School has suggested educational psychologist for DS in reception(23 Posts)
I have posted on here before regarding DS's trouble with concentrating and focusing. He is very energetic which can turn to frustration and anger, something that I have always associated with his delayed speech (which is much better now). Nursery always said he was very intelligent and got bored easily, leading to a lack of concentration.
He is 4 weeks into his reception class and today the teacher asked to see me after school, stressing there was nothing to worry about. She said that whilst he was tactile if it was on his terms, he resisted others touching him, i.e. guiding him by shoulders in forest school, holding his hand etc. He likes his own way certainly and has sometimes thought it funny to run away when he needs to walk sensibly but we have not found such behaviour that they are describing when he is at home.
They also mentioned his lack of concentration and focus in a group setting - he finds it difficult to sit still with the rest of the class unless he is given something to hold, i.e. a book or teddy. On a 1:1 basis he is really focused and interested and when he finds things difficult to deal with, he goes to the construction or small world area and the teacher has observed excellent imaginary play. She has asked me to consider having the school psychologist come and watch him, in order to give the school and us tips on getting him to concentrate in a school setting. I'm pregnant at the moment and very emotional and started to cry at the suggestion, and said I would have to discuss with DH. I then asked her what positive behaviour he was displaying and she was very forthcoming, saying the imaginary play, numbers and reading were his favourite things. He has got loads on at the moment apart from school so we all need to be aware of that, but at the same time I don't know what to expect and whether this will lead to a 'naughty' label.
Any advice would be much appreciated.
I'm absolutely no expert, but I think it is a positive thing for the school to get as much information about your child, so early on. They have clearly been watching him carefully to support him.
I know that many bright children have sensitive traits as well - my eldest certainly does. The school are probably working out the best way to deal with them.
Oh lots of hugs.
Really this won't lead to a "naughty" label. More the opposite. If he needs help they'll be getting in quickly, and avoiding getting just being the "naughty boy".
Many issues identified early and given the right intervention can be irradiated before they become a problem for the child or school.
It sounds like the school is being really proactive in trying to help your DS to get off to a good start.
It's not a disgrace - professional people are doing their job!
I think it is vital that children who are struggling with things in school are seen as early as possible. My 11 year old was eventually seen by the educational psychologist in year 6. This was after me pointing out in year 2,3,4 and 5 that there was an obvious problem. So he has had a lot of years in primary struggling and thinking he was stupid. He now goes to a secondary school which has acted on this immediately and things are tailored to suit his learning style.
My youngest who is now in year 3 has been struggling with the school system since reception, was seen by an Autism specialist in year 2 who said he was showing some signs of social communication difficulties. He is now in year 3 and is seeing the ed psyc. next week as other problems have surfaced, for hopefully 1-1 support.
So rather than being upset I would have been overjoyed if they would have been diagnosed in their reception years, it would have saved a lot of heart ache for all of us. So i can only see this as a positive for your little boy and in my opinion you should grab this with both hands and dont let them off the hook until he gets the support if it is needed. Lots of parents wish their schools where as proactive as yours seem to be.
I don't know if I'm missing something but...
My dd found it extremely difficult to sit still and concentrate in reception. she was still stroking the class animal at the end of year 1. She gets frustrated very easily and cross I would say. She shouts.
Also very imaginative.
I asked at the end of year 1 if teacher thought her not sitting still was a problem and she said no, there's at least another 5 in the class like this, if not more.
Anyway, now year 2, she's doing well academically - which surprised as all, most of all the reception teacher.
I think what I'm trying to say is that it may well be nothing and he might well just need a faster pace of things.
Maybe just think of it as extra information. Whatever they find out can only be helpful going forward. But don't think the worst. It may be all fine.
Thanks for your replies. I think initially the term 'psychologist' threw me as it seems such a heavy title doesn't it? Now I've had time to digest it all and discuss with DH I'm in a more accepting place. It's going to be a positive thing for him and they are doing their job by highlighting it so soon, and we also feel relieved that we're on the same page with regards his lack of concentration. It's just an unknown thing for us and I have no idea how they will assess him and then what they will do with that information, ie will we get a copy of a report? It's a small village school and I'm terrified that these things might get out and he could be viewed in a negative way. You just never want these things to affect your own child do you? Could we have done something ourselves to avoid this for him?
I'm also still confused about the touching thing - he's never be adverse to being touched so I'm wondering whether he's struggling to settle in? The teacher thought he may have felt he was going to be told off, which he wasn't, and that's the only thing I can think of as a reason. He also always asks if I'm coming back to collect him, but I've put that down to feeling unsettled due to the imminent arrival of DC2.
