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  #1  
Old 01-12-2012, 03:55 PM
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Default How Do You Accept A Child Who Is Not Smart?

This thread opened a whole can of worms when I really just wanted some help. Thank you to those who did help. I will be deleting any posts I am allowed.

Last edited by erinalexmom; 01-12-2012 at 08:16 PM. Reason: Can of worms didnt want opened
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Old 01-12-2012, 03:59 PM
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Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
Ok I have a little boy who causes me stress. Now he is a sweet boy. Listens to me when I ask him something and doesn't cause problems with the other children. However, he is just not smart. Most of it is his parents fault. They will never help him live up to his potential and they actually hold him back from it. But he also just isn't a "smart kid"
Anyway, all my other kids are bright (even the ornery ones! lol) and I really enjoy teaching them and working with them but I feel with this one, whats the point? No matter what I do the parents will just undo it. So help me if you have ever run into this situation and how did you overcome it?
Keep in mind my weekend job is a home health nurse and I work with children with special needs. I can accept that but their parents care and at least try to help their child and do what is in the best interest of the child.
how old is the child that you are able to say that he is or is NOT smart?
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:12 PM
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Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
Ok I have a little boy who causes me stress. Now he is a sweet boy. Listens to me when I ask him something and doesn't cause problems with the other children. However, he is just not smart. Most of it is his parents fault. They will never help him live up to his potential and they actually hold him back from it. But he also just isn't a "smart kid"
Anyway, all my other kids are bright (even the ornery ones! lol) and I really enjoy teaching them and working with them but I feel with this one, whats the point? No matter what I do the parents will just undo it. So help me if you have ever run into this situation and how did you overcome it?
Keep in mind my weekend job is a home health nurse and I work with children with special needs. I can accept that but their parents care and at least try to help their child and do what is in the best interest of the child.
Those are the kids who need us the most...
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:13 PM
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Wow, really? You need to term this family tomorrow. Let them find a provider that can love and accept them just the way they are. I hope your boss reads this post. I wouldn't want you working with my special needs, regular, or exceptional child!
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:14 PM
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I'm so confused right now. Like PP ...how old is this child?

Also, when a child absorbs information during learning, the info is in there no matter what happens at home. Nobody can "undo" learning that will take place at DC.

Sounds like no one is giving the kid a chance, but just "writing him off" as unintelligent!

Seriously is this post for real
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:18 PM
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Deleting my posts
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:19 PM
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Nevermind please just ignore this post. Sorry I asked.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:21 PM
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With the example you gave...I'm wondering...

hearing problem?

Auditory processing problem?

Perhaps instead of reminding him before he even has a chance to remember, give him a chance and then correct him if he forgets or notice him if he remembers ("I see you left the door open; thank you!")
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:23 PM
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He's 3!!! You are using way too many words for one, and I have no idea what this has to do with working with him, or his intelligence. I am incredibly intelligent and I have been known to mis interpret what someone asked me to do when my mind is on something else!

Try " leave the door open please". Or better yet train them to leave it open, or leave it closed and do it yourself if you want it to be done differently.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
Ok I have a little boy who causes me stress. Now he is a sweet boy. Listens to me when I ask him something and doesn't cause problems with the other children. However, he is just not smart. Most of it is his parents fault. They will never help him live up to his potential and they actually hold him back from it. But he also just isn't a "smart kid"
Anyway, all my other kids are bright (even the ornery ones! lol) and I really enjoy teaching them and working with them but I feel with this one, whats the point? No matter what I do the parents will just undo it. So help me if you have ever run into this situation and how did you overcome it?
Keep in mind my weekend job is a home health nurse and I work with children with special needs. I can accept that but their parents care and at least try to help their child and do what is in the best interest of the child.
I would try to focus on his many good qualities and remind myself that it's possible this child, through no fault of his own, has a developmental/learning disability and needs all the love and attention I can give him, especially since his parents can't or won't help him.

Can you be more specific about what he does that causes you stress and what you feel the parents are doing or not doing to to undo your work with him? Is it possible the parents have their own developmental/learning disability and can't/don't know how to help their child?
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:28 PM
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I know that it is frustrating, but you just need to keep working with him. It sounds like maybe no one works with him at home.

My niece is 4 and she would not understand what you meant. She is a product of a TV baby from birth to age 4. Never was exposed to DC or other social environments. We thought that something was wrong with her and we all had her go through tons of evaluations. I even tried her in my DC and I could not help. If you told her to go and get her shoes, she would give you a blank stare.

She also could not communicate either. You would ask her a question and most of the time she would repeat it.

Finally after 7 months of being in a good preschool, she is finally talking and she can comprehend what is being asked of her. Now if I tell her something she responds and does what is asked.

Little boys are slower in general than girls. I have a little one who is 3.5 and cannot put his own shoes on. I know its because no one ever showed him how and everyone does everything for him.

