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4 year old hyper(?) active

(18 Posts)
MarzipanPiggy Mon 17-Apr-17 22:15:46

I've posted about DD before, mainly issues around getting her to relax enough to go to sleep in the evening.

This is a more general question about extremely active four year olds and how to get them to slow down.

DD is constantly on the move, both physically and mentally extremely active, doesn't sit still, doesn't slow down, never stops talking. She goes to sleep while talking at bedtime, talks in her sleep and wakes up talking.

At what point does this become a concern? Will she grow out of it? On the one hand it's lovely that she's always enthusiastic/into everything, but it's also exhausting for her and for us. And for DS who is entirely different and loves peace and quiet!

She calms down when she watches tv, or listens to a audiobook story while in the car. Sometimes while colouring or drawing. But if I read to her she's doing role polies around me and bouncing on the bed.

Anyone else have a DC like this?

JiltedJohnsJulie Thu 20-Apr-17 17:59:24

Not experienced this so can't be of much use sorry. Is she getting enough sleep? What time is she zonking out?

MarzipanPiggy Thu 20-Apr-17 20:30:08

Thanks for replying Jilted. I had almost given up hope!

She's almost certainly not getting enough sleep so that's part of the problem. Asleep by about 8.30pm, awake at 7am. Bedtimes are very hard. She simply cannot relax. She now has a music / star show which helps but she still falls asleep while talking to her cuddles, and only after having been out many times for a range of reasons...

We are seeing a paediatrician about something else (wee accidents) in June and I am considering mentioning the level of activity / bedtime issue too but not sure if it'll really be considered a medical issue...

At school she has to sit at the front of the mat so the teacher can keep an eye on her fidgeting, but other than that she seems to be doing well / very enthusiastic to learn and experiment.

Difficult to get a sense for how normal things are especially with your eldest!

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 21-Apr-17 16:42:40

It is very hard to judge, especially when she's your eldest, like you said. It's almost like the eldest is the practice model smile

I would definitely mention it to the Paed, and having to sit at the front in class. Lots of background information can only be a good thing surely?

MarzipanPiggy Sat 22-Apr-17 20:00:06

Yes practice model sounds about right!

Will see what the paediatrician says. I suppose she is the way she is but it'd be useful to know whether there is anything we can do to help her calm down.. Apart from anything else it must be exhausting for DD herself..

farfarawayfromhome Sat 22-Apr-17 20:13:36

Have you tried the headspace app? It has great mini meditation exercise for kids , even small ones. I was sceptical but my toddler loves it.

twoforthepriceofone22 Sun 23-Apr-17 02:39:54

Does she have plenty of opportunities to really burn up her energy? Somewhere that she can run/jump/shout as much as she needs?
Does she have a trampoline? Go to sports classes?
I always say looking after my 5 year old ds is like owning a large dog, needs exercising 3 times a day no matter what.
You probably already do this but it might just be worth considering if she has enough opportunity to let loose every day.

MarzipanPiggy Mon 24-Apr-17 19:26:42

Thanks, I will look into the headspace app.

At school she has some form of sport three times a week, and she does gymnastics, tennis and swimming outside school. Of course it may be that what she actually needs more of is 'unstructured running around'.

I know it's not good to compare too much but compared to her peers she seems to be very energetic and also emotional. The most frequently used expression in this house is some version of 'calm down a bit please'.

I don't want to talk her down as she's really caring, sensitive and imaginative too, just never still...

MarzipanPiggy Mon 24-Apr-17 19:28:41

Actually I think a trampoline would be brilliant. Great idea.

Naty1 Mon 24-Apr-17 19:46:59

Any hearing issue/ear infections or sight problems?

My dd is/was similar. (Would never sit for stiry at playgroups). She has got better at school. Her attention for some things is very long though (reading herself).

Yellowcups Mon 24-Apr-17 20:04:27

My boy is exactly like this. Asleep eventually for around 8.30 and awake just before 7. Sleeps in longer on school days 🙄.

