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CM Club could really do with some opinions about this

55 replies

saltire · 13/03/2006 10:34

I'm a bit reluctant to post this here, but could really do with some opinions from other CM's.It's a bit long, so sorry.

I have two brothers that i mind, some weeks its every day, other weeks its only 1 or 2 days. The oldest is 2, he will be 3 in four months time. The younger brother is 14months. Mindee1 doesn't talk much, is still in nappies and is very clumsy. When he talks he doesn't string a sentence together, he will say
"oobble babble dabble Thomas babble babble"
or Babble babble car babble etc. He is still, as i said in nappies, and doesn't even know when he has wet in them or pooed in them ( as opposed to my part time 18month old who knows when seh's wet her nappy and will tell me). He is also very clumsy,if there is a toy on the floor he will trip over it, or stand on it, in fact he never steps over anything, he just stands on them, and trips over them. When we are out, every third or fourth step he trips, or he will repeadtedly walk in front of the buggy and trip over the wheels.
When its feeding time, his 14month old brother will sit in the high chair and feed himself quite well, as will the 18month old when i have her. However, Mindee 1 doesn't seem to know what to do with the food, probably not helped by some of the crap his mum sends for lunch mind. For example, if she sends soup, he just sticks his fingers in and trys to lick it off, if its a sandwich he puts it flat in the palm of his hand, and tries to eat it that way. He will also sneak up to the other kids and try and pinch their food.
I know they have problems with his sleeping. He never slept when he was a baby for more than 2 hours in a 12 hour period, and now he won't go to bed, he just screams the place down so they let him play in the living room until he falls asleep, which she says is sometimes as late as midnight, then she wakens him at 6 to get ready to come to me. Could this be having an effect on his develpoment? I have given her leaflets about the sleep clinic and asked her to talk to her HV about it, but as of this time she hasn't done anything about it.
I had my Care Commission Inspection last week, and we were going over the Care Standards, one of which was the one that covers observations of children etc. She was there while the brothers were, and she commented on mindee1, and said that she thought he was a very slow developer. She asked if i had mentioned his talking/potty training etc to his parents. I have told his mum to send pants and pull ups and i will help with potty training but she said he's not ready as they have tried and he didn't have a clue. I have also mentioned the talking, but she's very sort can i put this. If she hears him say a word shes all excited and jumps round the house, but doesn't then encourage him to try and say it again, and yet i know they talk to him a lot at home. She also thinks its normal for an almost three year old to only have a vocabulary of 6 words, but my own Ds are 8 and 6 so i cannot remember whats normal

Anyway, my CC inspector said that i have a duty to contact the local HV and aske her to come out and observe the child when he is with me, and she will then be able to bring the subject up with his parents as he will be due an assessment soon. My CC inspector said that going by her own children, and friends children he was very behind with his development and she had concerns about his clumsiness as well.
I was shocked at this as i feel she is asking me to go behind the parents backs on this, what about confidentiality etc. I am a bit uncomfortable about this and would really apprecitate some advice as to what othet CMs would do in the same situation. I know i run the risk of being shouted at, but i could really do with the opinions of other CMs, just to see what they would do? Do i go ahead and contact the HV? Please don't be nasty to me, i'm really stressing over this.

OP posts:
Kidstrack2 · 13/03/2006 10:55

i'm taking from your post you are in scotland, i'm just setting up, so prob haven't got good advice, but recently when i was at a pre reg course on childminding we were told that its our duty to protect and look out for the children we care for(child protection), inc if you thought that the child had slow development, however it was up to us as a childminder how we approached the parent/hv. I totally agree about your concerns, he does seem very slow for his age

Jensmum · 13/03/2006 11:01

If it was me I'd speak to the mum and tell her what the inspector said, then contact the HV.

For someone else to pick up on it as well as you he must be showing signs of delayed development, and whatever you do you will be doing it for the sake of the child.

Sorry not much help, hopefully someone more experienced will be along to help you.

Good luck

jellyjelly · 13/03/2006 11:01

Cant post much but i would talk to the hv as you have concerns. my ds was speech delayed and now has an outstanding vocab and can name most types of cars on the road. Having a vocab of 6 words is not normal. The clumsiness could be linked to a condition called dyspraxia (was covered in my sed needs training).

