XP: PreK/ADHD — The Bump
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XP: PreK/ADHD

I know I'm not a regular here but I remember some of you from my first go-around tri days. I need some advice/insights on DS (M).

M just started pre-kindergarten this week. He is young, born Dec 3, but NYC and the immediate suburbs' cutoff for pre-k and K is Dec 31. Our actual county's cutoff is Dec 1 but he goes to a private prek - grade 12 that didn't have any issue whatsoever taking him. (I'm not opposed to him doing two years of pre-k if it comes to it.) Except now he came home everyday this week with a bad report saying he just won't listen. The teacher wrote a note yesterday saying that he was sitting on tables, sits down for a minute and then gets up and she doesn't know what his deal is. Is it that he's acting out with new everything including sister or is he not ready for a structured environment. But he was already in a structured preschool before this with no bad reports. He went to Bright Horizons, which had science time, circle/reading time, and specials like gym/movement, art, and even cooking. Never once did I get told he was really disruptive to the class and I picked him up almost everyday.

Now I'm starting to think maybe M has ADHD. I always said he was a spirited child but I'm thinking it's more now. He has always been very hyper and can't even sit 10 minutes for dinner before he gets up. He had his first tumbling class the other day and would stand up and run around after doing one stretch exercise and would not wait his turn for the life of him. He can't concentrate on anything and I have a hard time controlling him. As a result, he's had 4 different sets of stitches and one concussion already (only - I say it like it's NBD - have two of the stitches been on my watch so it's not like I'm neglecting him myself). I researched and I think he's exhibiting all of the signs for ADHD. I made an appt with the pedi to discuss it on Thurs but I know he's young for full diagnosing.

But I also wonder how much of what we're going through is him being an almost 4 year old adjusting to everything, and one that just recently lost his single child status in June. He's now coming home saying "I'm a bad boy at school" and we talk about what he can and cannot do. And it's not like he's upset that he has no friends. This is the child before even introducing himself to someone will give them a hug. He makes friends anywhere.




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Proud Mama to Mickey (12.03.09) and Nemo (06.06.13)

Re: XP: PreK/ADHD

  • MNgirl326MNgirl326 member
    edited September 2013

    I personally think it is way to early to diagnose.   Many of the things you are describing at school are age appropriate for boys who are young in their grade and may struggle with a transition to a new school. And also may be struggling with a new sibling at home.   

    In most of the schools I have taught at we don't even start talking about assessments until after the first 6 weeks of school, and even then it the first step is usually interventions done in the classroom frist before recommending doctor assessments. 

    I would talk to the teacher.  Ask her what the expectations are, what she is doing to help him.  Do they have set routines?  Do they have movement opportunities? Do they have pictures schedules representing what they should be doing and what they will do next?  IS the work too challenging? To easy?  Is it hands on?  Does she have a visual timer she can set so he can actually see how long he is supposed to do an activity.  Does she give direction all at once or does she give step by step directions? 

    Also does the teacher tell you anything he does well?   Or does she call/ write a note of only the things he did wrong?   Most kids thrive off of positive reinforcement and if she is not noticing anything he is doing well, then he is going to continue to do naughty things to look for her attention.   Negative attention is still attention

    Schooi lsn't just learning academics.  ITs learning how to function in community.   I would put it back on the teacher and tell her before she continues to tell you things he is doing wrong, you want to know what he is doing right.   Then I would work with her to foster those strengths and slowly work with her to one by one work with the challenges. 

    Rome wasn't built in a day and either is teaching a child how to be in school.  If it were me, I would personally wait to take to a doctor until at least January to see if any of this irons itself out.   Plus a doctor worth his/her salt is going to first ask what interventions haven been done in school first anyway.

