Saturday, August 30, 2008

Can someone help please......?

See this "Sweet-boy".
How can you not just fall in love with those big blue eyes and those round cheeks and that oh so innocent face. With Uncle Gary, his fellow train lover.
Celebrating his birthday with a Thomas Train cake.
Friend Skyler at his train friend party.
Doing a jig at the end of school Kindergarten program.
Rizzo the class pet that came home several times and got to hang with our crazy family.
So why do I show you all these pictures of my little guy that I love so fiercely that it hurts when I hear things that I do not agree with. I do this because, as a parent I love unconditionally, I have tired to raise him as best as I can with his unique personality. My kids are challenges, that I will not dispute, but when I have a Kindergarten teacher that repeatedly tells me that he has ADHD - yes I know people that is grounds for legal action- you begin to doubt all that you have done as a parent. Of course when accused of having ADHD I immediately had him checked by our Pediatrician and my fears were confirmed. No my son did not have any of the charecteristics of ADHA. The teacher did not want to find a way to work with him. She wanted conformity, obedience and no bucking of the task at hand, and if that did not work then she wanted him medicated. We tried rewards and that did not work there was no motivation to get the work done.
That is my sweet-boy.
When a worksheet comes out, he goes glassy-eyed. When the repetition of doing the work comes he sits and plays. He struggles to stay on task and focus, although when you talk with him and do the individual testing he has it all down. If not would they have passed him to the next grade or it is just someone elses problem this year?
It is day three of first grade and we are already seeing the blank work, the empty sheets coming home, the notes of problems. I spent so many hours sitting beside my son last year trying to help him stay on task and all it showed was that he saved the work till I came so we could have a game to play of doing the work together.
I love that my son is an individual, he is not a go with the flow kinda kid and I do not want to squash that wonderful trait, BUT, I also want to give him the skills that he needs to survive in this world. That even though he does not like doing the work, that in life you have to do things that you do not like, that sometimes we have to conform to get by.
I need help, from anyone that can help me to help my son. We are a Love and Logic family but I am stumped at how to get him to want to do the work.
Help, help, help....


Michael A. Cleverly said...

Who did he have for Kindergarten? (If I had to make a guess, based just on this post, I would say V.S.?) Who does he have for first grade? You should alk to Shauna....

Caroline said...

Wow, that's a lot to take in as a parent. I know you want to do what is best for him, that you want him to be challenged, you want to encourage his gifts and traits, you want him to be the individual he was created to be. Unfortunately, I don't have any answers, but I can tell you that I will be praying for you as you and your husband decide what is best for you precious little guy.

Saunders Family said...

I don't know what to say... I feel like I should comment since I was with him so much with his fabulous K teacher :o) I love your sweet boy to death, and the first thing to come to mind is- give it time, both short term and long term.

Short term: It is only the first week of school and 1st grade is a HUGE adjustment. You know how I was first hired for 1st grade... they told me to only really teach half a day for like the first couple months because they can't handle the long days. How has sweet boy been handling being at school all day long? From what I saw last year, he is one who is all over the place, can't sit still doing boring assignments, needs hands on learning as much as possible. Suggest that to his teacher to get him motivated. If he was my student, I would have no problem accommodating him- like letting him orally tell me answers if he can't get them down on paper. He knows the stuff orally, then he is getting it in his own way! You have to make acceptions for that... I'm sure he isn't the only one who needs real application and hands-on learning. If there is no other way to do an assignment besides a worksheet... break it up! Have him do a few problems, get up and walk around, then come back and do more. The only thing that I thought might have been a problem was distracting others while he wasn't working, but he is 6! Don't expect him to be perfect!

Long term: I think that you'll see as he gets older, it will be easier for him to apply himself. It may be a maturity thing (although the things that comes out of his mouth sometimes are way beyond his years!) and the responsibility of doing things you don't want to do will come with practice and as he grows up. I have a student in my class this year that reminds me of sweet boy. His mom commented to me that she saw a ton of growth just over this summer and its taken a lot of work to get to that point. Just help him, encourage him, love him- and everything will work out just fine.

Also- he is only in first grade. From what I learned in college about learning disabilities, it takes a few years to get diagnosed with ADHD/other learning disorders through monitoring and assessments. Most kids don't get help until 2nd/3rd unless they are really severe. What annoys me is when kids are misdiagnosed and are medicated too early when they really don't need it and their lack of maturity/development delay is taken as ADHD.

Keep a good line of communication open with his new teacher. I worry if maybe K teacher talked to 1st grade teacher and had influence before the year started. I hope that 1st grade teacher has an open mind!

I hope this novel of a post helps and that some of it makes sense. Take it with a grain of salt though- What the heck do I know, I'm just a first year teacher. (and from the post I just did on my blog feel totally overwhelmed and like I know nothing...)

Elena said...

Your baby is beautiful! My second child has a hard time concentrating too. she's smarter than smart, but her little mind just goes a million miles an hour. Thankfully she has the best teacher on the planet that really helps her with her self confidence and understands her other talents. It's so hard to have your child labeled with something. Be your child's advocate and if needs be get him a different teacher that understands this type of learning style better. Best of luck!

Heather said...

I am so feeling your Gabe is very similar, and I am afraid of what we will be dealing with when he starts "real" school. So many people are so quick to judge and categorize these's such a struggle. I love the comment above; give it time. And keep doing what you do best; Love that boy.

p.s. thanks for visiting my blog again; Gabe and I loved the Thomas pics; Thomas is coming to our town on Friday for two weeks, and we can't wait!