Alvinchip what was your DD like on a 1:1 basis? DS seems to just struggle within a group setting to sit still. Nursery said sometimes he was like that but never highlighted it as an ongoing issue.
How frustrating for those of you who have known something was wrong and help wasn't forthcoming.
Let the psych come and see him. It's not going to turn him into a different child. Of course he seems normal to you, he's your child, but the teacher can see him in comparison with every single four year old she's ever known, and something has clearly pricked her ears.
Ed psychs are like gold dust, your school sounds fantastic.
I don't think your son sounds particularly unusual, I don't think my DD would like to be touched by others unless it's with her permission (she's just started reception). And boys learn differently to girls, they prefer to learn on the move and do better in 1:1 situations (master and apprentice style which used to be a common way to teach boys back in the day).
I can't think the psychologist will pick up much by the sounds of it, but 'naughty' is not really in their vocab, so i wouldnt worry about him being labelled negatively. I personally wouldnt protest to an observation being carried out if it helps the teacher to understand your son better.
I'm pretty sure you should be allowed to see the psychologists report too.
Can you have his IQ tested? Often gifted children have a hard time because they are so quick and need so much more stimulation and get frustrated easily.
Mine was always a bit (ok very) bouncy, even on a one to one level. I remember the first term or reception the v young, supply teacher being horrified by her. But she was quickly replaced by a much more experienced deputy head who thought it all quite normal.
She suddenly took to reading really quickly around Easter. And in the final term, the teacher said to me "i expect she's one of these that's always got her head in a book". I didn't know what to say. She couldn't be further from the truth. She'd spent the entire evening beforehand leaping off the windowsill onto the sofa.
If it's just groups, he might well just be anxious about the numbers i think year 1 is easier because they work in small groups a lot more.
I'd go along with it and just keep an open mind I think. i remember when mine transferred from a nursery to a pre-school and her report saying "a v intelligent dc". The pre-school key worker said to me "well it says this but I can't see any evidence of it".
They are v often wrong is what I'm trying to say. Any information is useful but don't necessarily think there's anything wrong just yet.
Mine doesn't like physical attention from just anybody. i don't think she's the only one either - quite a few of them shy away if you go to put a hand on their shoulder or something.
Would you say the teacher is very experienced?
Sorry - hope I haven't come across of dismissing situations where somebody does have a real problem.
My friend is one, take the referral, in fact take every referral you are ever offered - what do you have to lose!
They will may run through some standardised tests - believe me they have seen it all before - you only know your child and have no experience of the spectrum of behaviours - they have seen it all.
I find it very useful and get lots of advice from her - and free tests (comprehension age etc) of my DC!!
blissydissy has posted exactly what I was going to say.
I ended up paying for a private EdPhy report.
The head teacher promised DD would get to see the county one, when he made his once a year visit.
There were two other dyslexic DCs who would have benefited too.
He never turned up
Definitely see this as a positive from the school. They get so little of an Ed Psych's time in a year. It doesn't mean your child needs any diagnosis of any sort, that isn't an EPs job. It means that the school want help with making sure that your child does well in their setting - that is the EPs job.
DS1 is under the EP in a small village school. He has Aspergers syndrome. The school were doing loads of stuff for DS naturally, and didn't think they needed to 'waste' their minimal EP time on DS. However, the EP put several strategies in place for him that have made a big difference and DS has blossomed. He has gone from the kid that hid under a table when he started at his old school and no-one knew what to do with him, to a house captain in year 6.
Sounds like a very very good idea. They don't often volunteer stuff that costs a lot, so they must feel there's a need and it can't hurt, can it?
I never understand why people see it as a negative. Some people have to fight for years to get any sort if assessment. I would say that you are very lucky- grasp it with both hands! It can't do any harm and it may do a lot if good. The earlier the intervention the better. Why wait until there is a real problem at 9yrs and have missed 4yrs?
Thanks for your replies. We're going to agree but as I said before, it's a shock to discover your precious child may need help. No one wants that ideally so I wasn't being unusual or dismissive of the idea. Added to that I'm pregnant so emotions running high . I'd rather know if something was wrong though so it could give us a heads up and having read do many schools don't refer when they should I'm grateful they have given us the option.
If he needs help, then he will get the help he needs. If they decide that he doesn't, then no harm was done. It would be terrible for him to need help, or assessment, and for nothing to be done, and for this to impact his schooling and social life. Grab the psychologist with both hands!
Join the discussion
Please login first.