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View Full Version : to all the teachers/parents on this forum. i need your help!



DollyTa
07-06-2008, 18:51
hello everyone,

my (almost) 8 yrs old son is in - what is called 'year 3' (that should be grade 2, shouldn't it?) at the EIS. they had year 3 and year 4 together, as there weren't enough students when the year began.

the problem is...i find his interest in studies diminishing.

can you please help me pick out the reason(s)....

a) could it be that studying with students bigger than him in the same cl**** the desire to be the best among the lot is not there. its not a fair competition.

b) he is getting overwhelmed by what is being taught to the entire class.

c) its just a very personal & natural phase he is going through. it should have nothing to do with the two levels of children together.

am i just being a paranoid mother:confused1:

ta

MissAnnElk
07-06-2008, 19:43
My kids were in combined classes before we moved here (again, a small school . . . not enough kids to merit separate sections). But no problems at all.

Hard to say. Just him? A phase? That specific teacher? The older kids might inspire him. Or be a non-issue.

Perhaps time for a meeting with the teacher?

DollyTa
07-06-2008, 21:50
Perhaps time for a meeting with the teacher?[/QUOTE]

yes, i was planning to...

just wanted to have some more views on the issue in my mind.

thanks a ton for your input.

ta

anthonycasey
08-06-2008, 02:09
Well, you really do need to talk to the school about this. From my own experience, it sounds as though the class is being aimed at the higher age group so the youngsters are getting information that is perhaps over their heads; it sounds as though the younger pupils may be missing a step in their learning, so the new stuff they are being taught makes no sense to them, hence the apathy.
Good luck; of the many tasks life has set me, educating my children has proved the most challenging!

Bels
08-06-2008, 13:25
No you are not being a paranoid mother. How much are you paying for this. For a private school all parents should demand the class should be split up, even it costs them. I wouldn't bring two different levels together in my EFL groups to save money, so why should they. Especially when they charge more than enough, for this not to happen.


hello everyone,

my (almost) 8 yrs old son is in - what is called 'year 3' (that should be grade 2, shouldn't it?) at the EIS. they had year 3 and year 4 together, as there weren't enough students when the year began.

the problem is...i find his interest in studies diminishing.

can you please help me pick out the reason(s)....

a) could it be that studying with students bigger than him in the same cl**** the desire to be the best among the lot is not there. its not a fair competition.

b) he is getting overwhelmed by what is being taught to the entire class.

c) its just a very personal & natural phase he is going through. it should have nothing to do with the two levels of children together.

am i just being a paranoid mother:confused1:

ta

MissAnnElk
08-06-2008, 15:54
No you are not being a paranoid mother. How much are you paying for this. For a private school all parents should demand the class should be split up, even it costs them. I wouldn't bring two different levels together in my EFL groups to save money, so why should they. Especially when they charge more than enough, for this not to happen.

But it happens all the time, especially, it seems in these expat type schools. We saw it in our last posting and not just in our kids' school.

Sometimes the school doesn't have enough classrooms. Sometimes the number of students at a particular age shakes out oddly. You can demand all you want, but it might not make any difference. Yeah, the tuitions are outrageous . . .

But the school year is almost over. Make an appointment and express your concerns. See if the teacher seems to agree with you. Ask parents of other kids in that classroom what they perceive to try to decide if it is a problem with the teacher. If other parents are happy, perhaps something is going on with your child. If the teacher thinks the child's work is fine, perhaps it is.

What is the scenario for September? You might want to have a little chat with the school director/head master/principal about next year.

You have the summer, as well, to see what you can do to discover what excites your child, and turn him (her?) onto the joys of learning when there is no pressure (the zoo, museums, cooking . . . whatever).

But generally speaking, I think the parent knows the child better than anyone else. Especially a young child.

