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I think I might just be the Mother of to 'the naughty kid' :(

(61 Posts)
guttedmum Wed 03-Oct-12 17:50:42

The teacher pulled me to one side at pick up time today...basically told me that DS (4) has been having serious behavioural issues since starting Reception just 3 weeks's all come to a bit of a head today after he has hit a child and thrown sand at him and bitten somebody else.

The upshot is he's terrible at sharing, taking turns, etc....very "immature" and they plan on giving him some sort of behaviour chart as of tomorrow. She says he is a pleasant enough child and the sharing issues might be partly down to him being an only.

I'm absolutely gutted TBH. I had NO idea that anything like this was going on. He's a little smasher at home and very kind and generous...he loves making friends and he talks about how much fun he is having at school.

What hurt me the most is the teacher saying that other kids picking up on his behaviour don't want to be around DS has just told me that he only has one friend and I've been crying since I arrived home and started talking to him.

I have spoken very firmly and frankly to DS but also given him lots of cuddles as he can see how upset I am. He has been crying too...he said "I try my very best Mum, I know I am being a naughty boy but I can't stop sometimes..."

I don't really know where to go from here...when the teacher told me about him tonight it sounded like a different child entirely. I feel terrible for the kids he has hurt as well, no doubt the Mums will know DS is the culprit after talking to them and God knows what they will think.

Any advice is welcomed.

BobblyGussets Tue 16-Oct-12 21:18:16

Oh Atifarti, you are not alone.

DS 2 got his second orange card for pushing another little boy off a chair because he wanted a turn on the computer. I can hardly believe he is like that, as he wasn't like that at all at pre-school.

I think the hours at school are long and thirty children in his class with just two adults is a bit much for some children.

But yes, I felt terrible for the other little boy when the teacher told me.

artifarti Mon 15-Oct-12 13:11:00

I found this thread on Friady evening, when I was in tears after another afterschool 'word' from DS1's Reception teacher and just wanted to say that it really helped reading it - so if any of you are still about, thank you. DS1 only started school three weeks ago (only turned 4 six weeks ago sad) and although he is enjoying it, making progress and making friends, he is also getting into trouble for hitting, biting etc. He has had phases of this before so it wasn't a surprise but still so disappointing as he is so lovely for much of the time. I worry desperately that he won't have any friends if it continues sad His teacher was going to make him a sticker chart at the weekend and says his behaviour mainly seems to be borne of over-excitement. Deep breath later to go and pick him up. How is everyone else doing?

neverputasockinatoaster Sat 06-Oct-12 15:32:04

Slide up people!

I am the mum who has had people saying in that tone - 'Oh, so You're DS's Mum...'
I have had After School club tell me that the other children have reported thta DS has done X. Y and Z that day.
I have had the 'Can I have a quick word?' at the end of the day.
Parents have asked me not to leave parties as they've heard DS can be a bit 'difficult'

DS has ASD. He struggled to cope with large groups,noise etc. He struggled to cope with others misbehaving and tended to hand out discipline himself....

DS is now in Y3. He is loved by all his class mates and is valued by his school. Parents who avoided me now talk to me and tell me how lovely DS is. He gets put in the good behaviour book all the time.

Things change. I would never have believed that 3 years ago but they do and your DS sounds lovely.

Good luck!

monicamary Fri 05-Oct-12 21:35:39

Hi gutted mum.So glad you started this thread as i have been dreading going into school for pickup and to hear can i have a word.Must say what a lovely bunch you are and i dont feel so down now after hearing your advice and stories.
My Ds is the lovliest sweetest boy at home and on playdates.If one of his friends is hurt at the park he checks them and goes and finds their mum.
So to hear he is not listening or being rough at school has really upset me.

CockBollocks Fri 05-Oct-12 21:09:38

Good lord your DS sounds exactly like mine! Lots of good advice here, so wont repeat it again. Couple of things I would like to add

Ask that the teacher talks too you away from the school gate, a phone call or note.

Dont expect it to change quickly, it might, but my DS has only just got to a much more settled level at school in Y2.

