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Is this a problem - socialisation(9 Posts)
Dd is 2 yrs 9 mths and has been attending preschool two mornings a week since the week after her 2 nd birthday.
She loved it before the summer holidays and was doing brilliantly, would come home full of news about the games she had been playing. She has always been really imaginative, playing tea parties etc from well before her 1st birthday. However, she only enjoyed playing with the older children and of course they all left to start reception.
This term she has hated it, kept saying she wanted to go to big school too and the manager told me that she had problems with her socialisation because she wasn't playing with the other children. By this stage she was one of the oldest - there are a couple of three year old girls but as far as I can see 'academically' they aren't yet at same stage as dd. Dd referred to the other children as ' all babies'.
Language is good, she uses words such as 'maybe', unfortunately excited etc in context and sentences are adult length and structure - 12 words not uncommon. She counts beyond 20, can do more and less than, tries to write a lot of letters, writes imaginary shopping lists, plays word games eg tells us if tractor began with f it would be a factor, is starting to read v simple books.
If she hadn't fitted in so well with all the games last year I'd be thinking possible asd, but she does socialise well at playgroup, church etc - just only with children who are at least four. She also loves young babies but ignores most of the children her own age.
Should I be concerned? Is there anything I can do to help her?
Is it correct, as the manager told me, that they can't work on any other areas with her until they have 'solved' this one? As I can't see it getting solved until she has children at the same stage of development to play with!
She isn't attending at the moment - she was getting increasingly upset and withdrawn. Whether or not her glue ear has contributed I don't know - despite being a small setting it was often noisy. The glue ear doesn't seem to hold her back at playgroup.
Sorry so long, really difficult to know what to do!
I don't think your child has a problem at all. She sounds perfectly normal and the fact that your child is communicating her feelings is a positive. What does worry me is that the nursery teachers have not yet come up with a solution. My child had a very similar experience at nursery (she is now 4.5 and in school and has many friends and is happy) At my daughters nursery they were very quick to find a solution they started to encourage her to take on a caring role within the Nursery where she would be a 'big girl' and the teachers helper and to show the younger ones how to tie their shoe laces, write their name etc. She loved this and developed her own relationships with the other children in a positive way. It allowed her to flourish feel confident and secure. It is the mangers and nursery teachers job to guide your child and ensure she feels happy, safe and secure. All children are different this is what makes them so special and the nursery should be equipped to deal with this and embrace individuality. If the nursery can't find a solution they are clearly failing. I hope that things work out for both you and your daughter. X
Thank you for your reply. I really hope that if she does go to a different preschool things will turn out differently.
Any preschool teachers out there who can help me suggest says of helping her? The 'teacher's helper' one sounds very inventive, great idea.
I would challenge whether pre-school is the best place.... we seem to be sending children out of the home earlier and earlier...why? Partly due to working mothers needing childcare, but partly due to the fact that we are made to believe that our children are missing out if they don't go.... that they need to go to pre-school in order to learn to socialise. Ummmm... very easy to get swept along with it all and not really think through what we are doing.
You have few precious years with your daughter before she attends full time school. Why cut those years short? Does a child really need to go to pre-school for reasons of 'socialisation'? Schools have their fair share of children who have anti-social behaviour - are these the children who didn't attend pre-school? NO! School does not teach social skills, though it can help to develop these skills. Preschool can not, alone, teach social skills... social skills are taught in the home... as you talk to your child around the lunch table, as you chat through stories... as you talk through how your child is feeling when she doesn't get her own way.
I am sure that pre-school can be lots of fun, as this is a good reason to send children. But if children are not happy then perhaps it is just best for them to be at home (if money allows), with a parent. There are plenty of groups to go to in local communities, plenty of play dates you can organise, plenty of clubs to join if you want that - and all these with a parent present, where you are able to talk through issues and teach social skills, model social skills and praise good social skills.
Can a pre-school teacher do this? Yes... sometimes, but not as well as a parent can. Can they always pick up on the snatching that happens? The unkind words spoken? The bad attitude? NO, no, no. And I say this from personal experience both as a parent and as a teacher. No teacher cares for a child or loves a child as much as the parent does and this is why the parent does the best job in the pre-school years.
What happened 20 years ago? Did all children attend preschool from age 2? No, nearly no children did. Most attended a weekly 'playgroup' with a parent, some attended pre-school from 3 but most didn't. Is our society full of social stunted adults (now age 23 +). Certainly not.
Just some food for thought. Don't follow the crowd. Follow your daughter's needs.
Hello Betty. Your daughter's problems sound a lot like the problems my grandson Olllie, just 4, is having. The preschool say he's extremely bright and advanced, but he gets labelled as naughty because he gets bored with activities that are too young for him, and shows it.
