The article has been automatically translated into English by Google Translate from Russian and has not been edited.

Twins in the USA: why twins are separated in schools

Elizaveta Lubleva

Doctor of Psychology

'06.09.2018'

At the beginning of each school year, I receive questions from a large number of happy parents of charming twins, whose young children, as a rule, fall into different classes. Parents say that, despite the fact that they explain to school administrators that their twin children work well together, enjoy each other’s company and / or do not want to enter a new situation, the school is on its own. They reason that the twins, who are constantly together, will not be able to develop a sense of individuality.

Фото: Depositphotos

Currently, this issue attracted the attention of many experts. For example, in Minnesota, a new bill has already been passed, unanimously by the House of Representatives of Minnesota (130-0) and the Senate (64-0). Since then, many other states have passed or are trying to enact similar legislation (see twinslaw.com).

It is my firm belief that there should be no uniform school rules for twins, just as there are no uniform rules for non-twins. The task of every parent is to make an independent decision.

The researchers showed an interesting fact, when non-twins first go to school with friends, they manifest themselves in the educational process more independent and more engaged in educational activities. No one cares that these children will not develop a sense of individuality. There are many options for teachers to arrange an “inseparable couple”. For example, children can work in separate groups or sit at separate tables. Often these kids just need to know where the other is. This phenomenon is more common among monozygotic twins than heterozygous, but can occur in twins of any type.

The essence of the problem for the school administration may be related to the results of children passing tests and tests. Monozygous twins think and process the information in the same way; therefore, when test results with similar answers are obtained, children may be suspected of being tricked. It is also scientifically proven that such a relationship does not exist (for details on this topic in the journal TWINRESEARCH and HumanGENETICS). Nevertheless, this problem can be solved by spreading the children far apart.

When the twins go to school, parents face a difficult decision. Gemini should be together in the same class? Or would they be better off in different classes with different teachers and different classmates? There is no clear and correct answer. Each pair of twins is different, and the right choice may be this: together one year and in different classes for the next. Sometimes the US school system will try to set its own rules, but parents should always be considered.

Фото: Depositphotos

Below, I will provide the arguments on which the choice of “for” the separation of children is usually based:

  • The first. There are a number of abilities and skills of children, which distinguish them from each other, and therefore force teachers to compare.

Sometimes the twins can be more successful in different subjects. While many twins have striking similarities and truly monozygous (identical) twins can be very similar, it is important to understand that the twins are two unique personalities. They can learn in different ways, and they can have huge differences in abilities. There is a natural tendency to compare twins, and the comparison can become quite rough when one twin stands out more favorably. A child who is constantly lagging behind his or her twin can easily become disillusioned, instead of working at their own pace. In this situation, both children can learn more effectively if they are separated.

  • The second. The twins are very dependent on each other.

The relationships of the twins are complex. Their close relationship implies some dependence on each other to feel more comfortable. But in some cases, such relationships hinder the development of children's independence, and placing them in different classes may lead to the development of an individualized way for everyone to adapt.

  • Third. One of the twins is more dominant.

Sometimes the relations between the twins are out of balance, one of them begins to dominate the other. The dominant twin seeks to lead the duo, often speaking for both and influencing the actions of the other. This can be harmful for both children in the classroom and is a good reason to recommend separation of twins. In the long run, such a forced separation can restore the balance of relationships and help both children succeed in school.

  • Fourth. Gemini tend to compete.

As children are constantly compared, some twins can be very sensitive to competition. Not all. For example, twin boys / girls may feel more differentiated by gender. Competing twins in the same class may sharpen their desire to outdo each other, seeking additional attention, academic achievement or social status. While this may lead to some positive results, it can also have a bad impact on their educational goals and become a problem for their teacher and classmates. Twins, who are clearly prone to these kinds of feelings, may be more successful when they are separated.

  • The fifth. Children are distracted by each other.

The twins knew each other before birth and are loyal companions to each other. However, they can also be the biggest contenders. Imagine that you are in class with your best friend or worst enemy, and then, when you come home, you have to spend every evening together. Adults can compare this situation to working in the same office with a spouse. In this case, it can be difficult to focus on teaching when that important person is in the same room. Of course, some twins can cope with intimacy during the school day, but others are very uncomfortable. The task of parents is to catch this state of children in time.

  • The sixth. They are only interested in communication with each other.

For young children, most of the learning takes place in the classroom and not at the desks. This is an important time of social development, as they learn to communicate with each other and with other adults, observing a hierarchical distance. Gemini interact with each other from a very early age. However, it is also important for them to learn to communicate with other children. If they focus only on relationships with each other, are not interested in playing with other children, separation can be a good means of social development for babies.

  • Seventh. The behavior of the twins destroys discipline in the classroom.

Brothers and sisters treat each other differently than other children. A child who will never scream or beat a classmate can strike a brother or sister when he is provoked. In class, the relationship between the twins must comply with the rules and standards of conduct. Otherwise, it is destructive for the class and a problem for the teacher.

If your twins have behavioral and relationship problems, they can be more controlled in different classes.

  • Eighth. The resemblance of children makes them difficult to see in the classroom.

Identical or monozygous twins may have very similar physical data. Sometimes they are almost indistinguishable. This can lead to confusion in the classroom, both for teachers and for other children. Of course, identical twins should not be separated, if there are compelling reasons to keep the children together, but if their similar qualities make it difficult to stay in class or distract, parents can raise the issue of separation.

  • Ninth. Children themselves express an interest in being in different classes.

Talk to your twins according to age about school. Listen to their feelings and opinions on this topic. If they express an interest in being in different classes, follow their choice. They can say they want their own class or show a desire to distinguish themselves from their twin. They may want to be known by themselves, and not as part of their brother / sister. When deciding to take into account the feelings of your twins.

  • Tenth. "Reliable sources recommend individual classes."

Research and scientific studies are important for determining the best development option for twins. Seek advice from people you trust. Ask people who know your twins as individuals, as well as people who watch them individually or together: kindergarten teachers, pediatricians or health workers, current or previous teachers, friends and family members. Professionals may see different aspects of the personality of your children that are not so obvious to you, and if they recommend separation, it is reasonable to take their views into account when making decisions.

I wish you all good luck !!!

Your consultant in the world of psychology, Dr.Liza

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