Get thick skinned.

kitty my DS said to me last week "the naughty bit in my brain has gone now mummy" sad

Lizzylou Fri 05-Oct-12 20:23:46

Yay for thumbs up ans certificate! Good lad!
Ds2 was perfectly well behaved in preschool. It was as if at school he thought " hang on, 1 teacher, 1 Ta and 28 children??? I can go WILD!"

kittykato Fri 05-Oct-12 19:07:24

Hey benchers - can I join you? My DS's teacher has had quiet words for all of KS1. Got reputation in Reception (tho' prob was with snidy mothers rather than teacher that thought his behaviour 'wasn't an issue'!). However, since he's been the naughty kid for last 2 years (and I have to say 50% or poss more was down to another child - thankfully left the school - that kept lying about DS to get him trouble), he's now got a 'reputation' that is following him up through the school sad No-one invites him to playdates, but I'm glad as that says more about the parents, as I know he's popular at school.

Is light at the end of the tunnel as there are now 'naughtier' boys in his class. It's a sad day when your little one says to you 'I'm probably 3rd naughtiest now', even he's labelling himself.

OP sorry I can't give any advice. Think some children just need longer to mature...

jigglybottom Fri 05-Oct-12 18:10:36

Oh hun I have had it all!...quiet words at home time, when this didn't work being told for all to hear at the door, looks and whispering from other mums, other pupils actually running up to my son to tell him how naughty he is. Tried everything at home to try and help in the school- rewards, discipline, chatting, examples of good behavior, but the funny thing was the bad behavior was only at school!! I had not (and still haven't)seen any of the things they were telling me at home infact Ds is the complete opposite confused, So how can we change something-somewhere where we can not SEE what is causing the behavior?? and when a teacher does not want to divulge any info other than "jigglybottom junior has hit someone today...its unacceptable" and doesn't think it important to tell you anything else other than deal with it. what can you do?

bialystockandbloom Fri 05-Oct-12 16:22:26

His behaviour at school seems so at odds with his manner at home, which makes me feel bloody helpless to be honest.

Does sound like he's finding it hard to cope in a group, and maybe amongst lots of children his own age. Very different from being with adults (who will always give attention in a way children don't), and especially a parent 1-1. Have you seen much of him around other children? eg at nursery, parties, playgroups etc before he started school?

If it was me, I would invite some of the children from his class round (one at a time) and observe closely what he's like. You need to judge for yourself what he's like with other children.

The teacher may not realise how her manner of telling you is upsetting you, but imho you need to listen to her, I'm sure she is saying it to help rather than criticise. However, ask her what she will be doing to combat this, as if (as you say) it is only an issue at school, there is not much you can do about it - the school need to be doing more than just coming complaining you to at hometime.

guttedmum Fri 05-Oct-12 16:04:05

Yay...I got a thumbs up and a "better"...and DS came out of school looking like Swamp Thing so he's obviously been having good fun at playtime. He is very pleased that he has a certificate for good behaviour on the wall at school so I've been on praise overdrive for the past half hour.

orangeberries - He did attend a Nursery for 3 hours a day 3 times a week but it was very informal learning through play with just a bit of focus on being quiet, listening etc. at circle time. He never really had any problems settling in there.

KitKatGirl1 - The advice and support I've been given on the thread has been absolutely priceless. I'll be making a BIG effort with the Mums next week...trying to find a common ground and hopefully even make some new friends myself.

KitKatGirl1 Fri 05-Oct-12 14:56:58

You've had excellent advice, OP, re the behaviour and also your ds sounds adorable.

Won't add too much except you have absolutely the right idea in trying to make as much effort as possible to get on with the other Mums and also to support school and be on the same side.

Ds was a very difficult child in reception - has Asperger's - and there was lots of biting and knocking over off stuff etc. I think it really helped that I volunteered at school and with the PTA and made an effort to get to know the other Mums, even if they did seem cliquey; so they could see that ds had his good side, we were 'good' parents and supportive of school etc etc so that as much as possible some kind of social life was still possible for ds. I know it sounds harsh but it's almost as if they were more accepting of ds's little transgressions if they knew and liked me.

