8yo 3rd Grader with Possible ADD - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 11-16-2004, 03:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Does anybody here have experience with ADD (or "ADD tendencies" as her therapist puts it, we have not had any official diagnosis at this point.) She's a very sensitive child- her feelings are easily hurt and she has a hard time doing what she's asked to do (whether its homework or chores or bedtime) once she's gotten upset and starts crying. She's also very sweet and loving and is convinced that I'm the only person in the world who understands her.

I also suspect some kind of learning disability- she's incredibly bright, but having trouble with getting her thoughts down on paper. She does fine with "basic sentence structure." She loves to read and has great reading comprehension. She's getting bored in school because her teacher won't move her up to a higher reading level until she passes a written exam, and he KNOWS she understands what she reads! Her teacher thinks she's just being stubborn and doesn't want to do the work.

Yes, she can be stubborn at times, but I still think there's more to it. There's usually a REASON she's stubborn about something (such as refusing to wear her coat when it's too small on her.) I don't think she's avoiding her written assignments in school just because she's lazy.

Her teacher has punished her by keeping in at recess (this child NEEDS her exercise!!!) He also wants me to bring her in for extra help on Wednesday mornings before school. That's a nice idea, but I'm struggling to get her to school ON TIME most days! Getting her to bed on time is a challenge. Getting her up in the morning is a huge challenge.

I'm running out of ideas. I'm getting frustrated with her behavior and frustrated with the way her teacher is handling this.

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19 (in Israel for another school year), Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 12(homeschooled)
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#2 of 5 Old 11-16-2004, 04:32 PM
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I'm not going to move this thread because someone here might be able to help, but you might want to post your question in the Special Needs Parenting forum.

I don't have any personal experience, but I do have a friend whose little boy was dx with ADHD, put on medication... fast forward a few years, still having problems at school...he was kicked out of every school they put him in. His mom took him out of school and is now homeschooling him. He is no longer having behavioral or learning difficulties and is also no longer medicated! Not saying that is the solution for your child, but something you may want to consider.
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#3 of 5 Old 11-17-2004, 01:20 AM
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Have you checked on Sensory Integration Disorder? There is a good book called The Out of Sync Child by Kranowitz that could help you figure out if this is part of the problem.
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#4 of 5 Old 11-18-2004, 02:33 AM
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I can relate to what you are describing with my just turned 9 yr old dd. After a miserable year at school last year, I pulled her out and am homeschooling her. Her teacher wanted to have her tested for ADD. There is no way I was going to do it, because they only do it so they can put them on meds. (The forms themselves were published by the pharmeceutical company that makes the drugs). She does fit all the descriptive points of ADD, but as my good friend (and child development specialist) tells me, we look at her behaviors as positives, not negatives.

I haven't really figured out how to deal with the problem since it's made easier by the fact that she isn't in school. I still get frustrated with her for not doing what she needs to be doing as you said -chores, bedtime, etc. She doesn't cry much, but is prone to tantrums and has a very difficult time with transitions. She basically just doesn't do something unless she wants to or sees value in it. Like your daughter, she is very bright and I think was generally bored with school. She had been moved up a grade, but it didn't do any good. They still had them doing workbooks and worksheets all day and she couldn't stand it. The work was easy for her and so repetitive. She would just sit and read her book all day and not participate in what everyone else was doing. She could have been done with it really fast, but just refused to give in to it. (I'm sure my attitude didn't help as I think that mode of learning is ridiculous as well). Needless to say, we had a very hard time with her teacher last year as well. The only teacher she liked and respected was when we lived in New Zealand for a year. SHe was an awesome teacher, but also strict. She accepted Emma for who she was and just dealt with it rather than battling her. She also does not care for writing, but I just look at it as we all like and dislike certain things and that is not one of her favorites.

No one I know has a child like her at all and so I really don't know how others deal with this situation. Our children sound similar. I don't really have any advice, but have you considered homeschooling? We unschool actually. She is in charge of her day, we don't do anything formal. I'm of the mindset that children learn in spite of us and do not need us to actively teach them but be their guides and help direct them along their path. SOme kids do just fine in a school setting. My 7 yr old dd is the total opposite. She loves school and will do whatever the teacher asks. (She does go to an awesome school, though).

I understand your frustration. Please feel free to PM me or continue this discussion on this thread.
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#5 of 5 Old 11-18-2004, 09:38 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, I'm looking at the Feingold website in another window and my head is starting to spin! (although that may be partly due to my feverish 3yo who's nursing more than usual plus sleeping on me (making it hard to get enough to eat/drink) and possibly sharing his cold.)

The information IS overwhelming- but a lot seems like "common sense" to me- it's the stuff I used to do when the girls were babies but I've gotten lazy over the years (especially when it comes to things like letting them buy ice cream at school.)

A big part of me is hesitant to get the pediatrician involved because I don't want pressure to medicate- I don't doubt that medication can be very helpful for some kids, but I beleive it should be used as a last resort, when all other things have failed. On the other hand, the pediatrician might be able to help in some way. Letting the school know my concerns might help with them being understanding and accomodating her- or they might pressure me to medicate her.

This much I know: her behavior is getting out of hand and I have to do SOMETHING. Her therapist is strongly encouraging me to involve the pediatrician. I don't think homeschooling is a realistic option right now because of my own health issues.

Here's where I really want advice: Should I involve the pediatrician at this point? Should I involve the school?

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19 (in Israel for another school year), Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 12(homeschooled)
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