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  1. #1
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    Default Not CM related but..

    Slight problem I want a bit of advice on please!
    My dd is in y1 and is only just 5 (August baby) and her class had their 1st spelling test last week in which she did really well and got 8 out of 8, which put her on a table with children almost a year older than her.
    Great we thought, she loved her table as her 3 best friends sat there with her and all was well until Friday.
    The class had their second spelling test, and when I picked her up from school when we got home she said 'I got 5 out of 8 but I got upset on the 6th spelling and cried so my teacher said I didn't have to do the test'
    I felt awful for her as she did know the words but got so upset even when telling me about it, I tried to phone school to see what happened by they had closed for the day by then
    So I open her reading book and see the following comment
    T got upset during today's spelling test so I have made the decision to move her down a group to the Bizzy Bees as I'd rather she experienced success than get upset.
    Fine , we thought, we're happy if she is and I'd rather she was in a group suited to her level than feel out of her depth. But I did think her teacher could have rang me, or spoken to me after school just to mention it and it was a little harsh after one test, but that's the teachers decision not ours
    So I said to T 'are you happier being in the Bizzy Bees?'
    'Yes because it's easier, but I'm sad I'm not in the SuperStar group anymore. I'm not a Super Star'
    Turns out (after speaking to another 2 parents of kids in y1) that they have 4 groups in order from lowest to highest level: Caterpillars, Ladybirds, Bizzy Bees and Superstars
    Is it me or is this wrong?! I didn't know when she was in the Superstar group that was called that! And to hear her say I'm not a Super Star anymore is heart breaking. She is a super star! She's a lovely girl with a heart of gold, who tries so hard in everything she does. Who says knowing some words makes you a Super star anyway?!
    Tomorrow morning I'll be asking her teacher what happened during test and if she was ok, but do I mention this Super Star group business? Or will I sound bitter because she's not in it anymore so now I have a problem with what the groups called.
    I didn't know when she was in it and I still don't think it'd sit right with me even if she went back in a group that seems so blatantly superior to other insect groups! Also I don't want her friends at school saying Oh we're Superstars and you're not because you've been moved down! Helpppppp am I just being over sensitive?!
    Kelly xx

  2. #2
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    I agree you should say something, it's wrong they are put in groups like that, causes a lot of stress for a child that they are not the best. They shouldn't out primary school children in that position, to much stress to be better.
    And yeh I think it's wrong they have moved her down after just one test. They should have spoke to you and agreed to see what was best.

  3. #3
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    I think maybe moving her was the right thing to do. Being comfortable with the work is important.

    I agree that the names of the groups should all be insects. It must be horrible for all of the children who aren't in the superstars group. This could lead to all sorts of problems in the class. What happens when some of the kids decide to make fun of the ones who aren't super stars?

    You should definitely speak to the teacher about it. Tell her you're happy with the move BUT you don't think it's right that some kids are being told they are better than others at this age.

  4. #4
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    I find the superstars sounds put of place when the others are all insects. Do they really spell it bizzy? Bees, should it not be busy when teaching young children.
    I think the teacher should have had a chat with you on collection so you could work out why dd was upset, I agree there is no nig thing about moving her down a group if she is happy but surely a quick chat would have been more appropriate.

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    Glad it's not just me. I really don't mind the moving down thing, in fact we thought with her being the youngest it was a lot of pressure for her to be in top group but the Super Star thing is really niggling at me, has been all weekend. Name the groups insects but name them ALL insects!
    It'd be like us grouping our kids we look after into sets and calling the morning group group the Fantastic Ones and the others the Spiders lol
    And yes it's spelt Bizzy Bees, that was in the note written in her book from her teacher, you're right it should be Busy Bees really
    So should I say was she ok on Friday, I tried to call but school was shut, I was worried to heard she'd been upset over a test. I don't kind she's moved down group but I'm concerned that its called a super star group and think kids in the class might pick up that she's moved down from a super star to a 'Bizzy' Bee and tease her or something?
    Also she's been saying at home this weekend to family member I'm not a super star anymore and it just concerns me that she might lose some confidence over this, with it being called that?xx
    Kelly xx

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    I think calling one group superstars is awful!!

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  9. #7
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    Completely agree, all groups should be themed in the same way. When I started teaching I had caterpillars, dogs, frogs and flamingos. I chose them because I liked the pictures I'd found, back in the limited clip art days!!! One parent came to me really upset that her child was in the caterpillar group 'crawling along'. I was mortified that that was how it was perceived, especially as in my head they were a group with real potential, but very young. I was thinking they were going to change into butterflies! Parent left happy, I learnt a valuable lesson. Fast forward twelve years and I was right, certainly the ones I know of did very well in their GCSE's!
    Anyway I've waffled, they should be all along the same lines and no group should be singled out, either in a overly positive or negative way.
    Mum of three, 6,5 and 4. Now minding a few more too!