Keep on with all the good advice (and be consistent) and I hope it's not that your ds is too unhappy at school that he's acting out. He sounds very artistic and bright and they do say 'all behaviour is a form of communication'. I'm sure it'll improve when he breaks into some of the friendship groups already formed. Good luck!

orangeberries Fri 05-Oct-12 14:35:04

Did your DS attend nursery or preschool and if so how was he there?
It sounds to me that it is difficult to discipline if this behaviour is to do with a school type setting. Did he have a settling in period?

My DS2 (third child, just to reassure you and one of 4!) had a terrible time when he started pre-school aged 2 and a half; he had never been in a setting and was just like your son,ncluding the biting. He settled down after 3 months or so as he got used to the structures and routines.

guttedmum Fri 05-Oct-12 12:10:30

Lavenderhoney - Sounds just like DS...artistic and emotional, I'm already dreading the teenage years. I definitely need to (wo)man up to get through this school shit. wine for all.

guttedmum Fri 05-Oct-12 12:04:07

I do think his sensitivity might be a factor in this but I didn't want to get in to it too much with his teacher as I thought I might come across as though I was excusing his behaviour and being overly defensive. It seemed as though he was experiencing A LOT of rejection from the other children during his first couple of weeks with regards to striking up friendships ("A said he doesn't want to be my friend because B is his best friend", "I tried to play with C but he told me to stop following him", "D asked me to move away from his at lunch because he wanted to sit next to E"). A fair few of the kids are already friends from Nursery and he's the sort who becomes rather besotted with certain children, usually the loudest, funniest characters and I can just imagine him trying to tag along and probably coming across as a needy wee thing.

I've reassured him...told him to be kind to the other children, take turns etc. and the friendships will come naturally. God I hope so.

The ritual morning 'rock out' is very lovely and hearing him sing and leap about upstairs thinking he might come through the ceiling at any moment does make me smile. A couple of weeks back we were getting The White Stripes - Elephant at full pelt from around 7.30am in the morning...the baseline from Seven Nation Army and his gravelly White-esque caterwaul was uh...a wake up call like no other.

(disclaimer: our neighbour leaves the house at around 6am every morning!)

Lizzylou Fri 05-Oct-12 11:44:44

guttedmum, your DS sounds utterly fantastic, a real character.

A Halloween party would be fab.

Honestly, a few months from now and you will be amazed you even worried about him.

Lavenderhoney Fri 05-Oct-12 11:40:52

Oh dear, is there room on the bench for me? My ds who is fabulous at home is engaging in some behaviour issues at school. He loves being at home and is comfy there, so i assume he is still getting used to the school environment.

Sharing- I am firm snatching a toy and saying you have to share is not sharing! Just ask if he is the one snatching or refusing to hand over when he has finished with it.

My ds gets bored v v quickly and is very quick to learn. He gets bored with repetitive work as he has done it wants to move on. He starts to mess which is unfair in children who enjoy repeating books over again. He says if he is naughty he gets left out of an activity he hates, so f course works this. The teacher is great but unfortunately ds is realising those who make most fuss gets the mot praise over and above these good little souls who don't cause problems.

I also hate the little wave and can I have a word, my heart sinks as he is such a great boy, very sensitive to emotions, artistic and perhaps is unfortunate not to be a personality that fits the school environment of rules etc. some kids are like that, and have to find a way as its going to be a long time til they leave! Sorry for long post but it's a lonely walk from class to the gatesmile but now i know I am not alone...

YesAnastasia Fri 05-Oct-12 11:26:06

Wow, he sounds ace and what a character. He does sound super sensitive though (not that it's a bad thing) this might be causing his challenging behaviour because the others aren't on his wavelength and it's frustrating maybe?

I'm the mum who has to wait until all the other children have gone so they can tell me something, there's always something! It can get you down but it doesn't last forever.

BigFatLegsInWoolyTIghts Fri 05-Oct-12 11:11:56

Have to say I love the idea of his wild morning dance in private! grin

BigFatLegsInWoolyTIghts Fri 05-Oct-12 11:11:36

He does sound sensitive. My oldest has a fear of aging too! I suggest that you work with the teacher as much as possible...keep her informed and perhaps ask for a comment in his diary about his you don't have to keep asking her in person...then you can read it with DS and discuss it at home.

guttedmum Fri 05-Oct-12 10:50:48

Bookiemonster - You talk a lot of sense...and you have gin.