If it helps you my ds who is just over 3 (jan) huge vocab, not potty trained and isnt showing signs but will get there, can feed himself but wont eat wet things, can jump with both feet but not hop, climbs well - up ladders, over, down can dress himself but struggles with zips and can get very frustrated.

I hope that this has helped in some way, have you dont birth to three? to try and get the age levels ok and to get pointers?

HenniPenni · 13/03/2006 11:01

Saltire, I don't think that anybody is going to shout at you, I can see from your post that you are worried about his developement.

I'm not experienced enough to offer you any advise and to be honest I don't know what I'd do in this situation,To me I would also feel that it would be a breach of confidentuality to go to the HV behind the parents back, but at the same time it sounds that the childs developement is delayed and he does need an assessment. How would his mum react if you were to mention that the inspector had picked up these concerns?

Sorry that I can't be of anymore help.

HappyMumof2 · 13/03/2006 11:05

speak to his mum. I know it's hard but you must do it. She may even be wanting you to mention it, so she doesn't have to. Most parents find it really hard to acknowledge something could be wrong with their child but when an 'outsider' says something it makes it more real and they have to deal with it. It's not like you are just going up to someone you hardly know and saying it, you care for the child on a daily basis, you do have a 'right' and duty to express your opinion.

I was in exactly this situation with a previous mindee, and in the end I actually had to let her go as I felt I just couldn't do it anymore. Afterwards, when I talked to the mum, she acknowledged the problem and said she felt there was something wrong too. The child is now in nursery, where I assume it will have been picked up on, or if not, maybe she will be developing better there with more staff etc and outside input. I just couldn't do it, as I have my own dd to think about and she was a bit confused by her behaviour.

(I think previous mindee is on the autistic spectrum by the way - or aspergers, which may be a possibility for your mindee by the sound of it)

Good Luck Smile

RTKangaMummy · 13/03/2006 11:09

I think you have been put in an awful position by the inspector

IMHO if he was being ABUSED that is different

IMHO they should not be letting him carry on with this sleeping nightmare - he needs at least 8 or 9 hours sleep not 6

He may be tripping cos he is soooooooooo tired

My DS has Dyspraxia - which sometimes shows up in children by them tripping etc. But my DS doesn't have this symptom

Potty training in boys at 2 years 8 months is not late either,

saltire · 13/03/2006 11:10

When the child chats away to me, he gets quite frustrated because i can't understand what he's saying, as its all just babble. He then starts yelling very loudly. He does however completely understand everything i say to him most of the time. If i say, X, can you bring me your nappy bag please" he will go and get it and bring it over to me. I did wonder if it was his hearing you see that was making his speech abit slower, but if he can understand me then its not that.

OP posts:
HenniPenni · 13/03/2006 11:17

Re the hearing, My DD3 was severally speach delayed and very very clumsy, our exellent HV was onto this straight away, she referred her for hearing tests and it turned out that she had glue ear which was bad enough to warrant hearing aids if we decided that we didn't want grommets.

with the grommets her speach improved drastically although there is still room for improvemnt and the clumsiness is loads better, at one time she couldn't stand on one leg with out falling over because it affected her balance so much. Perhaps he has an issue like you say with his hearing.

colditz · 13/03/2006 11:21

Oh dear, ds is 2y 11m and isn't potty trained, eats with his fingers a lot (although can use a spoon and fork!), trips over and has delayed speech. Saying this I am pushing for referal (again!) with the speech thing, but he goes to preschool and his keyworker doesn't seem remotely bothered by any of it.

I don't feel your mindee is very behind, just a bit. you are in an awkward position though, sorry I can't be more constructive.

saltire · 13/03/2006 11:23

Thats exactly what i felt when she told me to cntact the HV, I don't think for one minute that he is being abused. If i did i would have done something about it before now. I just don't feel right about going to the HV about this, however the mum doesn't listen very often, she has a real guilt complex about going out to work, and is so focused on the children when she comes to collect them. I could tell her he had ran naked down my street and she wouldn't listen.
I'm just really worried about this, in all my years of minding i haven't been asked to do this. Of course i'm also now worried that the Inspector will phone up to see if i have done it, as i was to check my knowledge of the Care standards that started all this

OP posts:
HappyMumof2 · 13/03/2006 11:24

I really do think this child is very behind, sorry. It's more than a bit.

