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The "Policy on Twins"
Old 05-21-2017, 09:21 AM
 
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Does anyone else's school have a "policy on twins" meaning they MUST be separated in kindergarten at all costs for fear of *gasp* having them feel more comfortable with starting school for the first time? Heaven forbid! Yes administrator "twin policy" creators they ARE individuals who can occupy the same space and have completely different interests and behaviors. But should school be a source of unnecessary emotional trauma? I thought we were supposed to be supportive of children not making it a source of greater anxiety than need be. My thoughts personally seeing what the "policy" does to other young twin students and as a mom of twins who will be starting kindergarten in two school years. Yes I have heard all the proponents views but as a mom and teacher I don't see the benefits outweighing the unnecessary emotional load it puts on these young boys and girls. Thank you for this vent...just had to get it out there. And I have heard staff in my district crow with pride about how they even break up triplets! Ummm yay for breaking up family ties? That is after all what school is all about!


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Old 05-21-2017, 09:34 AM
 
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At our school the parent generally decides with input from staff.. I had twins last year and it was no problem so Mom kept them together again in 1st. We have twins in K this year and mom chose to have them separate because one is an introvert and one is very extroverted. I think it's for the best too. I think it's totally a case by case thing. I do think the school should have the option to insist on separating them though.
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Old 05-21-2017, 10:16 AM
 
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We don't have a policy and typically permit multiples to stay together in K. It is generally suggested they be split up in 1st grade, though. Our thoughts on it as K teachers is that they have spent every second together since conception; it's time to branch out.

Quote:
Ummm yay for breaking up family ties?
This is not the purpose. Kids with differently aged siblings aren't in the same class and that's not seen as breaking up family ties. Family is at home, not school.

Sorry you're upset, but they will be fine! If this is a source of "emotional trauma" and is causing "anxiety," I think all the more reason to split them up, frankly.
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Old 05-21-2017, 10:28 AM
 
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We don't have such a policy and I am happy that we don't. As a K teacher, I have taught many sets of twins. Parents generally choose to keep them together for their 2 years in K. For grade one, we can recommend separating them, and we generally do. Parents have the final say, but by that point they usually agree to separate. especially girl/boy twins.
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State law
Old 05-21-2017, 10:51 AM
 
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I believe we have a state law stating that it is a parent's decision.


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We take it case by case
Old 05-21-2017, 10:56 AM
 
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I have had twins and even siblings in the same class before many times. In my personal experience, it has always worked out. It is kind of strange because at 1st I was VERY apprehensive about it. I can see splitting them up if they become behavior problems, competitive, or 1 is too dependent on the other. There are examples I can think of where siblings behaved better than they normally would w/o a sibling in the room. It was not what I expected, but siblings often are good for each other imo. When it first started being OK to put sibs in rooms here, I figured OMGoodness! They are going to fight and squabble. I dreaded it. It did not happen. Maybe I have just been fortunate.. A couple of times, I even had naughty kids w/ a sibling. Both times, the more grounded sibling was a good influence. Those 2 times, I was thankful for the grounded sibling who told the parents the truth too about certain things when the naughty 1 lied. The ones I jokingly refer to as "the naughty one" were kids who showed some pretty bad behavior in other classes when their sib was not w/ them. There are probably a lot of different experiences w/ sibs and culture may play a role in it too.
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Old 05-21-2017, 11:00 AM
 
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i don't think it matters what anyone says, you clearly have your mind made up. I've seen twins stay together and do well, I've seen twins who really should have been separated.

My friend has triplets and they only had 2 strands so 2 of them were always together. For personality reasons, they were always careful about who was together and who was separated.

I think it's important for parents to have input, but remember kids act differently at school than they do at home.
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Old 05-21-2017, 11:04 AM
 
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It was entirely up to the parent at my school--good parents know their kids best.

One of my favorite families had twins the mom kept them together K-2 then put them in different classes starting in 3rd grade. I had one in third and the other in fifth. Funny thing, I just got a nice note from them and both boys will be attending the same college (my alma mater, UCLA) but with very different majors. Their wonderful parents raised unique and caring brothers.

Another favorite family had triplets. They, too, started together but the fabulous and brilliant mother split them differently. In 5th grade I had the more independent one and 2 were kept together for a last year before middle school.