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  • groovygrlgroovygrl member
    edited September 2013
    I also have my suspicions about that type of diagnosis in our future though part of it is just slower emotional/social maturity for my DS I think (in fact I will be redshirting him for public school based on maturity, not academic ability, when we get there and he is an August bday)... but as you said, he is too young to diagnose and I believe part of the criteria is seeing the behavior in multiple settings, so one teacher's report after 1 week of a new school would not worry me too much...I suspect it is a lot of change & transition and a whole new schedule for your LO and maybe a teacher w/ exceedingly high expectations of a child who isn't even 4 until December...
    Try not to stress it & give it some time.
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  • Is he the youngest kid in the pre-k class? Is there a lot of red-shirting in your area? We have a Sept. 30th cut-off, and at least half of the people we know whose kids have September birthdays keep them back. If all of the other kids in his class are fours or almost fours there could be a huge difference in maturity. Maybe he just needs another year to mature before he's ready for pre-k. There's no harm in talking to your pedi, but a good pedi should just refer you to a developmental pedi rather than diagnosing anything. Good dev. pedis have long wait lists, so it could be quite some time before you have answers. Have you considered doing one more year at his old school since he seemed to do well there?
  • Ditto fredalina's point about physical activity- our DS's teachers did not say much about his behavior (even when we would repeatedly ask about it) until this winter when there was a lot of either rainy or really cold weather and they couldn't go outside much... he had a lot more trouble sitting during circle/reading time, etc... it took us a bit to put it together that it might be related to lack of activity (unfortunately our school does not have an indoor gym & we moved here from a warmer weather state where they were outside year round and we didn't really think about that as a major factor in our school search)... when the weather started to get better, their comments & our observations of his behavior really improved.  Maybe the new school is a big change in this area for your LO too?

    We are not interested in changing schools at this point b/c our LOs like it there & we had so much change the first year we were here that we don't want to make it all crazy again w/ a new school & routine, so I plan to enroll him in more of the extra activities at school that involve physical activity this winter (regardless of different ppl's feelings about the extra activities at school...) and we are going to do swim lessons and another sport on the weekends too.
  • Thanks ladies. I was told that there's a lot of Dec babies doing what we're doing. I don't mind at all if he does an additional year of pre-k. I can't really put him back where he was because it's super expensive and I'm not working much with DD being 3 months old. Plus it's my church's school. 

    Thanks for the suggestions on what we should be doing and asking the teacher. I'm really gong to look into them. My pedi is great and he knows I'm a nurse so we both won't jump into meds. I was thinking though that if I start the process now it might be faster to get services like behavorial therapy if needed. 




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    Proud Mama to Mickey (12.03.09) and Nemo (06.06.13)

  • I agree with asking about the make up/dynamic of the class as far as age.  IF there are a lot of childen who are older for the grade, LO will stick out like a sore thumb because he is younger.

    I highly recommend this book, to all of my parents, it nicely lays out what behaviors are developmentally "normal" for the age.  it also describes the complications in classrooms when you have a young 5 year old, with a older 5 year old/almost 6 year old , and a 6 year old.  It helps put partents minds at ease to know that sometimes it really has nothing to do with the kid theselves but more to do with when their birthday is and where they are on the continuum compared to their classmates  http://www.amazon.com/Yardsticks-Children-Classroom-Ages-4-14/dp/1892989190/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1379213571&sr=8-1&keywords=yardsticks+book

     

    Also the clock I was talking about is this http://www.amazon.com/TIMER-INCH-MODEL-AUDIBLE-OPTION/dp/B001UAMZCU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1379213611&sr=8-1&keywords=visual+clock   I know it was originally designed for kids with autism but I use it every. single. day in my classroom of for any grade younger then 3rd grade.  because kids don't really understand the concept of time.   So to say, you to work on this activity for 10 minutes is completely arbitrary to them, since they don't really understand what 10 minutes is.  This clock however, is a great visual because the red gets less as the time counts down.   So if his teacher doesn't already have this or isn't using it yet, she want to start, to help him build some stamina on working through an activity. 

    Good luck!

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