Why is my child lying on floor to write at school?

(43 Posts)
Smith888 Tue 02-Apr-19 10:43:47

For several weeks my child's state school has had a trial with a "new form of education." Kids can sit wherever they want, with whomever they want, they can lie down, stand up, sit on bench or table. I have been told sometime back my child apparently does "amazingly well" writing whilst lying down, which initially made sense as doc says wrist is very stiff. Well I thought this was a one off experiment, until I saw my child's workbook last week and schoolwork has very much deteriorated not improved. I now hear from my child - after TEN WEEKS of this experiment - that its back to the table again, because teacher has now noticed handwriting is in fact worse (I have not brought this up) but because everyone gets to do whatever they want, my child sits alone.

So other parents are noticing the same and being told that their kids work has drastically improved, when they are noticing the opposite. I get the feeling the teacher is under pressure from HT and doesn't have a choice but to promote this.

Has anyone heard of this style of education? Shouldn't the school consult with parents beforehand? Am I mad, or would it make more sense for a child to see an OT if they can only produce good handwriting lying down?

OP’s posts: |
drspouse Tue 02-Apr-19 17:09:03

Sounds like a fad to me!
My DS has really poor handwriting and we are trying to work out how to get a diagnosis of dyspraxia. The advice we've had is all to sit straight, both feet on the floor, and use a writing slope if it helps. So the complete opposite to your DS' school!

Guylian2019 Tue 02-Apr-19 17:29:58

Although I wouldn't use this system in my classroom, I do get my kids active and up and about as much as possible. Children weren't designed to sit still at desks!

user789653241 Tue 02-Apr-19 18:50:21

But you say children are allowed to do whatever they want, so if they want to sit, they can, and if they want to lie on the floor they can, aren't they?
Why does your dc sits alone? If they are allowed to do anything, he/she can go next to someone and sit with them? I am sure not all the child wants to write lying down, do they?

eyeoresancerre Tue 02-Apr-19 19:02:11

It's a big thing in the county I teach in. Lots of schools getting rid of desks and chairs and children lie and sit on the floor with clipboards. It's meant to be a creative way for children to learn and raise standards. Bloody bonkers!

RafaIsTheKingOfClay Tue 02-Apr-19 19:04:09

Just because they want to doesn’t mean they should be allowed to though irvine.

I can’t see how this can possibly be helpful to children with motor/co-ordination issues. I suspect that a lot of them would love to lie on the floor and write, but what they need is what drspouse has described in her post.

Smellbellina Tue 02-Apr-19 19:04:52

Is the improvement she’s commented on referring to handwriting or content?


EffYouSeeKaye Tue 02-Apr-19 19:31:49

It does a bit odd but just in response to this question: Shouldn't the school consult with parents beforehand? I would say no, certainly not. However, you might reasonably expect some information about the new system on trial and what the benefits are supposed to be.

EffYouSeeKaye Tue 02-Apr-19 19:32:27

*sound a bit odd

Smith888 Tue 02-Apr-19 20:17:11

The issues are:

Does not always form letters correctly
Does not hold paper with left hand so words drift across page
Rests wrist on table

If anyone has any tips that would be great. I will ask teacher for help!

OP’s posts: |
Holidayshopping Tue 02-Apr-19 20:20:14

What age? Is this an lea school??

Smith888 Tue 02-Apr-19 21:08:09

@Holidayshopping, this is all ages up to 9 yrs, possibly older (don't know parents in yes 5 and up so not sure). My child is 8.

OP’s posts: |
Smith888 Tue 02-Apr-19 21:08:42

Sorry, yes it's an LEA school.

OP’s posts: |
fairgame84 Tue 02-Apr-19 21:14:49

They do this at a school locally. It's called "experiential learning" or something similar.
It's quite unstructured, there are enough seats/desks for all the kids because they can lay on the floor or bean bags to learn. One class has a wendy house on stilts in the middle of the classroom!

fairgame84 Tue 02-Apr-19 21:15:06


Dinosaursdontgrowontrees Tue 02-Apr-19 21:22:10

My dd is in yr1. When I looked around the local schools before I applied for her school place (in 2016) I was stunned how many classrooms have replaced desks with beanbags and encourage children right up to yr 5 to lie on the floor to write. It seems it’s quite the thing when I live. I find it very odd tbh.

Smith888 Tue 02-Apr-19 21:35:53

I guess my issue is before all this I was told DC was doing so well, learning on track maybe even excelling. DC was on a table with a group of great kids and everything was just perfect. Had no idea handwriting was an issue until the experimental learning took off. Was told DC was meeting all expected targets. This is so confusing.

OP’s posts: |
Smellbellina Tue 02-Apr-19 22:01:17

You’re missing the point, it’s not all about neat handwriting.

Rtmhwales Tue 02-Apr-19 22:24:02

OP I work at a private school in Canada (I think you call them public schools - think lots of money for tuition and mostly wealthy families with a lot of resources) and this has been implemented with quite a bit of success for several years now. It takes time to adapt though, and it doesn't work for all students.

How is your DS's handwriting at a desk in comparison to his peers? If he has a stiff wrist and the other positions of writing haven't improved anything, have you asked for a consult with a physio?

Holidayshopping Tue 02-Apr-19 22:25:56

OP I work at a private school in Canada (I think you call them public schools

We have state schools, private schools and public schools in England grin.

Smith888 Wed 03-Apr-19 06:41:54

@smellbellina the school say they have specifically implemented this system to help boys with their messy handwriting! They certainly have not explained the other benefits.

OP’s posts: |
Smith888 Wed 03-Apr-19 06:47:19

@rtmhwales docs won't do anything without referral from school. School won't do the referral. Private physio I saw last year said wrist was stiff, that's all.

OP’s posts: |
RafaIsTheKingOfClay Wed 03-Apr-19 07:06:24

What criteria are being used to define ‘success’ here? And which bits of those successes are directly attributable to not having enough desks and which are attributable to other changes that were made at the same time?

picklemepopcorn Wed 03-Apr-19 07:13:39

Thing is, sitting down at tables is really bad for kids. They need the range of options to develop all the different muscle groups and their proprioception(?).

picklemepopcorn Wed 03-Apr-19 07:14:06

Thing is, sitting down at tables is really bad for kids. They need the range of options to develop all the different muscle groups and their proprioception(?).

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in