I find twins/triplets parents are remarkably insightful in knowing what's best for their kids.
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family
Old 05-21-2017, 11:06 AM
 
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I've taught twins, siblings, cousins, and uncle and nephew, at the same time. What I have observed is that the parents are the ones who are anxious. For the most part, kids who are well adjusted can function in another class and develop their own identity and not be constantly "watched" by their sibling. For others, they need the balance of having their sibling even if they don't really interact in class. I believe that splitting up siblings is a case by case situation. I've also taught one twin while the other was in a different class. Again, the parent made some comparisons between myself and the other teacher, but we were both equally strong teachers and had our specific ways of teaching or homework to give. For example, mom would complain if one student got her progress report and the other didn't. Well if a teacher is absent, you have to wait until he/she is back to get it. It's not that serious! Mom got over it and both of her children did well.

To answer your question, we don't have a twin policy. Honestly kids are resilient and if they only know school as going to different classes (like most other siblings), they will survive. They will still be twins and still have the same bond.
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Case by case
Old 05-21-2017, 11:32 AM
 
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Its always been up to the parents. At my previous school, parents usually chose to separate. I've had sets of twins and triplets separated and it was fine. Last year, I moved to a tiny school so I was the only teacher in teaching the grade and I had twins together and they were fine. There are triplets altogether in another gradelevel this year and they seem fine as well. I think it doesn't make a big difference either way.


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My experience
Old 05-21-2017, 12:40 PM
 
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I've had twins together and separately in the older grades. It worked out. As a twin, we were together for a few years as we were in a very small school. When we were separated, it was fine. My twin granddaughters are in pre-k. Their parents requested they be separated, as they were too close and tended to not let others be their friends. It has worked out well for them. The quieter of the two has really blossomed! And the more outgoing one has had to learn to let others be the leaders. They will be separated in kindergarten next year, too. I think it depends on the situation. I know in our district, it is done with parental input.
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twins
Old 05-21-2017, 01:03 PM
 
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Our school used to let the parents decide. I've had twins together and twins separated - at the parents' request.

Now it's different. Now we're "performance based", so it's wherever the twins' scores fall. This year I had a set of twins and the mom wanted them separated. The P explained that they have to be together since they both scored there. It was a mistake. They fought all year.
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Old 05-21-2017, 01:24 PM
 
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It's up to the parents in my district. I've had twins who were together and twins who had been separated. I see no difference in terms of behavior or academics. None of my split up twins had "emotional trauma" from being in different classes. What if two best friends get put in different classes? Is that traumatizing as well?
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Old 05-21-2017, 01:31 PM
 
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We've done both and I think a case could be made for both kids depending upon the situation and the kids. I'll echo a PP's comment: you seem to have had your mind made up (and certainly this is a vent board, so complain away) but I'm curious about the personal situation that lead to this post. (I'm kinda nosy, sorry.) Is this your own kids?
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Old 05-21-2017, 01:33 PM
 
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In my experience, not every case just the ones I've dealt with, separation has been the best thing ever. It's allowed each child to blossom and held back parent comparison. In my district we separate, unless the parent makes a big deal out of it. The they stay together.
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Old 05-21-2017, 02:17 PM
 
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My distinct doesn't have a strict policy, and I like that. I really do believe each case is individual and the benefits and disadvantage will be different for different kids.

If it were my own kids, I would likely want to start them together, both because I remember being nervous starting K, and because it limits hastle for the parents (same field trips, same homework, etc.)

I would split them if one was dominating the other socially or if one was much stronger academically and I didn't want the lower one to suffer from the constant comparison.
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Old 05-21-2017, 02:45 PM
 
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My district's policy is that it's the parents decision. I cannot imagine why a principal or district would care. If it becomes an issue, why not just address it when it happens.
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Old 05-21-2017, 03:06 PM
 
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In our school, parents can pick their kids' teacher so it's totally up to the parent.
We have one teacher with a set of twins that she is going to strongly recommend be separated next year. The sister has been told to keep her brother on task and it is quite a burden on the child since the brother is a handful.
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My twins
Old 05-21-2017, 03:09 PM
 
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I have twins. They were in the same Kindergarten in order to become comfortable and familiar with a school setting as I was a stay at home mom. This was a school decision. When they moved up to 1st grade we had them separated and it was awful for one of them. They were then placed in a gifted program and were in the same or similar classes until graduation.

