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6 year old resisting going into school

(9 Posts)
sammum9 Wed 06-Jan-16 23:06:09

My youngest son, age 6, can be a stroppy little so-and-so sometimes (as well as the cutest, most gorgeous boy ever!) and a few times last term he got into a strop before school over something trivial, then continued his strop until school. Last term a couple of times I man-handled him (out of desperation) into the cloakroom and a TA shut the door.
On a couple of other occasions he legged it as soon as I let go of him and on his teacher's suggestion I warned him that if he didn't go into school I'd tell the head and he'd come and get him. That worked.
However this morning I asked him to take a toy to his room before school and that was enough to set him off. When we got to school he refused to go in. After threatening to tell the head he tried to tell me he'd go in if I walked away to the other side of the playground which I refused. I ended up taking him in the main entrance and the head came to speak to my son. I left and about 40 mins later the head phoned me to ask if anything had upset my son as he was still sitting outside the office refusing to move. Another call half an hour later assured me he'd joined his class and was fine.
So really I'd like to know if anyone has any suggestions how to deal with this if it happens again. I'm really hoping the headteacher gave my son a good telling-off and it won't but what if...?
My son is normally happy, loves school, is progressing well, has lots of friends etc. This only happens if he's already upset.

Topsy34 Thu 07-Jan-16 07:55:52

Have you asked whats wrong? It could be really obvious to him, but not you. I personally don't think getting the head to come and basically threaten him will help.

Does the school do emotional literacy? DS has done it and he said he feels better for being able to explain how he is feeling

sammum9 Thu 07-Jan-16 11:59:31

Thanks for your reply Topsy34. If I ask him what's wrong when it's happening, his reply is usually "You're being rude to me Mummy", ie by telling him he has to go into school. I've tried talking to him when he's calm and he deflects my questions with, "I love you Mummy"!
Most days he's very happy to go into school - I really don't think he has a problem there as it's only when something silly happens at home first that he plays up at school. It's as if he's cross with me so is punishing me.
I didn't like getting the head involved but I just didn't know what to do to physically get him into the building. I'd tried talking and reasoning but it just wasn't working. He went in fine today, so I guess it's a matter of waiting to see if or when it happens again.
As for emotional literacy, I've never heard of it! Is it an individual or group thing? Done for all children or just those who need it?

irvine101 Thu 07-Jan-16 12:11:55

My ds's school has ELSA(Emotional Literacy Support Assistant), and home school link team, who is there to help support children and families. Does your dc's school has one?

starry0ne Thu 07-Jan-16 12:19:13

I have never really had an issue with my DS going into school but had difficulties with separation I told him it was the Law...It took the responsibility of anyone else out but it was a fact he has to go to school.

Dungandbother Thu 07-Jan-16 12:43:16

You are describing my DS.

I have an older DD so I know I'm not doing anything wrong.

He walks to school so happily, then sort has a freeze at the gate. Lip wobbles, keeps turning round to me, starts mummmeeee

In our case, what makes it worse is new terms, changes, long weekends or sick days. If we had an extra fun weekend or he was all cuddled up and happy before being told to get ready for school.
It's like he forgets he has to go to school. And he doesn't know what day it is yet.

He never kicks off on childminder days (2 per week).

He is better when I am on time and he lines up than going in alone (still on time but teacher gone through).

He is better with a long build up of it's school tomo, I put your uniform out so be good and see how fast you can get dressed for me in the morning.

I bribed a week of sticker chart on front door for no tears week one and smiles week two. He chose a toy, we bought it together.

He is struggling a little in school. Huge writing delay, slightly behind in phonics but reading within normal range.
Friendships are tricky. His speech is actually very advanced for his emotional maturity (poss linked to writing delay issues) and he often says he has no one to play with. I think he's bossy and his rules too complicated.
But he is a friendly chap and he does have a best friend. Everyone says hi to him.

His teacher is young, weak but keen so not much help with anything useful.

I don't have the answers. But I'm happy to have a friend to share my woes with!

DS is a Gemini. He certainly has two sides to him!

Fairenuff Sat 09-Jan-16 00:08:22

Speak to the teacher again. There is a lot that can be done to help him.

He could have a specific task (one which he enjoys) ready for when he gets in. He could have a 'buddy' ready to greet him. He could have a sticker chart for coming in sensibly. He could have a transference object that sits with him until he's settled.

The teacher could also look out signs of sensory discomfort.

cariadlet Sat 09-Jan-16 09:27:07

I think that the suggestions about how to help your son get into the classroom and to settle happily would be really helpful for a child who is anxious, finds separations difficult, has sensory issues etc.

But from what you've said, your son doesn't seem to fit into that category. He seems to be a happy, sociable little boy who enjoys school but doesn't want to go when he is feeling cross and is also extremely stubborn.

Don't worry - it's not unusual. I often have children who love school but appear at the classroom door looking a bit tearful and clinging to mum, or who walk in independently, but ignore me and walk straight past with a grumpy look on their face. Nine times out of ten the mum will turn to me and say "Don't worry - I've just had to tell him off."

As this has happened a few times and seems likely to happen again, I'd try to catch the teacher at the end of the day and have a chat together to work out a strategy for next time your son is in one of these moods. Depending on the structure of the school morning and the physical layout of the school (eg whether children go from the playground straight into the classroom or have to go through the school to reach the classroom) you might bring your son to the door and hand him over, or the teacher or TA might go to the playground to collect him. Talk about how you're going to physically manage the actual handover on tricky mornings.

This kind of start to the morning can be stressful for everybody, but I'm sure that once your son is actually in the classroom he will settle quickly and enjoy the rest of his day.

sammum9 Sat 09-Jan-16 12:17:46

Dungandbother, I'm glad you found the solution with your DS. We've had success with sticker charts too for other issues but I don't think it'd help with this as it's so sporadical.
Fairenuff you're right about speaking to the teacher again - I definitely will. DS was sick thursday so not in friday but I'll talk to the teacher monday.
Cariadlet, thank you - your second paragraph describes him to a T. Particularly the stubborn bit - he's the youngest of 5 (never had any trouble with the others!) so I think he's become more and more stubborn as he's got older to show that he will not be bossed around by his siblings! Parents take children to the cloakroom door and the teacher or a TA is there to see the children in. As you and others have said I need to talk to his teacher again. She's a great teacher so hopefully she'll have some ideas.
Thanks all!

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