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    Oh. My. Gosh. I grew up in America and until reading this thread, I had no idea that children in the UK were put into groups like this. I find it shocking that children as young as 5 are grouped, and are aware if they are in a high or low group. If children are going to be grouped, they should not be aware of it as it can be damaging to their confidence and affect their entire educational experience, and perhaps the rest of their lives.

    I was speaking to my husband about it just now, and he remembers being put into the lowest group in maths and spelling when he was quite young, and because of this, he spent years feeling like he wasn't very intelligent and not expecting much from himself. Fast forward to now, he's an accountant! He's very smart, but still doesn't seem to think so.

    Does this happen in all schools? If so, I will most certainly be moving back to the states before my dd (1) is old enough to start school!

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    So sad. At 5 she has to learn 8 spelling words. So wrong. I would complain about the superstar word. Please please complain. I dislike this label.

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  13. #10
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    That is so wrong!! I cant believe it you must be absolutely raging.. 5yr olds and they are already putting on the pressure, they have only just started school??.. The names caterpillars and superstars doesn't make any sense at all, so unfair. Definitely say something!

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    Seems very pressurised to move them up and down tables each week after a test!!

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    I agree I don't like the name superstars...

    Our school children are grouped in shapes for maths and I insects for English...Despite this my son knows exactly which level group he is in... the kids do know.

    He was moved down to a different teacher in reception as they thought it would boost his writing as they thought he would be happier been top of the lower group than bottom of the top group and was happy with this... I wonder whether it is just based on one test..may be worth asking if she is generally struggling

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    I have never heard anything so ridiculous in my life. I feel like complaining on your behalf about the name of the group, I really do. If I knew the name of the school I honestly would.

    As a former teacher I don't agree with moving children around from table to table anyway, it's unsettling. You can differentiate your lessons no matter where the children sit and it shouldn't be based on how well they do in a spelling test from one week to another. She shouldn't have been so hasty in putting them in groups if she wasn't totally aware of their current stage of development.

    Please, please say something and please let us know how you get on. I'm really cross now, I hate such blatant stupidity in teachers. Good luck, hugs to your DD. X

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  19. #14
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    Unbelievable! The school should be ashamed at allowing a group called superstars when the others are named after insects. It's like something out of the dark ages. I would be complaining to the Head and insisting that this 'bullying' was stopped immediately.

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  21. #15
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    Thanks all!
    Spoke to teacher today and she was very nice about talking about moving her to ensure she's comfortable with her work blah blah and I was happy with what was said, then got a bit shirty when I mentioned SuperStar group. She said we do label them via levels and they are the top group so... I was so shocked I can't really remember what I said! Something along the lines of it being very unfair and so obviously grouping those kids as 'better' surely wasn't right, then I left because I honestly thought I was going to cry!
    Told other half and he's annoyed but said just leave it, you've said it now but my Mum was scandalised and said I should have asked to speak to the Head. God knows, I'm tempted to leave it but its SO annoying that not only is she ok with the labelling but doesn't like being called on it x
    Kelly xx

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    Disgusting. How can she even begin to justify this? What do the other parents think? Do you have an approachable Head teacher? If the class teacher is making this silly mistake what other silly mistakes is she making? Surely the Head cannot embrace this? Is it a teacher who is new to the school?

  23. #17
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    I would take it to the head. We would be hung if we favoured kids like that. It's also a really quick way to lower the confidence of all the other children in the class. If some already lack confidence they will find school life even harder now.

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    It actually doesn't help the children who are in the Super star group either. They will end up thinking that they don't have to try that hard to be in the 'top' group and then they'll find themselves in the real world one day where they really do have to compete.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kellyskidz! View Post
    Thanks all!
    Spoke to teacher today and she was very nice about talking about moving her to ensure she's comfortable with her work blah blah and I was happy with what was said, then got a bit shirty when I mentioned SuperStar group. She said we do label them via levels and they are the top group so... I was so shocked I can't really remember what I said! Something along the lines of it being very unfair and so obviously grouping those kids as 'better' surely wasn't right, then I left because I honestly thought I was going to cry!
    Told other half and he's annoyed but said just leave it, you've said it now but my Mum was scandalised and said I should have asked to speak to the Head. God knows, I'm tempted to leave it but its SO annoying that not only is she ok with the labelling but doesn't like being called on it x
    If they were in secondary school then fair enough but they are still very small children. Yes, they'll work out which group is the 'top', all the more reason to have the names be equal.

  26. #20
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    Firstly seems a little ironic if they spell it bizzy, and not busy!

    It isn't right that children are put in rank, super stars is blatantly meant as a way of making those children feel superior, and in turn, making other children feel inferior. You are well within your right to suggest name change. Perhaps mentioning you're DDs comment about not being a star anymore, that's heartbreaking!

    Perhaps move was a little hasty, but I do always agree with the notion of highlighting what a child can do as opposed to can't, so perhaps long term she is better off on the other table. Good luck!

 

 
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