Try to show show show show show him what you want him to do and be patient. I bet you he will come around.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
Nevermind please just ignore this post. Sorry I asked.
You do not need to be sorry people are trying to be helpfull. Your orginal pst did not give enougph information. How are you qualified to detrime that a

three year old is smart vrses showing signs of a learning/brain porcess disorder. Also you said all of your children are smart so maybe by comparing

them you are think this child is not smart when realy he is average.


The amount of words that you used wastoo many for a child that age lets break it down "when you come out of the bathroom leave the door open"

saying it this way has two parts to remember to do the first part is when the secound part is what. If the child was truely leaving the bathroom when you

spoke to him you could easily leave off the when part. "Please, leave the door open."


Without other examples or knowing why you are quailified to decied something I was taught in "teacher" school to never voice. It is hard to understand what

you are getting at. saying he is not smart is a very powerfull statement. While it may been the samthing to you it would have been better to say he does not

come by simple concepts easily.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:38 PM
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I have a ds who had "issues" when he was young (still does) - turned out he is slightly autistic. He tests very high on IQ tests but has no "common sense". He is now 19 and he still frustrates me at times but I accept that he will always be different and remind myself that he can't help it.

I look at it as God knew I needed to learn more patience, which I have.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
Ok I have a little boy who causes me stress. Now he is a sweet boy. Listens to me when I ask him something and doesn't cause problems with the other children. However, he is just not smart. Most of it is his parents fault. They will never help him live up to his potential and they actually hold him back from it. But he also just isn't a "smart kid"
Anyway, all my other kids are bright (even the ornery ones! lol) and I really enjoy teaching them and working with them but I feel with this one, whats the point? No matter what I do the parents will just undo it. So help me if you have ever run into this situation and how did you overcome it?
Keep in mind my weekend job is a home health nurse and I work with children with special needs. I can accept that but their parents care and at least try to help their child and do what is in the best interest of the child.
I agree that there were too many words used. Try going with him at the point of finishing up at the sink, and when you go out together say, "Leave the door open." After your out, give a little side hug and say "Thank you!" Go along side throught the day or when making requests at different trouble spots, and make simple commands while helping if necessary, and let him know thru different ways you value him; with hugs, winks, hi-fives, verbal praises... this may encourage him to respond to directions better. How long do you help him succeed this way? As long as you have him in your care.
Blessings!
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:46 PM
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I get it! Really!
I've had these kids and all you can do is love them to the best of your ability and just let it go.
You are not responsible for getting them ready for the world.
Your job is to keep them safe, love them as best you can, and teach them through everyday experiences. What they take from you is up to the parents and themselves.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:49 PM
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Silver Sabre thanks I was wondering about the Auditory Processing myself. I will look more into that.

e.j. thank you for that viewpoint. I appreciate it.


Daycare, what you have said about your niece is my daycare boy all the way!
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mary Poppins View Post
I have a ds who had "issues" when he was young (still does) - turned out he is slightly autistic. He tests very high on IQ tests but has no "common sense". He is now 19 and he still frustrates me at times but I accept that he will always be different and remind myself that he can't help it.

I look at it as God knew I needed to learn more patience, which I have.
I was just going to post another reply very similar to this.

My 21 yr old son, who has Asperger's is also highly intelligent but I still find myself having to be very careful about what I say when I give him instructions to do something. I'm not sure if it's so much a lack of common sense as it is a thought process that is different from neurotypical thinking. When I was researching his diagnosis, I kept reading over and over again that one of the red flags for parents of kids with AS is always saying or thinking, "I shouldn't have to tell you this....."
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:11 PM
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I have offended many people on this board and I do most time I post it seems so I will just ask Michael to remove this whole post. Thank You to the people who really tried to help me.
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:15 PM
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I have a set of twins that are three and sat in front of the tv all day for 3 years. Just keep up with him. After 6 months now I see a big difference in them. They still melt to the ground ALL THE TIME over nothing and I continue to say use your words many times a day but I'm hoping in another 6 months they will end that too. (EXCEPT at home I think the melt downs get attention, atleast at pick up/drop off they do) but I see alot of change in them. It was super frustrating at first but using short sentences really does help as well too.
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:24 PM
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I have a set of twins that are three and sat in front of the tv all day for 3 years. Just keep up with him. After 6 months now I see a big difference in them. They still melt to the ground ALL THE TIME over nothing and I continue to say use your words many times a day but I'm hoping in another 6 months they will end that too. (EXCEPT at home I think the melt downs get attention, atleast at pick up/drop off they do) but I see alot of change in them. It was super frustrating at first but using short sentences really does help as well too.
Thank you! This is great advice!
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:25 PM
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I am not sure there is anything "wrong" with the child. I think the parents don't care that he is behind and they never will. I think that if his parents would wake up and do what is right for the child, he could get caught up to his peer group and all would be well. But instead, they will wait until the school holds him back and labels him.
For the record. I care about this child or I wouldn't try as hard as I do. I have offended many people on this board and I do most time I post it seems so I will just ask Michael to remove this whole post. Thank You to the people who really tried to help me.
You didn't offend anyone. This is exactly why this forum is here....so people can get advice, help and support. Sometimes people are offended by the manner in which the problem is presented but we have to remember that we all come from different walks of life and use different words and actions to do or say the same things.

