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ds bedwetting - he says it's because of bad dreams about child X in his class - advice please

(12 Posts)
sitdownpleasegeorge Thu 03-Sep-09 19:44:52

Ds was fine in reception seemed to be popular and was on good terms with practically all the children in his class.

During year 1 we started to have tears at bedtime when we talked about his day and stuff he'd been doing etc. According to ds, one particular child was calling him names and sometimes pushing/pinching/elbowing etc or telling him he couldn't play with some of the other children if he was looking to join in with a game or activity.

After a while of telling him to just ignore/stay away from the child I eventually plucked up the courage to mention it to the class teacher and it was awkward as the child in question was one of the teacher's pets iykwim whereas ds and the teacher were "not on the same wavelength". The teacher said she'd look out for it but of course they are not with the class at all times, I think they had a class chat about being nice to each other. The second time I mentioned it as things had not improved from ds's point of view I was told it must be happening when no-one else is around as no-one else has noticed anything. I was a bit taken aback at this non-answer kind of response but by then it was June and I thought we'd get through the rest of term and hope things were better in year 2 with a change of teacher etc.

Well, ds has been dry at night for a few months now but in the week before school started he wet the bed every night and when gently quizzed in case something in particular was bothering him he told me he was having bad dreams about the child who had been mean to him in year 1.

I'm going to bide my time and see if the child gets up to their old tricks again but after last year's disappointing response from the year 1 teacher I want to be ready to nip it in the bud immediately and not be fobbed off. I don't want a general chat about being nice to each other, I feel the child should be specifically talked to about it and the parent informed but I'm probably over reacting, pfb and all that.

Perhaps ds is a bit oversensitive, he's very bright but also a plodder/ponderer rather than a boy who dashes round chasing or kicking a ball at every opportunity. Molehills can become mountains for all kids etc and if he can't cope with stuff like this in primary school I dread to think what secondary school could be like for him.

HELP, what do other people think about this ?

FernieB Fri 04-Sep-09 08:34:04

Go see his new teeacher and explain the situation and ask them to keep a look out. One of my daughters was bullied for a year by a girl whose mother was friendly with the staff so all my complaints were ignored, even though my DD was crying every morning and evening and was terrified to go to school. She lost a year of schooling and is still now a bit behind. If that child is up to his old tricks, keep complaining. If the teacher does nothing, go to the head. Use words like bullying and 'at risk' (apparently, according to a social worker friend, that is the key phrase to use if you want something done).

General chats in the classroom about being nice achieve nothing.

sitdownpleasegeorge Fri 04-Sep-09 10:32:06

FernieB

Sorry to hear about your dd and angry on your behalf to hear about how it set her back in her schooling. Did you eventually get the problem tackled satisfactorily.

It's interesting to see that having experienced the same thing, although for a much longer period of time, you too think that class chats about being nice achieve nothing.

I'm not a teacher so can only guess but maybe the chat is the first step in a staged method of tackling this sort of thing. I suppose they are not allowed to stare meaningfully at the child for whom the chat is mainly intended.

Are there any teachers who can advise if it is a recongnised strategy ?

crokky Fri 04-Sep-09 10:38:15

My kids are younger than yours, but I would not tolerate this. I would make it clear to the headteacher and the year 2 teacher that your child has been bedwetting and having nightmares because of a specific other child and that this bullying behaviour must be stopped.

My brother had a teacher who terrified him and he wet himself over it. He still remembers it now - nip this in the bud.

MarshaBrady Fri 04-Sep-09 10:41:24

Gosh your poor ds. If it were me I would take dh to the school for a meeting, to show we are serious about stopping this behaviour.

But then I get a bit emotional and he is great at being very calm and practical about the solutions he wants to see put into action. Sorry if this isn't an option, but maybe that would help...

MarshaBrady Fri 04-Sep-09 10:49:14

Also should say that I would want them to be more direct in tackling it, not general talks about niceness.

Not sure what the teacher method is though.

sitdownpleasegeorge Fri 04-Sep-09 13:35:40

Well he was dry last night after his first day back to school so maybe he had been anticipating something that may not happen this year. Under a new teacher child X may not be a teacher's pet and may watch their behaviour a bit more.

I'm sure lots of children have been apprehensive about a new teacher, new year, new studies etc. There's probably been bed wetting, stomach ache, nervousness in lots of homes.

