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Preschoolers & Kindergartners What a fun time in life! Time to learn 123's and ABC's. At the same time, they're leaving that babyhood we'll miss so much!

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Old 01-25-2003, 12:08 PM
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Pinkie Winky

Hi.....PLEASE don't take any of what i am going to say personally, ok? you are looking for some solutions for your child, and i have some thoughts, mainly because I have been there done that a number of times. My dd is 7, with learning disorders and chronic health problems.

My first suggestion is to sit down with a pen and pencil and make a list.....ok, you say no recourse but to take away the computer. wrong! you are thinking INSIDE the box....and with your ds you will need to think OUTSIDE. so....start a list of his 'life'. ok.....say his favorite food is cheerios....write it down. he goes to bed at 730, write that down. he watches videos each evening, write it down....he plays with legos every day, write it down. he goes to grammas on saturday mornings, write it down. NOW you have the beginnings of some consequences here.

Get a white board. even though he can't read, he can understand a 'mark' and a smiley or frownie face.

how hi can he count? two? three? use that as a basis. at my house, we use the word "ratty". our "ratty" covers a number of things. each time Angel is "ratty" she gets a mark....used to be frownies but she is old enough now for a mark. When she hits (two, three, four, whatever YOU choose).....she goes to bed early. This is definitely within his capacity to understand, if he is an average four year old. YOU decide how early, but make it consistent. At our house, if you get one or two marks it is forgiven but at 3, you are too tired to control your behavior and you go to bed 1/2 hour early. THEY UNDERSTAND this. the key is consistency. If you smack your friend with a toy, mom takes it for a day, because you are too tired to remember how to use it correctly. THEY UNDERSTAND.

Now, if Angel has even ONE tantrum.....its an hour early. Heaven forbid, if there are two or three.....well, one day she ended up laying on her bed looking at picture books at 5pm. BUT SHE UNDERSTOOD.

If you are consistent....if you talk to the school every day....and even if they ignore the tantrums, you should not......if you do this every day, within 2 or 3 weeks you will see a tremendous difference in your child.

the keys are consistency, and tying the action YOU take to the action HE took.

This method will work even with learning disabled children. And it puts the responsibility for their behavior firmly on them, not on you.

Now, the hard part, that will feel personal. You say that he 'wants his own way' or has a tantrum at school. My guess is... that he is probably getting his way at home quite a bit more than you realize. So sit down when you are relaxed, and review some average days in your mind. Try to spot the situations where he is guiding you instead of you guiding him, and begin to gently correct this.

It was very very hard for me, as a parent, to realize that I was NOT doing Angel any favors by letting her do things HER way because it was less stress for her. Life is not like that. All through life, we must comply with the way others wish us to do things. Now, I don't mean to take away choice. All children need oodles of choices, and to understand the consequences of bad choices. that is how they grow and develop. BUT.....a child that is unable to adapt to situations is at a disadvantage in real life, and as parents, we need to be able to help them grown and change.

I hope that this has helped you a bit, and that you are not offended. I have seen my Angel go from constant constant problems to occasional ones using this method of caring and consistency.
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Old 01-25-2003, 12:48 PM
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My son had problems from the start of school on, too. I put him on an herbal supplement & WOW his behavior really changed. We also sent a pocket calendar with him to school each day that he gave the teacher ~ his teacher marked a happy face or a sad face depending on his behavior that day. If he got a smiley face we made a HUGE deal about it at home & let him do something special or have a special treat or something like that. It gave him a choice & he could understand the smiley face or sad face. If he got a sad face, he had consequences & had to go to bed earlier than usual. This year has been his best year ever ~ his teachers from the past have noticed a HUGE improvement. If you would like to know more about the supplement or the calendar, feel free to email me at [email protected] Good luck!
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Old 01-25-2003, 01:05 PM
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Ummm.. call your pediatrician and discuss your child's behavior with the Doctor... see what he advises for your child. .... perhaps some counseling in parenting.....or for the child. Please understand I am not saying you are a bad parent. The fact that you raise a question states you are trying to resolve the difficulties you are experiencing. I would seek professional help to nip this in the bud before it becomes more than you can handle.

Jeannie
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Old 01-25-2003, 01:15 PM
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Oh, I didn't take anything you said personally, Anita. I spent quite a few evenings in tears trying to figure out how I'd failed as a mom, having a child that acted that way. Anyway--I took a class caleed "Systematic Training For Effective Parenting", and it went a long way towards helping me handle his behavior and my reaction to the things he was doing. Yes, he gets his way very often. Usually it's not an issue--he's a very laid-back kid. But I did find out some of the things that were going on at the school--not bad things, just things that were setting him off. I eventually just told the teacher to do what we did at home--stick him in a corner with his back to the room. This works better than sending him to bed because he knows what's going on and that he can't participate.

