approx maths age and you can see strengths and weaknesses.

I wish there was an english/ spelling equivalent.

Dontlikethedailyfail21 Sat 28-May-16 22:52:51

Being diagnosed with dyslexia doesn't (in my children's experience) mean they get any help at school. All classrooms are supposed to be dyslexia friendly anyway.

CodyKing Sun 29-May-16 00:05:52

Have you asked them to check her phonics knowledge?

She may be missing some gaps - DS did I year 6 and two weeks of extra practice has made a huge difference to his spelling result

FrancisdeSales Sun 29-May-16 00:08:22

Also Maths Whizz online? Goes at the child's pace.

Out2pasture Sun 29-May-16 00:18:46

can someone tell me at what stage spelling doesn't matter?
surely later on it only matters on work that is produced for grading (essays and papers that can be proofread) and those are generally assigned work not done in class.
my kids went through a system when they embraced spell check so no focus on spelling by y5.

mrz Sun 29-May-16 07:44:46

Spelling matters from the very beginning. The more times you spell/see a word spelled wrongly the more difficult it is to learn the correct spelling.

FinallyHere Sun 29-May-16 09:05:10

I'm loving the ideas ^ about understanding times tables. Finding and seeing patterns in things is such a useful skill.

I get that 7 times is tricky, but 9 times has a simple pattern to make it easier to see the progression: every time you add one to the ten column, you subtract one from the units column.


This is the same as adding ten then subtracting one, because nine is one less than ten.

AllPizzasGreatAndSmall Mon 30-May-16 21:29:57

can someone tell me at what stage spelling doesn't matter?

Spelling never doesn't matter, unless you never have to write anything that is to be read by others for the rest of your life.

raymarple Tue 31-May-16 08:23:31

The children grab the things only the surrounding people make learn to them. All things of learning are dependent on how they all teach children. Only you can find different ways to make learn more things to your child. The multiple activities are done by playing blocks or abacus and many other objects. This is the only way that your child can grab more things by physical activities than just reading and beat others. You can keep an eye on your child's activities in schools with the help of a school management and communication tool "WithMyLittleOne ". It is specifically designed for preschools, daycare centers, after school programs and child activity centers that provides an easy way to communicate with teachers and know about child's activities.

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