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Ds not settling well into reception..having a really bad week behaviour wise. Any advice?

(11 Posts)
punchandjudy Wed 30-Sep-09 18:06:09

Ds has just started reception (he has already attended the schools nursery last year)and is having a tough time.

Yesterday dh was called in to see the teacher after ds hurt another child, and again today I was called in to discuss another incident where he hurt someone.

The teacher said it was a 'nasty' incident today, and therefore ds missed his welly walk as a punishment.

Ds is very strong willed and opinionated and lashes out if he feels something/someone is being unfair (this includes him not getting his own way hmm)

Anyway, tonight I have said he isn't to have the tv on because he was unkind at school. Which after a bit of moaning he accepted and he is now in bed as he is shattered.

I am worried that he is beginning to get a reputation in class among the children and other parents...especially when the teacher is describing his beaviour as 'nasty' in front of the other parents. I am also a teacher, although at another school...and I would have such conversations in private with parents so not to label a child this early on.

So what should I do...ds has only just turned 4 at the end of August.

punchandjudy Wed 30-Sep-09 18:17:07


easymover Wed 30-Sep-09 18:58:23

Sorry your DS is having such a bad time.
I think the teacher is very wrong to talk about any child where other parents can hear.I'm not even sure i would have liked him missing the Welly walk has punishment,if he had been my son.I'm sure some other form of punishment would have been better,holding the teachers hand while on the walk maybe.He is only just 4 after all.
I think its a big change going full time then going to nursery.Could he just be tired so play up abit?
I think if parents and children hear teachers saying how 'nasty' and 'naughty' so and so is,they then treat that child like they are naughty ect.Which of course has a knock on affect.i.e. that child being even more naughty and nasty.
Not really sure what the answer is.See how he is after the early night.If he isn't any better how about a star chart.Thats how i got my DD to sleep all night.
Good luck

sweethoney Wed 30-Sep-09 19:08:11

He sounds as if he is just adjusting to reception class and is taking time to settle in. He is also one of the youngest in the year and so maybe not as emotionally advanced as the others (some maybe about to turn 5!). However, these are not excuses and he has to learn that hitting etc is unacceptable. Are there many children in the class?

The teacher was right to punish your DS and she chose not to let him go on the welly walk. This was prob to set an example to the other children too. Maybe it was a little harsh, but that is what she thought would work. However, she was out of order discussing his beahviour in front of other parents as it is inappropriate. Let it pass this time, but in the future insist she talks in private with you.

It is best to work with the teacher (as you know) and ask for a daily update on his behaviour. In the meantime lots of praise when he is good and plenty of sleep as he is obviously exhausted at the moment.

I imagine by Christmas it will have all settled down smile

lolapoppins Thu 01-Oct-09 13:33:30

"Ds is very strong willed and opinionated and lashes out if he feels something/someone is being unfair (this includes him not getting his own way )"

Snap! Well, he was like that at school, rarley at home. He is nearly 7 now.

I have no advice (he has been home educated since year one, as it was so much heart ache for all of us - he spent more time sat outside the head masters office than in class learning anything, so I thought I may as well teach him myself as I was spending all evening teaching him the phonics he should have learned in the day), but just wanted to tell you, you are not alone. We went though all the same and worse with ds. He was 'asked to leave' two schools (private, so they can get away with that) and we were constantly blamed for his behaviour, even though he was fine at home and there wasn't much we could do about his behaviour in school.

You need to ask the teacher to speak to you privately when she has concerns. Ds' teachers always spoke about him in front of other parents at picking up time, and yes, it does lead to a child/parents being alienated (we learned that the hard way). No one wants there child to be friends with the 'naughty kid'.

Because ds was labelled as 'the naughty one' he got upset, angry, frustrated and played up to it. There was even the incident where he was blamed for kicking a football and breaking a window - during the week he was off school with chicken pox hmm

potoroo Thu 01-Oct-09 13:58:16

Really sorry to hear this.
DS (4) has also had some ups and downs - can get quite pushy with other children. And last week he had a massive tantrum and kicked a teacher. However the school are handling in brilliantly.

They praise him lots.
They let him have a nap or quiet time by himself, especially after lunch.
They distract him if he looks like he's getting agitated - get him to do special jobs.
He has a special red mat that he sits on in front of his teacher - she tells him it is his special spot so he can be her helper.
When they line up, he often holds his teacher's hand to help her count the other children.

As a result, he has not be labelled (yet!) and is enjoying school.

When there have been instances, they have taken me aside to tell me what has happened, but have stressed that he is a lovely child and they will continue working on his behaviour.
They have also stressed that for now, any issues at school are dealt with at school and should not be rehashed at home.