No advice really. I can't get him to sleep longer or earlier. He eats no sweets choc or deserts or juice as I firmly believe ( despite what MN and scientific research claims) artificial sugar changes his energy and mood. He has got to 5 with twice a day exercise ( not just walking to shops but hardcore running scooting etc). He does respond to school well but is the most energetic.

When we leave softplay he will always ask 'what are we doing now mum?'. Other parents smile as compared to my one their children seem positively lazy.

I am using classical music at bedtime. During day I explain constantly that he needs to turn his volume down or off sometimes.

Like ur girl probably he lives his life with constant commentary. Speaking singing and dancing his ideas of which He often asks me to film him.

I too would happy for any advice.

Yellowcups Mon 24-Apr-17 20:06:41

Fortunately concentration isn't an issue.

twoforthepriceofone22 Mon 24-Apr-17 21:38:50

She sounds quite like my ds and yes he does seem to regularly need to just let rip, run, jump, climb and shout at the top of
his voice, no amount of structured exercise replaces this for him,

MarzipanPiggy Mon 24-Apr-17 21:51:03

Ah you have my sympathy YellowCup, we are clearly in the same boat.

My gut feeling is that it's probably within the spectrum of normal four/five year old behaviour, just at the exhausting end, and all the more surprising as DH and I are extremely lazy calm people.

Her vision or hearing hasn't been tested, although I've not noticed anything to suggest there might be a problem. No ear infections.

The classical music at bedtime thing is a very good idea and we do have a gentle starlight / music show thingy for her which does help, but somehow she manages to 'fuss' even over that. It's not in the right place / at the right volume / the room is too dark or not dark enough to see the stars etc etc. She'll get up fifteen times to move it two millimetres to the left or right..

Yellowcups Tue 25-Apr-17 08:17:16

Marzipan I do find that talking helps the most and explaining how I'd like him to be. It all sounds a bit negative but I do the whole ' I expect you to walk beside me to school with no jumping ir shouting'. We also have a points in a jar for good stuff that happens, reading or kindness or remembering to turn his volume down. He's quite responsive to it especially as points get taken out.

My worst time of the day is walking to and from school. All the other children are dragging their feet with tiredness but my boy is running around like a loon and it's not as simple as 'making him behave' ' telling him off' as these things don't work unless your child is scared of you or passive.

Xmasbaby11 Tue 25-Apr-17 08:25:37

Hi, my 5 yo sounds similar! We pick her up at 5.30 after a full day at childminder and school and she'll ask what we're doing next!

She isn't tired at bedtime but settles and sleeps 8.30pm to 7am. I think that's enough sleep tbh so I'm not worried about that.

Dd talks all the time, whatever she's doing, and yes at bedtime and wake up still chattering. It's hard to get a word it, literally, and even her friends ask her to stop talking.

With dd the hardest thing is getting her to stand still or sit still. She struggles to concentrate and this is a problem at school.

She's seeing a paediatrician. She is not considered hyperactive but is being assessed for ADD.

I think your dd sounds at the active end of normal but see your GP if worried.

Xmasbaby11 Tue 25-Apr-17 08:29:06

Things we say often to dd:

Please calm down!
Stay still.
Stop running round.
Please stop talking.


If your dd is able to listen and concentrate and do ok at school I wouldn't be too worried. Dd is struggling which is why she's seeing a paediatrician.

MarzipanPiggy Tue 25-Apr-17 14:16:36

Thank you I do think there's something about being really clear about what is expected. Sometimes I wonder if even 'please calm down' is too abstract and I need to be more specific eg stop kicking the chair with your legs and don't talk while eating.

Xmasbaby sorry you are having similar struggles. How is ADD diagnosed? Excuse my ignorance on the subject. I will definitely mention all this when we see the paediatrician in June, even though that's about something else.

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