What the hell is the point of the last half term in Year 6?
If you are the parent of a child just finishing primary school or you have older kids and have already been there, seriously – what’s the point of that last half term?
My Son has done practically nothing at school for the last few weeks. The whole aim of primary school was focussed on the SATs they took in May, which in my opinion are for the benefit of the school rather than the children.
As soon as those tests were done and out of the way it just seems like school have sat back and said ‘ok, we’ve done our bit – now it’s just a matter of waiting until the end of term and then its off with you to High School’.
They did their tests in May, then they went away for a week on their ‘school journey’. - OK, fair enough – they deserved some fun and those trips away are a great growing experience, bonding, team building, confidence building and great for developing independence skills. They came back from that trip in time for the half-term holiday.
There are 6 weeks of school after half-term. Plenty of time for lots of interesting learning that doesn’t have to fit into the narrow box of the National Curriculum, at least thats what I would have thought. But no.
The children have been involved in a drama project where they have put on a play at the local children’s theatre. It was great, and a nice experience, but surely practicing for that doesn’t take 4 solid weeks of school time? – It wouldn’t have been so unbelievable if they had also written the play, designed and made the scenery, props and costumes etc. as well, but they didn’t, the play was written by a specially commissioned writer!
Other than the play they appear to have done very little apart from help with the younger children’s sports day and sit around and chat. and to quote my Son ‘we had ICT and we were allowed to use the computers for whatever we wanted’. Well excuse me, but they can do that at home!
I sound like a right grump, after all they’ve worked hard, they’ve done their tests so don’t they deserve a bit of fun? Of course they do, but couldn’t they have fun in a more constructive, educational way? My Son and several of his friends have been bored. They are asking what the point of going to school for this half term is – and I honestly can’t give him a sensible answer apart form ‘its the law, so you have to’.
Perhaps its just our school. I do wonder why they couldn’t have organised some little projects for the kids to do, may be some research into things they’re interested in, to help get them used to working independently and organising their thoughts and time, it could have been made fun and interesting, yet still have had an educational purpose without feeling like ‘school work’. And they could have done this in between rehearsals for the play. These little projects could have involved going out on visits or doing something different.
So come on teachers, parents, anyone, – enlighten me – what is the point and why can’t schools make that half term more meaningful. Or perhaps your kids have done more interesting things with that last half term. In which case give me some ideas. I might share them with school so that my daughter isn’t in the same position in 2 years time.