Other than one poster, who's response seemed very reactive in an emotional way, everyone else seems to be trying to help.

I had a child just like the one you are describing. He knew every single commercial jingle on TV and the only physical activity he received was pushing the buttons on his Gameboy. No matter how many times I talked to mom or tried to get her on board with trying to help this child, she did nothing.

In reality, all you can really do is try to make a point of spending some one on one time with him. Help him learn the things you know he is capable of learning. Every kid is a jogsaw puzzle and you have to figure out where all his pieces go. It isn't your problem to fix, but if you can do something tohelp him...I would jump at the chance. YOU may someday be the person who made the difference in his life.

You are right though, whatever he has going on at home will always have an effect on him, but you CAN change that. Set up activities that are developmentally appropriate for him to do and praise him for doing well. Speak in a language he understands. That could be showing him or telling him with only one or two words what you want him to do. In still in him a love for learning and he will take pride inhimself and in trying to please you..

Start a developmental checklist of things he can and cannot do. Set up some short and long term goals from that list. Do some observing and see what areas he is lacking in (social, language, etc) and work at developing those skills. If you start with one small daily goal and one long term goal, you might be pleasantly surprised to find that he is in there...you just need to find a way to help him out.
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:42 PM
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Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
I am not sure there is anything "wrong" with the child. I think the parents don't care that he is behind and they never will. I think that if his parents would wake up and do what is right for the child, he could get caught up to his peer group and all would be well. But instead, they will wait until the school holds him back and labels him.
It can be very frustrating. It may be that they don't care, they don't know any better, they don't recognize the problem or they may be in denial. Unfortunately, we can make suggestions but we can't make parents follow through on them. If you think you can make a difference for this little boy, I'd say keep trying. If the situation is causing you stress, it's okay to acknowledge that and sever ties with this family.

Quote:
Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
For the record. I care about this child or I wouldn't try as hard as I do. I have offended many people on this board and I do most time I post it seems so I will just ask Michael to remove this whole post. Thank You to the people who really tried to help me.
It always bothers me when someone posts a message asking for help and leaves feeling misunderstood or attacked. I hope you reconsider asking to have this post removed. It could help someone else who may be struggling with the same problem to know they aren't the only ones. Take the replies that are useful and supportive to you and ignore those that aren't.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:03 PM
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Silver Sabre thanks I was wondering about the Auditory Processing myself. I will look more into that.
I keep thinking about your post and I am really, really wondering if his hearing is all right.

I have a 2.5 yo boy who has speech issues. Has had many ear infections, tubes have been mentioned but nothing has been done. He keeps staying juuuust ahead of the threshold where they will do anything about it . He reminds me of your dcb: sometimes it feels like I am talking to myself, or to a brick wall. I say something and my dcb just stares at me, or repeats part of what I said, or goes to do something entirely different from what I said, or follows someone ELSE I just told to do something. I honestly think that my dcb has some hearing troubles in addition to some other stuff going on. You dcb may, too. Think about it: bedroom and bathroom sound VERY similar, especially if he has hearing issues. I would push for a hearing check.

Could you give us more examples of what makes you think that your dcb is "not smart"?
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:06 PM
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I always get a few kids who are not as bright as the other kids. But, they usually have something that they are better at than all the others.

J is just never going to be an honor's student...but, he's awesome at helping and knowing when someone needs help with something. He's willing to do anything for anyone. None of the other kids are as generous as he is.

But, I have had two kids who were very slow, and were never going to do well in school without a LOT of help. Both were diagnosed in school as having severe learning disabilities.

Otherwise, I just take them as I get them. If they are slow, we find out what they are good at, and I put energy into their strengths instead of focusing on their weaknesses...but I still work on their weaknesses too. It's just not the most important thing. If they can't learn letters, we don't stress out about it... I tell that child all the things he's really good at instead. I never allow a kid to leave my care thinking he's not good at something.... he or she always leaves my care knowing what he is good at.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:31 PM
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I do have one girl who just doesn't "get it" as quickly as the others. And yes. It's frustrating! I find myself not trying as hard sometimes just because if I get too frustrated, I'll just end up pushing her too hard and she'll end up not wanting to participate in learning time. So I've backed off a little bit.

No real advice for you, I just wanted you to know that you're not alone. It can be challenging to work with children who learn at a slower pace than the others.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:34 PM
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Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
Ok I have a little boy who causes me stress. Now he is a sweet boy. Listens to me when I ask him something and doesn't cause problems with the other children. However, he is just not smart. Most of it is his parents fault. They will never help him live up to his potential and they actually hold him back from it. But he also just isn't a "smart kid"
Anyway, all my other kids are bright (even the ornery ones! lol) and I really enjoy teaching them and working with them but I feel with this one, whats the point? No matter what I do the parents will just undo it. So help me if you have ever run into this situation and how did you overcome it?
Keep in mind my weekend job is a home health nurse and I work with children with special needs. I can accept that but their parents care and at least try to help their child and do what is in the best interest of the child.
That comes across harsh. I'm thinking maybe you didn't mean it as it sounded? I accept all children ESPECIALLY those that need more care. I have 2 kids like this right now. I have been working with them for months and it is a very slow process. They can't retain anything like colors, shapes, letters etc. I will hold up color cards and say "Red" Then I ask what color it is. They will shrug their shoulders. I will go through lay cards down maybe 4 colors and name them slowly. I ask them to point to red they still don't get it. I hold it up and say "red this is the color red" Then I ask what color it wa and 1 said blue the other shrugged. This is just 1 of my examples. My ages are 2 and 4 yrs.

