Did your twins stay in the same class at school? Did it change from year to year based on what was best for them or what they preferred??
My ODD is in kindergarten, and we're trying to figure out what school to keep her in next year. Her current one, which we really love, only has one class per grade. But, I'm thinking of my twins (DDs) who will be 3 in Jan, and if we remain at this school for my ODD, my twins would never have the option of being in separate classes later down the road.
I love the idea of having my twins be in the same class, but I also feel that having the option to be in separate classes is important. We think they are MZ (I should get back our zygosity DNA test in the mail any day now...!), and I think there are extra issues that *may* arise for MZ twins if they are in the same class. Maybe it will all be fine and dandy and they'll love being together in the same class, but I am not putting all my eggs in that basket.
Sometimes I feel so misunderstood by other parents who don't have multiples. When talking about this w/ other moms, they've just told me, "Well, put your daughters in different extracurricular activities; that will compensate for them not having a choice to be in separate classrooms." Or, "Having to stay in the same classroom and not having another option will force them to build character." What?? It's times like these that the abyss between myself and non-multiple moms feels very large, and I feel that I don't have anyone to whom I can relate (thank goodness for this board!).
Anyway, I'm sure this topic has come up in the past. More than anything, it's the not feeling like I can talk about this type of stuff w/ my regular mom friends that can make it feel lonely sometimes...
Mama to my sweet sea-blue-eyed girl (2/06) and my hilarious mz dd twins (1/09) who keep me running.
I don't have multiples but I read this and thought of a set of twins in DDs second grade class. I thought they would split them up but they didn't. Both girls seemed to have their own friends but at times they were a unit. Theres another set in DD2's 1st grade but they are in different classes and honestly it does seem to be a good thing. They have their own little world outside of each other. Good luck on your decision.
My DZ girls are now in first grade at a very small school with only one grade per class. Oddly enough, there is a set of MZ boys in their class and our two sets of twins were the first at the school ever.
We are very happy that they're in the same class. They definitely play together, but there are only 17 kids in the class so all the kids play together. They have the same best friend and there have been some issues there, but nothing that we haven't been able to work out. They're happy being together and the teachers don't seem to have any problem with it. Their current teacher does refer to them by the wrong name from time to time, but they're pretty used to it and it's okay. All the kids in the class yell out, "That's Phoebe, not FIona!" On a practical note, I like that they have the same field trips, the same assignments, etc. I'm the room parent,so I'm the room parent for both girls. It's definitely easier than juggling two, or in your case 3 at that point, classes. I also get to hear each girl about their day, and her sister's day, and can piece together a better picture of what's going on at school. My girls don't sit together and never sat at the same table in Kindergarten and haven't yet in first grade. They go separately to some activities in which the class splits in half, like gardening, computers, etc. Anyway, I'm very happy they're together. We were planning on going to public school and the girls would have been separated and I'm so glad we ended up choosing a different path.
The MZ boys' family has a similar situation to yours. They have an older son who attended the school prior to their twins enrolling. They love the school, but I think having the boys in the same class has been more difficult for them. If there was an option to split the boys, at this point they'd take it. The boys are very twinny twins, if that makes sense. Always together. My girls don't always pick each other for partners, can play separately on the playground, etc, whereas these boys don't seem to chose that. I don't know if it's an MZ/DZ thing. The boys' mom has their hair different and they never dress the same. The children and I have no problem telling them apart, but I think some parents do. They're staying at the school because they love it and it's been so great for their older son, so they're making it work.
I also met someone who has her DZ twins together in a public school where there are more classroom options just because they have an older child too, they both work, and having 3 teachers, classrooms, to deal with is too much. Her kids are also in first grade and it's going fine.
So, my 2 cents is that if you love the school, you can make it work.
I should add that our school is a K - 8 and the school does get bigger in middle school, adding 20 new kids, so I assume my girls will have the opportunity to take classes separately in 6th grade.
We are just in the beginning of dealing with this so I can't give you much experienced guidance or anything, just my thoughts on our own situation. Our MZ girls are 4 (will be 5 in Feb) and are in pre-k this year. At our school, twins are automatically put into separate classes unless specifically asked in writing to be kept together. Being so young and having never experienced school or anything separate except maybe an outting alone with mom or dad, I decided to keep them together. I was a little worried about them having a lumped identity and feeling weird about the teacher not knowing who was who - but in reality, they get that everywhere they go anyway, they're used to it and are quick to tell you if you've mistaken one for the other. We lucked out though and their teacher this year has older MZ girls herself so I was thrilled to know that although she might mix them up, she would try a little harder and be more concerned having been in these shoes herself not too long ago. Although the teacher and the aid still give me a hard time (in a light hearted way of course) when I pick them up if I've dressed them in the same color or a similar outfit.
But honestly, I am so torn about what to do after this year. They are only in a half day program right now which is just a little under 3 hours but next year will be a full day so that doesn't seem like the right time either so we may continue wit them in the same class. One definite pro to keeping them in the same class - you only have to buy one teacher gift at Christmas and end of year LOL.
