View Full Version : Talk me down! Daughter's 1st test!


manismom
08-30-12, 02:49 PM
OK y'all -

My daughter has her 1st real test TOMORROW and I am really freaking out.

Without going into too much detail, my daughter is in 1st grade. She has fine motor skills delays, speech and language delays, sensory processing issues, executive function problems, and problems with attention and impulse control. Mostly, these are fairly mild to moderate, although the attention problems seem to be emerging as her largest difficulty.

She is in a mainstream classroom, but pulled out for Speech, occupational therapy and resource (where she gets one on one help with classroom work) as well as "inclusion" where the resource teachers join her class to offer support to the teacher so Daughter gets more individual attention.

She has an IEP, but the only testing accomodation we have on there is that her resource teachers give the tests. Her IQ is well within "normal" range (high 80s) and is estimated to be somewhat higher because her attention problems prevented her from doing well on some parts of the test.

So, in helping her study for her spelling test tomorrow, there is NO way she will pass. She is exhausted, mentally and physically, by the time she gets home from school, but we've pushed past that and studied words for 15 - 20 minutes every night. She doesn't do well at all with rote memorization, so we've been working on sounding out the words. She can read and recognize the words, but she is getting lost somewhere between the 1st and last letters on 3 - 4 letter words. :(

Part of that is the executive function. She has to think about how to start, where to start, what do the letters look like and how to make them. Then she has the fine motor difficulties that make it REALLY hard for her to write the letters (her hand gets tired and is somewhat shaky all the time). While she's thinking about all that, she loses her place in the word thanks to the attention difficulties. At least, that's the best I can figure.

I'm starting to think there may also be some dyslexia going on, although I understand it's common for kids to still mix up letters like b and d at her age, so not sure.

I know that in the great grand scheme of things, one 1st Grade spelling test doesn't matter all that much. Even the final grades in 1st grade don't make that much difference. But GEEZ! I don't want her sweet little spirit to be crushed before she even gets to 2nd Grade! She works SO FREAKIN HARD. SO HARD!!!! And she tries SO HARD to do what is asked of her and do it well. She already says stuff like "I'm just not good at that" about academic type work. How will she feel when she has spent hours studying for a test only to fail it? I doubt she would even get 50% correct if she took the test today.

Her IEP meeting usually happens in February, but our school year is 2/3 over by then. I try to give her the chance to try things out because I don't want to tell her "you aren't able to do that". She has surprised me more than once when I thought she wasn't capable of doing something. But I also feel like there are many more situations where I should have stepped in to protect her from something I knew would be over her head or potentially scary (because of her sensory issues) and I didn't because I didn't want to hold her back.

So... Should I talk to her teacher and/or resource teacher today? Should I let her take the test that I know she is going to fail?

I have a few ideas for accomodations, but would love advice on this. I don't mind calling an early IEP meeting, but if I do that I want to have concrete suggestions. How long should we stay with the current system before we try something new?

I just want my daughter to have a CHANCE at making an "A", but I don't want to shortchange her education by lowering expectations too much.

Any ideas on how to help my sweet, kind, hardworking girl succeed?

RedHairedWitch
08-30-12, 03:09 PM
I would seriously downplay the importance of the test. 1st grade is practice. It's important that she tries hard, because its good practice. But she shouldn't be too worried about not being perfect, its practice. She is learning how to do tests, try presenting it that way.

silivrentoliel
08-30-12, 03:48 PM
I'm with RHW, but you may also want to give her teacher a heads up that this is her first test, and you aren't sure how she is going to do. Not for lack of studying.

Sounding words out is a GREAT way for her to study, especially if she is having problems with mixing similar letters up... and if she gets the spelling words better orally than she does in writing, maybe her teacher will give her the spelling tests orally after this first one? Worth a shot.

manismom
08-30-12, 04:10 PM
I don't have a problem downplaying the importance of the test. In my opinion, 1st grade SHOULD be about learning to take tests and schedule homework time and behave in a more structured classroom. But the reality is that this test counts toward her grade.

We made a big deal when her sister got a good grade on her spelling test because it was a direct result of her choosing to spend her time studying every night rather than doing something she found more fun. So she knows we applaud good grades.

Do I just not mention the test if she doesn't score well? I won't say "If she doesn't do well", because she will do her absolute best. She almost always does. Or do I say something like "You'll do better next time"? Or do I tell her that she did great even if she didn't score very well?

Of course, she may really surprise me and score fine, but I just don't think its going to happen this time.

manismom
08-30-12, 04:13 PM
Oh, and I had planned to go over the material orally tonight to see if she can express it better that way. Will see how it goes, but had thought about asking teacher to try this. Thanks for the reassurance that this is a good thing to try.

Ms. Mango
08-30-12, 04:17 PM
If I were your child I'd be a nervous wreck because you are. You're too stressed out over this.