I know how frustrating it is but if we are willing to give up and pass on them as the parents have then WHO will be there for them? I personally like seeing my kids grow up and have fond memories of their time with me. I try very hard because I want to make a difference not only for the children to enter kindergarten knowing the basics but so they know someone cared enough to dedicate quality time to them when others didn't. Maybe you could set aside some 1 on 1 time with this child during free play time to help them progress. That's what I am trying now, 1 on 1.

Just a little experince I had:
I saw a Mother and child signing up for kindergarten 4 years ago. The Mom sat beside me filling out the forms for registration and couldn't read most of it so she called someone on her cell, she starts spelling things and asking how to spell the answer. Her little girl was so sweet beautiful black hair and the face of a china doll with the brightest smile. Sadly at the end of the year she was held back as the rest of the class passed because she didn't understand the basics. Sadly sometimes it's passed down from parents who don't know enough themselves. I remember thinking this poor child was probably never given the experience of being read bedtime stories since the Mom couldn't read a single sentence on those forms.

May you find the patience and answers you need to help this child. Good luck!
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:36 PM
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Deleting my posts
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:42 PM
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I've posted this example before but one thing is I'll say "go pick a toy and go play" and he will literally choose 1 block and sit down!
In his mind, he is doing EXACTLY what you asked him to do. He picked a toy (the block) and is playing with it.

You have to find language that works for him. If he isn't interacting with any one at home but the TV, he has no one to model for him what he is suppose to do. Do you have an older child you could have be a "classroom buddy"? Sometimes that helps when a peer is showing them what to do.

Instead of saying "Go pick a toy and go play" you could try "Get the cars out and drive them them on the rug over there." Try being a bit more instructive and state exactly what it is you want him to do. You may have to demonstrate or assist him until he starts picking up on those kinds of instructions. He is young so he still has plenty of time.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:43 PM
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Deleting my posts
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:46 PM
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I've posted this example before but one thing is I'll say "go pick a toy and go play" and he will literally choose 1 block and sit down!
Maybe he is taking you literally as for the "go pick a toy". I have been in a situation just like that!! When I then said "sally honey you can have more, would you like to play with more beads?" she smiled and got up and collected more beads for her string.

I would pick out his favorite items and spend some time just talking with him about the toy. Ask questions about it like is that hard or soft? What color is that? This is my approach it seems to be helping with 1 of mine.

HTH
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by e.j. View Post
I was just going to post another reply very similar to this.

My 21 yr old son, who has Asperger's is also highly intelligent but I still find myself having to be very careful about what I say when I give him instructions to do something. I'm not sure if it's so much a lack of common sense as it is a thought process that is different from neurotypical thinking. When I was researching his diagnosis, I kept reading over and over again that one of the red flags for parents of kids with AS is always saying or thinking, "I shouldn't have to tell you this....."
EXACTLY THIS!!! My son has Asperger's too (I hate that word lol). He has to literally be told each step of each task, every single time. And sending him to find something? Forget it! He can be staring right at it and not see it. It's frustrating for him, too, and he struggles with feeling "stupid" as he puts it. He's sooo not stupid, though, he just processes things differently.

He seems to take everything very literally, too. When he was little, I would say things like "give me a minute" and ONE MINUTE later he'd be back lol.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:48 PM
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It's not the child that I don't accept. Its that I need to accept his limitations and not feel like a failure because of it.
Oh hun you are not a failure!! Coming here asking instead of choosing to ignore it or drop him proves that much! I'm sorry if I offended you.

Some kids just need more effort, more time and definitley more patience.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:57 PM
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We need to be an advocate for the kids with "bad" parents. If they "undo" what you teach him (which I find hard to swallow, but you said it...) then so be it. At least while he's with YOU he has an opportunity to be worthy of receiving education. If they don't do it at home, that is even MORE reason that YOU should do it. Not because they pay you and it's your "job" to do it, but because it is basic morals. Otherwise, you are just saying, "oh, who gives a d*mn. Let him be dumb." Sorry if that sounds harsh, but that's how I read your words.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:01 PM
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Thanks Blackcat! You have helped me more than once and I appreciate it. I will be working hard to brainstorm ways to get through to this little guy. I already don't turn on the TV the entire time he is here because I know that is part of his issue. My daughter is 6 and she does "teach" him to play on the days she is home from school.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:11 PM
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I am not saying any of this to be mean. He is a nice kid.
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For the record. I care about this child or I wouldn't try as hard as I do.
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It's not the child that I don't accept. Its that I need to accept his limitations and not feel like a failure because of it.
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Wow, I'm really saddened at this post. I haven't read the other responses, but I glanced enough to know that I'm not the only one who feels this way.