If it starts up again though I think I will ask that the general whole class chat is skipped if the general consensus of opinion is that it wouldn't be over-reacting.

Chrysanthemum5 Fri 04-Sep-09 16:19:45

My DN was very upset when she started school because the P2 boys were picking on her. School were not that great about it, and felt it would just get better, but DN was finding it really upsetting and it was affecting her learning. So, my SIL arranged a craft party for all the girls in the class and drafted in all of us to make sure the girls had a great time and we all talked up DN, how cool she was etc. It worked really well, and DN now is much more confident because she has lots of friends. It was work for SIL but has paid real dividends.

sitdownpleasegeorge Sat 05-Sep-09 10:14:16

Oh No - wet bed again last night. We'll have to go back to Pyjama pants for a while.

I think the second day of year 2 unsettled him as last night he asked me to "teach me more things mummy because I'm not in the top group now but I learn't everything properly in year 1 and I'm the second best reader in the class and really good at maths, always get my spellings right and do lots of writing so I must need to know more things".

I'm secretly a bit pleased as his nemesis, child X who was mean to him last year, is in the top group.

I'm at a loss as to why he is now in one of the middle groups as it is completely at odds with the information in his end of year1 report. I realise it would be pushy pushy pushy to do anything other than accept the year 2 teachers' judgement at this point but if it dents his confidence which the report siad needed bolstering at times, I may re-consider but that's a whole other AIBU thread.

trickerg Sat 05-Sep-09 18:29:15

Teachers should act on reported bullying immediately (in accordance with the school's behaviour/bullying policy, which must available for parents to view).

At my school, if a parent reports a 'bullying' incident, I would alert the headteacher (and other teachers/ lunchtime staff/ TAs) immediately. The headteacher would talk to both victim and bullies. Bullies would be punished (kept in at playtime). The victim would be offered someone of his/her choice to confide in. We would talk to the bullies' parents as soon as we had proof that bullying had taken place (usually not very long in small children - they tend to dob each other in, or lose the thread of their lies).

Every school has to have a policy in place much like ours. Go in and talk to the teacher - tell him/her that there were some problems last year and you are worried that something similar may be happening now. Ask to talk through the bullying policy with them (rather than going in on your high horse demanding to see the policy!). As there has been no specific 'incident' to report, the teacher will probably have a quiet word with your son and observe him (and the other child) in the playground, then take it from there. Hopefully it will be nothing - just a blip and an excuse for not wanting to go back to school.

If he is being bullied you must nip it in the bud NOW! It is horrible to have your child being sad and miserable. Good luck.

Oh, and remember, if you don't see the teacher, s/he won't know about it. So make him/her aware!

sitdownpleasegeorge Sun 06-Sep-09 10:33:20

trickerg

Thanks for your post.

Ds hasn't mentioned any incidents yet but he's only had 2 days of school in year 2 so we're biding our time.

It was hard to know if ds was making a mountain out of a molehill last year but it was the tears at bedtime that made me talk to his year 1 teacher and the fact that he absolutely refused to include the child in his party invites when the child had been in the first few he mentioned for the previous year's party. He was also hesitant about attending other classmate's parties over the summer holidays in case the child was there too but fortunately they weren't at either party.

Ds takes namecalling to heart and is wounded, ponders it and worries about it a lot it seems.

sitdownpleasegeorge Wed 23-Sep-09 14:50:13

Update,

In PE yesterday child x pushed him off a low balance beam saying "get off" so he didn't get a turn at it as he had to go to the back of the line of kids waiting to go over it and class ended before his turn came again. I don't really see how child X could do this without being seen by a teacher so I'm confused. Apparently he protested saying "Hey, don't do that" but child X said "Oh I didn't mean to". Are PE/gym classes bedlam where this sort of thing could happen un-noticed ?

Also he mentioned that when he laughed at something funny in class, child X "did a cross look at me" so he had to stop laughing as he felt sad then.

It's all so trivial but why should his school experience be less enjoyable than other children's ?

I'm undecided over what to do as DH says he has to fight his own battles and stand up for himself and that we can't go rushing in and demanding action every time he has what may just amount to a personality clash with someone else, but DS so wants to be liked and is so upset by this sort of stuff. He's only 6.

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