My 6 yr old son's teacher says that he's always miles away, but surprisingly always knows where they are. His attention span is short even at home.
His teacher says that he always knows where they are in class, but since he's not always fully there, it takes him longer to respond to the question than it should. He does respond without any help, but if he paid attention he would answer more quickly. He's the best reader in his class, in both Maltese and English and always gets good marks. He does sometimes have careless mistakes. At home he does his homework quickly and very well, but it has to be done asap or he loses interest.
There are many possibities for why your son has problems paying attention in class. It may be his learning style, it could be that he has some attention deficit issues, it may be that he doesnt really know that he is doing something "wrong." A simple solution may be for the teacher to have your son sit in a spot that is free from distractions (toward front of the room). You can also ask how often the kids get to take a break and move around, maybe he needs to expel some energy. Is there any way that he can hold on to some object (squeeze ball), or can he draw and listen at the same time? He could also be bored, if the material that is being discussed is something easy for him. You should also talk to your son about expectations for listening and keeping eye contact with the teacher. It's a good idea to talk to the teacher about his issues on an onging basis. Request that an administrator or school counselor observe your son's behavior in the classroom. Know that if the behaviors persist or get worse, you can request to have some testing done to ensure he is getting his personal needs met in the classroom.