How the first ever day at school went for my 10 year old!

I went to pick R up from school after her one-off trial day (so lucky to have such a lovely headteacher at a local primary, willing to let R just go in and see for a day.)

R came out with such a grin on her face and actually bouncing, the teacher came out with her and said she had really fitted in well and been confident and made friends easily. The work hadn’t phased her (which was the primary concern.. dyslexia-wise) they had done maths and geography, and the only writing she’d had to do was copying words, which she did brilliantly… I was really impressed. They’d had reading time  in class and she’d asked to draw instead (which I guess as a child actually properly at the school wouldn’t be such an easy option)

She had a couple of girls look after her, and it sounded like they had a real giggle. She said the teacher was lovely and asked them nicely to get on with work once they’d had a bit of a joke, which they did.

She didn’t get to know any of the year 6 children, which had been the aim really, because their teacher was away, they were all split between the other classes and sat at the back doing homework, so there wasn’t much interaction with R, who was busy getting on with all the year 5 lot. The year 5 teacher said she’s welcome in his class any time 🙂 Shame it doesn’t really work like that!!! I think if that was an option R might consider asking to go in for longer. However, she has said she would like to try and go into class 6 for a couple of days when their teacher is back, if the school are ok with that, so I’ve e-mailed to ask if that is possible.

R is still saying she wouldn’t want to go to Secondary, though she did admit that Primary was much nicer than she expected. Funny really because L has raved about how lovely the Primary was when she tried it for a couple of days and she now also raves about how great Secondary is, and we’ve always been careful to say that there are good things about school as well as the not so good…. so it is funny how anti-school R is.

I wasn’t sure if R would actually fill me on on how it had gone right through the day, but she did, she was so excited, it was lovely. I think she was relieved that the work was ok, I don’t think she realises quite how well her reading and writing are beginning to come on, it takes more than just me telling her! Hopefully that has been a bit of a confidence boost for her.

It will be very interesting to see how she gets on with the year 6 class if she gets opportunity to go!

Watch this space!!

She the first post about this here

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First Day of School with a Difference!

Around 9 years ago I took my shy 3 year old to pre-school, she clung to me and didn’t want me to leave. She didn’t make a big fuss, but she was upset. I came home and cried. L did a term at pre-school, she wasn’t herself, she withdrew, she didn’t cause trouble, so the staff kept saying she was fine, but I knew that the quiet child they saw, wasn’t the child I knew and the best thing ever was taking her out and not sending her back.

Today I took my other daughter R who is 10 and who has never been to pre-school or school before, to primary school for a taster day. I was pleased how excited she was this morning. She was ready when I got up and bouncing around. It has taken her a while to decide whether to try a taster day, I think her dyslexia is the main concern for both me and her. It will be very interesting to see how it has gone. We held hands on the way to school, and her grip certainly tightened as we entered the playground, but the office staff were lovely, as was the class teacher, so I expect she’s been fine.

I think it will be a bit of an odd taster as the class has had to be spilt up with the teacher absent, so she’s gone into year 5 with a few of year 6. This may be a good thing as it may take the pressure of the work a bit. We may ask for the chance of another taster day if R wants to, so she can really get to know more of the year 6 kids, who she would be with if she went to Secondary school next September. I think there will be a lot of talking about that!!!

It was as close as I have been to that feeling of leaving L at pre-school though, as R had rather a worried face as I left her…. but dealing with that for both her and me was much easier than when a child is 3 or 4, I know she is more than capable of coping in many different situations, she has been out on day courses without me, so it isn’t the first time away from me or anything, just the first time in an actual school class!!

It has been strange coming home without her and a taste of what it might be like if we end up with both children at school!!!! Sort of an empty nest taster for me! I’m having days where I’m beginning to understand why people (women especially) have such a hard time with empty nest syndrome! Time is going by so fast, and although my children feel more grown up at 12 and 10, and indeed look grown up too, I think as a parent it still seems so recent that they needed you to do so much more for them, and you can still see the young child you knew. I can see how rapidly teenage years are coming and all the excitement that lies beyond!!

