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My poor DS sobbed for hours last night and told me some of the things that had been happening at school

(8 Posts)
Walkthedinosaur Sat 30-Aug-08 08:59:11

Just need to run this past someone DH working away this weekend and DC's go back to school on Tuesday, feeling a bit upset and not sure how to approach it.

DS1(6) has been looking forward to going back to school on Tuesday, really, really excited. Anyhow, he hasn't been feeling too well the last couple of days and I suppose is a little sensitive. He's dyspraxic and has just started seeing an OT type person (we're in France so not quite the same as UK) who is going to help him try and stop what he calls his "twirly whirlying", basically he has a pen, stick, anything in his hand and walks around telling stories to himself whilst twirling this stick in his fingers, he has always done it, it's a part of him. Anyhow at the end of last term he told me he wanted to stop twirly whirlying because it made him different to the other children at school, but he liked it. I got a referral to the OT and have told him she'll help him and I've said no more about the twirly whirlying, but have tried to keep him busy so that he "gets out of the habit of it" if you catch my drift.

Anyhow last night while I was preparing dinner he was sitting at the table talking to me and he started talking about twirly whirlying, and then all these tears arrived and he broke his heart and said he did it at school because nobody would play with him. When he asks if he can play they tell him to go away because he's stupid, when he goes to the canteen for lunch they put food in his water and he was crying saying how he had to drink his water with peas and potatoes in it. There are some lovely kids in his class and he goes to a playscheme on a Wednesday and I've seen him playing with them there no problems. What he told me is that there is one boy in the class, he's very popular and loud, the natural class leader, and speaking to a couple of the other mums they say their DC's say the same, anyhow this boy has decided that they're not allowed to play with DS because he's stupid and he's English! My son's French is really good now, but he's not fluent yet, I imagine by the end of this year he will be, their teacher last year must have seen something of this because DS told me that she'd told the class he was very clever because he can speak a bit of French and a lot of English.

The thing is I know DS can be a bit prickly, I don't know if it's the Dyspraxia thing but he can have a little trouble forming friendships. One of his English friends here came for a sleepover this week, and he was very mature compared to my DS although only 6 months older. Also, DS didn't behave well with him, he's really not good at sharing his toys and would have preferred nobody to play with the toys rather than share and I know I said to him on Tuesday that if you carry on like this nobody will want to play with you, so whether that has stuck in his head I don't know.

I'm not too sure what to do, the children have had 8 weeks of holidays so the classroom dynamics may have changed. They do have a parents evening on 27th September so I think it might be a good idea just to sit tight and see how the first few weeks go. DS and I have had a chat and I've told him that he needs to be pleasant and polite to everyone, say hello etc and think before he does something whether he would like someone to do that to him.

There's no point in speaking to the other boy's mum, I tried that last year, she's actually the only parent in the playground who refuses to acknowledge me when I say hello, it doesn't bother me, just makes me laugh, but then she has no relevance on my life whatsoever so it's easy for me.

I can't bring him home for lunch, school is is a 12 mile round trip, so the whole lunch hour would mean driving 24 miles every lunchtime, plus the dropping them off and picking them up every day, plus like everyone else these days, cash is tight and I can't afford the diesel to make an extra 2 trips into town a day. Packed lunches aren't allowed.

Sorry for this whole essay, I really worry about DS1 he's my PFB and it breaks my heart to see him as unhappy as he was last night. I realise a lot of it could have been to do with he wasn't feeling too well. He's woken up this morning and said I can't wait to go back to school on Tuesday it's boring being at home all the time, so I know it's not affecting him that much, but still, I just want to wrap him up in cotton wool and rip the heads off the kids who are being mean to him.

If anyone can offer me any advice that I can give him in how to deal with it, how to speak to the other children so that he can get involved in their games. Sometimes it's hard to see the wood from the trees when it's your own precious child who is hurting.

lilolilmanchester Sat 30-Aug-08 09:01:33

How sad for your DS. No advice as no experience of dyspraxia, but couldn't read and not post. Hope someone comes along with some advice soon xx

Gobbledigook Sat 30-Aug-08 09:07:48

Does he have any particular friends at school now? Are there people that you could help him strengthen friendships with by encouraging them to get together outside of school?

sherby Sat 30-Aug-08 09:12:19

Can you speak with him about telling a teacher or lunch supervisor if they are messing with his lunch, that is really not on

Twirly whirlying sounds so sweet

Can you get him very cool thing to play with a school that other children will want to be involved with, just so they can get to know him? Playdates with some of the other boys separated from the louder boy?

Doodle2U Sat 30-Aug-08 09:15:05

He could do with a kind of guardian angel at school, couldn't he?! Someone who'll look out for him, keep his food safe whilst he eats it, chivvy one or two other children to play with him etc.

I've only got two suggestions.

1) If he just had at least ONE good friend, he'd cope. Could you really go to town on the kid who came for the sleep-over - like suggest a sport or a club which both of them could go to outside school - they get to bond more closely and have a common interest they can talk about in school. More play dates with that child which include trips out where nobody's toys are needed?

2) Talk to school and see if they operate a system where the older children play with the younger children sometimes. OR see if school have a lunch time assistant who could keep a special eye on him.

Only other thing I can think of is, pop a wrapped snack and a water bottle in his bag, so he access to a fresh drink if his lunch time drink is spoiled.

The Little Emperor or natural class leader seems to operate in every class in every school. I have a similar situation with my seven year old DS and a little git boy in his class who rules everything but the worm is turning because the rest of the class are finally cottening on to the fact that he's a bossy bugger and he's not the only source of fun!

Walkthedinosaur Sat 30-Aug-08 09:17:20

I went through the whole list of children in his class with him last night, there were some he said were too naughty and he liked them but didn't want to play with them because they were always being sent to La Directrice (the headmistress) and he didn't want to get into trouble at school, there are others who he plays with at playscheme and who have been to our house and we've been to theirs, but they have told him they're not allowed to play with him at school, I'm presuming from the stronger personalities in the class, I know it's not from their parents. I'll try and catch their mums but it's difficult because they work full time so I don't often see them at school anymore. There were a couple of names I mentioned that my son said I don't like the games they play, so we had the whole discussion about compromise, and I'll try and reinforce that in the next few days, but don't want to lay it on too thick if he's going back on Tuesday and is already uptight.

I have thought about maybe looking into some external activities, he goes to his playscheme on Wednesday when I work and has piano lessons but that's a pretty solitary thing, but I was thinking of looking more into things like a karate class where he is socialising with other boys outside of school but it will help his balance and co-ordination at the same time.

DS2 is completely different, and although he doesn't speak much French at all, he's the one all the children gather round. How I could have produced two DC's at such polar opposites is beyond me.

Walkthedinosaur Sat 30-Aug-08 09:21:09

DS is also talking about taking his Top Trumps cards into school to play with someone, he said and if they don't play with me I can play by myself.

I actually already told him that I'll stick a water bottle in his school baag and he's pleased with that.

His little friend who came to stay doesn't go to the same school which is unfortunate.

He also told me that he never got invited to any birthday parties which I had noticed but thought he hadn't. He just didn't mention it until last night.

edam Sat 30-Aug-08 09:35:07

poor little sausage. Must be so upsetting for you to discover what's going on.

Water bottle and top trumps sound great. I don't know what French schools are like, but I think in your shoes I'd be approaching the teacher and saying that ds is being excluded, this boy seems to be the ringleader, could she keep an eye out or maybe have a class talk on playing together nicely?

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