I'd have a problem with the school deciding the emotional state of my personal kids without my input.
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Old 05-21-2017, 03:16 PM
 
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I agree that the parents always seem to have an issue with it more than the children. We had a father fight us one year about not separating his twin boys. The one was always the caretaker for the other one. It really wasn't fair to the caretaker. Dad finally relented and then when the boys really blossomed dad bragged about how he made the decision based on his wisdom.

When challenged with issues I always ask myself if I'm raising a child or raising a child to be an adult. Perhaps you could ask yourself if you are raising twins or two separate children? Will keeping them together help them grow in their own individual way or will it keep them "the twins"?
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Old 05-21-2017, 03:35 PM
 
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I agree it needs to be case by case.

However one thing that has not come up in the conversation is the thought of planning for parents. As one poster mentioned, when twins are split, there are always some comparisons.

One parent I had (twins split) really struggled with keeping track of different classrooms and teachers and expectations and it caused her stress. Then the kids were stressed. Once the kids were placed together again...much easier for the family.

I would love to know if twins together or separated do better depending on the type of twins. (Identical, fraternal, boy/girl...)

And those with triplets...can't believe how many there are. I hate that I have a hard time telling the identical twins apart, I can't imagine triplets.

My 2 cents...
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Depends
Old 05-21-2017, 03:35 PM
 
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At my first school, multiples were always separated. At my present school they recommend it but the parent has the last word.
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Twins Informal Survey
Old 05-21-2017, 04:03 PM
 
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I have twin grandchildren. I asked around to any parent or grand-parent of twins what they decided and why. The advice I heard reflected the posts on this thread.

The advice that was most interesting was that of the mother of five children, one with special needs and the youngest were the twins. She was a laid-back, experienced mom, and went with the school's recommendation to separate them in first grade after keeping them together in kindergarten. She told me that after first and second grades in separate classes she asked for them to be placed together for the remainder of their grade-school years. Her reason? It was too complicated to keep up with the different requirements for each class as homework increased. This was a near 'Supermom'; she was room mother for two of her children the year that she was pregnant with the twins. She said she just got tired of the hassle on top of keeping up with her older children. She couldn't figure out why it was harder to keep up with two classes in the same grade, than it was to keep up with different grades, but she said that was what she experienced.

If schools think that separating twins is a good thing, maybe they could identify the teachers who team teach or teach most similarly as the classes for separating twins.
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Old 05-21-2017, 04:26 PM
 
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Our school has no such policy, but I think it's a pretty ridiculous one. If young twins need to rely on each other for emotional support, so what? I've worked with twins in the same classroom at least three times (including this year) and the twins always do their own thing, in fact seek out opportunities to be themselves apart from the other. This year my parents are relieved about not having to contend with homework, projects and activities from two different teachers.
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Old 05-21-2017, 05:17 PM
 
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To me, this is the so what, caretakers as one poster mentioned and I alluded to. The cases I've had the kids have had similar dynamics one taking the leadership/caretaker role while the other takes the follower/cared for role.

It's unfair to the caretaker to have to watch out for their sibling instead of having the opportunity to branch out and blossom.

It is also unfair to the one being taken care of because they are often unaware of their own strengths because they never get to do anything for themselves. The caretaker always swoops in to save the day subconsciously sending the message that the child can't do it.

P.S. Found this article that sums things up pretty well.

http://www.thetwincoach.com/2012/09/...-wish.html?m=1

Out of seven sets I've had recently. 5 started out together and struggled. 4 were separated the year after me and blossomed, 1 was kept together one more year and sank until finally 2 years later were separated and immediately took off socially and academically. The other two were separated from day 1 and had no problems. They played together at recess and looked out for one another, but each had their own group of friends and their own safe space to be individuals instead of always being so and so's twin.

As to comparisons, I meant of the kids not the teachers. When they're together, in my experience, the parents tend to compare them more. You hear more of Johnny is only reading 15 sight words where Joey is reading 30. Separated they tend to view each child on their own merits. Johnny is reading 15 sight words, bus knows his basic facts up to 20. It so much easier to see that when they aren't seeing Johnny's work right next to Joey's at open house or on report cards.

