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Should I be concerned about DD2 (sorry, it's a bit long!)?

(13 Posts)
petunia Wed 26-Sep-07 11:35:54

DD2 is 4.8 years and has just started in the Reception class at school. She loves school and can't wait to get there; even wanting to go at weekends!

But just before last Christmas, her playgroup teachers said that she wasn't really relating very well to other children. She didn't like taking in turns and didn't really talk or play with other children unless it was on her terms. She seemed to be quite happy playing by herself if the one friend she has, wasn't there. She also didn't move on with games e.g. one thing playgroup said was that she'd be doing some jumping along a line, go and do something else, and then go back to the jumping along the line. (I don't really know how she's supposed to "progress" on from that and just think that she likes repetitive things and routine). She also doesn't really listen to instructions, or listens to the first part but forgets/loses interest/takes no notice of the 2nd part.

I ended up going to meetings at playgroup, with the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinators from playgroup and school. The first meeting at the beginning of this year, they decided that they'd tackle this by playing board games (where she had to take it in turns with other children). They even gave her an Individual Education Plan. About 3 months later I went to a 2nd meeting to review whether any of this had worked, and it turned out it hadn't. She still wasn't listening fully to instructions, although I think she was taking it in turns more.

Yesterday, the Educational Needs lady was there to see how DD2 has settled in to school. She wrote a report to say that nothing's really changed from when she was at playgroup. DD still doesn't really listen to instructions fully and during PE yesterday, preferred to look at things in the PE store rather than do pairwork with other children.

She doesn't seem to have any other problems. She's fine with doing work on her own, writes her name, does pictures, knows letters of the alphabet and numbers etc. She just seems to not like playing/working with other children, but is able to do this when an adult helps.
I wondered whether anyone else has had this and whether it sorts itself out. At the back of my mind is that she is only 4.8, and that something will "click" sooner or later that she has to work with other children at school.

ronshar Wed 26-Sep-07 11:47:31

Having read your post I cant really see what the problem is with your dd.
I am not an educational what ever they call themselves, but surely what you are describing is a fairly normal 4 year old child.
My dd1 is now 8 and she still gets told off for calling out in class, when she has the answer she wants everyone else to know! She also used to get into trouble at pre school because she would take turns etc. It is part of her character that she is quite dominant. If she were a boy it would be a problem!!

ronshar Wed 26-Sep-07 11:48:38

My typing is rubbish today.
I meant wouldnt be a problem and wouldnt take turns.

petunia Wed 26-Sep-07 11:56:06

I can't see what the problem is either! I just find the whole thing a bit depressing! I guess I see DD in the "big picture" type of thing, doing well with her name, numbers etc, but then you go to these meetings, and they're so focused on how she doesn't do this or she doesn't do that. I actually came home from that 2nd playgroup meeting in tears! When I've talked to other people, they can't see what the problem is either!

ronshar Wed 26-Sep-07 12:02:13

Right excuse my french but go tell them to F* themselves and leave you and dd alone.
Sorry for bad language but it makes me so angry when mothers all over the place are made to feel bad about their ability to bring up their children.

A policeman friend of ours was telling me that he arrested a woman recently who had a dd of 3. This child was covered in cigarette burns and all manor of stuff. Horrible. Not one social worker knew about it.
And there they are making you feel bad because your dd is not a wet blanket who conforms to all the normal social expectations at 4!!!
Sorry it makes me mad.

cornsilk Wed 26-Sep-07 12:05:05

ronshar you know your child better than the school. Tell them you are quite happy with your dd's progress if that's how you feel.

cornsilk Wed 26-Sep-07 12:06:00

That should be petunia(sorry!)

pagwatch Wed 26-Sep-07 12:07:05

I should say from the outset that my son has autism and I have spent a lot of time working with 'professionals' to help him withhis issues.
To be very clear I am NOT suggestingthat your child has asd but I would just like to say that I am actually heartened that a school are looking at a childs ability to interact comfortably withtheir peers and trying strategies to help develop this essential skill.
The fact that your child has one close friend means that she can form and nurture relationships but a child who interacts best with adults can.. well frankly ..can be just like my child.
I think it is very unsettling to have issues queried and discussed but if you are comfortable that your child is happy and sociable then all is fine.
#But i would hesitate to be too dismissive when the school are at least focussing on a vital emergent skill. A child with difficulties in social communication can really struggle and any help is a good idea IMO.
Most of my peers have had huge frustrations trying to get these areas dealt with - too many blinkered schools have ignored parents concerns if the child is coping withthe academic side of things.
I'm sure your DD is fine but I just wouldn't be grumpy that the school are being attentive grin especially as this is an area that can be helped enormously. Hope that makes sense

petunia Wed 26-Sep-07 12:22:20

pagwatch- thanks for your help, that gives the other side of things. I guess I'm just trying to sort in my own mind whether there could be something wrong and whether I can do something to help. DD2 is completely different to DD1 at this age (they've both started school at the same age). DD1 was/is very shy, couldn't write her name when she started school, didn't relate to other children at playgroup but once she started school, started making lots of friends and now, at the age of 8, has a bit more confident is actually beginning to enjoy school. DD2 is quite an impulsive child, does things without thinking and is generally enthusiastic about everything. I've also got ringing in my ears, what the headmistress at the school said at the 2nd meeting that I went to, that she "can't spare the staff" to give DD any extra attention/1 to 1 teaching if that's what she needs. So I wonder if it's me that'll have to do that in school or at home.

ronshar Wed 26-Sep-07 12:23:28

Thank you Pagwatch. That is probably what I should have said. You have made a far more rational post than my over emotional one.

(it does annoy me though).

pagwatch Wed 26-Sep-07 12:32:54

Ronshar grin

Petunia - your DD may well just be settling in and I always recommend trusting your instincts. Have you thought about inviting a couple of girls to tea - not the girl she is friends with but a different one. She may just be comfortable once she gets a bit more familiar - which is actually quite nice and discriminating smile.
That would have the bonus of letting you see how she feels about other friends and helping her get used to other social situations?

petunia Wed 26-Sep-07 12:40:12

ronshar- actually part of me would like to tell these professionals that too, but that's mainly because of the experience I had with DD1. The health visitor thought there was a problem with her weight when she was 9 months old, and we went through her being weighed at their clinics every month, and ended up taking her to the local hospital for urine and painful blood tests. I didn't think anything was wrong and they didn't find anything wrong. But it narks me too that the fact that I was her mother and used to be a Nanny (who has looked after quite a few children in her Nanny-ing years!) doesn't get taken into account at all when dealing with some of these people.

petunia Wed 26-Sep-07 12:41:24

pagwatch- I might try that. Thanks for the help.

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