Special Needs

Behavior in the classroom

My SD who is in first grade has continually had some behavior issues in the classroom. She has
ADHD and is medicated which has seemed to help with hyperactivity. The main issue this school year 
has been behavior in the class. She has a daily notebook she brings home about how her day was (Smiley face, middle face, or sad face)
for each part of the day. Then the teacher usually writes comments about the day also.  The main comments are usual emotion outbursts,
throwing a pencil, making faces at another student while the teacher is teaching, kicking another student.  It does not seem to be improving. 
She feels bad when she gets sad faces and we discuss and talk about what to do if she's angry and she knows it's not right kicking another student.
Custody is shared, so she's at her mom's one wk our house one wk.  Any input would be appreciated on what we should do or things that might help.


Re: Behavior in the classroom

  • Spooko said:
    What is the school doing when she gets the various faces? DS is similar, although more impulsive than hyperactive (both, though, really), and he has a chart, also. When he gets all happy faces or all happy and 1 straight, he gets to pick a prize. If he is doing disruptive behaviors, he gets various consequences from the teacher; it isn't just that the note is sent home. How are they dealing with it there?

    I really don't think they do anything that I am aware of if she gets all happy faces. I know there are behavior incentives for the whole class, but not just for her in regards to this chart she brings home.  The consequences seem to just go with the action. For instance she kicked a child because she was mad that she wouldn't give her something to put in lost and found so she had to visit the principal. I can't really say for sure what the other consequences are. I know they use "think sheets" and sitting alone at a seperate desk.  She is very also impulsive.  What do they at your son's school? Anything in particular that has helped him?  I just feel like something else needs to be done because we aren't noticing any improvement, but the teacher doesn't really offer any other suggestions. 
  • Thanks! Those are some very good things to thing about. I'm just getting frustrated bc I feel like everyone just think these issues will resolve, but they have been ongoing since Kindergarten so I don't think that will happen.  Sounds like his teacher is very helpful too!
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  • My DH said today when he picked her up he spoke to the principal and it sounds like they are wanting to do a 504 plan. I don't know too much about them, but I figure I will try to learn more about what they entail.  @spooko
  • -auntie- said:
    Who dx'd this child? And who is managing her meds? What is she taking?

    She was diagnosed by her Psychiatrist and takes Intuniv. We started with adderall which
    seemed to cause issues with sleep, so she's taken Intuniv for about 7 months.  

    The first step I would take is a letter to the district requesting a full multifactored evaluation.  Your DSD has a somewhat atypical presentation of ADHD for a girl, so it's critical to get a second look through the district, at least, to be certain she is accurately and fully dx'd. I would push for an IEP; I made a deal with my district that I would not consider meds without the protection of an IEP. 

    My DH is supposed to be meeting with school soon because the Principal brought up the 504plan.  Should he request the evaluation as well to try to get an IEP?  

    Medication is only part of the tx for ADHD. She needs to have a consistent behavior modification plan in place and perhaps even specific therapies like The Alert Program to teacher her how to regulate her level of arousal and avoid outbursts.

    I'll look into the Alert Program.  

    Talk therapy would be useful as well. I hate to bring it up because I really value co-parenting, but she's getting to an age where a joint physical custody is better for you than it is for her. Some school aged kids, especially those who have executive function issues, really struggle with having no one home base. 

    I agree, I think it's hard for her to go back and forth because things are not the same at both homes. I really don't know if it can be changed though.  

    Section 504 comes out of the ADA which is basically civil rights legislation. IRL, a 504 plan can be great for something like a ramp or extra time of an assessment but it doesn't have any funding to make services or differentiated instruction happen. And it does not come with safeguards to ensure that the services and accommodations are actually given.

    The other piece to IEP is that it comes with manifest determination which is critical if you have the sort of kid who acts out in ways that could trigger a suspension.

    You could look at the meds, too. Some of the stimulants have irritability as a side effect. In some instances the meds meant to help her calm down could be agitating her instead.

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