Now from a teacher's perspective, it's easier to have them together so that I'm not being compared to Mrs. Jones down the hall. However, at the end of the day it's not about what's easier for me or what's easier for the parent, it's about what's better for the kid.

Again, this is only what I've experienced. I'm sure there are plenty of cases where it is better that they stay together.

One last note, in regards to teachers making decisions without parental input. It happens every day, and it also has to be taken into account that the decisions the teacher is making involve the child's personality, temperament, and needs in the school environment which are very different to their needs in the home environment. How many times have you had a parent say "but at home he doesn't tie his shoes, dress himself, like reading, etc." or "at home he's always reading, he loves art, is quiet and shy, etc."?

Home and school are often apples and oranges.

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Old 05-21-2017, 05:55 PM
 
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To Cruxian :

No my own children as I have already mentioned are two years away from school. These are others, a set of boys who always get the behind the back lunchroom talk by the K teachers about how they cry all the time why don't the parents just put them on meds blab blab. Or how about you let them say hi to one another during the day? Yep this group uses the "oh they will be fine" garbage all the time... Like the other day a few of them just had to get outside for their personal sanity....windy and 45 degrees and only one or two kids with coats most wearing shorts...oh they'll be fine!
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Old 05-21-2017, 06:44 PM
 
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Ah, so this goes beyond the question of keep together or separate.
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Old 05-21-2017, 06:56 PM
 
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momysubs, how is parents not sending their kids dressed appropriately for the weather the teacher's fault? Teachers take kids out in all kinds of weather and it's not always pleasant - but kids need time to play! I'm sorry you dislike teachers so much. It's unusual to find that on a teacher support board.
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Old 05-21-2017, 07:00 PM
 
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Zia,

Do parents generally have to choose how much time to spend in each classroom to celebrate the birthday of two siblings with different ages? Do they need to choose which field trip to go on? Because naturally here the K classes go to different places on the same days (one will go to the farm, one will go to the mueseum, one the zoo, etc.). Maybe it is just too hard for so many small children to go to the same place all at once? No, I call that idiocy. Or which classroom do we choose to be a parent helper in during centers time? So you see, it goes beyond the just the "minimal" prospect of separation. It is me or my husband having to choose which of our young kindergartners gets to have us there. Would that be fair to consistently ask of siblings of different ages? Yes, my children spent their moments together, from three months in NICU (minus one month when one came home before the other) to when I take them to preschool learning activities with peers and even though I have been doing it since they were two, the anxiety is super high when one is away or out of the room doing something else. I am sure it is bad and wrong and must be corrected immediately with the most disconnective measures because afterall we live in a disconnected society. It may not be true everywhere, but where I come from it is unheard of and almost unacceptable to not have a daycare, preschool, nanny, or sitter minding your child most of the time before they even get to school. I feel like I am from another planet when I have to "explain" that I have chosen to "homeschool" preschool rather than send them off. Yes, I bring them to storytimes and academic enrichment activities with peers but generally I teach them their letters, numbers, writing, shapes, calendar, etc. But yes they are with me and are together. This will not only be their first school experience away from home but their first time away from each other as well. I think sometimes adults don't really understand that something percieved as "no big deal" and "they'll get over it" can be scary and daunting to a small child just starting out in kindergarten...a place where there are still potty accidents and bites taken from crayons... I may be a sub but I still get to see what goes on...the K teachers always seem to request me the most, even though my certification is for the adolescent group...why that is I don't know, but I do love to get that opportunity. But to say that family and school are completely separate entities...well...I would think that would be the opposite of what a healthy working community looks like, don't you think? But that is just my opinion.
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Old 05-21-2017, 07:16 PM
 
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seenthelight:

It is an apathetic mentality that I really dislike...not the way to be when working with small children. I get that working in K can make some teachers feel burned out, but seriously, they could take a vacation, get a sub, or just find another position. It's no fair to take that harmful frustration out on the kids. Did you say you had twins yourself? I forget. Yes, home and school can be apples and oranges in lack of communication and involvement from either or both sides, and therein lies the problem. Then you hear the staff room gossip about this parent or that, this difficult child and why or why isn't he or she on meds x, y, and z??? I get it. There are on average of 20 kids to manage at one time and well you just have to get through lessons a, b, and c in the era of common core and i-ready. But the world is fluid, not a network of little institutional boxes. People, places, and ideas are interconnected. Schools exist in communities that support them. At least ideally. That is why I sub. I love teaching but at the same time, I am there to support young learners, especially those who struggle. I guess that is why it is so hurtful to see apathy and lack of caring in a place where the youngest and most vunerable students are needing the highest degree of attention and care.

