Small boys, rough play and being kept in at playtime...

(169 Posts)
Pantone363 Tue 11-Jun-13 23:16:10

Ok I want honest opinions (OP you are a twat and in the wrong are fine grin).

I had a phone call after school today from DS teacher regarding an incident yesterday.

DS and some other children were playing tag (although more likely the grab each others coats swinging them round kind of tag). Some girls were playing too. DS caught one girl and pushed/pulled her to the ground (there's no evidence today she wasn't playing along doing the same thing to the boys). The girl then says that DS and 3 other boys kicked her whilst she was on the floor. DS admits pulling her to the ground but says he didn't kick her.

All 4 boys have lost their lunchtimes today and tomorrow and then breaktime for the next two days.

I have a few problems with this

1. She was playing along fine, if it was my DD I'd be telling her not to play tag with the boys if she can't suck it up if they get a bit rough.

2. DS swears blind he didn't kick her

3. Nobody else saw the kicking, theres no evidence other than this girls report to her mother.

4. Where were the playground staff?

5. I can't see that keeping 4 boisterous 5 yr old boys in all day is going to help anyone.

I've made DS write the girl a card saying sorry for pulling her over.

Am I being a job for thinking this is poorly handled and just point the finger at the rough naughty boys?

5madthings Wed 12-Jun-13 00:06:49

Yep ds4 is the same age and he would know this behaviour is not OK.

Tbh I don't like the implication the girl is lying, why would she? What does she gain from it?

pictish Wed 12-Jun-13 00:15:39

And I do have to add...when you say he'd be in a heap of trouble if he'd kicked...
I don't think pushing people onto the ground is any better. Really. The ground is hard.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 12-Jun-13 00:16:07

Agree with the school. Boys should not be allowed or encouraged to play rough.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 12-Jun-13 00:17:44

I also don't like the implication that the girl is lying. This sort of thing just feeds into the whole victim blaming culture from now until....whenever.

5madthings Wed 12-Jun-13 00:20:39

I think saying kids should 'suck it up' if they dont like rough play is shots as well, I mean where do you draw the line with that? When would a child not have to suck it up?

Children need to learn boundaries and what is and isn't acceptable, rough play is not acceptable and personal boundaries esp need to be learn and understood by children. They need to know that they can end up hurting each other and that is not OK. And if another child says 'enough' or 'I don't like this' or 'stop/no' then they stop.

Pushing, hitting, kicking etc are not OK.

5madthings Wed 12-Jun-13 00:22:13

Yep I agree sabrina I don't like victim blaming. You get the same with bullying... Is the victim should 'toughen up' etc,'its not OK.

olgaga Wed 12-Jun-13 00:26:55

Sounds like the school have done absolutely the right thing. Children cannot expect to push/pull other children to the ground then give them a kicking.

If your DS was involved in this group, he should be punished too.

Think of it as a learning experience, instead of getting on your high horse about the "innocence" of casual brutality.

pictish Wed 12-Jun-13 00:28:52

Argue about it all you like but generally boys do play rougher than girls, if they want to join in knowing that, then they should be told to suck it up.

I do not agree with that. That sort of stuff is for your family. Not for children who just happen to have been put in the same primary as your son.
Why the hell should they 'suck it up'?
She wanted to play tag ffs.

My 3 kids have all played tag and I cannot think of an incident where any of them have been pushed and kicked as a matter of course.
They do not attend a school for gentle children.

The rough lads don't get to set the bar ok?

5madthings Wed 12-Jun-13 00:37:06

Agree pictish

And i hate this 'boys will be boys attitude' essentially sanctioning bad behaviour.

pictish Wed 12-Jun-13 00:42:53

Me too. It blows.

Pantone363 Wed 12-Jun-13 00:50:24

I've taken all of your comments on board and perhaps won't go to school full of steam and some choice words.

It seems I had no idea of the different attitudes to rough playing etc.

In my opinion you get children from all ends of the scale. Gentle boys to boys who genuinely enjoy rough play. DS enjoys rough play. I'm not talking about punching each other in the face but he would rather be rolling around wrestling with other children who enjoy it than playing on the slide etc. the girl in this situation presumed she would enjoy it and ended up hurt. As I said above DS has written her a letter to say sorry for hurting her and I will put a ban on any physical play at school.

Pantone363 Wed 12-Jun-13 00:52:05

It's simple to say "it was just a game of tag" but I don't think at 5 they sit down and agree rules beforehand! One boy starts chasing each other and then another joins in and then another.

They're not touching each other on the shoulder and shouting tag!

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 12-Jun-13 01:04:57

I'm possibly on the opposing side to you, OP, as my 5 yr old DD is often on the wrong side of boys in her class getting carried away with rough play... which is why I agree with the school.

I have a slightly older rough playing son too...and I equally agree with the school when they clamp down on his behaviour. It's the right thong to do.

olgaga Wed 12-Jun-13 01:53:04

Well done OP for your response.

DD had nightmarish stuff at her primary school, boys shoulder-barging out of the blue etc.

