What extra support would parents like in regards to your childs education?

(35 Posts)
littlemissnorthernbird Sat 12-May-18 16:23:06

Purely for my own research... Would love to know what support parents would like to have in regards to your child's education. The curriculum in schools is very different nowadays compared to our own education and often means many parents are left confused with expectations.

Do you have any particular areas you would most like support with? What do you find most difficult in regards to supporting your child?

Thank you

OP’s posts: |
GreenTulips Sat 12-May-18 16:30:01

Remembering the phones sounds

DDs school sent home a booklet with the songs they sang on them

A meeting about the importance of reading to the children and how it helps them develop

Homework - I'm not a great fan but it's a good indication of what your child is learning. This could be done as a 'this term we are looking at..... sentence structures, colum addditin and time, in science were are learning about plants' blah

I also like the running school calendar for the next 3 months on every letter

reluctantbrit Sat 12-May-18 17:21:27

Explaining how maths is taught, most times I had to google expressions I never heard before and DD couldn’t explain it good enough. The two sessions in Y1 and Y4 just didn’t cut it.

Homework which is actually meaningful.

Seeing the books more often, we only are allowed once a year.

Good communication with the school in general, be proactive about upcoming events, not all mums are SAHMs, the majority has to juggle work like the dads.

Reduce dress up days, too expensive.

Don’t stress about SATS. DD is just doing them and the last couple of months were hell with weekly reminder like “x days until SATS” and mock tests and more holiday homework.

catkind Sat 12-May-18 18:10:21

I'd like for school to actually reliably educate them not just leave it to us where DC are inconveniently ahead. It's been really hit and miss.

Our school have been good about informing us how the syllabus is taught though. They have curriculum evenings about phonics/writing and maths for different years, and there is a half-termly update about class topics, assemblies where they show us what they're working on etc. There was more in reception which is good, the older they get the more they're able to tell us what's going on themselves.

littlemissnorthernbird Sat 12-May-18 18:30:56

Thank you for your responses. Do you think knowing how your child is doing in different subjects at more regular intervals would help you support them further? What do you do if you need extra support? Do you feel this is solely the responsibility of the school or do you support through other routes at home alongside the school?

Homework is somewhat controversial...would you prefer suggestions of how you can support your child at home rather than specific set work?

Thank you once again

OP’s posts: |
GreenTulips Sat 12-May-18 18:56:52

In my experience only the 'priority' children get suppprt - the bottom few. Those in the middle go unnoticed.

I'd like to see better support for ll children and parents informed if they aren't making expected targets and what we can do to help at home.

Schools ailed my child. Every step of the way

Tomorrowillbeachicken Sat 12-May-18 19:51:11

Getting a challenging curriculum for my high ability Sen child would a start. There needs to be something there if a child can hit end of year targets at the beginning of a school year.
Also being able to access the specialist equipment he needs to access the curriculum would be a bonus. But the schools Sen budget is a joke as it doesn’t cover the basics and getting a ehcp in our borough is a bar steward.
A lot of problems in schools is because budgets are cut to bare bones.


littlemissnorthernbird Sat 12-May-18 20:14:45

Tomorrowwillbeachicken I understand your frustration. Unfortunately the budget problems will not resolve soon. So you've identified the problems...would you mind me asking then how do you support your child further at home? Is it something you have to research yourself?

OP’s posts: |
sirfredfredgeorge Sat 12-May-18 20:15:16

Unless there are issues meeting the curriculum, I want less support, and the support for meeting the expected is obviously completely specific to the needs that are not being met - I don't need info on how the school teaches phonics, unless learning phonics is proving a challenge for example.

I see the schools role to deliver the curriculum, if they can deliver it easily, then getitng out of the way (ie not wasteful "you must do undifferentiated make-work homework") and helping provide time for the child to work on what they want, rather than simply the curriculum, and I don't see a need for a curriculum to be broader, it should be about core skills.

PerfectlySymmetricalButtocks Sat 12-May-18 20:18:49

DD needs more difficult work as she's not being stretched, DS2, otoh, needs support in reading, spelling and handwriting. They go to an academy, but they don't seem to have enough TAs.

littlemissnorthernbird Sat 12-May-18 20:19:39

Thank you sirfredfredgeorge That is really useful...the core skills comment in particular

OP’s posts: |
TheFlannelsAreBreeding Sat 12-May-18 20:21:41

Our school does lots of good things:
- homework reinforces classwork (so as well as practice for the kids, it tells me what they’re learning this week)
- termly ‘book looks’ so I can see their schoolwork
- termly ‘ask the HT’ sessions (which I rarely go to, but useful occasionally) for each KS
- termly class Assemblies where you see the highlights of what they’ve been doing (nice photos up on the interactive whiteboard, as well as whatever the kids have put together)

And the stuff the DON’T do is also important:
- no SATs pressure in KS1 (they don’t know they’re doing them)
- no nagging parents about reading / homework / spellings if they’re not done (though in KS2 it means doing them in playtime instead, which I’m fine with)
- very few (thought still some, annoyingly) last minute asks for kit / dressing up / events / parent helpers

Ummmmgogo Sat 12-May-18 20:24:40

I want less support too! we have meetings once a term to explain the curriculum, reading books and 2 stay and plays in the classroom a month. for a 3 year old this seems hugely over the top!

