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Please help! I don't know what to about 6 year old DD

(96 Posts)
CatWantsPeopleFood Tue 18-Sep-12 18:26:47

At home time today DD's teacher tells me that DD has been in trouble again at school. According to the teacher she scratched another girl's face at lunchtime, threw her own lunch on the floor, then kicked the head when taken to her office. No adult saw the scratching incident though and the girl had no marks on her face afterwards.

DD's version of events is slightly different. She says she was thirsty at lunch time but had finished her drink. So she decided to open her yoghurt to have a drink of that! The girl next to her then apparently started calling the dinner lady over because "she was going to tell" as she said DD wasn't allowed to do that. DD said she was worried about getting in trouble so put her hand up to the girls face (she does do this, it is her sign for stop) but she says she didn't scratch her.

DD says that she was then carried to the head's office. She said she didn't know that her dinner got thrown on the floor, or how it happened but she is definite she didn't do it. She did agree with me that it might have been knock by accident though. Anyway once at the head's office she said the head told her she was going to phone me. She said that she kicked the head to stop her from phoning. I didn't get any phone call from the head.

These kind of incidents have been happening at least once a week since DD was in reception. I don't know what to do about it anymore. DD knows that hurting people or throwing things is not appropriate behaviour. She doesn't do it at home, at anyone else's house, or at out of school clubs. She says she feels angry at school because the teachers don't listen to her/believe her. She also says she is sad because "everyone thinks I am a naughty girl"

I just don't understand what is going on. Teacher say they don't know either. I just want to help her, but don't know how.

steppemum Wed 19-Sep-12 13:51:20

I read this earlier and so much wanted to post but had to run, sorry if this overlaps with what others have said.

her perception of what is happening in a situation is not the same as what actually happend. A child's understanding and the truth are sometimes very different. I think this is important because she sounds as if she sees something in one way and then doesn't understand why it isn't seen that way by others.

My son does this, blatantly tells me black is white when I saw what happened, because he sees it through the prism of his emotions. One thing that has helped is not to get stuck in the who did what to who but take a step back, acknowledging her feelings. For my ds it was 'i know your sister was being a pain, I know she can sometimes be annoying and wind you up. It is ok to be cross with her and not to like it. But you can't hurt her when you feel that way'
then we go through things he can do when he is angry and ways he can express his frustration. I know he is a bit older, but the same principle works.

I also taught a boy who got really angry when he thought he wasn't listened to. I promised him that when there was a fight (pretty much every playtime with him) I would listen properly to his side of the story, but then he had to understand I would also listen properly to the other persons. He calmed down enormously once he knew I was listening, even though he was usually the instigator!

I know others have mentioned aspergers. She does sound as if she is struggling with sensory overload (very typical asd) and also change. It is hard to get girls diagnosed, but there are lots of tools you can use even if she doesn't have asd, which might help. One key one is to give her warnings of change, and let her know what the plan is for the day. This is often done in school anyway, 5 minute warning to finish your art. You said the school has a calm room, can she take herself to it? Can she have a cushion in a corner where she can bury her head when she feels overwhelmed? Give her a picture timetable which she can help make at the beginning of the day. This is pictures of all the activities (literacy, art, lunch, etc) with velcro on the back and a board. The TA can help her put them on in the order they will happen, then she knows what is coming up for the morning. (actually lots of children like this, not just asd).

It is definitley time to ask the school for a meeting, with class teacher and another (head or SENCO). Ask them to make a plan, ask them to think not just about sticker charts but also about some of the asd techniques which would help her. She needs help in managing these emotions and doesn't need to be labelled as naughty.

sorry that was long, really hope you can find help.

Please ask on special needs boards for tips with things to do.

steppemum Wed 19-Sep-12 14:54:10

sympton lists can be offputting, and no child has them all. My friends ds is very clearly asd, but he is very affectionate, not typical at all in that respect, but very typical in others. There is a boy in dds class with aspergers, he is very talkative, has good friends, but struggles a lot with change (had melt down when reception class transformed home corner into shop over one weekend)

KatMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 19-Sep-12 15:34:46

CatWantsPeopleFood

Aspergers/ASD? I don't really know much about those but I will look them up and see if it fits DD at all. I suppose if it is then that would help towards finding a solution to these problems. I'm not sure though. I know a little boy at DS's nursery who has autism and he is nothing like DD. He doesn't talk much whereas she talks non stop sometimes, but like I said i don't know much about it. The only other thing I know about that little boy is my DS is very jealous of him because he gets to hold the calculator all day!

