To Split or Not to Split? That is the million-dollar question.
As former educators, we answer this question often, especially as the school year approaches. Should you consider separating twins into different classrooms or keep them together?
To be honest, there are advantages and disadvantages to both, keeping them together or making the decision to separate twins into different classes. There are many factors that play into the decision, and ultimately, some twins will do well together while others will be more successful if they are separated.
With our experiences in the classroom, as parents of twins ourselves, and based on the conversations we’ve had with other twin parents, we decided to compile a list of pros and cons. Feel free to take these into consideration when making an informed decision to separate twins in school or to keep them together.
The Pros and Cons of Separating Twins in School:
If you decide to keep your twins together:
- Communication with their teachers becomes streamlined. If they share a teacher, so will the communication going home. Conferences are easy to schedule too!
- Built-in friends: When your twins are in the same classroom, they already have a buddy from the start, which gives them the advantage of knowing someone in the classroom and can help make the back-to-school transition easier.
- Fields trips: Volunteering couldn’t be easier! When your twins share a classroom you can chaperone one trip instead of two.
- Twins will have the opportunity to develop their own friendships and their own identity as a learner, however, it just might take longer if one twin is more timid and one is more outgoing, etc.
- Often twins are lumped together as a package deal instead of looking at them as individuals. How often are your twins referred to as “the twins”?
- Learning styles: Your twins are two different people who share a birthday, but it is unlikely that they will have the same learning styles. It could take a bit longer for the teacher to recognize each individual learning style if your twins stay in the same classroom together.
Separating Twins in School:
- Separating twins allows them the opportunity to develop their identity as an individual rather than as a part of a pair. Up until the point where your twins start going to school, they likely have had little time apart. Give them the opportunity to shine completely free of his or her twin sibling.
- When your twins are separated during the day, they might even, gasp, miss each other. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, right? Well, you might notice that they get along better after the bell rings. When they aren’t around each other as often, they are more likely to enjoy their time together more!
- Developing Confidence: Each student has unique needs in the classroom. Students learn information at various rates, which doesn’t change just because they are twins. Academic discrepancies will happen. Separating twins into different classes gives them the chance to learn at their own pace without comparing themselves to their sibling all day long.
- Social Life: Not having a twin to cling to makes a child have to meet new friends like the rest of the class. Separating twins can give your children the chance take social risks and make new friends without having their twin sibling to rely on.
- There could be a bit of an adjustment period. Again, up until this point your twins have spent tons of time together. Time apart will be a slight adjustment.
- If you separate your twins into different classrooms, this means the parents will need to streamline logistics like homework, volunteering, etc. But if you already have more than one child, this is inevitable anyways.
To be honest, making the decision to separate your twins in school is typically harder on parents than it is on children. Yes, there is an adjustment for everyone, but you may be surprised on how easy your twins get into the groove once the school year starts, whether you keep them together or split them up!