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Working Towards Expectations going into Yr4

(15 Posts)
GplanAddict Tue 18-Jul-17 22:34:23

Am hoping for some advice.

My wonderful, bright dd has always struggled with learning new things although her inherent intelligence seems to be very strong. She has always been behind academically but I hoped that after spending a year in a much more supportive school with interventions that she would progress more than she has.

Partly, I think I just need to get over the fact that she won't be academic and accept that my disappointment is totally unreasonable, but equally I want her to reach her full potential which both the teacher and I agree she isn't.

I don't want to pile on the pressure over the summer holidays, but if there is one area to focus on, what should it be? She's behind in all areas. Reading?? She's on gold books, reading them easily, outstanding comprehension but no stamina at all. Can read 4 pages or so before she needs a break. Number bonds?? She knows them if you give her time, but works them out on her fingers still. Any ideas are much appreciated!


OP’s posts: |
Ifonlyoneday Tue 18-Jul-17 23:57:18

I would focus on the basics; reading, writing and maths. Maybe you could sign her up for the library summer reading challenge. If you have a tablet or computer you could maybe look into apps, that may make it more fun in the holidays.

user789653241 Wed 19-Jul-17 07:03:16

My nephew has highly intelligent/gifted parents. He ended up having SPLD. He is very bright child with lots of creativity, but not very academic.
Now he is very happy taken up photography, instead of studying academic subject in Uni.
My Dsister ended up splitting up with her dh because he couldn't take it.
But she is still young, you never know, she may be a late bloomer.
Just encourage love of learning, not pile on pressure when she isn't ready, imo.

GplanAddict Wed 19-Jul-17 09:32:37

Thankyou for your replies!

We're certainly not gifted parents but we are both in intellectual professions. Both of us have issues with working memory however and our dd seems to have inherited a double dose of poor working memory.

I don't think we can realistically work on reading, writing and maths over the summer. We need to pick some specific elements of one or two I think.

I'm hoping she finds something she can enjoy so much that she tries extra hard at it like your nephew. I'd be over the moon for her to have a photography passion.

For now I'm thinking we'll forget working on spelling and times tables as they are just so difficult for her (and ultimately she can use spell check and a calculator). I think we somehow need to help her with her reading stamina and number bond recall.

OP’s posts: |
BarbarianMum Wed 19-Jul-17 10:17:12

I'd say reading. If she's reading gold books with no trouble maybe try her on something more challenging and interesting (but not too difficult)? Read to her a lot (if you don't already) and you could try reading so that you read a paragraph/ page then she reads one so you get further into the story more quickly. Try comics/comic type books (Tom Gates maybe), joke books, recipe books if you cook together.

ilovesushi Wed 19-Jul-17 10:38:24

Don't write her off as not being academic! She has still got years and years of education to go. Being quick at maths and writing early on is not an indicator of intelligence or academic ability. She may be amazing at problem solving, critical thinking, creativity - far more meaningful than the rote mechanical stuff she is currently lumbered with at school.

I agree with previous posters about encouraging the reading for pleasure. Don't discount audio books. If she tires quickly with reading these are a good alternative to making sure she is getting that exposure to language, vocabulary, ideas. My kids (about the same age, both dyslexic) love the Spiderwick Chronicles narrated by Luke Skywalker! Have you looked at graphic novels? There are some great ones. 'Ghosts' and 'Sisters' by Raina Telgemeirer are fab. Also the Phoenix comic which you can order online has some really fun stories good for boys and girls.

I also found this link to a maths problem of the day which I plan to do with mine over the summer (not everyday, just won't happen).
I like that it is one (or two) problems to get your teeth into rather than dull list of boring number facts. I have borrowed a load of maths apparatus from school - numicon, dienes etc to use over the holiday. Maybe you can get similar?

Have you had her assessed? I found it really helped me understand my kids. I agree on forgetting the spellings and times tables. It will be miserable and unproductive. Have spent all year working on 2x table with DS (Y4) and guess what - he still doesn't know it! There is no point. His memory for sequencing is zilch.

Hard to figure out how to get in the break they need but throw in some regular productive school work too.

GplanAddict Wed 19-Jul-17 10:49:10

Oh ilovesushi I haven't written her off by any means. I know she's very clever. Unbelievably resourceful. A star at Cubs! smile

Yes she loves graphic novels and audio books. Her favourite is laser moose and rabbit boy. She also likes Tom Gates books and Jeremy Strong and we have for lots of Barrington stoke books too.
She's had half an assessment which shows she's v bright but with poor working memory and off the scale slow processing.

