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Why do some parents have such low expectations?

(152 Posts)
CandODad Fri 17-Mar-17 21:28:13

School expectation is for children to read at home five times a week.

Class rule is at least three times or you attend a twenty minute lunch club on a Friday.

I had a parent trying to complain that I was robbing their child of play time and should blame them not the child?

I pointed out it wasn't about blame but learning a life skill but they honestly thought there was no issue to a child with no SEND issues being eight but reading at a five year olds level.

How do I resolve this?

Solasum Fri 17-Mar-17 21:30:35

Could the school organise a one-off 'information evening' for the parents about how you teach reading, how they can support at home, and done real life examples of how dire the consequences are if it isn't done?

AlexanderHamilton Fri 17-Mar-17 21:34:18

Children need down time. Reading is important but 5 times a week can be an unreasonable expectation depending on the child & family circumstances.

After a full day at school some children can't take any more.

And how are you sure there are no SEN issues. Do all the children at your school undergo full screening for dyslexia, asd, processing speed, working memory etc?

AlexanderHamilton Fri 17-Mar-17 21:36:12

It also could be worth looking at the type of books being sent home. Are they fully decodable? Are they likely to appeal to the child in question?

Blossomdeary Fri 17-Mar-17 21:36:14

Parents should read TO their children and not be burdened with school at home. Don't assume that they have low expectations; they may simply have different priorities to yours.

AlexanderHamilton Fri 17-Mar-17 21:37:09

I agree blossom.

CandODad Fri 17-Mar-17 21:37:54

It's been tried but no one attends. I am amazed this dad left his car since he parks at the gate and expects the child to walk to him. we are having to approach it with the children using pester power. I can only imagine the pester power started and dad thought rather than do it it was easier to pop in and expect me to stop expecting the child to read at home.

I'm an English teacher and I rarely get my DS to read to me five times a week. By the time I'm home from work, he's fed, bathed etc, it's bedtime and there's not been a chance to. That would be my fault, not his, so I kind of see her point. Having said that, my stock line is always that the parents choose to send their child to that school so they choose to follow the rules. Is she just not arsed to do the reading, or is she struggling to fit it in?

Penhacked Fri 17-Mar-17 21:38:12

I would ask why you devalue play time.

AlexanderHamilton Fri 17-Mar-17 21:38:15

Fostering a love of stories & books is more likely to motivate a child than yet more Biff & Chip/Read Write Inc or whatever is being used.

RandomDent Fri 17-Mar-17 21:38:22

I'm a teacher but I don't like telling people what they should do in their own homes in their own time.

SauvignonGrower Fri 17-Mar-17 21:39:35

Reading every night if you have one child is straightforward. When you are to hassle many children into bed in the evening it becomes rather complicated. I fail to do it on evenings when my DH isn't home.

AlexanderHamilton Fri 17-Mar-17 21:40:22

Do the parents always choose to send their child to that school though Truth? I did as we went private but many areas don't have much of a choice of state schools.

CandODad Fri 17-Mar-17 21:41:02

Yes we are positive there are no SEND issues and if you notice I say I expect three and the school expects five. But that's beside the point, this is a case of low expectations.

I wouldn't mind so much if the child was read to, but they aren't so that's a non issue.

CountryCaterpillar Fri 17-Mar-17 21:41:09

I think it's an unreasonable expectation (and I was a teacher!)

My kids schools have introduced a 5min loss of lunch to read if not read 3 times and I still think that's wrong. It's turning reading into a punishment. Kids certainly need their breaktimes. I will be livid I'd they introduce it into infants as it's not motivating by reward or, godforbid, love of learning, but target driven box ticking exercises.

Have you trained/recently started teaching. It seems to have become like this last few years as far as I can see. Every now and then I consider homeschooling.

And yes I'm a supportive parent who takes to museums, reads around topics etcetc but I think some of the recent things I'm being asked to support is crazy.

