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    #13304 - 04/08/08 12:01 PM At what point do I give in?
    questions Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/24/07
    Posts: 864
    Here we go again. DS is unhappy in school, again, or is it still? His biggest complaint is the "misbehaving" kids in his class. He complains about all the noise and hearing that they are one of the worst classes, etc., etc. Frankly, I'm not sure how much noise there really is in the classroom (the teachers don't seem to think there's a problem), but I do know there are four very "active" boys who are the ones constantly getting in trouble. This was one of our two complaints a few weeks ago in our big meeting. The other (allowing him to do "challenge problems" instead of regular work) seems to have been taken care of. We're supposed to have a follow-up meeting, so I guess I'll try to schedule one in the next couple of weeks, but at what point do we just throw in the towel and HS (there are no viable private school options at this point)?

    Ideally, I'd like him to stay in school (versus HS). Realistically, I'm not sure how that will work, having looked at the 3rd grade curriculum in a school district that only believes in differentiation. And I realize that once we start HS'ing it will be even harder to get him back in school - the discrepancies between where he is and where his grade is will continue to grow. Meanwhile, he's begging to be homeschooled (he has it all worked out - "I want to be homeschooled until college and then I'm going to [local Ivy League] University!" If that's the case, fine with me! smile ) And of course, I mentioned this whole scenario to a friend of mine who said that clearly DS has issues that other kids don't have, and we should consider medicating him for anxiety, and he has to learn how to deal with and get along with other people. crazy Fact is his favorite parts of school are lunch and recess and he's often "so busy talking to my friends" that he forgets to eat. (btw, this is an upgrade from K when his favorite part of school was being picked up by Mom) I'm just trying to figure out whom to listen to. (Kriston, that whom is for you - I'd usually say who.) I know that the other kids aren't bothered by all this stuff, but he's always hated school, and we keep forcing him to go no matter how badly he feels. If he chooses a career where he can sit by himself in a science lab all day in a t-shirt, flip-flops and shorts like the NASA engineers he's met rather than a jacket and tie on the floor of the NYSE, it's okay with us!

    I admire all of you who can make decisions like these more easily!! Any suggestions as to how to make school more palatable for him? (I had asked twice about moving him to a different classroom, but I'm always told that there are no guarantees that it will be any better, and I know that's true, but it might get him through the end of the year.) Thanks!




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    #13311 - 04/08/08 01:50 PM Re: At what point do I give in? [Re: questions]
    EandCmom Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/09/07
    Posts: 516
    questions - his complaining of things being too loud made me wonder about sensory issues. Especially if the class doesn't seem to be too loud to others. Have you ever considered this?

    Can you figure out exactly what he hates so much about school -is it the loudness and being around the other kids who are being disruptive or is it something else? What is it about homeschooling that appeals to him - not being with the other children or getting to do more challenging work, or not being with his current teacher, etc? Maybe if you could pinpoint exactly what his complaints are, you can figure out what you need to do to to fix it.

    No great help here, but maybe something to think about. I'm sure others will have some great advice for you.

    I'm so sorry that he is so unhappy. frown

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    #13312 - 04/08/08 01:51 PM Re: At what point do I give in? [Re: questions]
    Kriston Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/19/07
    Posts: 6145
    Loc: Midwest
    I have no suggestions that you haven't already heard, but I wanted to give you my support. I'm sorry the troubles are back/ongoing, and I hope you find a workable solution.

    K-
    _________________________
    Kriston

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    #13315 - 04/08/08 02:28 PM Re: At what point do I give in? [Re: Kriston]
    questions Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/24/07
    Posts: 864
    EandCmom, yes, he most definitely does have sensory issues, and that is the root of most of his complaints about school. He went from a class of 7 to a class of 22 (with two teachers), from a school of 120 to a school of 1200. And the sensory issues are why he complains so much about the other kids. It's the noise, and the discipline system (and of course, he knows how to make a lot of noise himself, with his friends, LOL). He is also frustrated with the level of work, saying he's not learning anything this year, but they are trying to adjust that. Not sure what can be done. The teachers have offered to let him do his work in the library, but he says he'll feel cut off. His number one complaint is the kids - not all of them, just the ones who make noise.

    As for the converse, he says he wants to be HS'd because the other kids won't be there, no school disciplinary system, and he won't have to do work he already knows.

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    #13318 - 04/08/08 02:36 PM Re: At what point do I give in? [Re: Kriston]
    incogneato Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/25/07
    Posts: 2231
    Loc: up in my head.......
    I agree with investigating sensory issues. I don't agree with your mom friend whose attitude is that he just needs to get used to it and learn how to get along with others. Clearly that's not the issue as he interacts with the others at lunch and recess.