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Old 05-21-2017, 07:26 PM
 
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Ok, I'm confused. Where did apathy come in to play? If your insinuating that I'm apathetic to my kids, then I'll politely bow out of this conversation as there seems to be a lot more going on here than the original post, and as a PP mentioned it would appear your mind is made up on the matter.
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Old 05-21-2017, 07:33 PM
 
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Quote:
Do parents generally have to choose how much time to spend in each classroom to celebrate the birthday of two siblings with different ages?
If the celebrations are at the same time, yes. At my school, teachers are happy to stagger times to accommodate.


Quote:
Do they need to choose which field trip to go on? Because naturally here the K classes go to different places on the same days (one will go to the farm, one will go to the mueseum, one the zoo, etc.). Maybe it is just too hard for so many small children to go to the same place all at once? No, I call that idiocy.
I can only speak from my experience, but grade levels at my school all go on the same field trips. I will say, I have had parents of a K and a 4th grader and each kid had a field trip planned the same day. So yes, sometimes hard choices need to be made.

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Or which classroom do we choose to be a parent helper in during centers time?
Tuesdays with Sally's class, Thursdays with Joey's class.
Quote:
to when I take them to preschool learning activities with peers and even though I have been doing it since they were two, the anxiety is super high when one is away or out of the room doing something else.
As a parent and as a teacher, this would concern me.

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I am sure it is bad and wrong and must be corrected immediately with the most disconnective measures because afterall we live in a disconnected society. It may not be true everywhere, but where I come from it is unheard of and almost unacceptable to not have a daycare, preschool, nanny, or sitter minding your child most of the time before they even get to school. I feel like I am from another planet when I have to "explain" that I have chosen to "homeschool" preschool rather than send them off. Yes, I bring them to storytimes and academic enrichment activities with peers but generally I teach them their letters, numbers, writing, shapes, calendar, etc. But yes they are with me and are together.
I did the same when I was a SAHM. No shade from me on this.


Quote:
This will not only be their first school experience away from home but their first time away from each other as well. I think sometimes adults don't really understand that something percieved as "no big deal" and "they'll get over it" can be scary and daunting to a small child just starting out in kindergarten...a place where there are still potty accidents and bites taken from crayons...
I am a very nurturing K teacher and I know how intimidating the first days of K can be for kiddos.

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But to say that family and school are completely separate entities...well...I would think that would be the opposite of what a healthy working community looks like, don't you think? But that is just my opinion.
I don't think having multiples in different classes is ripping families apart.

You're very angry and I am sorry this distresses you so much. I'm offering my view as a K teacher and trying to explain why teachers make certain decisions. I hoped to give you a different perspective. You have your two Kindergartners....I have more than 200 hundred Kindergartners behind me. I was truly trying to help; I had no intention of riling you up.
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I once had a long-term sub job
Old 05-21-2017, 11:45 PM
 
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in a class of 32 fourth graders, which included one set of quadruplets, two sets of twins, and four sets of first cousins!! Now THAT was a fun class. No real problems, though.
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Old 05-22-2017, 02:57 AM
 
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Thanks so much for explaining your concerns. I'm jumping in with advice because that's how I roll. On a practical level, you seem very concerned about the kiddos starting kinder without being in the same class. Is is possible that some of your anxiety is rubbing off on them? DD was very excited about starting kindergarten and I wouldn't have seen it as tearing apart of family bonds or anything like that. I do worry when you write that they are anxious when apart from each other. TBH at that point as a parent (and educator) I'd begin advocating for separate classes because they should be able to operate together or apart without an issue.
I do have a follow up question: you mention teachers taking kids outside in 45 degree weather with many kids in shorts and only a couple of coats (as a way of criticizing the teachers who should have kept them inside). Um, what about the parents?? Why are kids at school in 45 degree weather without long pants at least??? Where are their coats? We have a policy as a school to take kids outside unless temps drop below 32 degrees and I feel like that's a bit wimpy because I know many schools go out in colder weather.
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Old 05-22-2017, 03:24 AM
 
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No policy, the parent usually decides. I have one twin in my class and the parents wanted them separated because their behaviour is terrible and worse if they are together. Thank heavens for those parents!

