I went to parents evening last night, and was told that DS can't sit still, and is disrupting the class by chatting when he should be working. The teacher is tearing her hair out, and I don't know what to do to help.
I've spoken to him about it but I don't want to punish him at home as both the teacher and I agree that he is not trying to be naughty, he genuinely seems to find it hard. In class he's been moved to sit away from any of his friends. Obviously this is something he needs to learn to stop doing, as it isn't fair on his teacher and classmates. We've spoken about it with him before, and he's improved for a short time, but then slips back. Does anyone have any suggestions?
Maybe a star chart reward system? Ask the teacher to tick off each lesson he behaves within what she would consider the norm (ie. not complete silence) and if he scores highly enough a treat - such as a magazine, Match attack cards or whatever he is into.
It is a good idea that he /you deal with this now as it becomes more disruptive if this continues into secondary school and there they will just chuck him out of the lessons which will impact negatively on his education.
My DS was like this all through primary. I was told that he would settle with maturity and Actually once at secondary with regular changes of classrooms and teachers with specialists who were really enthusiastic about their subject he completely settled. Not a single comment about not focussing/chatting, they all just say how focussed and engaged he is! My DS always responded well to sticker charts too as app suggested - definitely a carrot rather than a stick is the way to go.
Queen thank you, that gives me hope. It would be lovely if he does improve once he's at secondary as yours did. I'm terrified he'll go the opposite way, be in trouble all the time, and switch off from learning, as the secondary he is due to go to is very zero tolerance on any bad behaviour.
Maldives, funnily enough after a comment from a friend recently, I had Googled ADHD, but my understanding from that is there would be other symptoms, and there aren't any. I was hoping to find some reference to how to help him manage his behaviour, but I all I found was a list of various drugs that can be used which was not helpful.
How about something to help him actually practice focus and stillness - is there any suitable martial arts activity he could join, or mindfulness classes, yoga or something like that? Is there something else he does where he does focus better? Does he get plenty of exercise?
The book 100 things to learn before you’re 10 has an interesting exercise to help children learn how to listen. Worth a try. Reckon it would be age appropriate for 11 (and useful for some adults I know tbh...)
Would the teacher consider allowing him to have a wobble cushion and/or fiddle toy without having an IEP in place. He may just be needing sensory stimulation. Also, she could consider trying to incorporate as much movement as possible for him in her lessons - asking him to wipe the board, move the chairs, hand out the books etc? If you don’t walk to school already, is this a possibility? Could he go on the trampoline before and after school?
My first thought was something like a wobble cushion or movement breaks between classes. DS's was about a fiver in Tiger.
We have a book called something like "the smart kid's guide to staying awesome and in control". It has various ideas from an OT to help children move from being a bit discombobulated (characterised as "fast and wriggly", which would be your son, and a couple of others) to "just right". Lots of the exercises involve crossing the midline, which is apparently calming. Whether it would cure chatting, I don't know. Some of it's really simple stuff like pressing your palms together. But the genius is all the "fast and wriggly" business which sounded weird to me, but resonated with my son like you wouldn't believe.