    If he WANTS to HS and YOU WANT to do it, I say look into it.

    It's not all Laura Ingals Wilder sitting around a candle in a log cabin with one book for six kids of different ages!

    I've heard others report the social opportunities were better because the fit was better and there was more time for quality socializing. So, I wouldn't worry about that aspect.

    I might try and make sure he is not sitting by the loud boys. Any possibility these boys are razzing him at lunch or recess? Could make him more sensitive to their antics in class?

    I also don't think you need to worry that once you HS you can't go back. I have been told repeatedly that as the kids get older there are more opportunities for the school to meet their needs, particularly in High School.

    Could you go talk to the teacher again? Or talk to the principal in a nice way? Could you express concern that school is visibly making him very upset? Maybe the social worker or school psychologist could observe what's going on in the classroom with your son.
    That's what got the ball rolling for DD5 recently. Sometimes those professionals are knowlegeable with gifted issues and will be able to see what's going on for him if they spend some time in the classroom.
    This opened up the opportunity to have a meeting and the principal and school psychologist were very nice and accomodating about communicating to the psyd. who tested the girls to come up with solutions. We don't know how it will go, but they are making an effort to try and meet the girls needs.

    After many rounds with the teacher, it was a phone call to the social worker that finally got some results.
    I don't know what else to tell you, just keep trying, you'll figure out a good plan eventually.

    Hugs to you questions, don't give up.
    smile

    Neato

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    #13319 - 04/08/08 02:39 PM Re: At what point do I give in? [Re: incogneato]
    incogneato Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/25/07
    Posts: 2231
    Loc: up in my head.......
    Hey friend, we crossed posts:

    I have a problem with sending a kid off to the library by themself.
    I haven't seen anyone send the ELL kids off the library be themself to learn english on their own!

    A special project is a great idea IF the child has an adult to work with them, or perhaps another (older) gifted student.
    I would definatly consider proposing that to the school as they mentioned they are open to special projects in the library.

    Peace,
    Neato

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    #13320 - 04/08/08 02:45 PM Re: At what point do I give in? [Re: questions]
    EandCmom Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/09/07
    Posts: 516
    I understand that sensory issues can be very frustrating. Have you tried any sensory therapy for him? I have a friend who's son has sensory issues and she has gotten therapy for him. She has said that there is so much that can be done for these issues with different types of therapy. If you haven't looked into that already, maybe that is something you can explore. If you have a diagnosis, I would think the school would have to provide some sort of accommodation. Have you discussed it with the special ed people at school? They might have some suggestions for accommodations that might not make him feel so isolated. Lots of kids have these types of issues, so there should be some sort of model out there that you could learn from.

    I'm sorry this is all so frustrating for you!!!

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    #13322 - 04/08/08 02:54 PM Re: At what point do I give in? [Re: EandCmom]
    incogneato Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/25/07
    Posts: 2231
    Loc: up in my head.......
    Ditto, DD5 receives therapy for overexcitabilites and it has helped her tremendously.

    Neato

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    #13323 - 04/08/08 03:15 PM Re: At what point do I give in? [Re: incogneato]
    questions Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/24/07
    Posts: 864
    Interesting. DS gets OT, but they concentrate on fine motor and focus to work on writing. I'll speak to the OT. At school they do try to address the sensory a bit, but he misses OT as much as he makes it. If he does have anxiety, it's caused by the sensory issues, not vice versa. I'll look into it from that angle.

    Thanks!

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    #13331 - 04/08/08 04:32 PM Re: At what point do I give in? [Re: questions]
    kimck Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/20/07
    Posts: 1134
    Originally Posted By: questions
    And of course, I mentioned this whole scenario to a friend of mine who said that clearly DS has issues that other kids don't have, and we should consider medicating him for anxiety, and he has to learn how to deal with and get along with other people. crazy


    To me this is like saying "Just throw him in the river - he'll figure it out" about a child who can't swim. I personally had a really difficult time socially and emotionally in elementary school, and it would have made a world a difference to have a few adjustments.

    I don't have any great suggestions other than possibly looking into a classroom switch if you really want to try everything before you pull out. Could you choose and talk to his teacher for next year? Would they be willing to let you supply curriculum for him or allow him to do an online program? Maybe if he could do Aleks online, he'd get some "quiet" time on his own during Math or something?

    That's an incredibly difficult situation! Maybe make yourself a time line for improvement before you give up. Keep us posted!

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