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Any primary teachers around? Am I overreacting?

(12 Posts)
sola82 Wed 03-Oct-18 12:52:34

I have a 7 year old DS who is in Y3. He is a very shy, sensitive boy and I have had issues the past couple of years with bullying and DS really not wanting to go to school.
So far this year he had seemed happier and more confident and I was really pleased. However, yday he came home from school upset. They needed to be in pairs for a project so the teacher went around asking 14 children who they wanted to pair with until my DS was the only one left (29 children) and so worked on his own. He was really upset and asked me why he was always the one left on his own.

This seems to me (as a secondary school teacher) to be a terrible way to pair childten up. Whoever was the one left at the end was going to feel rejected and upset, even children more confident than DS, and I worry about the effect of things like this on his still relatively low confidence in school.
I spoke to the teacher this morning and she couldn't see an issue with how she had paired the children up. She said she had asked DS if he wanted to join a pair at the end and he said no. I think that if none of his friends had chose him, he wouldn't feel confident then choosing them when they were all sitting in their pairs looking at him.

I've been sent a message asking me to meet up with both his teachers after school Monday to talk about DS. I don't know if this about yday or just DS generally. Is this a standard way to pair up children in primary school and it's just tough luck on anyone not picked? Should I raise the issue again in the meeting if they don't?

OP’s posts: |
Babdoc Wed 03-Oct-18 12:58:32

I was going to say that surely the teacher must have realised, with an odd number of children, that one was going to be left out.
But given the level of mathematical ability in modern primary teachers, this is obviously not a valid assumption!
What a cruel and unpleasant popularity contest - similar to picking sports teams, where the fat or unfit kids are always left to last.
I’d definitely be having some harsh words with her, OP.

phlebasconsidered Wed 03-Oct-18 18:49:52

I don't think you need to make the gibe about primary teachers and maths, babbdoc.

I would imagine that a quiet chat with the teacher will allay fears. I know of no primary teacher who doesn't have a partner plan in place. My own class has talk partners and face partners so they can talk to a person I think best suited to the task to help them / work with them/ extend themselves. I do have an odd number this year so I simply have one trio.

I think the only occaisions a partner might be unscheduled, as it were, in the average primary classroom is if the teacher were doing a movable Kagan pair up / share up. It's really no different to the strategies I had as a secondary teacher.

If the school have asked you to see them, go in with an open mind. I often find in younger years that children want to work with "their" friend and get upset if otherwise assigned. Hence i have a movable partner system. This just sounds a bit unorganised. Ir's worth talking to them as it could be your child, being low in confidence, only wants to work with some children. So be proactive and ask how groups are arranged, if they have supportive partners and so on. And ask for them to have one. I have seberal anxious children in my class and their seating pattern is carefully supported.

Holidayshopping Fri 05-Oct-18 19:04:10

But given the level of mathematical ability in modern primary teachers, this is obviously not a valid assumption!


Plawmawss Fri 05-Oct-18 19:25:21

That’s a very very unfair way to pair up kids.
Is she new teacher? Her intentions might be good and may not have realised how unfair this is?

enidblyton33 Fri 05-Oct-18 20:58:17

“But given the level of mathematical ability in modern primary teachers, this is obviously not a valid assumption! “


PurpleDaisies Fri 05-Oct-18 21:00:09

But given the level of mathematical ability in modern primary teachers, this is obviously not a valid assumption!


How rude. I have previously taught a level maths and now teach primary. I have lots of very competent and talented colleagues.

ladyvimes Fri 05-Oct-18 21:08:50

Thanks Babdoc my maths degree obviously counts for nothing when it comes to teaching primary maths!

CaramelAngel Sun 07-Oct-18 19:17:41

I don't think you are being over sensitive. I think it was a horrible way to pair them

MakeMeAFloozy Fri 12-Oct-18 19:59:32

I will never forget how crap i used to feel when i was the last to be picked for sports teams in P.E all the time. Its a horrible way to organise children. I would complain.

Legageddon Fri 12-Oct-18 20:04:57

No you aren’t over reacting that’s a ridiculous way to pair up and organised to hurt kids (and not just the one left altho that’s clearly the worst situation)

Calling you in tho smacks of them going on the offensive after you complained. It’s happened to me. I mentioned something that had upset DC and they wouldnt have it at all that any fault lay with school and then the next week are calling me in with a list of ‘issues’ with DC that had never arisen before but were now suddenly urgent.

WoWsers16 Sat 13-Oct-18 18:35:37

As a primary School Teacher I find it time wasting that she went round asking 14 children who they wanted their partners to be- I have done talk partners etc.. before where I have said, while the children are sat on the carpet- choose a partner- which they do and if any left over (even with even numbers some don't 'find' partners- I will pair them up- and if odd number (which I am quite capable of knowing my odd and evens) I ask that child which 2 they would like to join. Never been an issue- if anything the child enjoys being in a 3.
So I would fully confirm that she went through 14 children separately or if it was a more free for all kind of picking xx

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