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Talking to the teacher about behavioral issues

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
DS is in second grade in a full-time public school gifted program -- we are thrilled with it so far (it started last year).

He is a high-energy, very extroverted social kid -- has a hard time sitting still and being quiet. He's the "problem child" in class this year (a very well-behaved class of 17 kids) -- and keeps coming home with "warnings" and "strikes" because of talking too much and generally being disruptive. Recently he got sent to the principal's office for running around the gym during a special assembly. I was mortified, but I also wasn't terribly surprised to find out that it was the end of the day, a day without gym and with (yet another) indoor recess (we have cold winters and they keep the kids in entirely too often IMO).

So, dh and I are going in for a special conference to talk to his teacher. I suspect he needs more movement in his day but I am also curious to hear what she has to say -- she's been teaching gifted kids for several years and should have some insight. Anyway, does anyone have ideas for me to bring to her? Thank you!
post #2 of 3
How much of his behaviour do you see as a gifted issue and how much is a 7/8 y.o. boy issue? Does he have insight into his behaviour, how disruptive it is, and inappropriate? I ask because some gifted children have a maturity and insight that is beyond their years - and some don't.

It doesn't sound like he self-regulates all that well. It's not uncommon at his age, but at this point, it could start to become an issue with the other students. They may want to focus and work diligently, but find that he's disrupting them. My dd has returned this year to the same gifted class she was in years ago. It's interesting that she and her friends are still complaining about sitting with the same disruptive boys that they avoided working with when they were 9 y.o.

You are probably right in that more physical activity throughout the day will be helpful. Does he recognize the signs when he needs an outlet for his energy. It would be nice if he did, and he could let his teacher know that he needed a couple of minutes to get the wiggles out, so that he could sit down and concentrate again.
post #3 of 3
Two thoughts. The first is getting an eval for sensory processing disorder as that could be underlying the behaviour. If it's SPD, the remediation strategy is different than if it's conceived as "behaviour" that a child is choosing not to control. If it's SPD, it's about the child learning about their sensitivities and triggers and learning compensatory strategies.

The second is in how all of this is framed for your son. I have noticed in both of my children's classes that the teachers and the parents frame it as being about "the rules" or about "Mrs. Teacher." Our son has made remarkable progress and I attribute some of that to the fact that we regularly discuss being a member of a community (the classroom, for example), and how our choices affect those around us. So, talking loudly out of turn isn't about the rules or getting in trouble, it's about the lost opportunity for another student to contribute. For our son, this has really helped.
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