We need to be an advocate for the kids with "bad" parents. If they "undo" what you teach him (which I find hard to swallow, but you said it...) then so be it. At least while he's with YOU he has an opportunity to be worthy of receiving education. If they don't do it at home, that is even MORE reason that YOU should do it. Not because they pay you and it's your "job" to do it, but because it is basic morals. Otherwise, you are just saying, "oh, who gives a d*mn. Let him be dumb." Sorry if that sounds harsh, but that's how I read your words.

If you don't care enough to give this sweet kid a safe haven, then you're in the wrong business, sister. Sad.
The OP is asking for help.... where is the support? Seems to me there is alot of judging going on in this thread because of the language used or the fact that someone isn't all rainbows and kittens all the time when it comes to discussing kids. Most of us who have been in this business long enough, have had a child in their care that they have trouble connecting with.

It would be helpful if the entire thread (or atleast the OP's posts) is read before some says something that isn't helpful or supportive.

Joyce, I am NOT singling you out your post just struck a chord with me and I'm sorry but I am just really tired of the people who want to come on this forum looking for help or support or advice and then getting beat up for it.

What if providers stopped asking for support or advice.....what do you think would happen to all these kids then?

Reaching out to others is the RIGHT thing to do, no matter what words we use to ask.

Maybe if people aren't supportive or helpful they are in the wrong business as well. Part of being a childcare provider is helping, educating and caring for EVERYONE in a child's life.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:12 PM
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Pitter Patter you have not offended me. You seem to really want to help me. Thanks
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:14 PM
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I am sorry Joyce, I see you went back and deleted part of your post. I apologize for my emotional outburst....

If you want me to go back and delete it (the part you deleted) from my quote, please let me know....

Like I said, I wasn't aiming any of that AT you.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:38 PM
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I know lots of kids that are not smart. And yes it is their parents fault. I can't believe how many parents just don't want their children to be smart. Lets see, odd has a friend who is 13, her mother held her back in grade 1 because she couldn't read, instead of helping her, her mother didn't care and instead of encouraging her, knows that she will end up with a low paying job.

dcb I have is 3.5yrs old (I have 4 kids that are all 3.5 yrs old they are all going to school in sept) this boy is shoved with thomas the train cr@p and cars stuff (the movie) he doesn't know his name, he talks like a robot and will cry if I turn the tv off. I finally get him to do basic things only for his parents to undo it and back to monday retraining. They will tell you that he wasn't suppose to happen

I can go on. There is a difference between kids struggling and really trying and kids who just are not smart. I sometimes really wonder if parents do this on purpose, its like they don't want their kids to be better than them, to be successful kwim. We all know people like this. It just really drives me crazy.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:51 PM
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I am sorry Joyce, I see you went back and deleted part of your post. I apologize for my emotional outburst....

If you want me to go back and delete it (the part you deleted) from my quote, please let me know....

Like I said, I wasn't aiming any of that AT you.
Yes, exactly. LOL. I hadn't read any further than her original post, and I hope you would agree, the wording sounded more harsh than her backtracking in subsequent posts. After I posted my response, I went through and read what she and others had said, and I realized maybe I had been too rough, so I deleted the 1st and 3rd paragraphs of what I originally said.

I still feel, based on her original post, that she was kind of "writing off" this kid because he wasn't as smart as the rest. She felt she was wasting her time teaching him because he couldn't retain anything. I'm sorry, but that's how it read to me. I realize we don't always choose our words carefully when we post things out of frustration, so I will cut her some slack.

You mentioned that we should come here to support each other and not judge each other. Well, I do agree with that to some point. But we also need to give each other a reality check at times. Even if we may initially get ticked when someone responds negatively to what we've posted, I would hope that most of us would let it roll around in the back of our head for awhile and realize that maybe we need to look at the situation another way.

I will stand by what I said - we need to be an advocate for the underdog kids just as much as we need to help the "smart ones" shine. My gut reaction to her saying (paraphrasing) 'he's not smart, and what's the point in even trying to teach him' , was that she was writing him off.

Also, I have seen it happen before where someone posts something utterly ridiculous and out of the norm, and other members will call them on it. Most of the time it is from an "unregistered", but still... So if it sounded absurd to me at first reading, then I'm going to call her on it.
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:11 PM
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Joyce I am not writing off "the kid" I am writing off the parents and just trying to accept what the situation is and that the parents will never change. I already asked Michael to delete this and he said he cant delete it all. I am not 'backtracking" I just worded it in a way that isn't socially acceptable and I was trying to explain further. I will be going through and deleting all the posts that I have access to. I am also done with this forum except for the few friends I have here which I will PM from now on.
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:12 PM
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Countrymom thank you for your reply. I agree with you completely.
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:15 PM
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Joyce~ I agree that at first I was not completely comfortable with what I thought she was saying either. I wanted to be supportive first before thinking the worst. I tried being vague in my response, hoping for further elaboration from OP:
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Those are the kids who need us the most...

