Big changes in year 1

As you know Emmy has just moved from Reception into year 1 and before she started she had a little wobble.
She doesn’t do change well and the thought of changing classrooms and teachers scared her a lot, in the week before we started back there were tears and restless nights.
Now she has been back for 2 weeks and has settled in well, she really likes her new teacher and loves her new classroom as they have two class Guinea Pigs.  She has even won a prize this week for gaining 10 black dots – as far as I can work out from her mumbles, the children have to follow set class rules, they gain a dot for good behaviour/following the rules, once you’ve 10 dots you can choose a prize – She was so proud when she came out on Monday clutching her mini Jenga set.
Reading has been hard for her, we tried to keep up the momentum of reading daily over the Summer however it did lapse and was more a few times a week and books she choose, so they many well have been easier than the school ones.  Her new teacher has moved her down a level until her confidence grows again, this may well just be having a new teacher to read to – after all she didn’t actually talk to her last teachers until at least the second term and then only if they spoke to her – she is very shy.  Her confidence will grow again and I’m making an effort to ensure she reads daily.
Homework has also been introduced by way of weekly spelling tests, they started to introduce these towards the end of reception but Emmy never did too well.  This year she needs to make more of an effort though, school is now no longer for playing and mingling with friends, there is no longer that free play session during the day in class, she has subjects and more work based learning to do.
She had her first spelling test today and did OK, not brilliantly.  We had practiced at the weekend and she had gotten them all correct, however in the class environment she got 4 correct out of 7, one of those was a mystery spelling which she did get correct.  She was cross when she got home today and said she didn’t like the test.  Sadly they are part of school life and as she progresses through the school years she will soon find they become more frequent and harder.
Spellings year 1,, spelling test for 5 year olds
She has been telling me all about Florence Nightingale today at bedtime, and how she worked in hospitals making sure they were all clean “with no blood on the floors and clean sheets for all the sick people”, it’s lovely to hear her talk about what she is doing and what she is learning, and certainly makes a change from the usual “I don’t know” or “I can’t remember” when asked about her day.
It’s also worrying and scary the same day, she is only 5 and still my baby yet now fully in the schooling system where they will begin gearing them up for SATs testing in year 2 and again in year 6, obviously Emmy is still young so I don’t have experience of these yet but have been looking at this parents guide to primary school SATs in a bid to at least prepare myself and then Emmy when the time comes.
If she is anything like me, and it is already looking that way, then she will hate any kind of testing at all, they made me feel really ill and I would make myself poorly through worry – of course I don’t want Emmy to be like that at all so will help her all I can.
Only this week I have been chatting with one of my old school friends from secondary school, now while we don’t see each other very often we do whatsapp frequently.  She is currently looking at secondary schools for her daughter and it’s a mind field, her daughter is really laid back about the whole process but it is a worry for us parents.  Secondary school is a huge thing, not only is it a huge change for the children but it’s where they will build on their education, learn the basis of all they need to know to gear them towards a future career and yet before that gain the knowledge to hopefully get them through their GCSE’s.  All the while they are also dealing with changing friend sets, body and hormonal changes as well as any outside factors – our poor children really do have a lot to cope with and to deal with as they get older.
My fiend has been telling me that the school have already been pushing the students towards getting good SATs results and doing mock tests – they have been back from school holidays for just over 2 weeks and already the pressure piles on. 
It’s no wonder that some parents in a bid to help their children and to relieve the stress and pressure enlist the help of tutors such as Fleet Tutors  to help give there children an additional helping hand.  I know that a few of my school friends had tutors in the lead up to their GCSE exams, it did help them to stay focused and having that one-on-one learning helped them to take in the information, facts and figures better than in a classroom environment where, lets face it there are lots of distractions.
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5 thoughts on “Big changes in year 1

  1. My girl's just started in year 1, too. She likes homework and is OK with her spellings, but they don't make them out to be 'tests', as she had them in Reception, too. She was asked to try them each week with the teacher, but there was no fuss made if she didn't get them. I do think for 5 year olds they get a lot of homework, don't they? She has spellings, reading, maths and a project/show & tell to prepare for weekly. They're only 5!

  2. Your daughter sounds very much like my son. I'm so relieved that spelling tests have been shelved for the time being so that actually learning to read can be the main focus. He'll hates tests when they start. We expect far too much of 5 year olds in my opinion.

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