Anyway, thanks for starting this thread, I'm very interesting in hearing about how others deal with the class issue.
Full Time Student & Mommy to 3 princesses! 9/03, 2/07 & 2/07
We are in the same situation as you tink79. Our boys just turned 4 and are in pre-k. Their teacher last year had a set of twins and my boys look alike, but are certainly not MZ. The classes here are split in two for each age by older and younger, so it was suggested to us to split them this year and give D an educational push because he learns differently and cognitively he is way ahead of where his brother is (he was drawing stick figures at the age of three and catches onto concepts quite quickly. The way his brain works is quite scary, actually). On the other hand, emotionally he is a very young four and the boys are very interdependant. R is very social and seems to have a nice group of friends, but will always know where his brother is even if he is not playing with him. We decided that the educational push was not worth the emotional trauma of seperating them. They are in a class of 25 and do have their own friends and travel in different social circles as it were. We are probably going to keep them together through 1st grade (new school, school bus, etc) and once they are used to the new environment then we'll decide what to do. D gets upset that nobody invites him to playdates and R gets frustrated that D is basically teaching himself to read and he doesn't quite get it yet. It will be interesting to see what happens this year what the teacher recommends.
There are a set of MZ boys in the year above my boys and they are not being seperated. I think it depends on the kids and on the parents whether to seperate or not.
Good luck with your decision.
: wife to James, MoM to R and D (Aug 2007) and E (Nov 2009) and Y (April 2012)
Ultimately, it should be your decision, not school policy that determines if you separate. I taught for years, and at least where I was the trend was to keep together unless specific requst to separate.
My boys are currently homeschooled for first grade, but I have expectations that they will be in school at some point within a few years. When that time comes, I will want them in the same classroom unless there is a real compelling reason to split. My reasons are mainly about organization-- with two teachers, you have different homework, field trips, classroom policies, volunteer opportunities. And let's face it- different teachers have different skill levels. If we're going to get a "bad" teacher, or have a "bad" year, I'd rather them deal with it together than have one with a great year and the other with a horrible year.
For what it's worth, my boys are similar looking and sometimes mistaken for identicals, but they are not.
As a former first grade teacher and expecting twin mom, this has been an interesting thread to follow. I can't yet speak of my experience as a mother as my dd is only 2 and the twins are not born yet, but as a teacher I had many sets of twins over the years, some who were separated and some who together in my class. I think what it comes down to in the early grades is that it really depends on the personalities of the kids as well as the teacher. I've seen twins who thrive best together and twins who thrive best separated. I think in the middle school/upper grades it would be difficult to have twins in the same classroom. The reason I also said it comes down to the personality of the teacher is b/c there was an older teacher in my school who also taught first grade and she treated twins, especially ID twins, as such as unit and when she took a break from referring to them as "the twins" it was to compare them to each other...in front of the kids! It got to the point where I actually had to have a meeting with the principal about it. So much comes down to the teacher, so if you have found a great school with great teachers, then chances are your kids will do great there and you could always switch schools if later down the road being in the same classroom became a problem. Another way to think about it...if there is only one class per grade then ALL the kids are together year to year not just your twins. If most of the kids in the class return year to year, after 30 hours a week together over many years all of those kids will have a close relationship, obviously not as close as twins..but much, much closer then your average classmates.
We've been thinking of this lately too. Our twins will be starting j/k next year and going 2-3 days/week. I don't believe our school has a policy and I do know a mom of triplets who had no problem keeping her three in one class at our school. Our school is "smaller" but it still has a couple of classes/grade so we do have the option of splitting them.
Right now we are leaning towards keeping them together for at least j/k. I think it will help them to be together as they experience being away from home and me for extended periods for the first time. My two older dc's dealt with varying degrees of separation anxiety when starting school and I would hope that being together would help with that. I have also watched as my older dc's went from playing with both boys and girls to gravitating towards friends of the same gender. This happened around grades 1-2 so I'm thinking my b/g twins will go through something similar and develop closer friendships with others at that time. So, right now we're thinking of keeping them together but remaining open to separating them if the needs arises. Not to mention if they were in different classes in j/k I would never get a day alone because they would be on different schedules and after 9 years of being home with a child or two I think I might be ready to have some me time .
Good luck with your decision.
Karen - spouse to dh for 11 years, mama to ds (Nov '02), dd (May '05) and ds and dd (Jun '08)
Ours are in 2nd grade now and have been in the same class from the get go. It's easier in regards to homework, projects, school trips , volunteer time etc. Plus they like being together.
I think whether you separate them depends on your twins' personalities. My boys asked to be in separate classrooms starting in pre-k. (I didn't do it until K.) I had always dreamed that my twins would want to be together and would be best friends. The truth is, they have very different personalities and interests. And they excel at different things in school. They really did not want to be in a position where people directly compared them and they did not want to be competitive with each other. When I separated them, they were able to make their own friends (although they have many of the same friends) and be more of an individual in class. It wasn't merely the best thing to do for them, it was the only thing I could have done. They're in 4th grade now and each has flourished. I think their separation during school hours allows them to come together after school and share their experiences and build on their brother-bond.