CountryCaterpillar Fri 17-Mar-17 21:42:35

So so many reasons why families will find this difficult and so not the way to foster a genuine love of learning. If you're a young kid whose always being punished for not reading it's just going to make yoynresent learning to read more...

CandODad Fri 17-Mar-17 21:45:27

I would ask why you devalue play time.

I don't devalue it. Just like I don't devalue any subject but at some point that's what they have to Miss to fit in with the time I have. Or am I devaluing my lunch time? I would see it as valuing that the child in question needs to be able to access reading in general.

shirleycartersaidso Fri 17-Mar-17 21:45:44

5 times a week of school books is unobtainable for us. They read the three school books, journaled and read loads of other stuff we don't write down. I don't have time nor the inclination to write in the book every time they read. There's only so many times you can write 'read well'.

Dts are 5 and year 1 and ahead of where the average.

user1482079332 Fri 17-Mar-17 21:45:54

I really don't think sitting down for 5mins to read a book will eat into all their play time. Do they have homework on top of this? Is there flexibility in reading materials? Everyone reads in my family bar one sibling and she's seen as abit of an oddity to the rest of us so it's not a chore and part of everyone's daily routine. But I guess if you come from a family that doesn't read it can be seen as another chore, maybe if the kids are able to pick books they want to read rather then be given a selection just from the school you might foster a love of reading

Ragwort Fri 17-Mar-17 21:46:08

YANBU. Presumably the child only needs to read for 5-10 minutes? I don't see why it is such a problem, but some parents bleat on about the importance of 'playtime' (when they probably mean screen time grin) - I have never known my DC to be 'tired' and need more play time hmm.

sydenhamhiller Fri 17-Mar-17 21:46:24

I've got 2 kids at grammar, so might be perceived as a 'pushy' parent, but I find it hard to read 5 x a week with dc3 in Reception, in between work, play dates, after school activities. For me, the time to play, doodle, mess about in the park is increasingly important as school have to pursue an increasingly narrow academic path. As the Einstein quote says, (may misquote) to raise intelligent children, read them fairy tales. To make them more intelligent, read them more fairytales.
Not make them read: read to them.

I think it's great to give parents a target. It's great to promote home-school Learning. But I hate there idea of taking play time away from small children for this.

AWhistlingWoman Fri 17-Mar-17 21:48:08

Well, I could wake her at six in the morning to read or I could get her to start at eight in the evening. I only see my DD for a total of two hours a day, during which I have to allocate time for her eat breakfast and dinner. And she is one of three.

She is cared for by a childminder or grandparents after school and, as Randomdent says, I am not going to start telling other grown ups what to do in their own home!

I have decided that I would rather read to her every evening and we can share a book together that is a bit more inspiring that the Biff and Kipper stuff.

Between the endless dressing up days, the actual homework and practising times tables and spellings something has to give. I'm afraid for us it is reading. I don't think I have low expectations but I do think that the school expects every family to have a parent who stays at home or gets back at 4 or 5 pm in the evening. Just not very realistic!

Toffeelatteplease Fri 17-Mar-17 21:48:26

Quickest way to kill any love of reading is to enforce it.

I really hate this 5 times a week thing

CountryCaterpillar Fri 17-Mar-17 21:49:26

Ragwort - playtime here means the child lunchtime playtime, not screen time!!

We all read and luckily my children have taken to it but we have the odd week they don't read 5 times a week and I don't think the child should be penalised at school. Why should a child be made to feel bad for not having a parent willing/able to read?

I go into a school to listen to kids read, it's a much more sensitive approach. They mostly love being listened to and they are often the ones not heard at home or struggling with reading but it's done within the school day, not as a punishment during break.

Crusoe Fri 17-Mar-17 21:49:36

Punishing kids for not reading!! Are you for real? Well done for making reading a chore and killing all pleasure dead!
Wouldn't rewarding those that do read be better?
And please remember there will be dozens of reasons why some children aren't read to or encouraged to read at home, it's not all down to low expectations.

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