Dd is 2yrs 3mths and potty trained, she has a very extensive vocab and talks in full sentances. You do need to put it in perspective with other children of the same age, and I do think he is behind.

The mum needs to address it. For his sake. I know it's hard, but you need to tell her what you think. Then she can push for a referrel. The quicker the better.

I'm not sure about the HV, I would feel uncomfortable with this too. Maybe tell the mum what the inspector said and ask if she has any objections to the HV coming out whilst he is with you, or whether she would prefer it at home?

colditz · 13/03/2006 11:27

Is it an issue with the clarity of his speech, as opposed to the content? He may be stringing sentences, but you are just not understanding them. A SALT would (in my uneducated opinion) still call this speech, if he is consistant about what he says he is using words.

I do think that before the age of 3, a speech therapist isn't concerned about "Arble barble Thomas barble" as long as the effort is being made by both parties to communicate. At 2.8 this is all my ds did, but he has improved a lot, and other people are understanding him ok too.

colditz · 13/03/2006 11:29

Honestly disagree. I don't think a lack of full sentences in a child of 2.8 is very behind. It is behind, and does need to be addressed, but I know a lot of children (all boys!) who didn't speak intelligably to an adult that isn't a parent at that age.

HappyMumof2 · 13/03/2006 11:31

it's sounds as though there are other issues with the child too though. The speech, combined with the not being potty trained and the eating/sleeping issues etc, are worrying,imo.

colditz · 13/03/2006 11:31

Also WRT SALT, they are more bothered by the level of understanding before the age of 3. And the child plainly understands what is being said.

colditz · 13/03/2006 11:33

\link{\a table of the pattern of normal speech developement}

colditz · 13/03/2006 11:37

The sleeping issue is what would worry me the most.

Isyhan · 13/03/2006 11:40

What about just chatting in general terms with the HV. Its not like youre officially reporting anything and they can offer you some general advice about what to do next.

RTKangaMummy · 13/03/2006 11:44

IMHO the sleeping needs to be addressed by the parents

How is he physically?

can he jump, skip, run, balance

Does he play with toys?

katyp · 13/03/2006 11:49

Agree with Colditz that the potty training is not something to worry about yet. My ds was 3.3 before he got the hang of it. I think the speech thing does need monitoring and I would mention it to the mother and encourage her to go to her hv (or maybe offer to take him for her if it is possible for you to do it - maybe she finds it hard to make the time as she is working). However, I have known several children who were not saying much at this age (including a sibling of mine) and they were fine in the end - so probably just needs monitoring rather than intervention. I also don't think a speech therapist would do much more than encourage his parents (and you) to talk to him as much as possible

saltire · 13/03/2006 12:00

When he's babbling away to me, i always reply,
I'll say things like
"That's right X we are changing your nappy" or
"Look at the big lorry coming along the road X". he is always getting loads of chat from me.
He can run, but always trips after a few paces, TBH I've never tried him hopping on one leg, and he can jump quite well. As for the balance, he is a bit off, as i said he is always tripping, especially when walking and when he gets up from a sitting position, he tends to be really unsteady. I honestly cannot remember what age my two were potty trained (both Boys).

OP posts:
RTKangaMummy · 13/03/2006 12:05

How is he with balance?

Like draw a straight line and see if he can walk along it

Can he roll - lie down and roll over smoothly

can he throw and catch ball

can he throw a ball or beenbag into a bucket

can he throw a ball up to a wall and catch

can he climb over a gate

These are all things DS can't do and are classic Dyspraxic symptoms

RTKangaMummy · 13/03/2006 12:06

Does he ever fall asleep in the car ie he is very tired?

Jensmum · 13/03/2006 12:10

It's not unusual for children to still be in nappies and no interested in the potty at this age. The general advice I got when my dd was younger was to wait until she was at least 3 before trying to potty train her. Some children are more advanced than others.

Maybe the mother isn't aware of his clumsiness and speech she may just think all children are like this at his age, she might hear full words and sentances the parents always understand the child before anyone else.

RTKangaMummy · 13/03/2006 12:16

Does he trip even in bare feet?

Perhaps his shoes are too big?

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