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Finding it hard not knowing what they are doing in Reception

(37 Posts)
polexiaaphrodesia Wed 23-Sep-20 14:26:20

Hi all, please be kind to a struggling mum of PFB here! DS started school 3 weeks ago and I am really struggling with not knowing what he has been doing during the say, whether he is happy and making friends etc. He hasn't mentioned any other children in his class and when I ask him who he has been playing with he says "nobody". In terms of what they've been doing all day the most I get is "I ate my apple on the carpet" so no real information there either!
He goes straight to a childminder after school 4 days a week for tea until I collect him at 5.30 and she always says he's been fine but DH walks him in to school 4 mornings a week with some other children from our street who are in his class who are skipping and jumping and chatting away while DS is not engaging with the others.
Do you think it would be OK to speak to his teacher on the morning that I take him in to see if he is genuinely on his own all day? I'm worried that he doesn't know how to make friends as he was in a lovely nursery with the same group of friends from when he was 1 so hasn't ever been in a situation where he has to make friends before.

OP’s posts: |
polexiaaphrodesia Wed 23-Sep-20 14:38:51

To follow on, he is a really sweet and kind little boy who always had plenty of friends at preschool. I'm suffering from "mum guilt" hugely at the moment as there seem to be very few working mums at school sad

OP’s posts: |
LindaEllen Wed 23-Sep-20 14:41:30

If you're concerned I'm sure his teacher would be happy to schedule a phone call to have a chat about how he's doing. It'd put your mind at ease if nothing else smile.

Guymere Wed 23-Sep-20 14:42:56

I think I would leave well alone until after half term. It might come as a surprise to you but DC don’t immediately make friends at school from day 1. Or even day 21. They usually do what’s expected of them: play, write, craft, maths, reading etc and making friends isn’t no 1 on their agenda. They have a lot to think about and it’s all new. He might prefer to watch and wait right now.

Also you would be told if there were issues. He’s happy. He’s not refusing to go to school. He’s not communicating much but when he brings home reading books or a piece of craft, talk to him about it. You should get a parents evening this term in some form but you cannot keep checking up on him. Also, most DC will let you know if they are not happy! You cannot know every detail of his day and it’s very early to worry about friendships. Let him continue to settle in and don’t worry. Most DC are happy and find like minded DC. When he’s ready, he will talk about a child and then you invite that child round to tea! First friend chalked up.

You might also want to network with other mums a bit more. Being around school where possible let’s you see who are possible friends. I know it’s not easy but could you be more involved with the school run at all? Or maybe his Dad will spot developing friendships? But, it’s very early days.

ShouldWeChangeTheBulb Wed 23-Sep-20 14:43:33

Of course. It’s okay to worry about your child. Being a PFB isn’t always a bad thing.

polexiaaphrodesia Wed 23-Sep-20 14:52:22

Thanks all for your responses, some really useful points. I think you are right that he isn't refusing to go to school and isn't unhappy just not necessarily hopping and skipping through the gates! Bit tricky to network at school at the moment with my working hours and DH is rather unobservant so not that good at spotting potential friendships but I will get him on the case!

OP’s posts: |
welshweasel Wed 23-Sep-20 15:07:56

Mine is the same. Seems happy enough to go to school but tells me nothing about what he’s done or who he’s played with. We’ve got parents evening via phone at the start of October so I’m assuming I’ll find out more then!

Guymere Wed 23-Sep-20 16:36:01

When you say that DC haven’t named who they are playing with - it might be they don’t really know! If you watched the programmes on tv years ago with Professor Winston about starting school, some DC were happy just to run around with others in the playground. They just wanted like minded DC. No names asked! Playing chase and tag etc. DC can be quite noisy making aircraft sounds or they are racing cars. Are they bothered about names? Not really at the moment. Running around and letting off steam are what they want to do with like minded DC. Friends will appear soon enough.

HyperHippo Wed 23-Sep-20 17:53:08

It is very normal for children to give little information about school! They are exhausted, can't remember and don't want the fuss.

