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The school problems are finally starting..........

(15 Posts)
coppertop Sun 13-Feb-05 14:15:23

Ds1 has been in the Reception class of a mainstream primary since September. In general he is doing really well. He enjoys going to school and has made a lot of progress in the time he's been there.

Academically he's doing well but his lack of social skills are really starting to show. His teacher has told me that she is concerned about how he is starting to get increasingly 'physical' with the other children, even though some of them are children he has known since pre-school and who he considers to be his friends. A particular flashpoint seems to be lining up to come inside after breaks. Ds1 isn't particularly bothered about being first but wants to be the one to decide which of the other children goes first. When they don't listen to him he pushes them so hard that they fall over.

Ds1's teacher has talked it over with the SALT and we have had a meeting with the teacher and SENCO to try to come up with strategies to help with this problem. The SALT is writing him a Social Story as these stories seem to work well with ds1. Ds1 knows that he shouldn't be doing this (he even apologises atraight away and asks the child if they are okay) but this seems to be almost compulsive.

After talking to him about the problem he had a whole day without pushing. When he came home the following day he told me "I've been naughty. I pushed X over and now I'm on the cloud." (The class uses the system where the children's names are on the sun when they're good, a half-cloud if they've been misbehaving and a black cloud if they get into even more trouble). Just as I was starting to feel indignant about him being put on the cloud before the new strategies had been put into place he confessed that he'd actually moved his own name on to the cloud.

To round the week off nicely (also ds2's assessment week) ds1 asked if he could go to the school disco. I was a bit wary because of the noise and lights but took him and stayed with him. After about 30 minutes he asked me to take him home. I assumed it was because of the sensory stuff but he later said "I wanted to come home because no-one wanted to play with me." The thing is that some of the children in his class had tried to include him. Ds1 just hadn't recognised the signals.

The SALT is already working with him on social skills so I don't really know what else to do. Instead I'm just posting away on here and generally feeling sorry for myself.

deegward Sun 13-Feb-05 14:24:21

I know this in special needs, but I really think that all children go through some of this to some degree. Ds1 has just started full time reception as well, and he is a sensitive albeit pushy kind of child.

I think once your ds had heard the story he may get better, obviously he is santioning himself, so that has got to be a good sign. Hope all goes well, i think you are just feeling like a mummy

Jimjams Sun 13-Feb-05 14:30:07

social stories definitely. Do you have a that book full of them? Might be a useful starting point for you to make them up yourself (ime you can wait an age for pros to get round to this sort of thing by which time something else will be a problem). I don't know the authors name but it's ccalled 'socila stories" (esefully. Forgive typing ds1 is carwling a;l; over me).

ladyhawk Sun 13-Feb-05 15:22:39

hi coppertop <HUGS>
I totally understand how you feel as we have had the same sort of incidents with ds2 he had trouble standing in line and pushing etc..
we talked to ASD support worker about it and she is trying to find stratagies that will help they have introduced a 'rule book' (you can call it anything you like) this book is bright and colourful and each page has pictures eg a pic of boys lining up neatly with a smiley face and pic of boys not lining up with a sad face theschool also got all the kids to line up and stand to attention as if they were in the army they then marched down the corridor hands by their sides and they loved it,so this has been continued and seems to help my ds2.
Caleb takes his rule book evrywhere with him and is rather proud of it,he has trouble in the playground,changing classrooms,art and anything that is not structured.
He also has problems with social interaction and reading social cue's sorry i havent any words of wisdom to share with you but i just wanted to let you know that you are not alone pet..i havent been on much lately for one reason or another but saw your post and wanted to give you <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<BIG HUGS>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

onlyjoking9329 Sun 13-Feb-05 16:05:11

the lining up bit is still not without difficulties for my DS hes nearly 8, started with him insisting that all childrens feet were actually ON the line, he would herd them until all in position then we have a problem with snow, he cant see the line and is most upset, and still the worst one is if its raining the kids go into the hall, only just got him to go into the very noisey hall, then they ring the bell and head teacher asks the kids to line up, this causes some stress to DS as there are no lines, the social stories book is by carol gray, think someone posted a link to some social stories a while ago

ladyhawk Sun 13-Feb-05 17:52:03

coppertop hope you are feeling better love xx

JakB Sun 13-Feb-05 19:56:59

Coppertop, So sorry he's going through a tricky time. I hope you find ways to help him soon.