Like I said, though, this year he's doing much better. The kicking incident in a way was my fault. He kept wanting to walk around and the teacher's aide tried to force him to sit by grabbing him and making him sit down. I've taught him that if someone he doesn't know ever grabs him, fight them!(We used to live in a bad neighborhood). Well, he didn't know the aide and fought her.
As far as I'm concerned, she had no business grabbing him unless he was in danger, but that's a whole different subject. We went to the school and talked to the teacher, he apologized--and was disciplined for acting out. I told him I understood his reasoning, but the behavior was still unacceptable. He's getting there--I've been very proud of his progress!!
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Old 01-25-2003, 01:29 PM
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Lots of {{{hugs}}} for you and I am sure you will figure it out.
Through my almost 12yrs now of parenting I find that it is usually something simple when a child acts out like that. Something is bothering him AT school at this age. One of the triggers are who is playing with who and so & so gets to go to "their friends" house. Now this may not be the case with you but I find this to be one of the biggest irritants for kids.
Good Luck
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Old 01-25-2003, 03:15 PM
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Where did you find the class "Systematic Training for Effective Parenting" ? I think many a parent (including myself) could use some training.
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Old 01-31-2003, 03:06 PM
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Hi, I really feel for you, it is very difficult when a little one is behaving badly. The first time I saw 'The Simpsons' (the TV programme) Bart pulled his pants down and that was it for me as far as that programme went! People think that what they watch on TV (or eslewhere) doesn't have an effect on them but it does. I don't know whether your child saw that behaviour on TV or elsewhere but I do understand your consternation.
I am pleased that your son's behaviour is improving and pray that it will continue to do so.
Affirming and praising a child when they do right goes a lot further in promoting good behaviour than just concentrating on and trying to correct the bad behaviour.
I've also learnt that we need to differentiate between the 'who' and the 'do' i.e. We love 'who' (and the child needs to know this otherwise they can think that we are rejecting them which will create even more problems) they are all the time, but we don't always like what they 'do'.
Children need to learn to do what the parents tell them to do (when the best interest of the child is in mind) and not the other way around.
One of the best pieces of advice that I have come across is this one " learn to really know your child, get to know his/her personality, likes and dislikes. This requires a lot of time and effort but the diffidends are immense. I just wish that I had known this when my child was small.
My daughter has just had a baby and I came across a site which was of great benefit to her during her pregnancy - but also has a wealth of good advice and information for parents. The site is www.askdrsears.com. Warmest of wishes to you.
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Old 01-31-2003, 05:05 PM
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I posted earlier about my son's behavior. I have a possible
bittersweet solution. After some new initail testing and evaluations it appears that my son has bipolar disorder. He is scheduled for a full psych eval later in Feb. It's a tough diagnosis but at least we have something to help us to help him.
Unknown to me his symptoms may have started when he was around 4 with his speech. He talked so fast his words were running together making him almost impossible to understand at times.
I did not put two and two together until the doctor mentioned it as a possible sign.
I urge anyone who has questions about their childs behavior to talk to health care providers. With me, I had to stay persistant and I didn't find the answers with the first counselor I talked to about my son. We went through about 5 or 6 before we found the right one. One of the hardest parts is accepting that he has a
health issue and it happens to be mental. I have to also hurdle over the fact that I was not being a bad parent and it is not my parenting skills. My son probably inherited this from my husbands side of the family. Unknown to me until recetnly his (dh) mother has been diagnosed with bipolar for years and has been on meds. Bipolar disorder is different in adults than in children from my understanding.
Good luck to all those that are facing challenges. Robin
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Old 01-31-2003, 06:10 PM
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{{Robin}}--my thoughts and prayers are with you and your son.

MKS--the class was offered through my son's school and a program we have called Discovery Years. I swear it was like someone dumped a bucket of ice water over me, when the teacher started talking about behavior and how we respond to it--it fit me to a T!! It covered staying consistent, giving choices, what types of things to just simply ignore, etc. And it gave actual words for me to say, instaed of just direction. I know that sounds sad, but at the time, I really needed a "script" because as soon as the misbehavior would start, I'd lose it and start screaming!

The name of the book is "The Parent's Handbook" by Don Dinkmeyer, Sr.; Gary D. McKay; and Don Dinkmeyer, Jr. It's easy to read and covers everything!!
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Old 01-31-2003, 06:46 PM
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Thanks for the info and kind thoughts. There is also a very good book called Creative Corrections by Whelchel. It's a must have for your book shelves. And another thought. If you are a Mom of a infant up to school age there is a wonderful support group called MOPS. MOPS.org You can go to the website and find a group near you. It stands for Mothers of Preschoolers.
You will find support and plenty of good info. on most any topic related to being a Mom. Most meetings in our group start with a brunch and good conversation, then we have a creative craft or a guest speaker. Then we have a Mentor Mom or stand in to give us words of wisdom and thoughts to ponder. We close by having small group time where we break up in small groups and talk about the days topics or what is on our minds. All this while babysitters watch your children with guided activities and snacks. We have play groups where we all get together and go for a picnic and play at a park. We have Moms night out where we leave the kids home and go out with the girls to a dinner and maybe a bookstore and coffee. It's well worth checking into.
Robin in NC
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