Twins come in all shapes and sizes and it is unrealistic to assume that they will be the best of friends throughout their childhood.
There are no prescriptions or givens when it comes to raising twins.
In some cases, the twins may be inseparable and grow up to be wonderful friends whereas other families may find it to be a very challenging relationship to manage.
come in all shapes and sizes and it is unrealistic to assume that they will be the best of friends throughout their childhood. As with all sibling relationships, there can be good and bad phases and you have to take the good with the bad.
One major difference when it comes to raising twins rather than just siblings, in general, is the fact that their developmental milestones may happen in or around the same time. One might walk or teeth sooner or later but when it comes to their education the timelines are very likely to be the same.
Until recently I had no idea that some childcare environments and schools actively recommend separating twins when they attend. It may be a simple case of them not sitting beside each other in the same classroom or recommending that they participate in different classroom groups entirely.
This may be offered in a pre-school or school that has the opportunity to offer this option as they have more than one pre-school or junior infant class running side by side due to the volume of numbers.
As it turns out there are some really interesting benefits that can come with separating your twins when they attend school. Here are just some of them!
1. Separating twins can reduce the risk of comparing them academically or socially. One twin may excel in a particular area that the other struggles in. Each twin will have a different pace and ability when it comes to their school work and if they are in separate classrooms the temptation to compare these things is reduced hugely as they will have different teachers, routines and homework for example.
2. Twins can (but of course don’t always) cause quite a bit of chaos when they are together. They’ve quickly learnt that working together can be a great way to obtain what they want and sometimes this can be disruptive in a classroom both to themselves and the other students. Separating them can help with this.
3. Separating twins forces them to be less dependent on each other which can benefit them socially as they will be more likely to embrace new friendships.
4. In the case of identical twins, the similarities can prove to be a huge novelty for the other children. It may amuse the other pupils and as a parent, you may want to avoid this kind of attention being drawn to them as they may struggle to deal with it. It can also disrupt the class.
5. In the twin relationship, one twin may be more dominant in personality. This can lead to one twin answering on behalf of both of them or influencing the behaviour and actions of the other twin. Separating the twins means that they must represent and answer for themselves at all times and this can benefit them developmentally.
6. There is less likelihood of competitiveness developing between the twins if they are separated.
7. The similarities in appearance can make it difficult for them to be properly identified. This can mean constant mistakes in names from their peers (and the teacher) which can be frustrating for everyone, especially the twins.
8. Their relationship may benefit greatly from being separated during the school day. They might just appreciate each other more.
Tracey is mammy to five-year-old Billy and newborn Willow. She is a breastfeeder, gentle parent and has recently lost five stone so healthy family eating is her passion! You can follow her on Instagram.