I think his preschool, and your daughter's too, are not accepting and working with the fact that your child (and my grandson) are far more advanced than their peers. Instead of offering them activities that would interest and absorb them, they just expect them to put up with what is provided for the mainstream, which is essentially very dull for a child who has outgrown that stage.
Like your daughter, Ollie has had severe glue ear. His hearing was affected for a bit, and this makes him a bit awkward and sometime a bit reserved. He has a large vocabulary but his speech is still a bit off from not being able to hear properly for a year or more. He loves playing with his sister, who is also very bright and two years older, and the activities they enjoy are more advanced than average for their age. At preschool he seems to like pretty much all the other kids but has no special friends. I suspect he feels it's boring and a bit pointless. I remember feeling the same at that age. My home was so much more stimulating than preschool, which I found very dull. Dull enough for me to remember all these years later.
He has another issue, and I'm going to look for other people on this site who are struggling with the same issue. He's a boy. And it seems to my daughter that his preschool is set up very much for girls. Girls of that age will sit quietly and colour in, but boys tend to be more physical and boisterous. Just being a boy seems to be a problem. The only children who ever get told off are the boys, and what they are told off about is always being too noisy or too active.
I remember reading somewhere that studies had been done which suggested that although boys and girls mature at different rates and tend to behave differently, too many nurseries and primary schools are set up to see girls as the norm and boys as an aberration. Of course not all girls are well behaved and not all boys are boisterous, but it is a pattern I observed in my own kids as they grew up.
Hi betty, this happens where I work when some of the older children go off to school and others are left behind
In fact it happened to my own Dd1. It is especially common with autumn born children and can be really hard on them.
When we get lots of new children in September we always try to make a big fuss of the ones who are returning from the year before who might be missing their friends and sometimes even siblings.
I think you have lost confidence in the preschool and it might benefit you and your Dd to find another one.
If you do decide to go back make sure you speak to your Dd's key person and tell her how your Dd is feeling.
It is not that difficult to sort out really and should never have been a problem. I feel for your Dd as I remember how upset Dd1 was
I am very unsure about what to do with my DD (just 4), she goes to pre-school 2 mornings and I would like to increase it as she wants and needs more social contact (we don't know that many DC her age). DD says she doesn't like preschool though, its boring. She seems to play with different DC, some call her their friend and she talks about one girl in particular, but I don't think they are special friends. DD says she wants to stay at home. Maybe she is shy?
I can't quite work out why she doesn't like it, the staff keep saying she had a lovely time and did lots of things ... ? She is keen to go to big school but I think they all want that when they see others moving up.
DD is bi-lingual and a lot more verbal in German, however her English is fine but that doesn't normally stop young children. Maybe she gets underestimated as the nursery assistant told me last week that DD wanted to write an 'o' and she was told how it sounds. DD reads and writes her name, knows a good number of letters and words and she blends them together.
As you, no advice but very confused.
Just a quick update. we took dd out of preschool and she is doing fine. Her glue ear has cleared up which means she is communicating more easily and sleeping better. I've made an effort to take her to playgroups in more affluent areas - sounds awful but she does better when there are children who can play the sorts of games she wants to. having watched her play I'm pretty sure the issue was the other children not being able to join in with her and dd not being able to act well enough to play the game on her level too.
her keyworker brought me her learning record. interestingly there are pictures of another child labelled asdd! the two girls were born days apart and are a similar height and colouring and have the same hairstyle, but there were only 20 children at the nursery!! I'm wondering whether they were even describing the correct child some if the time now, especially as they would often call dd by the other girl's name.
the reason I wanted dd to go to preschool was that I wanted her to establish friendships before reception. I went to a private Montessori school over 30 years ago and adored it. however, all the other children went off to prep and I had to start at state school where the other children all knew each other from playgroup. not easy!
we have arranged for her to start kindergarten at a small convent school, 2 days a week, just for a year. if she likes it then she can stay for primary. we could tell she felt happy there when we visited and it was so calm and caring. much
I always thought it would be too expensive but it is only the same hourly rate as the preschool.
Hi Betty. Sounds like a plan! Your dd seems v bright and is clearly benefiting from lots of good parental support. In my professional experience children can have spikey developmental profiles; they may do very well in formal learning activities, but have social behaviour more in line with their chronological age.
Children are not really social beings, in the way we think of children being, until after 3yrs or so. You've not said anything that would make me concerned about ASD.
She is fortunate that you are considering her transition to school needs. It might help to keep an eye on how aware her Reception teacher is of her abilities. Teachers don't always read in detail preschool reports. And some assess later in the first term than others.
Anyway - this is some time in the future.
All the best.
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