Join Date: Jul 2006
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Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.
The one bit of wisdom I learned during those early years is that it's OK to try things. If something doesn't work, change it. Don't stress about making every single right decision. I'm telling you right now, there will be mistakes. However, if you prepare your child for that in advance and let them know you'll never let them wallow in a terrible situation, they can bounce back from anything. Follow protocols at the school... never go to the principal before going to the teacher. Never go to the superintendant without first speaking to the principal. Never try to chat about it informally. Always schedule a conference where all parties are prepared. When asking for accomodations, make the case for the emotional/social benefits for what you are asking first. It's MUCH easier to say "no" to "but my child is so bored" than "he's unhappy and feels like there must be something wrong with him."
You also mention that he needs a teacher to stand over him. That tempts me into a lengthy discussion about child-led learning, but I'm going to resist. It also tempts me to talk about the boredom a gifted child often has with routine work - and the lack of motivation to finish that kind of work. In case it's really more about organizational issues, I'll just suggest that you talk to his teacher about implementing a bunch of mechanisms that help him learn to be organized and follow through on things on his own - using agendas and lists and reminders and routines etc. to stay on track.