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Just after half term we have parents evening. I have a boy in my class who has come from a very formal learning school. He has obviously been used to lots of worksheets and has not yet grasped correct letter shape formation because, he was introduced to writing on a small scale far too early. Anyway, his mum thinks he is a super reader, which he is but he still lacks fluency when reading aloud. She also thinks he can write 2 to 3 sentences easily. She likes to complain and is always saying that he is not been challenged enough. He has only been with me for 7 weeks and i dont know how she knows if he is being challenged or not. I differentiate according to chns abilities but she obviously is not satisfied. I think she is going to be awkward on parents evening and wondered if anyone can give me some advice.

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I have a parent like this...very, very pushy and constantly putting her child under pressure. He is currently in year 1 and last helf term we have a parents meeting to share targets. He is quite able (for example his writng traget is to do with using full stops and captial letters correctly in his writing - advanced for beginning of year 1!) All the parents were interested in was how much is he being pushed and how does he compare with the other childrne in the class. I ended up telling them that this was a target that you would expect to see more towards the end of year 1 not at the beginning, his Mum's response to this was "...well if he was born 9 days earlier he would be in year 2!" Not sure what she was getting at but i stood my ground and said what i thought. They wnet away quite happy (I think) but you just have to accept thta there are some parents who have a warped sense of what we are trying to do. (same parents compained all the way through Reception thta he was doing too much 'playing'!!!) Focus on the formation and why you want to correct it, parents like this usually like things like correct letter formation and spellings so give them ideas of how to help at home.

 

Hope this helps and is not too waffly....been planning all day so my brain is a bit pickled! Remeber your not alone and you are the one who knows what they are doing! :o

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Difficult one Rocket, be sure of what you are saying and why and if needed show them evidence to support it. You are the teacher and they do need to understand what he can do and what comes next. Praise him as much as you can and concentrate on what he can do when you are talking to them. Children like to conform within their peer groups too.

If necessary have another adult in the room with you, inform your head of your concerns and have her/him on standby to support you. If necessary tell the parents to take their concerns to the head.

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Guest tinkerbell

Hi Rocket

last year i had a particularly clever reception child with very pushy parent, the parent wanted the daughter to change reading books more often etc I was very firm and said yes she was good at reding and I would pop an extra book in her bag but would only change the books once a week,she has a library books and favourite books at home surely.Also gave the little girl a specil book (exercise book)which she could write in anything she wanted to and every Friday I would look in the book and give her a sticker if she had done any 'homework'.I then talked about all areas of learning in foundation and sharing,teamwork..rounded person......the mother got the message and backed off.

Stand your ground and don't be bullied .good luck Tinkerbell

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:o can I put the parent's side... xD

 

Just the bit about the lad who would be in the year above if 9 days older strikes a chord with me.

 

My older daughter is a September baby and in dancing she is in a class with children 2-3 school years above her as the teacher has no idea how old they are and goes purely on ability to tackle the syllabus. Sometimes I wish schooling was the same!

 

As a nursery nurse myself I nannied while B was small and one of my jobs had a mum who would make her daughter try to read aged 4 and at 6 was making her do SATs workbooks. It broke my heart as the little girl would sob :( I maintained that I would not be like that and wouldn't try to teach reading or writing before school as apart from the confusion if I did it a different way, what would she do at school??!! BUT I had a particularly girly swot daughter (and actually no2 is the same!) who memorised books after one or two readings and would ask what words said then be able to spot them out of context very quickly. (no2 is 2y4m and is also asking which word says XYZ as I read to her...!)

Of course this went against my thinking totally!!

At Nursery school the teacher told me one parents evening that B was lazy and needed to work on her phonics. Don't get me wrong she was a lovely lovely lady and I think that's what upset me most! I wanted her to be pleased that B was reading and all she could do was criticise. B read for sense and used whole word so when she read 'Mum had a new yellow duster', she saw the picture and knew the first 5 words so said 'cloth'. I thought this was fine aged FOUR as it made sense and how many adults skip words when reading but still get the sense?

I'm really getting it all out of my system here sorry! Basically every year after that I got told she was lazy but when I asked what I could do at home I was told nothing she's top of the year but doesn't want to consolidate her learning. I suggested more challenging work and was told no, she wasn't allowed to move on until most of the class had caught up. So she was being given the same old maths work day in day out waiting for the others to grasp the concept. I'm sorry but when you don't like colouring, having to keep colouring in the same amount of flowers as dots nad write the number or whatever is just boring nad so she didn't do it very quickly and got called lazy grrrrr.

In yr 2 I was told she couldn't have anything more challenging as that went into yr 3 syllabus and that wasn't allowed. THIS is where i thought that for the sake of a few weeks she would BE yr 3.

I also got fed up with the same books she was bringing home and refusing to read as they were too easy. The teacher tried to explain but her choice of words left me feeling like a crap mother!

 

Now I've ranted I will qualify that since then I did a degree course including units in reading and writing and although I am still quite bitter about the laziness brand, I now see where the reading side of it was going. The school taught by the phonics system so if she didn't grasp them she would struggle with written work (although a fluent reader) but this was never explained to me. Secondly although she was a fluent reader, the content of the next stage books was above her so her comprehension would have been compromised.

 

if you've got this far WELL DONE. I apologise but you know this is really cathartic!

 

OK my point here is that if as a parent you feel your child is bright, you may not be pushy, but you do want them to keep it up. Teachers know that children need to practise and consolidate learning where mere mortals think that they know it's a square today so they will tomorrow etc. I think sometimes we forget that because something is obvious to us (needs to know phonics to help writing) it ISN'T always obvious to parents, even when they're in the business :(

One bit of advice I would offer if your parents are being 'difficult' is to try asking them to be specific about what they want for their child. Sometimes people just need to complain to make themselves feel more important or whatever and perhaps if intimidated by professionals they are defensive? I have found that a smile and 'OK, I can see you're not happy with what I'm doing. How can I help? What would you like me to do?' often floors them! :(

 

 

OMG is this the longest post ever?????

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Guest tinkerbell

I read your 'rant' with interest pandamonium and I fully appreciate what you are saying and how you can see it from both sides.It is good for us all to be reminded to give some time to explain what and why we are doing things to parents...its just the few parents with guilt trips and self importance that spoil it for me.

Tinkerbell.

Edited by tinkerbell
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I can imagine! At preschool stage, we already have parents looking at what we have highlighted and telling us that little Princess does all of the stepping stones at home... xD

 

I just wrote and deleted another old waffle! In all my early year's jobs from Nanny to NVQ assessor we have always said childcare would be so much easier without the parents sometimes :o

 

anyway I'm amazed that anyone ploughed through my rant and I hope in some small way it will help someone!

 

Please read my schemas plea for help!! I so so so want to put this parent's mind at rest!

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