Rough play simply has no place in a school playground. It would be impossible to prevent daily serious injuries in most schools if it was allowed.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Wed 12-Jun-13 08:32:12

It sounds as though the boys turned on the girl to me. Why else were 4 of them flooring her and kicking her. Pantone you said * the girl in this situation presumed she would enjoy it and ended up hurt* Of course she presumed she'd enjoy it....they were having a laugh weren't they? Running and playing rough is appealing to some girls but NO child of ANY sex would appreciate being pushed over and kicked I sense you're still of the mind that she shouldn't have joined in and that the boys were just indulging in natural "boy play" which is bollocks.

Iloveshowandtell Wed 12-Jun-13 08:34:36

Agree with Pictish

Chandon Wed 12-Jun-13 08:37:02

I think you sound barmy with your demands for "evidence".

Boys should not be allowed to play rough, and hurt others, just because they are boys.

I thinkthe school did the right thing ( and I am a mother of boys!)

Hullygully Wed 12-Jun-13 08:41:49

I understand that you feel cross on your ds' behalf, because he is enjoying himself and this kind of play suits him AND he swears he didn't kick...

But schools can't possibly permit this kind of "play" because they can't manage it. Other children get caught up in it, it encourages a physical culture that really schools need t discourage and sends the message that it's ok to grab, push and pull, when really schools need to teach that it isn't.

And at what age do schools stop it? 6? 7? At what point to they say, no more grabbing boys?

Panzee Wed 12-Jun-13 09:21:19

Just as an aside to rough play at school: I let children play rough but only under my close supervision (and only on the grass!) and I can help them with safer holds, nothing round the head, I can intervene if someone looks like they've had enough, make sure people stop if asked, etc. And absolutely no kicking! It tends to be only six or seven boys (no girls have ever come near!) that do it.

Pantone363 Wed 12-Jun-13 09:28:09

I've spoken to both DS and his teacher today. DS has reiterated again that he didn't kick and previous to this the girl was also involved in pulling/pushing the boys when she was catching them.

His teacher has again told DS that there is a complete blanket ban on any physical play even if he thinks the other child wants to play that kind of game.

I knew that they are not allowed to play fight etc but wasn't aware that any wrestling, rolling around games etc are banned. I suppose that in a school environment it would be difficult to manage a lot of children playing this kind of game.

I think there is a tendency to think that this kind of play must be coming from a naughty bullying mindset when often it is played between friends without any nastiness.

claraschu Wed 12-Jun-13 09:36:32

I agree with you about not keeping kids in from outdoor play as a punishment. I think running around is just as necessary (maybe more necessary) as literacy or anything else.

I also think that the playground staff should know the kids and should have a very good idea about whether the girl is the type to exaggerate, the 3 boys are likely to kick someone lying on the ground, your son goes too far with his games, etc. (even though this incident was not observed).

We have all been around kids who get too boisterous and even violent in this kind of game. We also all know kids who always feel like someone has hurt them and constantly fuss about imaginary injuries. It is impossible to say from your OP which situation we have here, so I think people are reacting based on their own preconceived notions.

GoblinGranny Wed 12-Jun-13 09:51:31

Irrelevant how boys play when unfettered by rules or under the loving care of a relative or parent.
School rules on playtimes should be very clear, reinforced at all times in a fair manner, following the rules and applicable to all despite gender.
So in our school we have rules about pulling and grabbing, they get a warning first.
But kicking, hitting, hair-pulling biting? Straight off the playground.

'His teacher has again told DS that there is a complete blanket ban on any physical play even if he thinks the other child wants to play that kind of game.

I knew that they are not allowed to play fight etc but wasn't aware that any wrestling, rolling around games etc are banned. I suppose that in a school environment it would be difficult to manage a lot of children playing this kind of game.'

You haven't really got much of a clue about the difference between school playgrounds and other scenarios have you, OP?
No doubt you and your DS will learn over the next couple of years. grin
Hope it's not too painful for all concerned.

Hullygully Wed 12-Jun-13 09:58:29

<snort at granny>

Pantone363 Wed 12-Jun-13 10:10:42

Ah granny I sense a thinly veiled sarcastic tone to your last paragraph....

I'm not an entitled parent who thinks her darling child is exempt from the rules. DS is aware of which children like these games and which don't. Outside of school he knows that x loves rough play whereas y doesn't.

What are we teaching girls when we say "here's a group of boys playing rough, you can play with them and also play rough but as soon as you get hurt you can cry to the teacher, not be punished yourself for playing rough and that's fine".

In all honesty, if my daughter had come home and told me that (she hates rough play), I would've asked her why she had joined in with that game instead of the other twenty non rough games she was playing elsewhere. This is not about the kicking. We all know the kicking isn't ok, but DS didn't kick her!

5madthings Wed 12-Jun-13 10:22:10

The child is being taught that if she gets hurt it is not OK! All children need to learn to play appropriately!

My ds2, ds4 and dd all love a bit of rough and tumble and they can do it at home, supervised. They must stop immediately if someone has and enough and I am there to step if its getting out of hand. They also have to remember that soemtiems they don't known their own strength ad to be mindful of littler ones etc.

The girl won't be allowed to 'play rough' either, so they all get that consequence and she got HURT, why should she be punished for that?

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