She has traits of ADD and PDA and we're also getting her assesed for Irlens syndrome this summer. We've tried and failed more than once to get her referred to both CAMHS and also a Pead.

Thankyou very much for the maths link, I'll take a good look at that!

OP’s posts: |
SaltyMyDear Wed 19-Jul-17 10:52:56

Not being able to read for very long can be due to a vision problem making her tired.

Engaging Eyes ( ) is a fun game she can play over the summer which will strengthen her eyes. This should improve her reading stamina.

ilovesushi Wed 19-Jul-17 11:03:19

Glad to hear it! My son's school keep referring to him as low ability which drives me nuts as he is not. I worry that his teachers' low expectations filter through to him and hit his self esteem and motivation. My DD does okay because she is a worker and a perfectionist and has a very robust sense of self. She thinks she is in the bottom set to help the other kids. Hasn't a clue the teachers think she actually belongs there! x

nonicknameseemsavailable Wed 19-Jul-17 14:06:17

have you had her eyes tested recently if she needs a break after a few pages? one of my daughters was like that and it turned out to be a very slight astigmatism which was making the print move around etc on the page and so the effort she had to put into focusing her eyes on the text and trying to work it out was exhausting. with glasses she can now read with a lot more stamina. Might be worth a check.

GplanAddict Wed 19-Jul-17 14:31:32

Thankyou Salty, that website looks great, think we'll invest!

Love the attitude of your daughter ilovesushi!

Yes, we have her eyes tested every 6 months as she does have a prescription. I think the stamina is attention related but we're also getting her tested for Irlens just in case that helps at all.

I've also discovered hit the button do a number bond one so maybe a few goes of that a day and the eyesight tracking games that you linked Salty can be our summer homework on top of reading daily.

OP’s posts: |
nonicknameseemsavailable Sat 22-Jul-17 19:56:26

my daughter wore coloured glasses for a while as they couldn't find anything else really wrong with her eyes then suddenly one optician decided to try the astigmatism prescription because she said there was a very very very slight one, not normally enough for them to take any notice of but she thought it might help, put it in and all the problems virtually disappeared, light sensitivity, inability to see contrast, stamina, reading words in the wrong order etc. really might be worth mentioning to the optician. when you look up astigmatism, those sort of things are listed but usually I think they expect it to be of a certain level before you would get those sort of problems but not in my daughter's case.

SureIusedtobetaller Sat 22-Jul-17 20:08:50

You can get a school eye test that will detect tracking issues- can seem like dyslexia or poor focus. It's not free however.
We've sent children for this with good results- often they get coloured lenses for a while. Most opticians don't do it so you'd have to look around.
If it was me I'd focus on the reading first- when I was in year two, those reading gold books struggled to meet the end of year expectations so she could do with building fluency and stamina to cope with yr 4 curriculum.
I'd do lots of practical maths - cooking, shopping, problem solving. And maybe apps for number bonds or times tables.

GplanAddict Sun 23-Jul-17 11:42:49

Thankyou both!

Just thought I'd update as she's done hit the button for number bonds to 10 for 3 days in a row now and is proud of herself for achieving 20 as her highest score so far.
What it has highlighted for me is that she can't even concentrate for 60 seconds. She drifts off in that time. Her brother who is 5 has beaten her score after his second attempt and he hasn't even been taught number bonds yet. She doesn't know this.

Thanks for the advice about astigmatism, both her and her brother have prescription for astigmatism already and I do need to get more on the case with both of them to wear their glasses more frequently. She's also been seen by a behavioural optometrist (expensive!) who picked up that she doesn't track well at all. We do exercises with bean bags but again probably not as often as we should.

OP’s posts: |
nonicknameseemsavailable Sun 23-Jul-17 21:40:46

ok so it sounds like it could primarily be eye related. If it is hard for her to focus then she will struggle to concentrate. I didn't realise until my daughter got her current glasses that to her all walls curved!!!! she had no idea they were supposed to be straight. to be honest she probably felt queasy most of the time as everything was curved, she used to bounce off walls literally. not because she couldn't sit still as she was hyperactive but because she couldn't focus on anything visually. i would make a daily time slot to do the eye exercises for eye tracking and explain what the glasses are there to help with.

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