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Talk to me about mixed year classes

(14 Posts)
steppemum Fri 11-Jul-14 22:05:55

dd came home today with the news that they are mixing up year 4 and 5 to make 2 x year 4/5 mix classes

I used to teach, I don't like mixed year classes and I am cross.

dd is very bright, top of her class (year 5 next year) But she is a quiet not pushy girl, and tends to get lost in the crowd.

What do you think of mixed classes, would you be happy? Am I worrying for nothing? School's line is that a good teacher teaches every child where they are and so the split in level doesn't make any difference. Ture in theory, but in practice?

steppemum Fri 11-Jul-14 22:43:36

all the teachers have gone to bed smile

steppemum Sat 12-Jul-14 07:15:45

any teachers around this morning?

mnistooaddictive Sat 12-Jul-14 07:24:54

I personally this topic is for teachers to post on teaching issues. You want to post in primary education to get replies.

GretchenWiener Sat 12-Jul-14 07:30:27

How are they organising the mixed classes? What will happen next year?

steppemum Sat 12-Jul-14 07:36:03

OK I will repost in primary education, although, as I said in my OP I am a teacher, and I wanted the teacher's perspective, not the parent's.

steppemum Sat 12-Jul-14 07:37:54

gretchen - in theory they are splitting them down the middle, making sure there is a balance of gender, friends, academic ability etc.

In practice many children feel as if they have been split up from their friends.

In year 6 they will reform as one class because they won't do mixed class for SATs

GretchenWiener Sat 12-Jul-14 08:19:24

Why would they do that though? I'd split to stream

steppemum Sat 12-Jul-14 08:29:47

I think that that is the problem gretchen, we just can't understand why. There is also a back story with this class, and the school promised the parents that they would ensure hem a good year with stability and then we get this.
I have been thinking about it and I can't come up with any positives.

The school has no other split classes, and until now has worked on a year 3/4 and year 5/6 grouping (things like trips and certain activities etc)

toomuchicecream Sat 12-Jul-14 14:31:50

I can only think that in one of the year groups there's a really tricky group of children/situation that they need to split up. In a single form entry school this would be the only way to do this. And it's probably year 5 - if it was year 4 they'd mix them with year 3. Because of the introduction of the new curriculum they can't mix 5 & 6 this year because year 5 are on the new curriculum and year 6 still on the old.

Alternatively, it could be because one of the teachers is supporting the other one - by having two parallel classes they can plan and evaluate together. That could really work in your favour.

The school won't have made the decision lightly. Having made the announcement they certainly won't change it. All you can do is watch the differentiation like a hawk.

steppemum Sat 12-Jul-14 15:23:25

I think it is the kids. there are a small group of kids in new year 5 that have been a problem.
Both teachers are experienced.

PacificDogwood Sat 12-Jul-14 15:25:40

I've had nothing but good experiences with composite classes - DS1 and 2 have been in 3 between them (Scotland).
The class size is smaller which IMO counts for more than the age/year mix.
I'm a parent, not a teacher wink

steppemum Sat 12-Jul-14 15:51:13

class size the same for us pacific.

I don't think it would bother me so much except for
1. The class has been massively messed around this year and the school promised parents a stable good year (the 2 teachers are the two most experienced in the school) and this doesn't feel like the start of stability, it feels like more instability
2. dd is the at the top of year 5. I wouldn't mind if she were at the top of year 4, or middle of either class, but I can't see how it can be easy to push her set, who are working at 4b level at end of year 4 and also get best out of bottom of year 4. The gap is huge.

PacificDogwood Sat 12-Jul-14 15:54:30

Ah, I see.
I frequently forget just how different things are between England and Scotland.

I am not sure what you can do though?

Fwiw, DS1 has SEN in maths (he's several year groups ahead of his peer and always has been confused) and has always simply had different tasks set for him. Might that work for your DD?
Why my boys were put in to composite classes it was v much done by social groups.

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