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Reception teacher wants me to get DD referred to Paediatric Development expert

(81 Posts)
threelittlerapscallions Wed 02-Dec-15 11:06:17

DD started Reception end of September, she turns 5 in the Spring. She has settled well and has made lots of friends. The teacher however thinks I should get her checked out by a paediatrician as she says her fine and gross motor skills are behind most of the other children eg she can't do/undo her buttons and has not written any letters though she is learning to recognise many letters now.

She also does not talk to the teachers much so they have asked me if her speech is OK and I have said she talks really well at home and I know she talks a lot to her friends and her sister.

I tend to think, she is 4, she is happy just to leave it as children develop at different rates. I did mention to the teacher she is hypermobile so did walk late (just after she turned 2). At that time we saw a Paediatrician who said she was fine - just hypermobile children later to walk and to me she seems fine running around and on her scooter etc. She is a bit impractical eg with the buttons and I would like her to start writing some letters but I thought this would come with time.

Should I see the GP and get her referred to paed or should I wait and see as no need to label her if nothing wrong surely?

If anyone has any experiences to share I would be interested.

threelittlerapscallions Wed 02-Dec-15 11:08:08

The teacher also says her hands seem not very strong so this could be why she is not writing letters. She does do drawings at home and plays with dough etc.

Keeptrudging Wed 02-Dec-15 11:10:34

Get her seen. The sooner the better when it comes to motor skills, as she could benefit from physio. Teachers do often pick these things up because they've seen so many children over the years so have a pretty good idea of what is 'normal/doable' for a child that age.

Getting tests done won't harm her - it's not invasive.

gamerchick Wed 02-Dec-15 11:14:13

I agree, it won't do any harm and it's better than having to fight for every little thing later on if she doesn't catch up.

It won't hurt and it'll give peace of mind at the least and at the most early intervention can do wonders.

MajesticWhine Wed 02-Dec-15 11:15:02

I would get her seen. There is no damage to come from having her assessed and it really isn't the case that she would be labelled. It may be that she needs to build up her strength in certain areas. I know loads of kids who have been referred and have been recommended for some speech therapy or occupational therapy. It's not indicative of a major disorder but just some aspect of development that can be improved with the right activities.

threelittlerapscallions Wed 02-Dec-15 11:15:03

Thanks Keeptrudging I may book a GP appt and see what he says. DH thinks children get labelled too soon and we should wait. I know the tests won't harm her but I have read so much about children being stressed out in primary school and all of them are so different and develop at different rates - for example my friends little boy didn't speak properly until he was 5, he hardly got any speech therapy as she didn't get him referred for ages and now at nearly 7 he is much better (though quiet) and doing really well at school, he is just a quiet little boy.

RiverTam Wed 02-Dec-15 11:17:08

Get her seen. My niece's pre school picked up on her ASD, a lot of us thought as you did but my sister took their advice and by the end of reception she had a diagnosis and the right support was put in place.

threelittlerapscallions Wed 02-Dec-15 11:17:10

I am also worried the GP will think I am overreacting as she seems perfectly normal little girl though a bit shy with strangers. Will get an appt and ask him.

Iwantakitchen Wed 02-Dec-15 11:17:41

All that may happen if she sets a professional is that your daughter might get a diagnosis, and may get may get more support at school. There are many things that can be done to support and help children with hypermobility, especially when it comes to holding a pen, strengthening the muscles in the hands/fingers, etc. The test is fun, there's a lot of jumping around and standing on one foot, which my son loved. I would say go ahead with the test, it's likely that your daughter will benefit from it.

RiverTam Wed 02-Dec-15 11:18:08

I have to say I think your friend was wrong in her approach.

threelittlerapscallions Wed 02-Dec-15 11:18:52

River that is interesting - does ASD manifest differently in girls? I ask because DD talks well but she does get odd obsessions with things like a certain colour and everything has to be that colour if possible.

RiverTam Wed 02-Dec-15 11:20:14

I don't know as she's the only child I know with ASD. And I am absolutely no expert. This is where getting your GP to refer you will help.

threelittlerapscallions Wed 02-Dec-15 11:20:55

River - My friend did her best but she is not in the UK and in the rural area where she lives there was not much help available and she is a shy individual herself so did not push for the help.

VocationalGoat Wed 02-Dec-15 11:26:05

I'd follow through with her request. It can't hurt and if anything, it will offer everyone reassurance all around and put to bed any anxieties. Sometimes teachers are
way off the mark and other times they can be more objective than parents and see things that we're missing.

4-5 is a funny age because there are kids who can't unbutton a shirt to save their lives or barely draw a picture and then there are kids who can already swim lengths and ride a bike without stabilisers. I find by 7, everyone is on a bit more of an equal footing.