I also agree that we do need to give and get reality checks from time to time, and doing that without emotionally reacting is tough. I think it is better to start a conversation before judging anyone though....I like to get all the facts first.

I wish we all had the ability to let things slide and not take it so personal, but one thing I have learned in this job is that most people who care enough to be in it are people who feel everything is personal....kwim?

Apparently, we on the same side, just reacted from different perspectives.... with the same intent.

Last edited by Blackcat31; 01-12-2012 at 08:19 PM.
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:16 PM
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I don't see anything offensive about what you wrote. I do understand where you're coming from. I've worked with hundreds of kids and there are always kids that are not so "bright". It's what makes us human.

Find out what DOES make him bright! He's got to be good at something? Maybe he's a very sensitive caring child who loves animals, or someone who loves to draw. Find out what makes him shine because everyone has that inside of them. The most important thing you can do as an educator is bring that out and make him feel like the greatest kid in the world
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:19 PM
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I think I know what you mean. I have a 2.5 yo who doesn't seem to get it. I can tell him something, and I use short sentences like, "X, walking feet." To which he replies, "K". Then takes off running. "X, come here. Diaper change." To which he replies, "K" and then continues to do whatever he was doing. I know he hears me. He can repeat what I told him, but he can't seem to do what I ask. He speaks very well. For instance, today he says, "I don't like her, can you get her out of here?" Referring to a little dcg. So, it isn't that he doesn't have train of thought. Not real sure what his issue is or how to fix it. He is a sweet boy for the most part, just fairly frustrating when you have to physically go over and do the hand over back technique or take him by the hand to do x, y, or z. So I feel you, just have no advice! Good luck!
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:26 PM
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Ok, point taken. But I was taken aback immediately from just the title.

"How do you accept a child who is not smart?"

Like they can't be accepted? Loved in spite of it? Helped to improve?

Sorry, it struck me wrong at the get-go, and I reacted. Had she said something along the lines of, "Can you help me help a child who is struggling to learn?" , it would have been a whole different story. It was the whole 'why bother?' attitude that I perceived in her title, as well as in her original post.

I don't mean to offend, and I do see now that you have his best interests at heart. My apologies.
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:30 PM
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I'm so glad you posted this question, OP. I have one in preschool who cannot think for himself. I really worry about how he'll do in Kindergarten (he's 5 yrs old and will be going this fall). He doesn't come here in the summer, so I only have 3 1/2 -4 mo left to help him, but don't know how (he also only comes 3 days a week for just a few hours. That is, when his mom brings him). I feel like I'm not preparing him adequately, and another teacher could do a better job. My other preschoolers going to Kindergarten in the fall were pretty much ready by the end of last semester, but this one little boy is just really slow on what I consider common sense, and he's extremely socially under developed. His mom and grandparents do everything for him, baby him to the extreme, and his entertainment is tv and video games. He can't even participate in circle time or conversations because he'll start talking way off topic about his latest video game. But he talks about it as if it just happend right that moment, and we should have "seen" it. He'll randomly start talking to himself, and doing kickbox (?) type moves out of no where.
He also seems to have NO confidence in himself. Examples: He waits until everyone else has sat down, then asks where he should sit (there's only one chair left and he's standing right behind it, but he has to be told that he can sit there before he will sit down). Any directions for preschool activities have to be spelled out for him, step by step. The others will literally be finished, and he'll still be working on the first step. I don't know how to teach children to think for themselves, when all their lives someone else has done their thinking for them. I start out with one step and then try to move on to two step directions and my goal is to continue to 3 or more. The 3 yr olds can even follow 2-3 step directions without hesitation. But as soon as I give 2 step directions, he has to be reminded what the 2nd step was. So then I'm right back at only giving 1 step at a time. There are just so many issues I wouldn't even know how to talk to his mom or where to begin. Plus his mom hardly acknowledges me anyway, so how would I talk to her about such a sensitive subject when she acts like she she's just "putting up" with having to see me 3 days a week. I have his evaluation all finished and ready to show her, but I really need to talk to her about it. But I don't know how to talk to her about it when she acts like she doesn't even want to see me. And it's such a sensitive subject to tell her "your son is doing ok (maybe not great, but ok) academically, but socially and physically he's WAAY behind even the 3 yr olds." (his large and small muscles are also really under developed. His small muscles in his hands are so weak, he can't even hold his pencil with any strength, and therefore can't even write his name very well yet. He tries, but you can't tell what it says half the time. And he scrambles the letters up really bad, too, No matter how much I work with him. Like he'll start on the right hand side of the paper, going to the left, then switches in the middle of his name and puts the next letter to the right of the first letter of his name. Let's say his name is Johnny. He'd write it something like: "hoJnny". Sometimes like this: "ynnhoJ". His writing also looks really shaky, because there's no strength in his hand. Finger Plays are really difficult for him as well.
Whoops. Didn't mean to write so much. I'm just glad to see your post. I can really relate. If you find something that helps, let me know, and I'll do the same for you... Does yours come full time, or part time?
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:32 PM
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I don't see anything offensive about what you wrote. I do understand where you're coming from. I've worked with hundreds of kids and there are always kids that are not so "bright". It's what makes us human.