I think keeping them in the same grade, particularly at the K level eases parent anxiety and has nothing really to do with the kids.

IMO they should be separated, if possible. I don't see how being with anyone 24 hours a day can be a good thing.
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CSUF Twin Center Studies
Old 05-22-2017, 06:51 AM
 
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Cal State Fullerton in CA has done extensive twin research. Checkout their website.
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Twins
Old 05-22-2017, 07:53 AM
 
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At our school they are generally together for kinder. They are often separated in first and second but not always. We once had boy/girl twins that stayed together through third grade. We recommended they be separated in fourth grade because the boy was so dependent on his sister, he could barely function. They needed to find their own identities at that point. Which I think is the actual point. I think it really depends on the parents and the dynamics on those siblings. I have always been struck by the number of kids that are anxious and then you meet the parents and find out why. Parents often, even without meaning to, pass their own anxieties on to their children. It just seems to me that if you present to the twins that they will be fine without each other for a few hours each day, that is the message they receive and they will be. If you are nervous and anxious then they will be too. That's just my two cents, though.
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Old 05-22-2017, 12:56 PM
 
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I have lurked for years but had to actually create an account to comment on this one. I have twins (b/g) who will be starting k4 in the fall. We were strongly advised (pestered) by our former daycare director to split them up. She knew best she said. I told her "Thank you for your input but no thanks." I am keeping mine together until they wish to be separated or until they become a behavior problem together. I think that no one quite understands the twin life unless you are a twin or have twins. I like having them together because it's easier for me to keep up with homework, projects, etc. I think the parent should have the final say.
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Old 05-22-2017, 03:03 PM
 
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Our policy is to talk to the parents and make the decision together. Usually they stay together for K, then other decisions are made as necessary as they move up the grades. We had one set of twin boys that we refused to put in the same class after K - each was a big behaviour issue on his own, together they were an unstoppable force of nature. Other sets are sometimes together, sometimes apart.

I think,mommysub, you need to do some more investigation into this, and thinking about why this upsets you so much and why you are so angry about the teaching professional in this respect. Your children will pick up on your anxiety about this issue and it will make them anxious. And that isn't fair or fun for anybody.
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I have twins.
Old 05-22-2017, 03:40 PM
 
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I have identical twin boys, and we have separated them since K. Best decision we made. I can't imagine them being in the same class. Of course, they weren't super emotional kids, so maybe that's it. Their brother was right next door, they saw each other at recess and lunch. Not a big deal.
We would go to both parties - spend some time at one, some at another - the kids completely understood. I helped in both classes - divided my time as I could. It did not rip our family apart. In fact, I think it strengthened our family bond, because our children realized that the world did not revolve aroudn them. I also had a child in the next grade up, so would often have to bounce around to 3 classrooms on celebration days, with an infant or toddler in tow (I have 4 children), especially when my husband was travelling or deployed.
Now they're in middle school, and have several classes together. Those classes are a nightmare! The competition is ridiculous.
I tend to think it's better to separate twins because it gives them a better sense of being an individual. Many times twins are treated as a unit (dressed the same, same activities, same friends, same everything), and they struggle with their own sense of self. Being separted allows both to be individuals, and be treated as such.
It's not going to scar them for life if they are separated.
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Slightly Different Perspective
Old 05-22-2017, 05:18 PM
 
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I teach older kids (high school), so I may see things from a slightly different vantage point.

I taught identical twin brothers once in the same Sophomore English section. It was brutal. They had their own friends by this point and didn't sit together, so when they were in their seats it was fine. But it was a uniform code school, and if one walked up to me and asked me something specific about his work, I'd have to say, "Sorry... which one are you?" before I could answer. It was embarrassing.

I had another set of twins, but this time they were in two different sections (both in my class, just different sections/times of day). Their mom was a nightmare. And she was an Assistant Principal with a neighboring school district so should have known better. If both brothers got exactly the same mark, she'd accuse the teachers involved of "pigeon holing" them and not treating them like individuals. But if one got a significantly higher mark than the other, she'd go after the teacher who gave the lower mark and demand an explanation, and she'd be content to compare the assessment her other son was receiving as a point of reference. So if they were both doing the same, it was evidence of "pigeon holing," and if one did worse than the other, it was automatically evidence of bad teaching on the part of the teacher who gave the lower mark. You couldn't win for losing.

