Parents' Evening
Parents' Evening

Parents’ Evening. The first of many judgements.

 

As you may know if you are a reader of my blog, Pops is in reception. A few weeks ago we had our first official parents’ evening. I say official because we had one in October but that was more to discuss settling in. Luckily we were told she had and appeared to be enjoying her time at school.

So far she is loving going to school. Of course she has the odd day where we get a longing plea not to go to. But we’ve never had trouble getting her to go. My heart would go out to the mothers whose children were glued to their leg at the school door.

What is clever?

This parents’ evening, the focus was more on academics and how they are doing. During my daughter’s life we’ve regularly had comments that she is really clever. I never really know how to take comments like that. We all say it to children. They do something and we say ‘aren’t you a clever boy’. They use a random word that is more than a couple of syllables and again they are ‘clever’. I do actually think she is learning at a pace I can’t keep up with. She is so switched on to the world around her. I hate to label children by ability but I don’t want to ignore her need for learning. She asks us to ‘do sums’ with her, to read with her and if she can write things such as birthday cards.

I find it hard not to compare her to others. They are individuals after all. However I think it’s important to take an interest in how she is getting on at school. If she isn’t getting on, I want to be able to help her. I know I’m at risk of being branded a pushy parent. Honestly, I don’t want to place too much emphasis on academic achievements but I fear if she falls behind then there could be a parallel to being unhappy at school. I really don’t want that for her. I want her to find school a happy place. A place to thrive. Maybe I’m overthinking it?

Judgement day

Parents' evening
First day of school!

So when parents’ evening came up I was a bag of nerves. What would they say about our little girl? It feels a little odd that you invite someone who knows your child less than you to judge them. Or maybe, it feels strange because for the first time in their lives someone else is influencing how they develop and learn. Of course I would be over the moon if they told us she was excelling but mainly I wanted to know that she is settling into school life and interacting with everyone. I wanted to know that she is ok and plays with friends.

My daughter has bags of confidence. She will make a conversation with anyone. She will include everyone in her games and is in general a smiley, happy girl. However she is rather sensitive. If her kindness is not reciprocated she gets upset. If she doesn’t get to have things her own way she gets upset. So I did worry that that she would have trouble settling in at school.

On arrival we found that they were running late. So we waited half an hour to be seen. Which I half expected so it wasn’t an issue. Her teachers are lovely and friendly and she holds them in high regard. We were told that she is doing extremely well. That her writing skills already meet the requirements for the end of reception. We were told she is excelling in her reading skills and that she will thrive in year 1. This made us feel so very proud.

Then we were told that she hasn’t defined her set of friends yet, that she regularly plays with different people. At first this upset me. My main concern was that she would struggle to establish strong friendships. Was she lonely? I discussed it with my OH and he didn’t seem concerned, he said that it was a good thing that she didn’t need the security of a group. I spent the next few days mulling over what we were told. Worried that my little girl wasn’t settling in.

I needn’t have worried

A story written by Pops
A story written by Pops

The next week at school, everyone was asking about parents’ evening and how it went. I raised my concerns to some of the mums. It seems I shouldn’t have been worried. Most of them were told the same thing about their children and how they were making friends. It seems that actually my OH was right. Perhaps it is better that she is able to form relationships with many in her class and not just a few. I actually feel a bit daft for being worried. I just want her to be happy.

 

I need to share this too. I think I’ve mastered how to get a snippet of information out of her after school too. I used to get ‘I can’t remember’. I ask her to tell me the funniest thing that happened in her day. Sometimes it may be something daft pertaining in no way to activities at school but sometimes it gives me insight into her day. Most of all I hope she knows I find what she has to say is important.

 

Dear Bear and Beany
Mummuddlingthrough
The Pramshed

28 COMMENTS

  1. Parents evenings are so nerve racking aren’t they? Is your child doing okay, are they settling in, are they being picked on, are they picking on others … Glad the feedback was so positive and she’s settling in. #SharingtheBlogLove

  2. Glad to know the report was positive. I think they always are, because if there was anything to worry about, the teacher would have asked to see you already. It’s natural to worry though, I think it’s a Mum thing!

  3. Glad to know the report was positive. I think they always are, because if there was anything to worry about, the teacher would have asked to see you already. It’s natural to worry though, I think it’s a Mum thing!

  4. Totally get this post! We also have a daughter in year R, and have just had our first proper open evening. I was literally hanging off every word – there was a lot of discussion about her emotional well being at school which just tore me to bits at first, but now I realise they’re just terms for those difficult settling in months. It’s a huge adjustment for us, and the kids!
    Thanks for sharing with #coolmumclub x

  5. We have our nursery parents evening coming up, and even though I already know from his key worker exactly how he’s doing, I still get nervous! I think my initial reaction to the friends thing would have been the same as yours, but when you think about it, it’s much better to be able to form relationships with a wide range of people. Especially at such a young age too. It sounds like you have lots to be proud of – it’s always lovely to hear nice things about your child! Thanks for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

  6. This is great. My youngests teachers have passed comment about how sometimes she chooses to play on her own which I initially got into a big panic about. Then I realised she does also have friends who she plays with and actually I’m myself someone happy in my own company and calmed down a bit. It’s hard not to worry #fortheloveofBLOG

  7. so important to get them in the habit ow of talking to us, while they still might want to! I always feel sorry for the teachers, the endless parade of parents all wanting to hear about how great their kid is. Glad it went well #fortheloveofblog

    • I hope she feels she can talk to me about anything. May be unimportant to us as adults but major to them. I can imagine teachers need excellent people skills! There are some feisty parents out there 😉

  8. We actually take the kids in with us. The teacher says what they need to in front of, or more often than not, to the child. Interstingly in High School, the last one was one focused on subject selection for the HSC and it was as if I wasn’t there. I loved seeing how well they knew my child, and the relationship they had with my child. It was amazing for a public school (your comprehensive? Govt run school?) It also meant over the years, if they’d been not performing, they had to own that…(but that is a joy of the teen years…) #FortheloveofBLOG

  9. Can’t remember if I managed to get my comment through or not.

    It sounds like she’s doing really well – she’s certainly more focused than my 6 year old who I struggle to get to write more than 3 sentences.

    Do come and link up to #schooldays which is open til Saturday. #sharingthebloglove

  10. Sounds like your little one is doing really well. My mum used to be a reception teacher and she said it was perfectly normal that they don’t form set friendships in that first year and actually it’s a good thing so I’m sure you’re right not too worry about it. Thanks for sharing your post on #fortheloveofBLOG

  11. My daughter started school last September and we have parents evening coming up, I’m nervous! I think its great that she doesn’t have a set of friends, at this age its lovely to see them just being friends with everyone and not just hanging out with 1 or 2 people. I think I will get told the same about my daughter and I am ok with that. She is invited to birthday parties and playdates, so I know she is she liked. Thank you for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove x

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