Find out what DOES make him bright! He's got to be good at something? Maybe he's a very sensitive caring child who loves animals, or someone who loves to draw. Find out what makes him shine because everyone has that inside of them. The most important thing you can do as an educator is bring that out and make him feel like the greatest kid in the world
Thank You! I will try this He's a kindhearted little guy-that he is good at for sure
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:35 PM
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sahm2three yes he is like this exactly. Its not that he doesn't want to listen its like he "can't" listen KWIM?
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:39 PM
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preschool/daycare teacher. This is him exactly! No ability to think for himself and its because everyone does the thinking for him. He is full time. Yes if you know any tips PM me! would love to hear it!
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:48 PM
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Joyce, no worries. Its just people on this board are really eager to get upset if you admit "thoughts/vents" you have about the kids and I just hate drama. So I am not angry honestly.There is always some thread that ticks everyone off everyday. Today just happened to be my day. This is just not the place for me. I will still lurk some but no more threads for me. Best of luck to ya'll! Thanks to all who have helped me over the months. I honestly am very grateful.
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:55 PM
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Joyce I am not writing off "the kid" I am writing off the parents and just trying to accept what the situation is and that the parents will never change. I already asked Michael to delete this and he said he cant delete it all. I am not 'backtracking" I just worded it in a way that isn't socially acceptable and I was trying to explain further. I will be going through and deleting all the posts that I have access to. I am also done with this forum except for the few friends I have here which I will PM from now on.
Please don't go away from the forum. There are some really wonderful people here with excellent advise. I admit I myself should read the replies before I post. I do that all the time but usually I don't have much time and want to participate in as much as possible. I too have had my share of misunderstandings and wanted to leave but it's great people with great advise that keep me coming back. You just have to overlook those who misunderstand things, me being 1 of them tonight. Again my apologies. And who knows you yourself may be able to help someone with advise that no one else can. Hope you will stay!
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Old 01-13-2012, 04:28 AM
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I'm sorry if I hurt your feelings. I am glad you got the advice you needed.
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Old 01-13-2012, 05:27 AM
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Please don't leave the forum!

Sometimes, it is very hard to "read" peoples thoughts, emotions, personalities, and intentions over a computer. We're missing very important apsects of human conversations like tone of voice and facial expression.

I have to admit, When I first read the thread title, I thought the same thing many others did as well, and my first thought was "how can you NOT accept a child who is "not" smart"?!?!?!?!?

But instead of reacting right away and lashing out, I try to wait it out and think about what the OP is trying to say.

Now that I've had some time to think about it, (and this may have already been mentioned) but maybe this child should be referred to early intervention services. Maybe I missed this...but you say the parents arent on board. Have you presented them with assessments or recommendations? Have you shown them through documentation the things he IS capable of doing?

This child sounds JUST like my older son. He does have some learning disabilities, and to this day, (he's 15) isnt the best when it comes to common sense. But you put something in his hands, to build, and he's a genius. all kids learn differently, with or without disabilities. Find what this child is good at, and play off of that.

maybe he has extremely low self esteem and anxiety and doesn't think he CAN do it. I think, sometimes, parents dont put high ENOUGH expectations on their kids, and as a result, he doesnt feel good about himself. I would keep working with him and challenging him. Soon you will see whether it is a true disability or if its a parenting/home life issue. Either way, when he is with you, YOU make sure he is being all that he can be. in the end, its all we can do.
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Old 01-13-2012, 06:00 AM
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I need to tell you a story about making a difference. About 14 years ago, we left the farm and moved to the big city. We bought a house in an inner city neighborhood undergoing "revitalization". We were the only white family on our entire block, but everyone took us into the community and it was a great period of our lives. One of the 4 year old neighbor boys adopted us. Seriously, he came straight to our house after school and stayed until it got dark. He would have spent the night but I was a little nervous about that. He had a stay at home mom, a grandma across the street, and an aunt up the street, but he liked us. All of these houses were full of kids and people and noise and chaos. It was very casual parenting--sort of "foods in the fridge when you get hungry and clothes are piled in the floor in the laundry room-go find something to wear". I was the one who noticed that he couldn't hear in one ear or see as well as he should. I taught him to read because he wasn't getting it at school and no one at home gave him the extra help he needed. We read every day, even when he didn't want to (and that was always). We struggled and we struggled, but we read. He was a storyteller. I listened to his stories--long, long stories-- when he was 4, and when he was 8, I read each and every story he brought me. I spelled words for him..hundreds of words. We moved away and for a couple of years, we kept in touch. He outgrew us and the contact ended. Two weeks ago, he got in touch with us. He's all grown up now, and one of the first things he said was "You taught me to read". All these years later, all the home cooked meals, all the play, all the other things, that's what he remembered. I cried. I always knew he would be a writer if he could ever learn to write what he had in his head. I was close, he's a lyricist, getting ready to go back to school and study music producing.

