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Parents evening, year 5, dd1 is just not putting in much effort, what can I do?

(7 Posts)
Janus Wed 21-Oct-09 18:12:51

So, parents evening was a bit of a disaster! DD1 has, yet again, been described as 'not putting in much effort, not concentrating, easily distracted, talks too much' etc and is, generally not doing well.

She is INCREDIBLY forgetful, away with the fairies, always has been, doesn't bring home her homework, spellings, nearly all letters, etc! I think this is how she is in class too, she starts something but then gets distracted and so doesn't finish it off too well. It was a pretty horrible parents evening, she has two teachers as they are split into groups for maths and english and they both said the same (and TBH I have heard this since she was 5).

I'm at a total bloody loss at what to do. We sit down and do work together in the week, homework, etc. Tonight I just rang up Kumon in desperation and enrolled her for maths and english, which means 30 minutes extra work a day in homework, every day. Not sure she's really going to enjoy that but I'm hoping it may get her focused on working. Does anyone else have any ideas??

Earlybird Wed 21-Oct-09 18:17:58

Have you asked her about it? What does she say?

mussyhillmum Wed 21-Oct-09 20:34:51

Janus - I hope someone comes up with a few suggestions because our parents evening sounds just like yours! DS's teacher (yr 3) says that he is one of the most able students in the class but is producing some of the poorest quality work because he is constantly distracted. I have tried to speak to ds about it, but he just says he is "bored" or "I can't help it". Work which he does at home is great, but his work at school is DISGRACEFUL and far, far below what he is capable of producing. I have banned the computer and wii during the week and blown the dust off the jigsaws to try and improve his concentration.

Would be interested to know how your DD's teachers have said they will tackle it. DS's teacher has mentioned keeping him in during playtime, etc to get him to finish his work.

Janus Wed 21-Oct-09 20:46:19

Hi. Early I have spoken to her about it tonight and she just can't see what all the fuss is about! I guess she does enough to get by, at best, but doesn't want to put in any more effort than that. She has said she will try harder next term but I think as soon as that comes around she will 'forget' to try, again. She likes school, mostly, but I think more for the social side than any of the work. Dp just thought of offering her an incentive, eg a new pet (although god knows we have enough!), in order to get her focused, ie get better feedback from the teacher and we will consider getting a new pet.
Mussy, you sound different to me actually as perhaps your boy is bright and finding it all just boring? I have a friend whose child is bright and he finds school really dull as, I suppose, he can do it all. That's a whole different area to tackle I suppose and can't think what to suggest. My dd's teacher just said she would continue to nag her which I agreed with but I still think the nagging goes over her head.
Big sigh!

Madsometimes Thu 22-Oct-09 10:27:12

Your dd sounds just like mine (also in Y5). I cannot come up with any answers either. I think my dd1 is a little bit scared of her teacher this year. The teacher said that she sometimes sees her sitting at her table doing nothing because she is stuck, and is not confident enough to ask for help. Her teacher last year said the opposite, that she knew dd1 would always ask for help if she needed it. Her Y5 teacher is a little bit scary!

We do Kumon, but it is such hard work (especially two subject, we only do maths). Expect arguments and strops. Kumon has an easy start point, so she will probably be up for it for the first month and will get lots certificates and stickers. Once the work becomes challenging, then brace yourself! However, we are persisting with the Kumon because dd1 finds maths hard and it does help. Good luck.

Janus Thu 22-Oct-09 10:58:26

madsometimes, I think mine struggles with maths more than english so maybe I should just start with one topic with the Kumon, she is going to hate doing 30 minutes a day, every day!! How is your dd's english? Mine forgets even the basics like putting a capital at the beginning of a sentence, spelling is pretty bad, etc. However, what she does write, I think, is pretty interesting and imaginative. Not sure what Kumon tackles in English, is it spelling, punctuation? Meeting the lady next week so will find out, I guess. What does the maths cover for yours? Is it lots of sums, ie addition and subtraction or longer puzzles to tackle?
Many thanks for the replies.

Madsometimes Thu 22-Oct-09 12:35:54

Maths is just number bonds, times tables and division, fractions. Lots and lots of sums. Very few word problems, just the basics really. It is not a perfect system, and misses out time, shapes and many other national curriculum elements. Consequently, my dd1 knows her times tables very well, but cannot tell the time!

I'm not sure about the English program. I think there is lots of reading comprehension, and also a focus on spelling, grammar and punctuation. Not a focus on creativity, which my dd1 likes.

Your description of your dd1's scattiness made me grin. Mine is exactly the same. I am dreading secondary school, she is so forgetful and disorganised. I'm sure she will get lost going between classes! I have also had exactly the same report for dd1 since Y1. Very quiet, not very confident, excellent reader with poor handwriting ... I could go on. It would be far easier just to let me write the reports instead. I know what needs to go in!

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