The day is going very quickly though, as I knew it would. Time to get a few jobs done, but not much more, then it will be time to go and pick R up from school!!!

See how the day went here!

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Getting lost in a book for the first time!!

R got lost in a book this week. We have been reading Wolf Princess together and we take turns to read, usually with me reading a lot and R reading as little as possible, so I’d handed over to her to read a paragraph and she carried on right down the page and over onto the next page and down part of that…. she emerged smiling and said she’d been so involved with the story that she’d forgotten to stop reading!!! YAY!!! Big moment for a dyslexic child!! Her reading is coming on in leaps and bounds which is great. Finally at aged 10. Writing will be the next thing.

Found a great site if you want to get a small taste of being dyslexic…..

Through Your Child’s Eyes

We’ve tried the reading and writing ones… a useful tool!!!

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School ups and downs

School is over all going extremely well for L, she is enjoying it, has some lovely friends and some very nice teachers. There are of course the not so good bits… mostly the system itself. L still has target levels set at average (which seem lower than what you might think is average going by the people around her and the people in the lower groups she was in.) The school have e-mailed again to say that although they’d said they’d sort her target levels to something higher than she is working at rather than lower than her present working level… apparently the computer system cannot cope with changing a target level!!! WHAT???!!!

She has been moved up sets now which is much better and she hasn’t had any problems and has a nice friend she sits with for most things.

L also got kept in after class with a few others for a couple of minutes to write in an answer she’d got wrong in a test… which seemed rather unfair. She’d had 5 days to learn 25 words and their definitions and then was tested on a random 10 and got 6.5 … they kept people in if they got under 7. That was Geography, they also have a list of words for Spanish at the same time and I think the other one is English or maybe History, also a list to learn. Mostly L is very good at learning lists like that, but since they started it she’d said how hard some children must find that every week!!! So to keep kids in after school for not getting a high enough score seemed rather unreasonable!

L’s friend whose sister died in the summer has now moved school as her parents weren’t happy with how it had all been handled at school. So sad for the whole family. I hope the move of school works ok for her. I know L is worried about her.

We had L’s report and Information and Guidance day last week. All very good and her tutor was happy with it all too. So we’ll plod on with school, or in L’s case bounce on happily with school!!! I am so pleased it is working so well for her.


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To Wonderland and back again

Half term was a blur, the girls did a two day drama workshop with a performance at the end which was great. We caught up with friends, went to a birthday day in the forest, which was a good mix of old home ed friends, some who now have kids at school, others who are still home ed, and us with one of each!

Went to an Alice in Wonderland event which was fab,

The Red Queen and Alice
The Red Queen and Alice

Caught up with more friends, went out for a walk at Holly Hill.

Out trick or treating with my sister and her boys, what a treasure trove!!

The last day was spent in pj’s having a lazy day which we all needed I think!!

This week we started on Monday with an art session at the library, we made stain glass window pictures, which came out very well indeed. Using gold card and cutting out holes and sticky coloured see-through coloured sheets on the back.


We’ve done some reading. Having had a break R’s reading has yet again improved a lot. She has also had a go at some typing and her spelling is getting better… the attempts at words are much closer now.

More algebra, we both enjoy that using MathsWatchVLE videos. Today we covered Factorisation of some fairly tricky equations.

A local author has asked R to critique some of her new poems, which with the promise of a small recompense R is very excited about doing!! We had a look through, and commented on the first five poems today.

R also had a go at some 11+ Non verbal reasoning quizzes on Education Quizzes which is a great site with lots of different subjects and levels. Worth e-mailing them as they offer free access for teachers and also Home educators. You have to sign up for each subject separately, but well worth it.

I’ve been busy as ever with the local library … which looks like it may well end up closed by the end of March 2016, along with others in the city. We have now written to the Secretary of State asking for an inquiry, especially as all 5 libraries and the mobile library come out in the most deprived quartile of the poverty index. R challenged one of the Cllrs at the Alice in Wonderland event we went to at our local library. He actually blushed when she asked why certain options hadn’t been properly looked at!!

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