Beancurd - thanks

rrbrigi - I am really going to town with the praise and the cuddles at the moment...and I do think that is the best approach for both of us. Thanks for the advice and reassurance (again).

guttedmum Fri 05-Oct-12 10:45:04

It's very reassuring to hear of similar experiences and I welcome and take on board all the advice given so far.

I am already planning a small Halloween themed party for DS and some of his classmates. He is so animated and excitable when chatting about his new little friends so I do believe he is making progress on a social level.

I also spoke with a couple of the Mums yesterday on the way to the park so I think I'm making some progress too.

BigFatLegs - I do believe that he is bright but don't we all? He is a silly, typical 4YO of course but also very enthusiastic and knowledgable about music and films (...on a level that seems beyond his years). In the morning he selects music to dress to...his favourite at the moment is Nilsson Schmilsson by Harry Nilsson and he sings all the words as he dresses himself. He keeps the door closed because he likes to dance wildly and becomes very self-conscious if he sees us watching him.
He often asks me quite challenging questions and had a bit of a meltdown last week after learning that he would one day become an old person sad...I made an off-the-cuff remark because he said that he was going to do something before he was 102. It led to a very emotional conversation and him ruminating (read: sobbing) about death. He kept asking me if there was any way he could not become a very old man and asked me if I will love him just the same even when he is not "a cute boy". It was bloody horrible and I tried to be as delicate as possible...and naturally I filled his head with little white lies.
He may or may not be exceptionally bright but I think he is sensitive and has a strong artistic streak.

rrbrigi Fri 05-Oct-12 10:22:53

What about if you reward him for being good and nice in the school (e.g.: with a chocolate or playing together or go to a place together what he likes a lot)? Lots of cuddle and love also help him to feel that you always will love him no matter what happens. Usually if my son does something wrong (e.g.: in the school or at home), when he calmed down we sit down and speak the situation through and at the end we have a conclusion what he should have done in that situation, so next time hopefully he will react in a different way.

Also I think you should book an emergency appointment with the teacher to discuss the behavior chart so you know what they would like to achieve with him in the school and you can support same behavior at home.

Children react differently when they start school, some won't even notice the difference between school and nursery, some will cry and will be upset for a while and some children will have bad behavior (I think most of the time when they do not want to do something what the teacher or other children ask from them). Also some children feel they are losing their privacy, their space. Imagine when 30 children all together in a classroom what is 3-4 times bigger than our living room (if we are lucky with the classroom); of course they feel a bit crowdie. And some children will be shocked by the lots of rules that they need to follow in the school. All of these things have an impact on their behavior. And I think that is why they behave differently in school and at home.

He only needs time (and lots of love) to get used to it. Do not worry he is so little and it will be better.

beancurd Fri 05-Oct-12 10:17:51

Been there too, I think that it is normal for young children to struggle in this demanding semi formal environment. Actually it would take enormous energy for adults to negotiate such a change.

One of mine was a warm friendly delight at home but approached his peers like an angry bull. He had a number of children he liked and was great to them but was awful to some if the others.

Long term he just settled in and him and his next teacher loved each other. Not sure the first ever 'saw' him which didn't help.

BookieMonster Fri 05-Oct-12 10:12:57

Budge up, I have gin.
Some boys find the confines and expectations of formal education very difficult. I would imagine that things will settle down. One thing, it is up to the teacher to manage the behavior of students whilst in class. Venting at you achieves nothing. Perhaps you could push back a bit and ask her how she intends to manage his behavior in school. If he's well behaved with you and receptive to you talking about how he should be behaving in class, there's not actually a lot more you can do as you're not in the class with him.

BobblyOrangeGoldGussets Fri 05-Oct-12 10:10:30

Sympathies OP. DS2 came home with an orange card in his second week for unprovoked hitting of another child because he wanted a toy. It really didn't sound like him, I was very surprised.

He has settled and so will yours.

I don't like that "only child" crap; it is lazy. All first children will be only children for some of the time. DS1 was an only child for five years. Meh.

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