Sept 2009 DS started in reception after moving house (from abroad) Dec 2010 DS starts new school in year one after we finally buy a house but move area. Sept 2011 DS is put in a different class from the one he was in because of his age and because the year is split between 2 classes.
3 times now he has been the new boy in the class, meeting a group of children that he's not met before. It came to our attention before the summer holidays that he was being called names and it was worrying him. He would bristle up when we took him to school. I addressed this with the school who said it wouldn't be an issue because he was changing classes and that they'd maybe do some group work and buddying to help him integrate.
Yesterday, another child hit him, though neither child can relate the incident. Another parent told me about it. I went to the school and talked to the teacher.
DS is mixing and working with the children in groups in class. Things seem to be going wrong outside the classroom which includes name calling and not being allowed to join in. Again, I pointed out the numerous changes he's had and that he keeps coming home saying his has no friends. I wouldn't say he was lacking in self esteem but when he approaches other children and is told to go away, he does exactly that. I feel that the other children have already bonded and this is why he is finding it so hard to integrate.
Again I've asked for buddying, working with the special support teacher on making connections with other children. The school is at a loss as what to do.
What can be done to help him integrate? He's a friendly and caring child. Maybe not as streetwise as some of the others.
I'd appreciate any advice as to how we can help him.
Do you issue LOTS of invites for playdates? Do you chat LOTS with the other parents? I know other people will dispute that matters, but it can help you to network, DC have had party invites just because I new the parents, and at very least it helps to persuade other people to let their children come to yours for play. Have you ever helped out in class? It helps you understand the dynamics of the year group, and can help you identify other children in need of a friend.
Yes, I do chat lots with the other parents, though I don't know names and can't match them to the children. As for invites, until now it's not been possible because we've been renovating. I did issue invites at the last school. Problem is I wouldn't know who to invite given what DS has told me about the children in his class. I can identify anyone who would be open to playing with him. I also have DS5 and DS3 so the house is quite full and busy in general but this is no excuse. I must also say no invites have come his way and no invitations to parties, whilst my other boys have received invites.
Your son can't be the only child needing a friend to play with. Has your school got a friendship bus stop. If not, suggest the school set one up in the playground. Very sucessful at my kids infants school.
tell me more about the friendship bus stop please, I've not heard of this.
I am hoping that the school will get him some group sessions with the boys and a special needs teacher to help him integrate.
I had been told the Beaver group would take him on in September but I'm still waiting and my emails are going unanswered. Yesterday we took him to Little Ninjas and are hoping he might make friends here or at least give him something in common with the boys at school.
He's been in this school a year now, but 2 separate classes. I would have expected him to have bonded by now.
Hi I'm really sorry to hear of this - and I've just noticed you posted in November! -we have a similar situation with our DS (6) in that he seems to be excluded from the 'top dog' boy's wee gang in his class. (A boy our DS idolises) Although so far he still enjoys going to school I've seen and heard enough now to be concerned for him. A note of caution re the friendship bus stop - our school has a buddy stop - basically it's where kids go if they find themselves with no one to play with. Other kids are then supposed to say 'oh look - we could play with them' - but really - there are a lot of kids also thinking - check out the loser with no friends. Our boy obediently sat there regularly until his older brother (10) pointed out the harsh truth. We try to arrange play dates with other boys not too strongly associated with top dog to build up friendships elsewhere, and I think we need to tell him top dog is no friend and to move on. Hope things are improving for you.
the other suggestion I would make, is ask if your School has a "Buddying System" in place, my DDs school does & its been a bit of a godsend to her of late, as she was experiencing bullying problems from girls who where her friends all through school & nursery - & she was the buddy working to help others.
I know its a system in place in a lot of Schools, as they have seminars & stuff that the DCs who are "Playground Buddies" get to attend - DDs been to a couple & has a party this week
The system works, where older DCs in the School "work" maybe a few sessions a week as "Buddies" - they have sweatshirts or tabards to mark them out & they patrol the playground looking for DCs who look lonely & pair them up with others who are too, or try & resolve disputes - with adult help where needed - DD absolutely loves doing this & takes great pride in helping the younger DCs in School & its generally a really good system that works, as the small DCs are always keen to get to know the older DCs & are often more open to telling them their troubles, than they are the teachers - DD has volunteered for extra sessions of late, as its meant she could escape her own playtime tormentors, whilst doing something she enjoys - so win win
I have the same problem, my son's two best friends left half way through the reception year to go privately, and he was left a bit lost. I've tried to make the effort to invite other children round, and he has had play dates with other children, but he is one of the quieter boys in the class and doesn't like joining in with the rough and tumble of the other boys, so gets left out. One of his supposed friends has also been picking on him recently (typical school boy stuff), but it breaks my heart - on a school trip today he was sat next to one of the parent helpers, while all the other boys sat together. He seems happy enough at school, and his teachers say everything is fine socially, but I'm not convinced. I'm not sure what to do, I'm just relieved it's the summer hols soon and I won't have to take him there everyday. We do encourage him socially out of school - my husband has just become a kids coach at the local rugby club and takes him up every Sunday and I'm enrolling him in Beavers from Sept. It's just so hard.
I always keep thinking tho, that it's never the most popular kids in the class who do well later in life - my boy, as I'm sure yours is, is a kind, gentle, well behaved child, and he is who he is, and should stay true to his personality. I'm sure in the long term he'll have a great time with some solid friends. (He does still see his best friends from reception too).