As for those who say the parents should make the call on whether they are kept together or separated, that's fine IF it's an environment in which parents normally are invited to have a say over class placement. In my sons' elementary school, parents are told blatantly that we can't pick our kids' teachers or have their class placements changed. In such a case, I don't see why the parents of twins would have any say at all as to whether their kids were kept in the same class or not. However, if it's a school where parents are invited to make requests in terms of placement, then I suppose that's different. I'd just hate to think twins would be treated as a "special case" while every other family is told to hold its nose and simply live with the class placement as determined by the staff.
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parents' decission
Old 05-23-2017, 05:01 AM
 
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It's always been the parents' decision in my teaching experience.
I'm for that because the parents responsible for their own decision!

I've taught twins in my room with very few problems-lower level elementary. There were a few times when one twin would be overly concerned with the learning/behavior of the other twin. I would usually make the seating arrangement where they would not be visually able to "check on each other" during independent work.

My grade level did have triplets that the parents chose to separate because each child was on a different level, with 2 of the triplets having diagnosed learning disabilities. They wanted each child to feel at ease in blossoming as a learner without their siblings being aware of some of their struggles. I thought the parents made a very wise decision!

.
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Old 05-24-2017, 01:06 PM
 
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Our school does not have a policy on twins. I think we take the parents' wishes into account; they get what they want for the most part. However, sometimes scheduling doesn't allow for that.

I think I have had about ten sets of twins. Two or three were in the same class. This year, I was only supposed to have one twin, but I ended up having both because mom wanted them together. (They had had horrible issues---not their fault.)

The funniest thing that happened with twins was when we had a supply giveaway to start the year. I didn't know there were twins; I saw one girl get supplies, then she came back to get more. I thought she was taking two sets but didn't say anything because the purpose of the giveaway was to help the kids, and I didn't begrudge them a set of supplies if they need them that badly. Turned out---the second girl was the twin of the first. We still laugh about that.
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Old 05-24-2017, 06:01 PM
 
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I'm a mom of twins and I have taught many, many sets of twins in kindergarten over the years. We let the family decide.

Quote:
It's unfair to the caretaker to have to watch out for their sibling instead of having the opportunity to branch out and blossom.

It is also unfair to the one being taken care of because they are often unaware of their own strengths because they never get to do anything for themselves. The caretaker always swoops in to save the day subconsciously sending the message that the child can't do it.
My twins are 2 students out of 24 (or more). There is plenty of space to branch out and blossom while still occupying the same classroom. I have never seen the caretaker issue in the classroom. There is often a caretaker--it just doesn't really come into the classroom.

I definitely think the families should make the decision of whether to place twins in the same class or not.
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Old 05-29-2017, 03:36 PM
 
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Abbigail,

I totally agree...sometimes it can be a good thing to separate if they have very different needs but I am glad that the parent gets to make that choice!
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Old 05-29-2017, 03:43 PM
 
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ICrazyTeach

Super refreshing to hear! I agree it should totally be up to the families and not the school. A friend of mine who I went to school with has fraternal girls and her district let the family choose. They decided to keep the girls together for that first year (they did not go to a formal preschool beforehand either) and it worked out wonderfully.
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Old 05-29-2017, 03:54 PM
 
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EllyTeaches,

I love that story! And I am glad your school is receptive to parents. I haven't spoken to the principal yet about my boys but maybe if I gently put the bug in her ear?
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Old 05-29-2017, 04:21 PM
 
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Angelo,

Thank you for your perspective. I totally agree that high school is a completely different animal! My only concern is that first school experience away from home...I guess if I could have had even one ally to ride the bus with me maybe I wouldn't have had to give a kid a black eye for biting me! . But they will have the bus ride at least! I have seen plenty of flexibility in kindergarten for individual children. Example being a boy in an inclusion class whose mother moved him to another class halfway though the year because he said he didn't like the teacher. Well that teacher was more of a support than the next who was not ready for his behaviors. The flexibility is there when they choose to use it.
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Old 05-29-2017, 04:32 PM
 