My sons are seniors in high school, so I guess I have the most experience!
They were together for K; it was their decision (as well as the recommendation of their K teacher) that they be split up after that. Our middle school had 3 "teams" of 3 classes each - the students in each team switched teachers for different classes (math, science, English, I think), but didn't move around between teams. My kids were on the same team, so they had the same teachers and homework, but were not in the same class.
In high school, they are sometimes in the same class, but they prefer to be in different classes - even if they have the same course and the same teacher, it is at different times. For 9 - 11th grade, they even went so far as to arrange their schedules so they didn't have the same lunch period; now they eat lunch together.
Oh, and we color-coded in elementary school, so they were easy to tell apart.
There is no blanket answer to this question - it completely depends on the kids.
If the chips are down, the buffalo is empty.
My twins are in kindergarten this year and I lobbied the school to keep them together. They both wanted to be together in kindergarten and I was confident that they would thrive in the same class. I will spare you the details of the back and forth debates I had with the principal, but I ultimately got my way. Both kids are doing very well and their teacher told me I made the right decision and she was sure to communicate that to the principal. They are very different in looks and personality and have their own interests, separate friends, etc. It took about three weeks of school before their classmates realized they are related, much less twins!!!
SAHM to twin kindergarteners
My B/G twins are in grade 1 now. For preschool they were in the same classroom, as otherwise they would have been in separate preschools. Their preschool teacher felt they would be fine either together or apart in K. I didn't even consider separating them for K, as to do so would have meant one going mornings, the other afternoons. They were happy together, but quite independent of one another. One day in K I was volunteering in the classroom with a substitute teacher, who didn't realize until I took both of them home that they were twins! For grade 1 there are 2 classrooms, and they are separated for the first time this year, which was our choice. There is a set of MZ girls in their grade who have been kept together. Being in separate classrooms has worked out well for them and they are both happy. They still see a lot of each other at recess etc. and all of their field trips have been together. Our school leaves the decision up to the parents, with teacher input.
My MZ boys have been in the same class every year (they're in 3rd grade), including preschool. It hasn't been a problem (though we did get the hairy eyeball from some adminstrators along the way). The standard practice in our district is to separate--however the choice school program our family participates in only has 1 class in each grade (it used to be split classes, so all 3 of my kids almost were in the same class, as my DD is 1 grade ahead, but the program went to straight grades the year my sons entered).
My sons are very different in personality/temperment and due to the TTTS they are still about 20 percent apart in height/weight (that is starting to change somewhat) so the other kids (who they've known for 2+ years at this point) can tell them apart easily and so can the teachers (except from behind). We did make an effort to keep them in separate extracurriculars, but they both wanted to do more karate (and since that entails 3 group classes and a private lesson, they don't have time for a 2nd, separate activity). We did insist that their private lesson not be at the same time (it's 2 kids on 1 teacher).
We are very careful at home to not allow them to copy each other, if one of my boys forgets his binder or homework he must deal with the consequences and not copy over from his brother, ect. When they were younger, one of my boys used to semi-parent the other (he's just naturally very rules oriented, and likes everything in its place and organized) but after working on that at home and getting the teachers on the same page that doesn't seem to be an issue anymore (he no longer feels responsible to make sure everyone has what they need).
So I can't speak as to whether I would have chosen to have them placed together or been willing to fight for it if they weren't in the choice program. Probably not, since I was indifferent to them being in the same class. It has not *harmed* them, but I think that may be more of the environment of their choice program (very small adult-to-student ratio, high family/parent participation, ect.) where all the adults get to know all the kids very well, it's a tight knit community, so people have the time to get to know each of my sons as an individual entity and not squished together as "the twins". We've even had playdates where one went and the other didn't, and it was fine (I just had to assure the other mom that yeah, that was fine, no I wasn't offended, and THANK YOU for thinking of the individual child!)
I just lost my post. This re-write will have to be more brief. I think it is a really interesting discussion, and I agree with some of the previous posts that suggest the importance of considering personalities. My twin brother was very protective of me, and I rarely spoke in class. He spoke for me. He also made decision for me. It was difficult for me to separate from him (in all respects). We were separated in the first grade. The decision really helped me to thrive as an individual. I was able to learn to engage with my peers, and develop independent friendships. It was not a difficult transition. We were later together for after-school programs, but it was different. I did not want to be together. We had developed independent personalities, interests, friendships, etc. (My home situation was also very stressful. I wanted clear boundaries, and I resisted the extension of home into the school environment). I think it is also very different for opposite gender twins. We knew several same gender twins. They each had a different closeness and connection. They also were more likely to be subject to comparisons. I suppose there are a lot of factors to consider. Best of luck in your decision . . !
(I also apologize for so-called forum crashing. As a twin, I have an interest in other multiples, and I frequent as a lurker on this part of the forum).
It's definitely far from forum crashing, I think the most valuable opinions would be from those like you, who have very personally experienced these issues that parents of multiples question every day. Thanks so much for your insight :)
Full Time Student & Mommy to 3 princesses! 9/03, 2/07 & 2/07