DD, Year 4, concerns.(20 Posts)
DD just 9, has always been behind at school. We have always felt she is just a bit immature, and that she needs a more active learning environment - we have asked for a bit more support and have been told in various ways that she is a bit stubborn and difficult though the school has tried in various ways to give her some extra support in the past. She also has social difficulties at school, but not really outside school [we feel she is excluded and there is some meanness, but we can't be sure how she behaves at school, and I think there is some collective awareness that she is different in some way. She is though very sweet and has good friends outside school.] I guess i hoped she would grow out of her academic issues, but she had a trial day at a private school recently and they picked up on a few things - her very picky eating habits, her very slow writing skills [45 minutes for one para] and her below average maths ability. She is exceptionally imaginative, and very empathetic. She is also very bad at sitting still to eat, very picky about food, slow to get dressed, and pretty damn stubborn. I am worried about her being on the spectrum, but guess now we must get an Ed Psych report to get to the heart of the issue. I guess no one up now [fretting] but just wonderd if autism can present in girls whilst being v imaginative and expressive, very verbal and empathetic. I can't really put my finger on what the issue is, though I am hardly an expert - but she seems socially naive, though very friendly, and just not matured as much as we hoped in this last year. I thought she might be dyspraxic due to some motor skills issues but she is a fab ski-er and ice skater, and never had problems riding a bike or anything like that. Sorry if I sound horribly ignorant about all this! Just v worried about her after the private school assessment, and the large, clunky handwriting of her paragraph that took her 45 minutes to write seemed a bit shocking to them. Her reading age is above average though apparently, so weird.
Sorry after reading some threads will post on the SN board.
My ds is in y4 but is much closer to 10. Some of what you describe sounds quite familiar to me eg taking so long to write a paragraph etc. However, over the past few months the he has really come on and improved dramatically, with the help of a tutor. Could it just be that she is young I the year and does still need bit more time to mature?
Have a look at some stuff Sue Larkey has written about Girls on the spectrum. They can and often do present differently to boys.
I think Gavel up until recently I hoped that was what it was just immaturity, but what the private school observed in the trial day made me a little more worried. I think we do need a tutor though - she has one for maths now, just started. But for the writing too.
Will do Notanotheruser thanks. Hoping it might be another processing issue iyswim though
Remember the private school have an agenda though, trying to worry you enough to get you to switch over to them? This time of year in y4 they're in last chance territory for filling any spaces for y5/y6 (mines also at a private school and they're doing taster sessions at the moment to fill a place as a child is moving away, not many move in y5/y6)
Did they point out things that are concerning as in she wouldn't be suitable for the school or as in we can fix this?
Saying that you know your child the best and you've obviously had this instinct for awhile so I think you're sensible in looking for to get some specialist assessment.
i just wanted to say that my son is dyspraxic, but can ski and ride a bike well. He however takes an age to write and is fairly immature
He is also year 4 -feel free to PM me if it would help
This also sounds a bit like my dyspraxic son although he can't ride a bike etc. He is very friendly but can't quite understand the hidden social rules etc he is clever and imaginative but has difficulty getting words on paper and also struggles with maths but in a very uneven way i.e. School assessed him for extra help but he's too clever he just doesn't process in the same/right way.
That is very interesting Dyspraxic. Everyone, at least at an initial stage, has dismissed the dyspraxic thing because she has such good balance and good at bike riding, skating etc. But she has real problems writing, getting dressed alone [buttons for example] and eating properly [this is also a textures and tastes thing though]. I will PM you thankyou. And gruffalo that is interesting about the social side, sounds v similar to my dd.
Gavel I just don't know the school's take on her - they want to see her for another day, so I guess the jury is still out.
At school they had to write a poem, and everyone's poem was up on the window, except DD's. I asked why and was told she hadn't finished in time. In fact she had written the whole poem but not finished the second 'neat' copy for the window. We took it home for her to write out and it was a really beautiful poem!
Social difficulties, a bit immature, very empathetic, slow writing skills, picky eater - I would definitely recommend an Ed Psych report. You might also wish to contact Action for Aspergers. They give a broad range of advice to worried parents around these very issues.
How is her academic work apart from the maths and slow writing?
I would go for the Ed Psych assessment, but with an open mind. There are aspects on here that really remind me of DD - slow writing, maths not as good as the rest of her academic work, empathetic, better friends out of school than in. We've never found one thing that explains it all, so here are some thoughts..
Sensory issues - noise accounts for some of DD's issues, including friendships in school, because she finds the chaos of the playground overwhelming. General sensory issues/SPD might also account for the food
Dyspraxia might cause the slow writing, but has she also been checked for hypermobility. DD's hand gets very tired, and a writing slope helps (it also got a lot better in Yr 5 due to practice). Again, might also account for the buttons.
Also, don't rule out ADHD - the inattentive kind (getting distracted by your own thoughts) might also be part of the picture.
Something tells me she isn't Aspie though of course I am no expert. Just have read quite a bit about Aspergers and though I know it presents differently in girls...we'll see what the assessment says. I thought being very empathetic was generally not indicative of Aspergers?
ADHD may well be part of the picture chopchopchop. She hasn't been checked for hypermobility, but wouldn't that show up in other physical arenas too? How does one go about diagnosing that? I am not sure about sensory issues, noise and chaos never seems to bother her [she is often v noisy and chaotic with her good friend outside school] - I know other children who have that kind of issue. But processing issues I think there might be.
She is really a different girl when with us to the one she is at school. For example, she put off doing her reading comprehension all week [always a battle with her] and so we had to do it in the car this morning taking older ds to school. He helped her with it and we had great fun, yes wobbly writing of course!] But she had no issues writing, spelling, or completing it with us. Not sure if that is an indication of anything.
Actually reading up a bit more about girls and aspergers I am beginning to wonder....
Though I have a feeling one of her very sweet and fiercely bright friends might be a bit Aspie, though not picked up on as she is so gifted at school work, and dd is rather different to her [this girl is quite rigid about a lot of things and has a sort of collector type brain for facts] so have always thought dd not aspie. Confused! Hope ed psych report sheds light.
DD has been diagnosed ASD and she's super super empathetic, and super imaginative, and friendly etc.
So no that's definitely not something that would rule it out definitively.
that is interesting. Do you mind me asking what qualities led to the diagnosis Meeep?
I think you should get her assessed as soon as possible to know for sure as many of the things you mention reminds me of one my own daughters when she was that age. She was diagnosed as dyslexic! The support was amazing for her self esteem and as she grew older her social naivety lessened although I think she will always be considered 'too nice' (like that's a bad thing ). She is also super imaginative and creative. Her handwriting is still pretty messy so thank goodness for keyboards!!!
Thanks trying2bgd - assessment coming up - half dreading it and half glad we are tackling it.
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