Try going in other ways: Was it a good, a medium or a bad day?
Ask him to guess how many fingers you are holding up behind your back and then say thats the number of things he has to tell you about school
Arrange playdates or trips to the park with other classmates at weekends so you get to know the other parents and see him in that situation

As PP said, the teacher would definitely be in contact by now if there are any problems at all - so assume all is fine!

StayClosePooky Wed 23-Sep-20 18:00:44

Mine is exactly the same. Today all the kids came out with something they made and he didn't. He said there wasn't time for him to do one. I have to ask him hundreds of questions before I have the smallest idea of what he's done. I've got mam guilt too and I drop and pick him up 5 days a week so don't worry. I think as long he isn't really upset at home or distressed when going in then he's fine. It's difficult, my DS is 4 and he looks too small to be going to school. It'll be good once he's settled.

Guymere Wed 23-Sep-20 19:18:21

Don’t ask hundreds of questions. That’s really bombarding them with pressure and it’s not helpful. Try a few really well thought out questions. For example: what did he do that was great today? The most fun? What was funny? If you don’t get anything back, don’t worry. You will. My DD didn’t like a child that poked her with a pencil putting her off her writing. There’s always something like that they will tell you about.

If he didn’t make something, he was busy doing something else. That’s ok. And, I bet he wasn’t in his own doing something else!

year5teacher Wed 23-Sep-20 19:39:49

Teacher might not be able to speak in person - is there a a year group email you can contact? Or can you phone and ask for a chat?
I wouldn’t worry personally but will put your mind at ease.

willitbetonight Wed 23-Sep-20 20:57:09

Most schools have parents evening before half term. If you are worried he is on his own mention it and ask them to keep an eye out but otherwise wait for parents evening.

Dramateacher1 Wed 23-Sep-20 21:00:32

I feel exactly the same about my son who started reception 3 weeks ago. It’s a big adjustment for us all.

Solasum Wed 23-Sep-20 21:04:30

Is there a class WhatsApp group you could join?

cabbageking Wed 23-Sep-20 21:07:06

The majority of children will say they didn't play with anyone all day.

What they see as play is not the same as an adult

You are not asking the right questions.

Laquila Wed 23-Sep-20 21:09:54

My Reception-age kid LOVES playing "two truths and one fib" - they have to tell you three things about their day and you have to guess which one is a fib. It's a good way of starting a conversation/engaging them over dinner.

ineedaholidaynow Wed 23-Sep-20 21:12:55

I assume parents' evening might be slightly different this term.

I also assume it is quite hard doing the usual school gate chat on the school run as parents are meant to be SD and not hanging around

gower4 Wed 23-Sep-20 22:44:00

One of mine didn't make any friends for about a term, but she was quite happy playing by herself or occasionally with one other. She had loads of pals by the end of the year, and still does years on, but she also still enjoys her own company. It's no bad thing.

Delta1 Thu 24-Sep-20 10:08:11

I get sod all info from my boys unless they really want to tell me something! I've found just asking if they had a nice day is best. Let the rest come. My friends with girls seem to get rather more detail btw! Do they not use a communication tool? Or send weekly pictures or anything? Our school posts pics of Reception a few times a week on an app. I actually get more from Reception than I do from my older son's Yr 1 class.

Pascha Thu 24-Sep-20 10:13:40

My go-to questions are:

Tell me something funny that happened today.


What have you found out today that you didn't know this morning?

bookmum08 Thu 24-Sep-20 10:32:55

Watch a few episode of The Secret Life Of 4 Year Olds. They are brilliant and amazing to watch. That will give you a bit of an idea. Obviously Reception is a bit more formal than how they did the programme. You often don't get much information out of the children themselves. I joked that the Queen could have visited the school and parents wouldn't have found out until about 3 weeks later grin.

Dinosforall Thu 24-Sep-20 11:01:16

Enjoying this thread as the most DS has offered up so far is that he had a cheese roll at after school club, and that they've been told not to chase the school ducks grin

bookmum08 Thu 24-Sep-20 11:58:37

They had a 'thinking chair' at my daughter's school (aka naughty step). I got "I did some thinking" a few times for the what did you do today.

Dinosforall Thu 24-Sep-20 12:17:21


They had a 'thinking chair' at my daughter's school (aka naughty step). I got "I did some thinking" a few times for the what did you do today.


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