Do you think that you could ask them if they could try any of these strategies?

mistermister Sat 03-Oct-09 13:43:03

Hi, PunchandJudy, agree with most of what has been said so far, i.e. the teacher should definitely not discuss this in front of other parents and could maybe have requested a short meeting with you after school?! Is that what you would do, being a teacher yourself? Agree that 4 is still very young and that he is maybe asserting himself/pushing the boundaries to see what is/isn't acceptable. You reinforced the discipline given at school by not letting him have any TV, so that's good in the respect that you are consistent in your approach. Perhaps the teacher could implement some form of award system incorporating being kind/not hitting/general good behaviour? And hopefully (eventually) it will become almost second nature? Just carry on bigging up the positives and as Potoroo mentioned, see if they can give him some "special" jobs to distract him/make him feel like he's really part of the class (which of course, he is)!! Don't worry - my DS actually made my eyes water one day (he's now in yr 8 and he said this last year) - I realised that he was going to be sharing his tent with one of the "naughty" boys in his class and he said "don't worry, mum - just because he's naughty, doesn't make him a bad person.." How true. Good luck.

buy1get1free Sat 03-Oct-09 13:49:42

Next time, just quietly tell the teacher not to speak to you about any incident in public and go into the class room. How was your ds at nursery? Are these incidences something that has only happened since he started school?

RainbowsandDaisies Thu 22-Oct-09 22:14:53

Having similar trouble - son not settling in very well at all. He is apparently being disruptive, distracted and not listening to instructions - he has also hit another pupil (which is totally out of character - although the not listening is not!)

I am also a teacher which I think can make it harder to take - has certainly made me worry more!

His teacher has tried a few strategies - he is coming home at lunch time on a Thurs and Fri. He is now a computer monitor which is supposed to help with his confidence. She has also given him a cushion with his name on it to help him to sit still during story time or teacher led activities. This apparently has worked. In the afternoons when tired she has given him a'buddy' to go into the garden with as he loves being outdoors. Its still early days and he is exhausted but hopefully things will improve with a bit of trial and error. Just thought you might liek to know you are not alone!

LittleBigSis Thu 22-Oct-09 23:46:46

Hi, don't despair; our son is now in Year 1 and for the last few weeks has been on a tick chart at home and at school - put in place by the school. I am sure the problem was the transition from Reception to Year 1(Think what a huge change starting school is after nursery/playgroup). He kept having behaviour issues (mainly silliness, inattentiveness and unnecessary talking) and we were beginning to despair. He has always been lively but he was agitated and confrontational at home and seemed to have no conscience or understanding of how to curb himself. We were called in to see the deputy head, then after a really bad day after the first week with the chart I had to see the head. I was mortified. And panicking. But we fully supported the action the school has taken and have worked together to get it right. The chart began 3 weeks ago. He has had 2 fantastic weeks getting all his ticks on 7 of the last 9 school days. I think the head and deputy head have used up a huge chunk of their sticker stock on him but he has loved the praise for his good behaviour; at school, at home and from family and friends. We kept home and school charts separate and didn't punish bad behaviour at school at home except after seeing the head when he and I agreed ds shouldn't go to a party next day. I'm not counting my chickens until he's back after half term, but I am amazed in how quickly the change has happened.
Your boy is probably exhausted, especially as he is such a young one. They need to know their boundaries and the boundaries must be consistent and universal, for school AND home. It sounds like you are doing all that. Persevere. We feel like we have our lovely boy back and it is a joy.
I quickly got into the habit (back in Reception) of being in close at collection time so I could check quickly and quietly on his behaviour, and his teachers so far have reciprocated with discretion. I hope they appreciate my concern for how each day has been. Anything more than a word or two from the teacher should certainly take place discreetly.
Last year, the child whose mother had to have a 'chat' with the Reception teacher most often (and for whom I felt nothing but sympathy - thankfully) became my son's best friend at school and I can see why, they are both similarly animated and exuberant.
As a teacher you are uniquely placed to understand the type of parent you don't want to be and you can work with your son's teacher to get the best from him. It's early days, the kids are shattered. You have half term to relax and enjoy time together. He's only 4. And you are definitely not alone.

RainbowsandDaisies Fri 23-Oct-09 16:05:11

Thankyou so much - very wise words my son is also VERY animated and exuberant - to say the least - wouldn't normally harm a fly though! Think maybe these types do take a while to settle. Will see what happens next half term - reward chart sounds great. Nice to know other mums feel they want instant daily feedback - felt I was being a bit of a 'fuss pot' this week but its so nice to know how each day has gone even its just one or two words. I teach older children so we don't tend to have that relationship with parents as the children often travel to and from school alone. Anyway nice to know it's within the realms of normality
Thanks again

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