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Difference in performance at school and home.

(16 Posts)
thisismyusernameagain Sat 30-Sep-17 22:20:22

Why would a child perform very poorly at school but have absolutely no problem with the same level work and much much harder work at home? Quiet, well behaved child.

Ideas please? I am at a lost and so is the teacher.

OP’s posts: |
DancingLedge Sat 30-Sep-17 22:33:25

More distractible at school? Noise, lighting, other children making it hard to concentrate?

I didn't recognise teacher's description of DS, until the day I tried to hear him read in the classroom.

Wellthen Sat 30-Sep-17 22:35:37

Can you give an example? E.g. A maths problem or writing technique they can/can't use?

It could be a learnt behaviour - a complete inability to work independently or with other children around. I've taught children who are so scared of looking silly that they wouldn't attempt anything except the easiest work when other children were around.

It could be a difference in expectation- do they use resources or help that aren't available at school?

brilliotic Sat 30-Sep-17 22:58:38

Is the child anxious, or perhaps perfectionist (which is also a kind of anxiety)?

Some children are so worried/anxious about behaving at school (since a large part of school seems to be behaviour management) that they have no energy/brain space left for the academic stuff. Perhaps something goes 'in', but in the midst of worrying about the 100 rules they need to remember, they cannot 'show' what they are capable of academically. At home the behaving is easier (behaviour rules/expectations are there, but have been learnt since birth really, and do not take up any conscious thought). Therefore no anxiety and more headspace to focus on the work.

And then there are those who are so afraid of getting something wrong, that they won't try. Anxious not to disappoint the teacher? Anxious not to be seen as silly by their mates? But more relaxed when with their parents, as they are confident of their unconditional love.

user789653241 Sat 30-Sep-17 23:02:15

I think it's quite common, even with well behaved child.
Noise/ children distracting/seating arrangement, etc, etc.
Also at home you have 1-1 with a child in better environment, but at school, 1-30 at worst ratio, so children's own ability to do work independently is needed more, without constant encouragements.

thisismyusernameagain Sat 30-Sep-17 23:02:44

They have just entered into year 3 and have been exceeding expectation since reception. Always in the highest ability groups and then last year the ability groups were scrapped. I did notice that work started to suffer a bit but sats results were exceeding so didn't worry too much.

Four weeks into term I noticed that lots of errors had been made on all the maths sheets in school and I was concerned as it was really below their capabilities. I printed out the same work at home and the next 15 levels and they were completed quickly and almost perfectly. Left alone and no help given. So I took them to the teacher and the teacher was shocked that my child could do them.

The teacher said that there was no sign in any school work that our child was exceeding expectation on the performance they had seen.

I have complained about the level of noise in previous years, it is a rotten class behaviour wise. Obviously the school always say its not that bad but from what I hear it is terrible. Our child seems to have little confidence at school, doesn't put their hand up and is drowned out by the loud ones. I am shocked at how nervous she was in front of the teacher.

However if I am honest, I just do not understand what is going on and I am ever so worried about it. I really want to help her.

OP’s posts: |
thisismyusernameagain Sat 30-Sep-17 23:07:21

Thanks for the replies.

I can definitely see their is an anxiety issue at school and I have seen her do daft things in front of her friends when she is nervous.

She is a child that does need prompting a fair bit, even at home. I get fed up with it but i don't know how much prompting is normal at 7!

I am interested in the comment - children's own ability to do work independently is needed more, without constant encouragements. Any ideas how I can encourage this?

OP’s posts: |
Applesandpears23 Sat 30-Sep-17 23:08:54

I really struggled with noise at school and being unable to concentrate. I found it easier to switch off and not try and then if I was interested read the book/think about the maths later.

steppemum Sat 30-Sep-17 23:10:16

I have veyr mixed feelings about children sitting on a tabel all of one ability. But the one thing it does do is show the kids what those of the same ability are up to.

So, children all doing creative writting. Little Sue really struggles and writes half a page, that is huge for her, teacher really pleased, well done Sue. katy sitting next to her thinks half a page is great, so does half-one page and feels pleased with herself.

But if Katy was sitting next to Jane, jane usually writes 3-4 pages, and katy might have picked up her game and aimed for 3-4 pages too.

Quiet well behaved children can often end up doing the work in front of them, and handing it in. The fact that they coudl do much mcuh harder work is not discovered, because they are not stretched, and do not misbehave when bored.

One slight red flag for me is that the teacher should have seen her results from last year, where she came into class exceeding expectation, and should have been challenging her appropriately. She doesn't seem to be considering where they were recorded as being at the end of last year.
Also, in a good class, the children will have the next step in front of them, so, when you can do this, then you can try that. Which gives them something to aim for.

brilliotic Sat 30-Sep-17 23:11:38

So it is not just a discrepancy between home and school work, but also that school work appears to have declined whereas home work has remained at a high level.

And it coincides with new teacher, and with going into KS2.

It could be that the new teacher has not yet got to grips with the class, behaviour wise; so there is more disruptive behaviour, distracting your child.
Or due to the higher expectations for behaviour, now that they are in Y3, perhaps with new rules; your DS has become anxious about behaving (compensating for other children's bad behaviour) and has no headspace left for school work.

thisismyusernameagain Sat 30-Sep-17 23:41:14

The teacher just said to me that she had noticed that she was above expectation last year and that her work was no way near so she was going to address it at parents evening which is near Christmas. If I am honest I do not think that she had noticed until I told her. I really do not think that my child gets noticed at all which has always been a worry.

OP’s posts: |
thisismyusernameagain Sat 30-Sep-17 23:44:01

Does anyone have any ideas of what I can ask school to do to help?

OP’s posts: |
Silver47 Sat 30-Sep-17 23:48:21

it is completely normal, all kids without exception perform better at home than at school, at home they have one to one support and at school they don't. Even though you say they were left alone, they still have the one to one attention from you before and after doing the work, that is not going to happen at school. it is comparing apples with oranges.

Kokeshi123 Sun 01-Oct-17 12:06:23

Can you ask for your child to be moved?

What is the school doing to minimize noise in the classroom?

Kokeshi123 Sun 01-Oct-17 12:07:18

Has their hearing been checked?

RedSkyAtNight Sun 01-Oct-17 12:17:34

Is it just a settling in issue with moving into juniors (is it a different school?).

DD's work definitely dipped for the first few weeks when she moved into Y3 - her mind was on new school, and learning new expectations and getting to know new children. When she'd settled in, her work reverted back to its previous level (I remember her teacher saying he'd decided to ignore the first 4 weeks of term as clearly it wasn't representative of her ability!)

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