A twin education

I wrote last week about the outspoken childminder who ‘opened up’ on her view of my sons’.
I’ll be honest, the upset I felt has been replaced with anger tinged with humour.
Reflection has made me more angry about her behaviour than able to consider her words valid.
I also have sympathy, I think for the parents, who have the children in her care, and hope they aren’t subject to her judgement.
I still standby my consideration, that I have yet to meet a parent with the same approach. Most parents seem to know that as readily as a child may have poor behaviour inflicted on them, so the following week they may be the one demonstrating poor behaviour. Such is the nature of children. And the playground.

However, the words did provoke me to contact the boys’ teacher to explore the boys’ behaviour and what I could do as a parent to better support my children.

I have no doubt I caught the teacher off guard, I’ve not contacted the school before for anything other than illness notification and I am not the parent who does the school run so am not familiar.

We talked things through, about the cyclical nature of their behaviour which has a telling off at its heart. We talked about their relationship, how they behave as they might at home- they are very physical with each other.

As a side note this, for me, has been one of the most trying elements of my boys. One will hurt the other, we will discipline them (naughty step, separation, etc), there will be an apology, five minutes later the other is complaining they have been hurt. Having witnessed the events which have just unfolded.

The teacher confirmed all incidents of poor behaviour had been addressed with Mr J.
Generally speaking they are naughty, they are lovely boys and good learners, but they fidget when they’re bored, and if the other is in touching distance they will inevitably end up brawling.

I asked whether separating them would be of benefit.
The response was in the teacher’s personal opinion there may be an advantage.
So I asked how we could make it happen.

There is so much behind this.
I had originally wanted to separate the boys.
They are so similar.
Some twins do not have similar interests, but the boys do, they have similar personalities- with nuances which make them individuals.
And I was originally concerned the teaching team would get them confused.Trunki Spike and TangI was also of the opinion that siblings shouldn’t be in the same class. I suspect if me or my brothers were in the same class the arguments would have been legendary.
Yes. My sons are twins. There should be an additional filter of consideration. But not a blanket consideration.

So I’m a little cross that once again I didn’t follow my instincts as a parent.
That I agreed when I was told the school policy is not to separate twins. Even though I know through TAMBA this may not be upheld if parents present an alternate perspective.
I am annoyed when I hear my sons speak about themselves in the third person because they’ve learned to differentiate themselves for people.
And that they complain that people cannot tell them apart.

And then, the worst part dawned on me.
Yes. This might be the right decision.
But how?
How do you decide which child to take out of their class and put into a new one?

And it’s because children are awesome. (Especially mine).
I asked them.
They decided.

It’s also addressed another issue.
This year E decided he wanted to move his birthday going forward to March 17th (I don’t fully understand the date, he is insistent it should be the day before his sister’s birthday). Why? Because he’s afraid people will muddle up his and his brother’s presents.
But now, his perspective is he’d be happy to share a birthday with his brother, because now he can invite the children in his class, and his presents won’t be muddled because the children in his brother’s class will bring gifts for B.
Problem solved.

And, of course,
The school have been fantastic.
They’ve stopped me from making a knee-jerk reaction to some outsider, who doesn’t know my children from Adam, affecting my judgement.
As any good school would, they’ve asked us to put in place a plan to make sure a considered conclusion is reached for my sons.
That we look more closely at them over the coming half term.
And meet in May, to agree what would be best for my boys.
And potentially discuss with the Governors why, if it is the result, separation is right for B and E.

In many ways, I do not support this course of action.
I do not think I, as a parent, should need to justify my options to people, who, if my children had different birth dates, would not have a say.
I do not see why I am fighting a blanket rule.
When we agree all children are individuals.
That this is an issue simply because they were born on the same day.

But like them, I am not an expert in multiple births.
My twins are individuals, as are all twins, so why should my view about my boys determine how all multiples should be treated.
So, hopefully, the Governors like me might understand the emotional attachment of a parent.
And make a decision based on, like me, wanting the best learning environment for each child.
Which, in B and E’s case, might mean they are too much of a distraction together.

So, here we go.
Let’s see what a more considered future holds for them.
And believing, because the school, for me, has been fantastic,
Will ensure, whatever I think, that B and E have, as individuals, the most positive learning experience.

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