Should I have hothoused her?

Unlike entry to Primary Schools, admission into Secondary Schools is based on meritocracy. PSLE results are used as key admission criteria. Discuss everything related to PSLE and selection of Secondary Schools here.

Should I have hothoused her?

Postby Hope n Peace » Fri Nov 23, 2012 6:38 am

Dd collected her PSLE slip yesterday and she cried. Her T-score is 10 points below the COP of her dream school. My heart is now very heavy, with many many knots. I am trying to untie them. To move on and to help her, I know I have to untie them quickly. But I need help. I hope that the experienced parents out there can share your views and thoughts.

Dd is someone who is not fantastic in her work, but above-average. Hubby and I have not sent her for tuition for the most part of her school-life, partly because we had not realized, until the last couple of years, that society has moved to a stage whereby tuition has become a necessity to excel, and partly because we wanted to protect her childhood.

Aside from this, we had also let dd play computer games and watch youtube/TV for what most parents would consider excessive hours - 1 to 2 hours a day during weekdays and more on weekends. This, after having done the practice papers/assessment books that I asked her to do.

The issue I am struggling with now, is whether I should have been a better parent and do what some parents of dd's friends have done. They have disallowed their children to play computer games, watch TV or take an active part in CCAs and their results as revealed yesterday turned out better than dd's.

Should I have hothoused her? I had tried to be more relaxed on her mainly because I was hothoused before by my mother and it really strained our relationship. Up till today, it is still strained as the bond just isn't there. Because of this, my philosophy for my kids has always been that building a bond with them is more important than anything else as it will give them life-long happiness.

Unfortunately, I am now unsure of my philosophy. I am wondering now whether it is too much of a trade-off - having a strong bond with them at the expense of achieving better results.  With my dd, I know I can't turn back the clock with respect to PSLE. But going forward, should I be stricter with her in terms of hours spent on work? Also, should I start hothousing my younger one who is just embarking on his primary school journey?

Sorry for this very long post. I needed to get this out of my system and I would really appreciate any insights on this. Right now, I feel like I have failed as a parent, that I have not done everything to enable her to compete with her peers. TIA

Hope n Peace
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Re: Should I have hothoused her?

Postby ngl2010 » Fri Nov 23, 2012 8:09 am

PSLE is just one exam in a lifetime while your bond with your DD is lifetime. In addition, hothousing does not necessarily guarantee good scores. Please don't feel like you have failed as a parent. You have done your best and your bond with your DD is much more important than PSLE. Now you need to be strong for your daughter. Cheer up!

ngl2010
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Re: Should I have hothoused her?

Postby BlueBells » Fri Nov 23, 2012 8:23 am

My DD didn't do as well as I would have like her to. But in all honesty, despite my little disappointment, her results is fair relative to the efforts that she has put in. She was so over the moon and contented with what she gets, and that happiness written all over her face is priceless.

We didn't send her for maths tuition, despite her bordering 50 during her P6 year, partly because we did not want to overload her, and partly because she resisted it. Do I regret not sending her for tuition? Not in the least bit. I felt she was tipping towards a breaking point somewhere, and I didn't want that to happen.

Dwell on the future, not the past. There will always be some after thoughts and what-ifs, but the sun still rises and all will be well. All the best!

BlueBells
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Re: Should I have hothoused her?

Postby Peony » Fri Nov 23, 2012 8:26 am

No. I'd rather have low score than a depressing childhood anytime.

DD met her targets - 26* - and can enrol in any school she wants. Like your DD, she is not brilliant nor gifted but above-average.

Our strategy has always been regular study and balance - rest, study & play - with the aim to keep ahead. We've monitored her progress closely every year and always analysed her results to plug her weak areas.

I'm thankful she achieved her results with a balanced and happy childhood. No way would she have achieved this with hothousing. Why? A happy child will do better than a stressed one. AND stress produces harmful hormones.

Peony
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Re: Should I have hothoused her?

Postby sammifan » Fri Nov 23, 2012 8:45 am

Dear Hope and Peace,

Your daughter may not be able to get into her dream school, but that is not the end of the world. She could be posted to a school with a lower COP, get into one of the better classes, be recognised and excel there. I know of some people who did not do well in PSLE, went to schools of their 3rd or 4th choice, but went on to do very well in the schools and never looked back.

I wish her all the best and hope she will be able to find good friends in her next school.

sammifan
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Re: Should I have hothoused her?

Postby Mawar » Fri Nov 23, 2012 9:09 am

Few years ago, my friend was like you. Her child was performing above average in school, and did not attend any academic classes outside school. The parents wanted to protect the childhood of their child.

When the PSLE results were released, there were some regrets. The child did not meet the COP of the dream school, and where most of the close friends got in.

The child is currently doing very well in secondary school. She is an all rounder. She has made lots of new friends.

Mawar
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Re: Should I have hothoused her?

Postby hercules » Fri Nov 23, 2012 1:33 pm

Most of the time, results have a high chance of being 'reversed' (in either way) during sec school time after pr school but there is a low possibility for a strong bond to be built if the base is not strong during the primary years.

So, the priority to me is to build bond instead of 'building' results if such results are only possible via hothousing kind.

Let nature takes its course with your kind guidance. With a strong bond built during primary years, it will benefit you and your child for life - this is priceless!

hercules
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Re: Should I have hothoused her?

Postby pecalis » Fri Nov 23, 2012 2:02 pm

2 yrs ago, my dd1 also did not meet the COP of her dream sch (abt 5 pts) I did not even put it as 1st choice for her. She only attended CL tuition. We were happy with her results but we knew it as not good even for her dream sch. I asked if she had preferred me to push her to study harder (which may help her gain those few points). Her answer was very quick - NO, I would hate you for that! She was able to go to a few IP schs but those schs were too far, so she got her 2nd choice, O level track. She continued to be independent and did well enough to get her 1st choice combination for Sec 3 next yr.

pecalis
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Re: Should I have hothoused her?

Postby kamom » Fri Nov 23, 2012 4:38 pm

Hope and Peace , I respect you for choosing to do things differently .

Like many have said, PSLE does not determine your dd's future and does not reflect on the kind of parent you are. I personally have good friends who did badly for PSLE, went to VITB then poly then NTU and now a much sought after professional. I have a cousin who can play computer games and study at the same time and still do well...it all boils down to an individual. Of course, I need not go on to scholar/s who aren't very wise.

I personally feel that PSLE is a very cruel system and in desperate need of a change. No where in this world segregate children at this age like the way our system does. Kids in other parts of the world do IB without sitting for PSLE.

The future is still very bright for your dd. Help her, guide her to discover her strength and see her soar :smile:

kamom
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Re: Should I have hothoused her?

Postby sleepy » Fri Nov 23, 2012 4:53 pm

Hope n Peace wrote: They have disallowed their children to play computer games, watch TV or take an active part in CCAs and their results as revealed yesterday turned out better than dd's.

Should I have hothoused her?



Even if your friends did all the above, I don't consider them hothousing their kids. I think hothousing means pushing them excessively beyond their scope and capablilties, which will certainly be very stressful for the kids.

However, children need to have clear guidelines & borders. I think it's absolutely fine to set guidelines like no computer games or excessive TV. As parents, we know our kids best and have to assess how much they are capable of taking on & help them prioritise. If they can't manage their time well, then TV and computer games are definitely the first 2 'luxuries' to go.

For kids with great time management skills, yes, they can take on more things like learning instruments or play an active part in CCA. Really depends on individual, case to case basis.

The above aside, I agreed with the earlier post that psle is just one of many exams. Look to the future. 加油!

sleepy
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