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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 03-13-2002, 12:24 PM
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just about out of patience!

My ds(4 yrs) goes to preschool--he rides the bus. The little darling has pulled his pants down twice going to school. I have talked to him and let him know that's not acceptable behavior. He has been throwing tantrums in school on a daily basis and has had one getting off the bus for two days running. I talk to him. The only leverage I have is not letting him play with the paint program on the computer. I know he's only four and can't always express what he's feeling/thinking. But with all that's going on right now, I'm at my wit's end!! He says he likes school and wants to go. He adores riding the bus--it's not like he's been having problems. I speak to his teacher regularly to stay on top of things. Any suggestions on how I can handle this? Or since it's happening at school, just let the teachers handle it? Even though I get these reports daily, she says it doesn't bother her at all(she teaches special needs kids, my ds needs speech therapy). Even so, I don't want him to think this type of behavior is okay as long as he's at school and not at home.
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Old 03-13-2002, 07:33 PM
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Has the teacher made any recommendations for when he's at home? How does she handle it during school hours?
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Old 03-14-2002, 07:39 AM
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Actually, he's usually well-behaved at home. He just likes to have everything be his way at school(even if it's something they do at the same time every day, as long as HE says"Now let's do...." he's ok.) The teacher usually ignores the tantrums--literally stepping over him if need be. At conference last week, she did say they are less intense and less frequent than when he first started school in Dec. So he is making progress.

The school social worker said I'm doing fine at home when he acts like that( into the corner if he's real bad, or just to his room if he's just being a brat). She said it could just be a phase--he's used to getting his way because there was no competition, and now he's got 7 other kids to contend with. She also said it may be because he's cognitively ahead of the others( some of them have learning disaabilities and physical handicaps, whereas Vince just needs speech therapy). They want him to try Headstart next year.

I think my biggest problem is he's growing lol. He's argumentive because he's learning to assert himself, plus he's picking up things he sees others do. I dunno....
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Old 01-23-2003, 07:26 PM
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All I can really say is talk to him about his behavior at school, and tell him that it's not appropriate. I would really need more info to give you any great ideas. Has there been any changes at school or at home that have affected him? Maybe he is acting this way because he is influenced by his classmates and the teacher doesn't correct it. If he sees his friends acting out this way, and the teacher doesn't correct it, he probably thinks it's okay to act this way at school. If the teacher and school will allow it (and they should-all schools are supposed to allow parents to come into the classroom) you may want to pop in the class one day without his knowing so that you can observe this behavior. It may also be that he's not getting something at school that he is used to at home. Does he take any medications? Maybe his meds are wearing off when the behavior begins. Does he skip or eat more than usual at breakfast? If this has changed with school starting, maybe he is acting out because of this. Or maybe he is eating lunch later, or isn't getting a mid-day snack that he is used to. Or maybe there isn't enough physical activity during the day that he is used to at home. It could really be a number of things for him to act so differently at school.
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Old 01-24-2003, 09:27 AM
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Thanks for the advice! Though we went over everything, trying to figure out the "triggers". This year he is doing much better--partly because he's matured a lot, partly because he has some new kids in his class that aren't as delayed as the ones last year. A lot has to with the fact that I told him when school started that if he acted that way again(every day--I know all kids have bad days) I would simply not let him go to school any more. Telling him that came back to haunt me though--for the three days before winter break, he was acting out very badly(even kicked the teacher!). He was ready to go to school at the beginning of break, and I told him he wasn't going. He spent the first four days of Christmas vacation crying in his room because I wouldn't let him go to school! He thought it was because of his behavior--he was promising to be good, to apologize again to the teacher, etc etc. I had a heck of a time trying to get him to understand it was a vacation, not a punishment lol! I finally drove him to the school so he could see that no one was there! He hasn't had a problem since, though.
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Old 01-24-2003, 12:39 PM
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Well that is great that he is doing much better. Sounds like you found what works for your son. The best thing you can do as a parent is to stay involved in what is going on at school. So many parents let their children's problems at school stay at school with the teacher and never worry about it. You will be helping your son a ton by staying involved in his school life. :p
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Old 01-25-2003, 06:00 AM
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Tantrums

My expierence is that you need to replace poor behavior with desire to do better. This can sometimes be done by concentrating on the good and playing down the bad. When your young one acts out the overreaction can be a reinforcement to do it again. When your child comes home from school find out what he did that is positive and reward him. This can be anything from stickers to extra tv time or even a little extra time doing what he likes the most. Instead of taking away what he wants for bad behavior give him extra for positive behavior.
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Old 01-25-2003, 06:01 AM
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My dd turned 4 in November and since she was 3 we have had behavior problems. I have her in a preschool thru the park district and have spoken to the other teachers regarding her behavior. We recently had her tested for the pre K program thru the grade school and she was accepted...but not for the reasons that we expected. They told me that she could not write her name. It is very uncommon for a a4 yr old to have the motor skills to do that. The teacher said nothing about behavior. So, we decided not to do it, thinking that she would be around more negative behavior. In the last month, she has already shown signs of growing up. Do you have the option of switching pre schools? Is your son in a pre k program?
My daughter has allergies and asthma. I know that when the allergy season is thick, her listening skills go down as well as a drastic behavior change. I don't like to make excuses for her, because the world will not make excuses for you throught life.
Hang in there! The attitude will change!
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Old 01-25-2003, 06:25 AM
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Hi,
I would recommend that if the behavior continues you seek out advice from you health care provider. My son had similar behaviors and it got better for a while and then he started again.
It has become a serious issue with his behavior at home and his performance at school.
We are in the process of doing evaluations to determine what is the best way to treat him and what to treat him for. He is a bright, loving child most of the time and sensitive but when he is in one of his phases it's like a child I don't know and can't control.
Good luck! Robin in NC
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Old 01-25-2003, 07:24 AM
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Children aren't really aware of what the trouble is. The only way we know they're having a problem is through their behavior. We'd like to help, but how?
Like we hear constantly, "if we don't (or can't) acknowledge the problem" we stand little chance to do something about it.
If we could only get the child to tell us what's wrong. But they don't really know. They only know they're uncomfortable. They are seeking strategies to remedy their discomfort.

There are two techniques that work well in discovering core issues of a child's discomfort. One is art. Have the child draw pictures and tell stories about them. Draw pictures around the trouble area. Listen when the child is telling the story. Be careful not to express disapproval or negative emotions. Encourage and allow the child to speak and you will get clues as to what's going on in their inner world.

The other technique is to use puppets and role play with the leading characters in the child's world.
Use these techniques in a less emotionally charged arena to get a feel for them and to determine if they have a value for you and to see if you can attain some preliminary skill with them. Then try to get at the root of the child's discomfort. A caring parent is always the child's first line of defense as he or she encounters the difficulties of the world beyond home.
-RC Scott-
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