Hi, I have a year 1 girl who started at Diocesan school for girls in February this year. She is doing extremely well with her reading and is in the top group for both maths and reading. About a month ago the teacher decided she would benefit from going to the another year 1 class for reading ( the girls are about 6 months older) as there is no one in her current class on the same level. She is now in the top reading group in the other class.
Even though she has settled in well and seems very happy she hasn't really formed any friendships in the current class. During breaks she prefers the company of year 4+ girls and shows zero interest in playing with the girls from her class. She is a very social girl but is also happy with her own company. She also prefers one on one play
At the recent parent interviews we raised this with her teacher ( who is fantastic). By 8.30am the next morning the teacher had discussed this with the Dean and the Principal ( very very impressed) and suggested Samantha move to the other class with the slightly older girls. I agreed this could be a good option as she might be challenged by being with more like minded and more able girls.
Our concern is the teacher in the new class may not be the right 'fit' and will not extend Samantha or help her to reach her potential. This is based on my observations and other parent feedback.
So, do we put Samantha in a class with slightly older girls where she might be more open to forming friendships with her peers and be working with more able children, or keep her in the class with the very focused achievement driven teacher?
If she continues in the current class she can still go to the other class for reading, plus next term she will also be part of an extension programme for the more able children.
We have asked Samantha and her biggest concern is whether the new teacher has 'star of the day' lol!
Although your current concern is this year do you know how will it affect next year? Are both classes always going to be the same Year with one just being 6 months older? Or at some stage does the older group become a year ahead?
The reason I am thinking about this is because if she is actually being accelerated (ie skipping a year) then that might override the short term concern of the new teacher not being the right fit.
Hi, thanks for your reply. The class she would go into is still year 1 and they are basically both doing the same curriculum. Next year both the classes are blended to form the year 2 classes where they will be streamed into groups according to ability ( like they are now) .
I've a girl who has moved classes a lot. One of the issues with moving mid-year is that your daughter will be trying to fit into already formed social groups. Although this can happen easily - and it sounds as if the girls in the new class might fit well with her - the teacher's attitude can have a huge impact on this, especially at a young age. We have found the transition works best when the teacher has been accepting (of course). If the teacher has believed our child was 'too young' for instance, then that attitude can easily be conveyed to the other child, albeit inadvertently. And that makes it hard.
I guess if I was you I would be asking *why* this teacher may not the best fit? Is it something that may be directly related to your daughter's presence in the class, or, perhaps a personality issue (eg maybe not 'strict' enough, or 'too strict')? If it is a personal belief against things like acceleration, then, be wary. For this to work, the teacher has to want your daughter in the class, and believe it is the best move.
Another thing I would be asking myself is how important is the teacher to your daughter? Some children can move along quite nicely with any teacher, for other kids, the relationship with the teacher is everything.
For my own daughter I mentioned - teacher is everything. We've had a lot of maths underachievement that only now, in Yr 8, is reversing. It's all teacher-related. She's now flying and needs moved out of that maths class really, but, we wont be doing that. Our preference is to work with the teacher and have her extended in that class, even though she is too able for it. (Any teacher that can have our child wake up and say "yay, maths today" is a keeper!). In contrast, I have another child for whom the children around him are more important than the teacher.
Good luck with your decision. I have to add that it even though you will naturally be anxious to make the correct decision, it sounds as if your daughter is in a very good 'space' at the moment. How wonderful. Involved parents and a school who has recognised her needs and is willing to act to meet them. I love these stories!