Choosing schools is one of the biggest decisions you have to make early on as a parent. I will be honest and I didn’t realise how stressful it would be. We all just want the best for out children and if we get it wrong, we feel we have let them down. If you are just about to start thinking about schools, Amanda at Mummy2twindividuals wrote a great post on choosing a school which is definitely worth a read.
If you haven’t already read my first article on delaying school start, I suggest you pop over to it here so that you understand a bit about how it works. In a nutshell, when you apply for a delayed start, you are asking the school/schools admissions team if you can keep your child at home an extra year, and for them to start school the following year but you have to specify that you want them to start in reception, and not year 1. You are allowed to do this if your child is born in the summer term.
My reasons as to why I applied for a delayed start for the twins are fairly simple. I wholeheartedly feel that sending children to school having just turned 4 is too young, they should be at home playing and that is even after 15 years as a professional in education.
I have seen a mixture of summer born children enter school, some do incredibly well, some struggle, only you know your child and ultimately, you have to do what is right for them. You also have to remember, that just because your child is academically bright, it doesn’t mean that emotionally and socially they are ready, and this is where we are.
This has nothing to do how bright the twins may or may not be, or that they are currently struggling, they are simply at school for a long time so why be in a rush to send them if there is the option?
I honestly can’t see any negatives in this, only positives. I have had many people say to me ‘they will be fine’, ‘I was a summer born and did ok’, or ‘I know a child who is the brightest in the class and they were born in August’, but the other day, my husband hit the nail on the head…. He was born on the 29thAugust and academically did well. He was clever, a high achiever but emotionally he struggled and he remembers this. He remembers not being ready socially, not being ready emotionally and I think sometimes we worry too much about what they can and can’t do on paper, and forget about how the child is feeling and dealing with their emotions inside.
The twins can come across as confident little people at home, who love acting, singing and dancing, putting on shows for us and not having a care in the world, but you put them into a new or social situation, and they are extremely immature and so not ready for the big wide world. Some may think I am wrapping them up in cotton wool and maybe they are right but this is probably the only time we can, so let’s do it!
Here are my reasons why I feel that the twins will benefit from a delayed reception start;
- They were premature.
- They were due on the 21stSeptember so they shouldn’t have been in this year group anyway.
- They are twins. There is research from Kings College in London which identifies that there are key areas of academic delay in multiple birth children and that they score significantly below singleton children at the start of school.
- The twins still nap during the day.
- Socially and emotionally they are not ready.
- They will get an extra year in a play based setting. Going into reception from a nursery setting doesn’t worry me, reception is the perfect step forward, but going into year 1 is not. It is very formal and structured and if the girls aren’t ready to sit down and focus all day, they potentially could struggle.
They will not be bored by staying in their nursery setting as it is every Early Years practitioners job to challenge children individually no matter what their capabilities are – FACT.
I don’t want my twins to be fine at school, I want them to thrive – FACT!
If you would like to know the process I went through to delay the girl’s entry, please take a look at this article here;
If you have any questions on the above topic, please feel free to comment below or message me privately.
You could also check out these school starters articles