The teacher is probably being overly zealous and that's not a bad thing. She's made some observations and flagged them. But you are mum and you know your DD best. Still, I'd get the referral just to assure myself mainly that the teacher's concerns are nothing to worry about.

Seeline Wed 02-Dec-15 11:28:25

I would have thought a child is far more likely to become stressed if frustrated/worried that they are not able to do things their friends can do, than if they get extra support with something.
I'd at least take her to the GP - teachers have lots of experience.

GnomePhone Wed 02-Dec-15 11:31:27

Your GP will likely take you more seriously if you say that it is her teacher who has raised concerns (not necessarily good, but tends to be true ime).

Re stress, getting her checked out won't stress her, it will be more stressful for her in the long run if problems aren't identified and supported. For example she may run into an unsympathetic teacher or TA in later years who gets impatient if she 'won't' speak, or if they don't think she is 'making enough effort' with her writing.

If she grows out of any problems then all well and good, but that is more likely to happen with the correct help early on. smile

lljkk Wed 02-Dec-15 11:34:26

What GnomeP said. Might be a waste of time, but might be worthwhile & no harm done.

LMGTFY Wed 02-Dec-15 11:37:24

Hypermobilty and dyspraxia often go together, have a read about dyspraxia and see if this could be why the teacher has made the suggestion to refer. It's not a label, it's a way to ensure your child has the best support, I speak from experience.

ThatsNotMyHouseItIsTooClean Wed 02-Dec-15 11:37:49

Her lack of dexterity may be linked to her hypermobility.
Why wouldn't you get her checked & get some extra support for her is if is considered appropriate? The other children will quickly pick up if she is the only one not able to do things like button her shirt or need the teachers help and, whilst they may not bully her about it, they may adjust how they treat her & play with her.

LIZS Wed 02-Dec-15 11:43:09

It would be worthwhile to go back to the paediatrician and ask about dyspraxia and occupational therapy. An assessment leading to a programme of exercises and possible equipment ( writing slope, pencil grips, sensory cushions etc) could all help her as her writing skills and concentration develop. Early intervention is a positive thing. Hypermobility and dyspraxia can be linked. The Dyspraxia Foundation website could help you identify the areas she struggles with compared to her peers.

Keeptrudging Wed 02-Dec-15 11:47:16

My son has hypermobility/dyspraxia. Unfortunately this wasn't picked up until end of primary as he also has ADHD. Everything was put down to him having ADHD. Hospital were horrified that school hadn't spotted/referred much sooner as they could have done a lot of physio with him when he was younger (I'd had concerns for years but been fobbed off).

Three, ASD in girls does often 'look' different, which is why it is (IMO) underdiagnosed. They're often less visible/disruptive in class, so less of a 'problem'. In fact, can often look very well-behaved/quiet, but really suffer emotionally/socially. It's worth having a read about it.

Want2bSupermum Wed 02-Dec-15 11:59:10

Go and get the assessment. I'm so happy we did it for DS. I knew he was behind but I didn't realize just how far behind he was. At 23 months, developmentally he was about average for 9-12 months. We had been told by first doctor to wait and see and moved to a different doctor when we moved home. The new doctor was very concerned and extremely supportive.

Teachers see it all so I would def listen and push for the assessment the teacher recommended. If the GP pushes back I wouldn't hesitate to communicate this to the school and get them involved. We are in the US but the assessment will be the same. They move on to another section of the test once they have failed to complete 3 items in a row which made more of a chilled affair for DS.

threelittlerapscallions Wed 02-Dec-15 12:33:41

Thanks everyone. DD is the eldest of three and the first to go to school so I am not so experienced as some of you are. her younger sister who is nearly 3 can do all of the practical/physical things DD can do and a lot more, the younger ones speech is not quite as good but not far off. DD2 was also toilet trained at 2 wheras DD1 was three and a half.

I good friend of mine whose daughter plays regularly with DD thinks my DD has dyspraxia.

I had discounted ASD as her speech is fine and she is friendly with children her own age but I have heard it can appear different in girls.

Supermum what is the test like? DD is a lot more confident and will likely speak to the doctors if her sister is there and we can pretend she is talking the test too.

DDs teacher is lovely, young and very recently qualified but the SENCO who is also deputy head has also observed DD and agrees with the teacher.

threelittlerapscallions Wed 02-Dec-15 12:34:11

I have made GP appointment for next Tuesday.

RiverTam Wed 02-Dec-15 12:37:13

DN also had excellent speech and vocabulary and is socially confident. If you met her for an hour or two you would probably never know.

That's great you've got an appt with the GP.

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