Bels
08-06-2008, 19:16
Don't get me wrong, as I thik this is a very good post. But aren't English speaking International schools doing rather well? In fact isn't the American International school always fully booked with a waiting list? If you want this school it appears you must book well in advance.Of course the American International school doesn't appear to have the capacity to the demand of what is here. But the BIS appear appear to be bigger, yet still doing very well.

I don't know about the EIS. How many students are in this mixed age level class? Now that's a good question.

And as Missanelk stated, it's now the end of a school year. Time for a re-think, don't you think? :)


But it happens all the time, especially, it seems in these expat type schools. We saw it in our last posting and not just in our kids' school.

Sometimes the school doesn't have enough classrooms. Sometimes the number of students at a particular age shakes out oddly. You can demand all you want, but it might not make any difference. Yeah, the tuitions are outrageous . . .

But the school year is almost over. Make an appointment and express your concerns. See if the teacher seems to agree with you. Ask parents of other kids in that classroom what they perceive to try to decide if it is a problem with the teacher. If other parents are happy, perhaps something is going on with your child. If the teacher thinks the child's work is fine, perhaps it is.

What is the scenario for September? You might want to have a little chat with the school director/head master/principal about next year.

You have the summer, as well, to see what you can do to discover what excites your child, and turn him (her?) onto the joys of learning when there is no pressure (the zoo, museums, cooking . . . whatever).

But generally speaking, I think the parent knows the child better than anyone else. Especially a young child.

Bels
08-06-2008, 20:14
What would make a very good post for our theadwriter would be: What do teachers think about teaching mixed ability levels in a classroom?

As I am sure that they have had to put up with it in the darkest of Africa, or in China, or in perhaps in state schools of many countries. Fair enough if the budget is low, and parents can't afford the fees for a quality service. But should it happen in Moscow??? Where the fees are extremely high for private International schools???

Sorry!! But my opinion is this, you pay for what you get, and if you don't get it, you complain or quite and choose another school. Anothe. very important question would be how many students to one teacher in a class or group. Because believe this is very important. I hav enough experience to know that the less students in a cl**** the better results I will get.

So MissAnelka, don't just look a the teacher, look at also the management. Yes!! What a terrific teacher that might be, teaching 45 children in a class with different abilities and age groups. I'm so glad I'm not one of those teachers, as I want proven results!! The same teacher will have much better results if they taught in comparison 8 in a group of the same assessed level.

Hopefully you can now see that it is a mixture of management and teacher. You might well blame the teacher, but in most cases in my research is that it is management problem, not a teacher's problem. Most teachers are OK.

Sometimes they might have classroom management problems, such as child contro or discipline problems :) But that's a different topic and thread I think. Most teachers have knowledge and talent to teach, and I really do believe that. But reading so many articles on the news, I can see that they may well have a big problem with classroom management. Now that's the real skill of a teacher!!

DollyTa
08-06-2008, 23:47
What would make a very good post for our theadwriter would be: What do teachers think about teaching mixed ability levels in a classroom?!!

i agree bels...that would have made a far better title. thank you for your views.

i have met the teacher many a times during the course of the year. she is very nice and sweet. i think she is doing her job well. and because she is good, then its either my son's personal phase or studies of the two levels together. i mean, my real question should have been i suppose - do/would children get affected in any negative way, should they be taught in school with a higher class together?

ta

Bels
09-06-2008, 00:08
i agree bels...that would have made a far better title. thank you for your views.

i have met the teacher many a times during the course of the year. she is very nice and sweet. i think she is doing her job well. and because she is good, then its either my son's personal phase or studies of the two levels together. i mean, my real question should have been i suppose - do/would children get affected in any negative way, should they be taught in school with a higher class together?

ta


How many pupils are there in your childs class ? As I said I'm not against the teacher, but more commonly what happens, what she or he is up against.

nyinrussia
10-06-2008, 12:52
First let me say that I have taught in combined level classes in the states for several years. I just want to point out that although this class may have been made to create a class when not enough children were in each level. There is a whole theory and some beneifical reasons why schools do multi level classrooms. Please do not confuse classroom teaching with English as a Second Language Teaching as there are different elements to be considered.