Thanks for asking for this thread to be moved btw, if you think it would be better somewhere else. I have no idea how to do that myself.

Hi OP, we've moved this thread into Special Needs: Education, hope you find the advice and support you need thanks

CatWantsPeopleFood Wed 19-Sep-12 17:18:55

Thanks for moving it.

LadySybildeChocolate Wed 19-Sep-12 17:43:49

My nephew has aspergers. He's a lovely little boy, but he can talk and talk about pop groups. I hope your DD has had a better day. smile

CatWantsPeopleFood Wed 19-Sep-12 18:33:07

Well according to her teacher she had a good day, a bit up and down (whatever that means) but generally good and better than yesterday. She did however forget to mention how DD acquired the large cut on her lip that she has come home with! So mostly tonight she has spent her time either complaining about how much it hurts or freaking out when it started bleeding again while she was eating dinner.

LadySybildeChocolate Wed 19-Sep-12 19:33:07

sad I hope it heals quickly. Does the school write a diary of her day for you? It can help if things are documented.

CatWantsPeopleFood Wed 19-Sep-12 21:19:59

No they don't write a diary. I have asked in the past to be told everything but it never lasts past a few weeks. The teacher has started a new sticker chart for DD today though and said they will try to get someone from Behaviour Support to see her next week.

LadySybildeChocolate Wed 19-Sep-12 22:38:14

They are not helping at all. Is there another school that she can go to? I'm not a huge fan of moving children to different schools, it sounds as though they are failing your daughter on so many levels though. sad

CatWantsPeopleFood Wed 19-Sep-12 23:01:47

There are no other primary schools nearby (this one is a 40 minute walk from home) and it would be a long way to travel to the other ones I know about. They are also in the opposite direction to the way I need to go, so would need to have breakfast club too. Also I have a DS at this chool so they would both need to move as I can't be in two places at once. I suppose its something I can look into though but I don't know if it would be any different and i think I would worry the upheaval would make DD's problems worse or if it was the same, changing school would have been a waste of time.

I wouldn't really know what to look for in a different school either as I obviously didn't do a good job choosing this one. I just picked the closest one to home because i thought that it would be fine. I don't have any experience with schools, only the ones I went to and that was just the closest to my house then too. My school experience was very different to DD's though because I was just allowed to do whatever I wanted most of the time.

LadySybildeChocolate Wed 19-Sep-12 23:11:40

Don't blame yourself, we've all made mistakes. I moved my son 3 times before I found the right primary for him. Have you thought about speaking to the school nurse? I worked with them here for a little while, they are so supportive and will liase with the school for you to make sure your daughter gets the care that she needs.

CatWantsPeopleFood Wed 19-Sep-12 23:25:01

I don't think that the school have a nurse. Its quite a small school and they just have a little first aid room for children to go to when they are sick/hurt. I've never actually seen a nurse in there, teachers/TAs just take them in there when necessary.

steppemum Wed 19-Sep-12 23:42:54

there will be a school nurse, there is a nurse responsible for your school, but she isn't on site, she probably has a dozen schools in her remit. You can request a meeting. You may be able to request a meeting without going through school. Have you tried your gp? If they are good they may be able to refer you.

I think the school is thinking along nehaviour lines, and there needs ot be a shift towards understanding her needs. that is possible. don't write them off yet.

LadySybildeChocolate Wed 19-Sep-12 23:43:14

All schools have access to a school nurse, even the tiny private ones. They are not always based in the school though. They usually pop in when needed, or to do the weight/height checks. Pop into reception tomorrow, tell them that you'd like to speak to the school nurse and they will arrange for her to call you, you don't need to say what it's about. The school nurse will call you and arrange to come and see you. You just need to tell her that your daughter is having some problems at school, and you don't know what to do. If you can explain what the problems are this will help, or if it helps to print this thread off and hand it to her rather then speak, then do that. They are lovely people, and she/he'll do their very best to help and support you and your daughter.

