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Summer born children-disadvantage?

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by lauraeve, Mar 3, 2011.

  1. mystery10

    mystery10 Occasional commenter

    Yes I agree with you. Sorry there was a "not" missing from my post above yours - "looking at an individual summer-born you could NOT jump to the conclusion that they would not do as well as an individual autumn born"
     
  2. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    My worry is that a blanket statement such as summer borns are disadvantaged influence expectations so teachers and parents happily expect less from a child with a summer birthday ... and if it is a boy with a summer birthday...we all know boys do less well than girls don't we!!!
    Have the same high expectations for all children regardless of month of birth gender orsocial background (and all the other excuses) or you are doing children a disservice!
     
  3. mystery10

    mystery10 Occasional commenter

    Yes I agree with you - it's the difference between statistics applied to a population as a whole and to an individual. But don't teachers have the wit to understand this? We know that children of alcoholics are more likely to be alcoholics themselves, but we are not going to go round assuming that child definitely will be an aloholic.
    I rather hoped these things would be more the other way round - that if one knew that a summer-born child might be more likely to struggle than an autumn born, or that a boy might not do as well as a girl in primary, or that a child might become an alcoholic, that we'd do our best to insure against this happening, not assume it would happen and expect less.
    I could be wrong but I think some of these ideas start in reception ....... a guilty feeling that the youngest ones shouldn't really be in school yet, less is expected of them as they are the "babies" of the class. They get grouped together and the age clumping sticks for a while into KS1 too.
     
  4. katycustard

    katycustard Occasional commenter

    <font size="2">Well we certainly start this in Nursery mystery. The age differences are very noticeable the younger children are. 6 months is a greater percentage of your life when you are only 3 than when you are 16. We do our best to meet the needs of all our children, while making sure we try and close any gaps between the summer borns and their peers. </font>
     
  5. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    The number of times I've been told my son's writing was due to him being a summer born boy ... and I still hear it being said at moderation meetings and in classrooms and conferences ...
     
  6. mystery10

    mystery10 Occasional commenter

    How annoying. My children were born in April so I don't know what excuse is made for them. Or now it's warm this April does that count as summer-born too?
    Did the teachers who told you it was due to a summer birth have an idea in mind when his handwriting would be as neat as the Autumn borns or was it a life sentence they were giving?
     
  7. I'm cynically inclined to think that this interest in such labels as 'summer-born' ,white working class boys etc is to do with the back to front thinking of our approach to education and intrinsically linked to our obssession with results and measuring.Identifying groups that statistically don't do so well can easily become a self-fulfilling prophecy as heads and SIO's (not necessarily teachers) grasp at any straw to 'explain' less than perfect results that will damn them in league tables and attract unwelcome attention from LA's.

     
  8. mystery10

    mystery10 Occasional commenter

    It's a shame though, because these "findings" were not intended to make excuses, but intended as pointers to help people find out barriers to learning that might be causing these effects and find ways round them. Same goes for SEN identification.
     
  9. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    instead the findings could be increasing the problem
     
  10. Exactly - meant to help but doesn't.
    That's where the back-to-front thinking comes in...there's a suspicion of a problem area or something awry is observed; well meaning studies are done that ascertain that there is an observable, statistically significant phenomenon coming into play eg summer born children at risk of doing less well, all well and good BUT what to do next?? Well, especially with summer born's perhaps the most useful response would be to monitor progress and not make a judgement at a set point in time ie end of KS.It is well established good practice to continue the EYFS into KS1 where appropriate so what's the problem?
    Other focuses for concern eg lack of progress amongst white working class boys really, in my opinion, require a very good look at the middle class, feminised curriculum for these kids to have a chance of succeeding with the current 'goal posts' set as and where they are.
     

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