coppertop Sun 13-Feb-05 21:35:32

Ladyhawk - That rule-book sounds like a brilliant idea. I might investigate doing something similar for ds1 this week.

Ds1's favourite game at the moment is to pretend to be the teacher at playtime. He blows the whistle and tells us all it's time to line up. He has trouble with role-play and finds it difficult to see how, for example, I can be "Mum" but also a character in a role-play game but if I can somehow get past that (she says hopefully!) maybe I can use that as a way of getting the message across.....

I have a few sample Social Stories but haven't bought the book yet. So far the SALT has been really good at getting the stories done asap but it may still be worth me investing in a copy.

I think this has all just come at a bad time. Having an IEP meeting in the same week as ds2's assessment probably just made it seem so much worse. It was awful the way he looked so upset about it all. Then of course you also start feeling guilty about the children he may have hurt when pushing them..... A big part of this seems to have stemmed from his first few weeks at school. A few of the boys are really quite physical and did a lot of pushing and hitting. My guess is that ds1 has somehow thought that this was the way school is supposed to be and that it's somehow spiralled from there. Despite being one of the youngest in the class he's actually one of the biggest. Some of the other children seem so tiny in comparison.

JaysMum Sun 13-Feb-05 22:52:10

Coppertop....J was exactly the same when he was your sons age....thats when school first started to acknowledge that I was not some neurotic mother who had read one to many books!!!!

J was terrible in the playground, pushing, hitting and even biting the other children if he didnt understand the underwritten rules of a game.....we asked if J could have a playtime buddie....an older child who could be a good role model for J....someone who could help teach him how to play in an acceptable manner.

Teacher agreed and a year 4 boy, who J knew as he was a friend of our oldest boy, was assigned as J's playtime buddie.....it worked for a period of time.....head changed the buddie to a child who worked out that J would do anything he told him.....so pulling his trousers down at playtime might have been a giggle to the older kids.....but for J it was a nightmare....he had to do it because his buddie had told him to and if he didnt do what he was told he would get in trouble!!!!Little blighters some kids!!!!!

macwoozy Mon 14-Feb-05 11:32:12

Really can understand your worries over your ds, as the problems you've described are very similar to my ds anxieties. He's in reception as well. I'm not much help with the advice but can understand how really sad this can make you feel.

Davros Mon 14-Feb-05 17:06:29

Carol Gray is the social stories woman, look on Amazon. Sorry things are tricky CT. Rule book sounds a good idea too, he might like that!

coppertop Mon 14-Feb-05 19:03:34

Poor J! Little toerags (to put it politely). At ds1's school the younger ones have a separate playground to the older children so I don't think an older buddy would work. It may do if he still needs help with this in the juniors.

It's half-term here ana little. Ithink he's been feeling ill but as usual wouldn't tell us. Anyway we had a great time setting up our own little cafe with a te-set and play-kitchen. It's one of the things recommended for ds2 as well so it was a case of killing 2 birds with one stone. Ds1 had a great time and so I gave him a sticker for doing so well. He gave me an enormous smile and said "I'm back on the sun now, Mum."

coppertop Mon 14-Feb-05 19:04:39

Oops! Seem to have lost half a sentence somewhere.

JaysMum Mon 14-Feb-05 23:07:26

"back on the sun"....Blessxxxxxxx

JakB Tue 15-Feb-05 07:39:37

Back on the sun!!!! AAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!

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