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Parents' Evening - Poor Child


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Good grief, just had parent's evening.

 

A parent of a child who can read and write (turned 4 in Nov) wanted to know what he could teach him next. In a polite way I suggested a few social skills would be good ( :o like sharing, doing as he is asked, sitting still, not hitting, not grabbing faces to talk to people, talking quietly etc. Dad listened patiently then said 'Yes but what can I teach him?' i.e. reading and writing.

 

Same dad said he was very upset because his son had always wanted to be a doctor or in medicine and now 'after being at your nursery he wants to be a Superhero and I am NOT happy'. Good grief, feel so sorry for the child - push, push, push academically - wonder when burn out will hit? xD

 

Sorry, needed to vent

 

 

Megsmum

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Oh dear how sad - our job is more about educating parents - where do they get this idea that at 4 it really isn't that important to read and write and there are 101 other skills that are more important. Still there are always a few who seem to think that their children are failing.

Still we need to keep at it and slowly encourage our parents to recognise that perhaps there children might be happier being a superhero - let's see what would I prefer - superhero or being able to read and write - if I was a superhero - reading and writing would be unimportant. I could magic and make all sorts of things better

Nikki

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I can sympathise I had a parent who phoned on his child's first day at school to ask if we could hold on to him as he was stuck in traffic and would be late xD When he arrived he asked how his child had got on to which I replied he had settled in well and seemed happy enough. He looked at me and said OK what I want to know is how has he done accademically :(:(:o

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it's the same old story parents think academic skills are the be-all-and-end-all and if their child succeeds in reading and writing at an early age then their child will be good at everything and I blame the messages the government sends out to parents which only re-enforce the need for children to be fully literate by the age of 7 and "nursery Education grant"

 

its horrible to see and as a playgroup we loose so many of our children each year to "school nurseries" because as the parents put it "the children will learn something there" we are just a playgroup..... the children only play!!!!! :o

 

 

I think it is a never ending argument that children need to learn through play but so many parents still only value "teaching"

 

and its the children that miss out!! xD

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Have you tried presenting the experiences you offer the children as exactly the same as they would receive in a funded i.e. school, nursery - which they are, as we all work to the FSCG!...?

 

We took that approach, when I was in a pre-school, and it really paid off!

 

Sue

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I feel we need to market our pre-school a little better. I feel that 'learning through play' adequately describes what the children do but not what we offer. I'm trying to look for a better description. What about 'active learning and play'?

 

Deb

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Deb, my old playgroup came close to having to close twice during the 9 yrs I was there. Both times it was due to parents being bombarded with 'nursery' info form government sources. We battled hard to show that we were providing the same as a nursery (I have stood in Sainsburys, handing out leaflets and smiley stickers to people), and we did win a lot of parents over, so much so that I've had parents openly tell me how glad they were that we were able to keep their children. :D The ones who went to nursery were the ones who wanted the full time place that a nursery near to us offered when their numbers were low. :o Have an open session, put leafets through doors, in GP's surgeries, at the library and in local shops. Display childrens work and photos with phrases from the FS guidance. Quote bits from your Ofsted, they usually refer to what you do as teaching, use the words teach and learn a lot. Find out what nurseries in the area offer and show you can match it or better it. We couldnt compete with the outside area the nurseries had or their computers but we had a bigger room, higher ratios (in the one case) and had closer links with the local primary school. We didnt need the children to be dry, or to have no comforter, or to be ready for anything except playing. We also, in my opinion 'sold out' when the committee decided to drop 'playgroup' from our name and call us 'pre-school' instead, although I will admit it did make people think of us differently. Hope you think of something. :D

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Totally agree, we have to be careful what words we use, we can change parents views on childcare but only if they come through our door first. I don't think parents understand 'learning through play' or worse still see it as non educational, we can only change their view if they come to us. We know what we do, we just need to inform parents.

 

We are in the process of preparing a flyer which is going well, apart from this sticking point. I came across 'active learning and play' which I hope will offer a compromise.

 

Deb

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Ive dug out our old flyers and revamped them (my last ones were too formal) parents only skim through the letters I send out

 

so onwards and upward with the challenge to keep "the only playgroup in the village" alive

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