You matter to this little boy. The secret in teaching is to remember the failures only long enough to try to correct them. If you showed him red 50 times and he still doesn't get it, remember that he did learn table manners from you. You didn't fail, you just aren't seeing the exact result you are looking for yet. For every detail you haven't achieved, if you look, you will see several things you did teach him. And don't give up. There is a trigger in that little head that will suddenly click in and the thing you've worked on will become clear. It may not be while you are with him, and he may not know you planted that little bit of knowledge, but you are laying foundations. One of the hardest parts of teaching, whether they are 2 or 12, is remembering that you can't stuff knowledge into their little heads. All you can do is plant seeds. Even if they lie dormant for years, you've done your job.

Finally, remember our motto-you can't save them all. Would you think this would be a candidate for some sort of early intervention?

I hope that you change your mind. I haven't made a lot of friends on here yet, but I hate to think of losing a potential one. We have so much to learn from each other. Sometimes, I think that we, as providers, aren't that far removed from the little ones--we all learn so much from each other every day.
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Old 01-13-2012, 06:39 AM
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I know exactly what you mean by 'not smart'! I also fully understand you not being sure if you want to continue working with a child that doesn't seem to be understanding anything you are trying to teach them. You feel like you are just beating your head against a wall - or are just talking to a wall because nothing you say to him seems to be sinking in at all! Yep, I fully understand what you are talking about. I have actually wondered if I could offer childcare only to gifted and talented preschoolers! Even though they are not really catagorized as such at this age! But the ones that 'aren't smart' drive you crazy and you feel like you are wasting your time. Trust me, I know and understand you on this.

I had one child that would just sit at the table with their chin toward the table and stare at you out of the very top of their eyes. Kind of felt like a mini serial killer staring at you! The child took MONTHS to respond to anything. However, now, after constantly working with the child, they act like any other child. My personal opinion of this one is that the parents baby the child, they watch tv a good bit, and the father is very "authoritive" - very likely he scares the kid to death and I think the kid was afraid to do or not do anything - I think the kid had kind of like a damned if you do and damned if you don't feeling.

A few of my friends who are daycare providers and I have been discussing the fact that children are getting dumber and dumber every year for aproximately the past 5 years. It seems like parents are not bothering to work with their kids as much in the past few years. They are too tired from working, have to work 2 or so jobs, simply don't have a clue what to do with their child, etc. Many more children are being placed in front of the television on a consistant basis for the above reasons. Parents don't talk with and have normal conversations with their children, don't teach them scholastics, don't take them to the park and socialize them, etc. The average child that I get nowadays is what I would consider about a year behind the average child that I would have gotten 5 or so years ago.

However, like someone posted before me, if you are willing to keep working with the child, after a WHILE, you should notice that you are making a difference and he is learning from you. He might have a learning disorder or other medical problem that causes him to not be on the typical level for his age, but you said that the parents hold him back or undo what you do. So I think the child is probably medically fine, it sounds like just bad parenting. If you work with him, and maybe find a way to get the parents to stop undoing what you do, you should eventually see a difference.

If you do papers with the children or teach them with hands on activities things like colors, shapes, letters, numbers, etc. Maybe you can give the parents a letter at the begining of the month to let them know what you will be focusing on that month. Have the kids do a paper or two each day and send them home daily. Then give some homework pages for them to do at home. This might get his parents to understand what he should be working on and able to do at his age. The homework pages will give the parents something to do with him at home so they can personally see that he really can do those things.

Also different kids/people have different learning styles. He might do well with hands on activities. Maybe you can do hands on projects that might spark his interest.
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Old 01-13-2012, 09:17 PM
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Originally Posted by erinalexmom View Post
preschool/daycare teacher. This is him exactly! No ability to think for himself and its because everyone does the thinking for him. He is full time. Yes if you know any tips PM me! would love to hear it!
Just wondering, do you think your little guy does better coming full time than he would if he only came part time (3 days/week, when mom brings him)? I've been thinking about possibly asking the mom if she would consider bringing him full time (I don't know that she would. She probably wouldn't). I just wonder if that could help him (at least it'd be two less days of video games and tv all day, and two more spent with other children. Maybe he'd be more confident if he knew the other children better and did the routine things with us everyday?). But I'm almost afraid to try it too, in case it doesn't work. I can already hear his mom blaming me and this daycare/preschool for his not being ready for Kindergarten when he starts struggeling. "He went 3 days a week, all day, then they wanted him to come 5 days, all day, and yet there's nothing to show for it. She didnt teach him anything... I paid all that money for nothing! Don't send your's there!" Plus he does take a lot of time away from the others because he does require so much one on one. I really really want to help him, but almost afraid it could end up being at the expense of the others if his days were increased.
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developmental - support, developmental delay, developmental issues, education, feeling alone, feeling defeated, training

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