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What's the best way to help DD1?

(9 Posts)
flashingnose Fri 01-Jul-05 14:27:46

DD1 (aged 4.5) is having a really hard time at school at the moment. She's in the school nursery and will start Reception in September. There are a group of girls with very strong characters and one in particular who is very bright but very mean. DD1 is in tears on a daily basis about things these girls are saying to her (for example, yesterday she said the girls wouldn't let her in the dressing up area because she "had the wrong coloured hair" - dd1 is blonde and they have brown hair).

Is this kind of thing classed as bullying? Should I have a word with the Teacher or does she have to "toughen up"? I really want to do the right thing and we've given her strategies which have helped up to a point, but I'm wondering now whether I should really be getting the teacher involved. One of the things that has stopped me up until now is that the ringleader was a good friend of dd1 and her Mother is a good friend of mine, so I guess I was rather hoping that this would sort itself out without my intervention.

I'd really appreciate any advice/thoughts/experiences. Girls can be so unkind .

(P.S. have to go out in a bit, so will come back to this on my return - TIA)

starlover Fri 01-Jul-05 14:29:33

hmm, yes i would say that this is a form of bullying.
definitely speak to her teacher! If they are saying nasty things to her and making her cry that's totally out of order.

Twiglett Fri 01-Jul-05 14:30:47

personally I'd get the teacher involved .. but really don't think the other children are being 'mean' I don't think they understand the impact on other children at this age .. they are still learning, they are only 4 ..but it does need to be addressed in the school environment as well as at home

I would also speak to the mother personally so it can be reinforced at home, but in a 'I know this is natural but DD is so upset' way

flashingnose Fri 01-Jul-05 14:35:23

Twiglett, the ringleader definitely knows she's being mean. I thought like you that 4 was far too young for this kind of behaviour until I witnessed it with my own eyes .

Twiglett Fri 01-Jul-05 14:50:09

disagree .. the ringleader knows she's saying something and getting a reaction that is interesting to her but at 4 you have no capacity for empathy and being mean involves being able to realise how the other person is feeling

it looks mean to an adults eyes though but needs explaining to a child of that age and continuous reinforcement

Earlybird Fri 01-Jul-05 15:33:26

flashingnose - I'm so sorry to hear your dd is going through this. I started a thread earlier this week about the same sort of thing. My dd is the same age as yours, and the same sort of thing is happening to her too. Isn't it heartbreaking to see our much loved dds reduced to tears by someone who's being mean?

I haven't reached a solution for our situation either. But, I have spoken to the teachers who have given a general "we must be kind to others" sort of talk to the class, and they have promised to be extra vigilant for this sort of treatment. (They also say that unfortunately this behaviour is common for girls at this age.)

I have also spoken to the other mums (two of them) to say that I know my dd can be extra sensitive, but that she's having a hard time at the moment due to some mean treatment from other children...without saying that it's their dd's who are causing the problem.

We've also rehearsed possible responses for dd when another situation arises. And finally, we've done a heavily supervised playdate so that dd and one of the bullies could "enjoy" each other's company which perhaps could make the other child friendlier?? (who knows, I'm just hoping...). Finally, I have arranged a few playdates with other children who are outside the "pack" so that dd has allies to spend time with if/when the mean behaviour occurs, and so that she's getting some positive peer interaction too.

I don't have a solution. I sympathise with you completely and totally. To be honest, I'm relieved that school is almost out for summer, as I hope the problem will pass over the break - especially as both the little girl bullies will be at dd's new school.

Best of luck, and please let us know how you get on. Also post if you find a solution...

madmarchhare Fri 01-Jul-05 15:39:47

Earlybird seems to have it sussed there flashingnose. I really like the idea of her having some one to one time with the 'bully' out of school time and if youre good friends with her mum, it shouldnt be too hard to arrange.

flashingnose Fri 01-Jul-05 16:42:09

Earlybird, I posted on your thread too! It really sounds as if our poor dd's are suffering the same kind of problems. I'm going to have a word with the teacher for starters and see if there's any improvement - if not, I'll tackle the other Mothers in the way you suggested. DD1's situation is slightly different in that she has been good friends with the girl who is giving her a hard time and one-on-one, they still get on well. It's just in a pack where there are problems as the other girl is a natural leader IYKWIM.

It would be really interesting to hear how you're getting on - I'll add this thread and yours to my "Threads I'm watching" list for updates.

I'm looking forward to the end of school too .

Thanks again for everyone's input.

flashingnose Fri 01-Jul-05 20:01:35

bump for any other experiences/suggestions

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