I do love that the teachers are so dedicated so I wouldn't normally complain but you did ask xx

Tomorrowillbeachicken Sat 12-May-18 20:28:34

We supplement a little but our six year old teaches himself to a larger degree. At home he has learnt to use a pc and due to his writing issues he has found this a more accessible means for written communication.
He usually teaches himself a new maths concept as he needs it, usually in minecraft, and last ones taught were 3 and 4 times table (had already figured out 2, 5, 10) and two digit plus two digit addition.

In terms of reading we supplement by taking him to the library to get harder books. He is also bought books on his passions, I.e science.

littlemissnorthernbird Sat 12-May-18 21:06:54

Tomorrowwillbeachicken Thank you. It's the supplementary things that you do at home to support your child that I am interested in so this really helps.

OP’s posts: |
littlemissnorthernbird Sat 12-May-18 21:11:30

Thank you GreenTulips, reluctantbrit, catkind, PerfectlySymmetricalButtocks, TheFlannelsAreBreeding, Ummmmgogo for your comments too. Really useful.

Would appreciate any more discussion on this topic if anyone else would like to participate?

OP’s posts: |
RainbowFairiesHaveNoPlot Sun 13-May-18 07:56:10

Ours isn't bad really - particularly in reception where we get a weekly update on what they've been doing in class that week (godsend when you've got a child with speech issues if you know roughly what's happened as a starting point to figure out what they're telling you).

I think they possibly need more in terms of explanation about maths methods across the school - even as an ex-primary teacher myself it's all bloody changed (again) since I last taught it and that was only 6 years ago. The only reason I know what's going on with it all is because I'm usually in the classroom for a couple of Maths lessons a week and I've spent the time to start looking into the curriculum changes myself (I'm wanting to return to the classroom eventually... that stampede of people running away from teaching and I'm trying to get back in the other direction) - but the parents on the playground generally look totally stumped by it all. We've had a lot of good phonics and reading based parent sessions but nothing in terms of what's going on in Maths within the school.

Tomorrowillbeachicken Sun 13-May-18 08:11:20

In reception we also used teach your monster to read nester to read, oxford owl and used busy things website (and still do)

catkind Sun 13-May-18 09:58:59

Supplementary things we do at home: taught DC to read, mostly Songbirds, some Oxford owls, TYMtR, and just playing around. Had maths toys like dice games, top trumps, cuisenaire, dienes blocks. Various maths/logic-ish apps particularly dragonbox ones. Took them to library and provided books. Encouraged DC to write stuff e.g. birthday cards, then later holiday diaries.
Apart from the writing where DS has been behind, all just following kids' lead. So currently not much academic going on at home at all. They've got interested in music instead. Possibly because that is an area where they get 20 minutes of actual teaching, homework that's interesting and challenging and a sense of progression. Worked for me, primary school was dull dull dull but I learned how to learn via music.

GreenTulips Sun 13-May-18 10:53:59

I think you get mixed responses because all children are different

DD didn't need any extra help as she just gets it
DS struggled and could've dont with more support at home - but the issues weren't raised

They are twins - I would've wanted a different approach to each child

littlemissnorthernbird Sun 13-May-18 11:11:34

'All children are different'....very much so! So a very personalised response of supplementary ideas at home is required rather than one size fits all.

OP’s posts: |
brilliotic Sun 13-May-18 11:35:55

I just wish the 'school and parents are partners in educating the children' thing were more than lip-service.

Those parents wanting to support the children's learning - be it by helping out at school, or by wanting to understand how things are taught so they can support their own child at home - are regularly fobbed off.

And yet school expects parents to support them in getting top results. Meaning, 'get private tutoring'.

In our house, chess has the place that music has in catkind's. I wish school did anything my child could get so enthusiastic about.

sirfredfredgeorge Sun 13-May-18 17:01:56

It's always interesting to me that so many parents of able children want their kids to be challenged by primary school, when to me I only want them to be engaged so that they might choose to challenge themselves, or not. I can see why you need your non-able child pushed if you want particular academic outcomes (7+ / 11+ etc.), but when the child can achieve those outcomes easily I simply want the child to find things they enjoy and push themselves. I actually don't want continual external push from teachers (or parents) to work hard, the earlier a kid can start judging when to work absolutely their best, and when to coast a bit, the better!

That is of course for a kid who is achieving the curriculum though, any problems, early intervention, good resources and a focus on what the parents can do to help is great.

And yet school expects parents to support them in getting top results. Meaning, 'get private tutoring'.

I assume this is a particular sort of school, the ones that everyone moves next to, or gets religion to get their kids into? DD's school isn't like this, but then it's results aren't "top".

catkind Sun 13-May-18 17:36:49

I'd buy "engaged" sirfred. It's difficult to maintain "engaged" without learning and challenge.

Tomorrowillbeachicken Sun 13-May-18 17:57:34

I’d love engaged but my son is not learning anything new most of the time in reading or maths so is bored and disruptive. In particular in reading he is doing guided reading two or three levels below his solo reading level and because he can no longer be taught out of year is being made to read books he read earlier this year.

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