Now yes multi level classes is not for every child. But it allows the child more flexibility to learn, especially if the student is excelling or a slower learner because the teacher can group the child according to ability.Also the younger students tend to learn more from the older students.

In response to your question I agree with Miss AnnElk you need to meet with the teacher first to see what insight she has. Then as a guess as I have never met your child it could be 1. a subject your child is finding difficult 2. something going on within the classroom like not getting along with peers

If it is the first of the two then maybe as a summer spruce up you can work with him on that subject as he is in the 2nd grade sorry level 3. It is where the class begins to get more academic so if there are problems with reading or math they begin to show now. Hope this helps.

DollyTa
11-06-2008, 16:59
thanks a ton nyinrussia...

i am relieved to find out that there are indeed beneficial reasons to mixed class levels. yes, they may learn from the older children.

i was worried about certain topics going over his head. he has come home many a times with homework sheets that he has no clue how to do. at first i thought it was beacuse he didn't pay attention when the topic was being taught. but when it started happening more often (esp. in his favourite subjects) i was wondering if he wasn't ready for the topics yet. they did seem a little beyond him.

then it was statements like - "i hate studies" something which he had never said earlier. he is generally a very social boy and makes friends pretty easily. i do plan on meeting up with his teacher next week.

thank you all for taking the time to give suggestions and views. its highly appreciated.

best wishes
ta

Bels
11-06-2008, 23:20
i agree bels...that would have made a far better title. thank you for your views.

i have met the teacher many a times during the course of the year. she is very nice and sweet. i think she is doing her job well. and because she is good, then its either my son's personal phase or studies of the two levels together. i mean, my real question should have been i suppose - do/would children get affected in any negative way, should they be taught in school with a higher class together?

ta

Thanks, and it appears to have worked, and thank you NYINRUSSIA , for sharing your professional experience.

Please keep us posted of your decisions, and how your son is getting on. There's no doubt that this school is expensive on fees, and I hope your visit to the teacher is to your satisfaction.

aarden
12-06-2008, 17:12
My son is actually in the same class and I hear the head is planning to split the class into 2 year groups in September. He is expecting a lot more pupils then. My son actually dislikes the high girl:boy ratio! The girls can sometimes make the boys feel inferior if they are not at the same level and we all know girls are more advanced than boys at this age - could that be a factor for your son?

hka
13-06-2008, 13:57
It would be nice to hear the results of your chat with the teacher next week if you don't mind sharing.

DollyTa
18-06-2008, 11:51
hello again,

i did meet the teacher yesterday and here is a brief note to share with all those interested.

the teacher had also noticed that my son hadn't been himself (a little lost probably!) for a while now....

the reasons she agreed on:


he had been seated with a group of three girls (from higher level) who were not supportive enough, she had noticed.
he could be missing the competition around that some children need for a push.
even the boys he is close to in the class belong to year 4 and are not from his level, so its a bond shared while playing, etc, but not when it comes to study work.
the class concentrated on the year 3 curriculum in the beginning of the year, but towards the end she is trying to get the year 4 geared up to move on to the next level in a more better state. so year 3 was indeed doing some stuff that was not specifically for them at the moment. (but nevertheless, at least they will be a little familiar with it when they actually do it next year)

i think the meeting went very well and was indeed an eye opener in some ways. she had already changed his seating place that very morning- he will now be sitting with his level friend upfront, and she hopes to see a positive change . this could also benefit my son otherwise: he wears glasses - maybe its time for an eye checkup!

thank you all for your input. this is a great forum!
have a nice day.
ta:)

hka
19-06-2008, 17:34
And from September all the years will be separated anyway... good news maybe for the academic side, perhaps not so for friendships then!