This phase of education has become a demanding and complex time with formal learning, testing and a strict curriculum in place in schools from day 1. Children are expected to develop English and Maths skills and be reading, writing, counting and solving mathematical problems very early in this phase, with demanding academic targets set even within the foundation stage.
With schools needing to show adequate progress from day one, there is an extreme amount of pressure on very young children. Some children will have issues with learning that will be with them for a considerable length of time, possibly the whole of their educational life. Some children just take a little longer than others to get going, for a range of reasons such as concentration and attention. At Aspire Tuition, we do not recommend that parents rush into extra tuition and more formal learning for very young children, on top of a tiring day at school. Giving a child time to get used to learning, to learn through play, talk and life experiences is crucial.
Key stage 2
By Key Stage 2, children should be able to attend to a day at school and be making sufficient progress that they are working at ‘age related expectations’. Schools analyse data, plotting each pupil against their starting points and ensuring they are progressing in a linear way.
Not all children follow an expected path. Some will find all or some aspects of the curriculum easy and may become bored and frustrated with a lack of challenge; many will find aspects very difficult; some will not be able to respond to the presentation of tasks in school or the pace expected. Many children need far more consolidation and revisiting of areas, with practical and visual supports, to be able to make any progress. The level of this, within a class of approximately 30 children (each one having their own personalities and particular behaviours) means that the class teacher will struggle to adjust the learning to all student needs.
Many students feel bombarded with complex concepts such as different tenses in English, simplifying fractions, ratio and long division. Many are not fully secure in the underlying skills and this means they are unable to access the new areas. As a result, these students consistently fail to gain a real grasp of the work set. They may be able to get by in class but, often inwardly, they begin to lack confidence, feel anxious or even suffer mental health difficulties.
Once a child lacks confidence, this begins to take over and often they feel the same about other subjects and, worryingly, about school generally. At Aspire Tuition we can go back to the early stages of the new areas and find out whether the prerequisite early skills are in place. On a 1:1 basis we can work on those areas so that harder learning can lay smoothly on top.
We work at the pace the child requires, with visual and practical models to help. 1-1 tuition means that we find the gaps and work to fill them or give them the next step in learning, pushing their boundaries, challenging their mind. Vitally, we work to boost a child’s confidence so that they know that they have ability. Our attention, approach and positiveness mean that we see children bloom very quickly and develop a whole different attitude to learning.
After a few weeks of you being shut at the start of lockdown, Ollie started to ask if he would ever come to Aspire again. He was so pleased to see you over Zoom. Although he hates writing at school, he is more than happy to work for you and it is great to hear him laughing and coming out with ideas when working online with you. Thank you for being one of the few people to get the best out of him.
Thank you Andrea, Elsie had a big smile on her face after she finished her session with you which only confirms to Martene and I that we have made the right decision in engaging with you.
Thanks so much for this morning. When my husband got home and asked Ada how it went she told him it was great (with a big smile on her face), so I’m really pleased she’s feeling so positive about it!