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Child really struggling emotionally with Reception

(8 Posts)
dreamsofsleep Wed 11-Nov-15 14:09:19

My dd is 4.5, 5 at end of feb. she started Reception in January and has still not settled at all. She is hyper hyper sensitive (if anyone's ready the book the highly sensitive child, well, she's straight out of it), but also at home extremely strong willed and defiant. She's bright, funny and outgoing. But she notices every tiny thing people say and do and is hyper conscious of, for example, people 'frowning' at her.
She goes to school most days withou fuss and is fine when I pick her up but her behaviour at home is absolutely awful. Defiant, moody, massive tantrums. She is beyond exhausted, so tired she can barely see straight, yet impossible to get to sleep. Has not been asleep till gone 9 on past two nights and then awake at 6.30. Now where near enough sleep for her. I thought I had cracked it by using that child's hypnosis book the rabbit who wanted to sleep but she is bored of it now and refuses to have it. We have huge huge awful battles at bedtime because I am at wits end and she is shattered.
Teacher says she is a model pupil and one of the quieter ones in class.
She hasn't really made any good friends yet though she does play with people.
Any advice on how I can support her? Therapy? Drugs for sleeping? Ask school for educational psychologist input? Take her out till she's 5? Anyone's else's DC still not settled in reception?
Thanks in advance x

SimLondon Wed 11-Nov-15 17:24:48

sleep training?

Haahooooo Wed 11-Nov-15 21:51:00


I'm not sure how useful my advice is as my DD is only three and in nursery, but she does sound quite similar (sensitive, bright, well behaved at nursery but tantrums at home).

We also had the issue of too little sleep and bedtime taking ages. We always had to (actually we still do) wake her up in the morning and she's clearly tired.

What we have done to help is:

- Start bedtime much earlier. She can't really tell that we are doing this and it being dark helps. Bedtime still takes long but at least she's asleep earlier and there has been a positive impact on her behaviour I think.

- At bedtime, let her have things her own way a bit. So if she wants the light on, three enormous cuddly toys and a book to look at in her bed, we let her do that, which means she's calmer and ironically therefore goes to sleep earlier.

Good luck, hope someone more knowledgable come along soon.

dreamsofsleep Thu 12-Nov-15 00:37:48

Thanks both. Hahoooo before even reading your post i decided to let her have her own way a bit more - you must have been telepathically helping me! It did help, I think - wasn't a magic wand but bedtime was better than last couple of nights. I start bedtime routine around 6- impossible to start earlier as I only get in from work then. Dear lord I am slightly losing my mind. After spending two hours putting her to bed earlier I am now awake with dc2, 20 months who woke up randomly which he does about once a week. dH is away but thank god my mum is here and she is currently on round 1000 of twinkle twinkle by his cot as I have no reserves left at all.

Loftyjen Thu 12-Nov-15 20:45:07

Currently facing a similar thing with (Sept born) 5yo DD; started reception in Sept which coincided with us moving to a flat (we've got building work on at the mo).
DD currently mid tantrum, we're all over the shop with how we try to manage it (DH currently against door blocking her from opening it and she's screaming to come in).
It's so frustrating as she is loving and gets on at sch really well, but we don't know how to manage her which is scary for us both.
We also have a 24mo who is sometimes disturbed by her (luckily tonight he was out like a light) we've been lucky enough to find a 3b flat, but her room is the smallest & even smaller than a typical box room.
My feeling is we need to improve our communication, but don't know where to start (think might start A new thread!)

chrome100 Fri 13-Nov-15 09:01:02

No real advice but just to say I was your daughter - really well behaved at school but a complete nightmare at home. I found school very hard going and remember feeling I used all my energy there being good I had none left for home. I grew out of it about 12. Sorry.

Daisiemoo Fri 13-Nov-15 21:12:28

Talk to the teacher, can she do reduced hours? My lo is on part time until she ferls more settled in reception. Its been hard work but we are getting there, tantrums have stopped more or less. Hours are being upped slowly. Lots of reassurance and cuddles at home.

NCISaddict Fri 13-Nov-15 21:24:56

I would second putting her to bed earlier, I remember when mine were small my record was having them in bed at 4.30 one particularly bad day near the end of the autumn term. It did mean being super organised with a very easy to eat tea but paid dividends in much more pleasant children.

They were never later in bed than 6.00 during term time until about year 2 as the alternative of overtired and seriously grumpy children was too horrible to contemplate.

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