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MissAgnes,

Thank you for your perspective. You sound like a wonderful mom!
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Old 05-29-2017, 04:51 PM
 
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Tiamat,

Thank you for your perspective. I am glad there is that ability for parents to make a choice at your school. Can you imagine being told that you have no choice in your child's education? I guess that is why I posted in the vent thread. It makes me angry as a parent AND a professional that this dialogue never happens because there is no choice to be had. In what other cases will the dialogue be closed to me as a parent? I have already seen it as a professional in all areas of the school. Yes it is frustrating which is why I am "venting" my feelings here. In the real world I have the most political of poker faces which I am trying to maintain in order to bridge a way to having a constructive discussion about my children's futures. You are so right about the need to keep a calm exterior. I already know that even though I will have the biggest smiles as my kids leave on the bus on that first day, as soon as that bus is out of site I will be unleashing the tears!
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:00 PM
 
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Teamtwins,

I completely agree! No matter how anyone looks at it there is a bond there that cannot be ignored. A big first transiting like starting school is not the time for ripping that bond apart.
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:11 PM
 
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Cruxian,

Glad that's how you roll! Thank you for playing devil's advocate to my vent. Nicely done. That is what this vent thread is all about afterall... And as teachers I think if 90% of the class is dressed in summer stuff and it suddenly and unpredictably starts to snow...wellll...you have the degree....
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:32 PM
 
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CatLove,

Glad your school has the option. Honestly it is not my anxiety. I would be happy to not have to think about it. If it wasn't brought to my attention when I do try to separate them myself at various preschool and community activities but yes unfortunately they get anxious when apart. Believe me I am trying to prepare them in the best way I can. Would it be so easy if this wasn't an issue at all? Absolutely! If the whole "twin thing" wasn't there...then it would just be the getting used to school. Yeah the crying and whining "where's so and so" drives me nuts. And yeah I am trying to do my best to change that pattern before starting the milestone of school. But what if I can't? Will that hold them back while being in separate rooms if that's all they do at school is worry about where their brother is all day and cry?
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:33 PM
 
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Teabreak

Agreed. Parent input should at least be considered!
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:38 PM
 
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Clarity,

You rock!!!
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:42 PM
 
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Lady Teacher,

I am glad your school allows for them to be together for kindergarten. That would be my only wish really. They already struggle with being apart...it would be much easier if that wasn't an issue and it was merely just the kindergarten transition.
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:44 PM
 
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Booklady57,

I wish we had that!
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:55 PM
 
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Zia,

I appreciate your view. Thank you for trying to introduce the benefits of separation into my vent. Yes I have been a teacher and tutor for many years also. I have taught and tutored from pre-k to grade 12. Scary seeing some of my former preschoolers become high school seniors. Yes anxiety is normal in kids. Should it be lessened? Perhaps. But that is my professional and parental opinion. Not everyone shares that opinion and that is how it is. Computerized testing in kindergarten would have once been laughable but now...not so much!
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:57 PM
 
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Pausebutton

Refreshing to hear and I wish we were in your district!
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Old 05-29-2017, 06:46 PM
 
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amiga13,

Your school sounds like a great place, and you sound like a wonderful teacher! I would really just love to be able to work with my children's teachers in that same way to find the best possible way to meet their needs.
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Old 05-29-2017, 06:55 PM
 
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learnforever,

Ah yes, Dr. Nancy Segal's research...I briefly entertained the idea of bringing it up in future conversations with our own adminstration...
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Old 06-18-2017, 04:30 PM
 
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My boys are Irish Twins, 10.5 months apart. Both have summer birthdays, and for about 7 weeks are the same age. Both were eligible to start school the same year.
I never taught where they attended school.
When they started kindergarten I was asked what I preferred. I separated them and both flourished. We moved between kinder and first grade and I was asked again what our preference was. They never had classes together until 2 or 3 in high school. Both graduated with honors, had mutual friends and separate. They both played baseball on the same team, but went separate ways for other sports.

This year our school had 3 sets of twins in second grade; all were separated and parents were not consulted.
I did teach third grade and had a set of identicals, both in my room. They both just graduated in the top 10 of their rather good sized senior class.

I think it should be decided on an individual basis every time.
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Old 07-23-2017, 10:30 AM
 
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Our policy is parents choice. I've had one twin in my class as well as a set of twins.
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