I'd be so proud if you were my mum, you sound as if you love your daughter very much. smile

CatWantsPeopleFood Thu 20-Sep-12 00:14:10

Would the school nurse be the person who does hearing tests? If it is then I was told she only comes to the school twice a year when I was trying to get DD's hearing checked when she first started school because I was worried that she didn't always respond to noises or being spoken to. She has had 2 hearing tests since then though and it came out fine.

Anyway that is something else I will look into tomorrow as well.

LadySybildeChocolate Thu 20-Sep-12 00:31:36

Yes, she does all sorts. I worked with the school nurses here for a little while, you can see them at any time. If school reception say otherwise, you may have to hunt them down. They are usually based at one of the health centres, so you could try calling around. You can also go and see your GP, although he/she may not be able to liase with the school for you. You do need to get the ball rolling with regards to an assessment, so you can either wait for the school nurse, ask the school (again) or see your GP. I know it's confusing, there's a lot of different ways to get to the same place.

CatWantsPeopleFood Thu 20-Sep-12 10:12:46

Feeling really awful this morning. DD was totally happy to go to school up to the point the doors opened, then she just froze. I don't know if she could tell what was about to happen but I certainly didn't. A TA appear and just grabbed her, said 'bye mum' to me then carried her screaming into school. I was really shocked and confused, I'm sure DD must have felt the same way. I had no idea they were planning to do that, if I had I could have at least prepared DD for what to expect. We didn't even have a chance to do our little saying goodbye routine ( a hug and a kiss and a spare one for later) it all happened so quickly.

I feel like going back to the school and taking my baby out and never sending her back there. I know that probably isn't a good idea though and they did it for a good reason. I'm happy to do whatever it takes to help DD with her behaviour at school, but this just didn't feel right sad

sad

That sounds hideous. How you must be feeling right now. It isnt right.

If I was you I would be going and getting her now. I know that isnt always possible. But shes only 6. Thats still so young.

LadySybildeChocolate Thu 20-Sep-12 11:06:45

sad They really have no idea. I think you need to tell the TA/teachers to stop doing this. If she does have aspergers it's only going to make things a lot worse and upset your child. You're going to have to speak up, 'don't do that to my child, can't you see how much it distresses her?' The school is making things a thousand times worse. I'd be upset if a TA did this to my child, it's very unnecessary. Did you manage to track the school nurse down?

Chandon Thu 20-Sep-12 13:09:38

Sorry but the school sounds rubbish!

Start looking at other schools, and get to know the HT.

A HT sets the tone for the school, and some schools are truely inclusive, and helpful when a child is anxious or has difficulties.

CatWantsPeopleFood Thu 20-Sep-12 20:33:04

I did a bit of research and managed to find out there is a school nurse that covers our area. Luckily she was located in a part of a building I was already going to a meeting at today. I went in and spoke to her and she has agreed to visit the school to see DD.

sunshine401 Thu 20-Sep-12 20:43:24

Does your child have SN ?

CatWantsPeopleFood Thu 20-Sep-12 20:55:28

no, but I got recommended to move the thread to this section

EscapeInTheCity Thu 20-Sep-12 20:55:36

Cat the school has said that they wanted her to see an ed psychologist but this has never materialized.

Seen what you have written, I would really encourage you to demand to see an ed psychologist with the school.
Also as others have said, go and see your GP too and ask for a referral for an assessment.

My experience with small school is that they are quite often unprepared to meet the needs of children that acts 'in a different way' mainly because they just don't see that sort of children on a regular basis. That means that problems aren't sorted properly, mistakes are made and children suffer from the consequences.
Has your even been in touch with the SENCO at the school? This is the person who 'takes care' of children with different needs (ie SN, SEN or very able children who get very bored). SENCO normally have a bit more experience/training about that sort of situation. I would have though that person should have been involved a long time ago on how to best handle your dd.

What stick out a lot from your last example, for example, is the fact that your dd didn't seem to have grasp that there was no more need to go to MrsX room. She was still expecting it to happen and kicked up[ a fuss when it didn't.
Perhaps starting by giving her lots of warnings would help a lot.
I am also getting the feeling that you have worked out a nice way to communicate with your dcs that means that they can cope with changes. It obviously works if there are little problems at home or when she is out with you etc.. Perhaps the school could learn from your experience and use warnings and visual aids too?

EscapeInTheCity Thu 20-Sep-12 20:56:24

Cat this thread is very well where it is now smile

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