Ask if the resource teacher will be helping her with tests. Maybe they can go off somewhere quiet where your daughter can spell the words back to the resource teacher, or she can spell them to the resource teacher and the teacher can write them down. That was one accommodation my son received last year. In third grade.

Spelling is not my son's thing. Of course, I wanted him to study and do his best. His best wasn't always an A.

Your daughter has a lot of years of school ahead of her. Now's not the time to stress her out.

One thing that helped my son study for tests and we still do is learn kinetically. We jump up-and-down or skip around the room. It seems to help him retain information. And he thinks it's fun!

holmracing
08-30-12, 04:28 PM
I wouldn't put too much importance on the grade she gets and just encourage her to try her best. She might surprise you!

In fact i think you would be surprised by the grades the rest of the class gets on this first test.

Also... don't be afraid to ask the teacher for recommendations to help her succeed. Some of the best ideas to help my kids with stuff has come from their teachers. Especially after they have gotten to know them through the school year!

One last thing. kids can sense mom's nervousness and stress. If you are stressed over her taking the test she will be! So take a deep breath and remember this is a tiny matter. She will have alot more spelling tests before the year is out :)

Lunacie
08-30-12, 04:30 PM
My granddaughter also has trouble with her fine motor skills and writing.

The teachers have sometimes let her take those tests orally, there are times

she will give the answer orally to the teacher who then writes it down to record

that she does know the answers.


She just transferred to a special school where she is allowed to do some of

her work on the computer, especially where it involves written answers.

She has taught herself very good keyboard skills for a 10 year old, let alone

a child with Autism. Yeah - I'm bragging! :D


Your daughter probably can't use a keyboard yet, but there are accomodations

that can help her. I hope you don't have to fight for those accomodations.

manismom
08-30-12, 05:41 PM
I'm actually trying not to transfer my anxiety about it to her, but I do have to take some deep breaths and chill.

I could personally care less about grades. I know first hand how easy it is for a grade to NOT reflect what you actually know.

But there are other people who feel that grades matter quite a bit. And she knows what grades mean and has heard other people's opinions about how important grades are.

I believe her resource teacher will be giving her the test, and she knows her well enough to know that she needs to be somewhere quiet. I don't know how much "help" she can give in terms of shapes of letters. She may even give it both orally and in written format so she can compare.

But I don't quite trust her teacher and I am not certain that school administration is paying enough attention to my one kid to make sure she gets the help she needs.

I guess one of the reasons I'm kinda freaking out is that the teacher has talked about giving quizzes throughout the week as well as a weekly 20 word spelling test and at least 1 weekly reading comprehension test.

Maybe her teachers will make sure she gets the accomodations she needs. Maybe not. But her IEP isn't scheduled for several months. I don't mind her making mistakes and failing, but only when she has some chance of success.

She's nothing if not inconsistant, so maybe she will have an AMAZING day tomorrow and nail it. But usually, she just kind of freezes up on tests. Even in a supportive environment where she knows the material. She reaches a point, pretty quickly, of just being "done".

I just really hate the feeling of knowing she is almost set up for failure and not really being able to do anything to prevent it, then being the one who has to "clean up the mess" later.

julesjampot
08-30-12, 05:50 PM
make it positive for her, tell her she is doing great, people are interested and all she needs to do is note down how she feels, and thats good , luv Jules, more smilies more praise

julesjampot
08-30-12, 06:15 PM
dont forget babe she will not unstand what she is doing, to her you are on a day out, , just telll her its a good thing and if shes ok she will have some treat at the end of it, believe you me she willl not understand what is happenning, the testing thing

Ms. Mango
08-30-12, 08:11 PM
Oh, I know you're not trying to transfer your nervousness to her!:)

No matter what, let her know that you're proud of how hard she worked.

I think it's sad that she's being tested right at the beginning of 1st grade. Her teacher seems to be putting too much emphasis on tests and quizzes. DS didn't have tests until third grade. At the end of last year DS's teacher taught US regions/states and capitals and tested the kids each week. Even though our district doesn't give out letter grades on report cards until 5th grade, she graded each test. That was the first time DS ever received a grade.

I've met informally with DS's teachers and had discussions about how accomodations might be made. They have always willing to do that as needed. There's no reason to wait until your annual IEP meeting. Try voicing your concerns that way. It's easier to do it like that than to call the whole team together--which you can do at any time if you need to.

manismom
08-31-12, 02:02 PM
Ms Mango -
I'm not particularly pleased with the kids getting tested and quizzed like that in First grade, either. It's like kids don't get a chance to screw up anymore without it being counted against them. In my opinion, in First Grade, at least, if a kid does his or her best, they should get an A.

Of course, I also believe that the only real purpose of grades is for competative parents to have something to brag about. In some countries, the kids don't grades at all in Primary School. But I could be up on THAT particular soapbox for hours.

Back to the topic, I spent some time going over the spelling test orally and she actually knew the material. It took some significant prodding, time, and patience to get the answers out of her, but she actually had it down pretty good.

I think part of the problem is that she is completely exhausted when she gets home from school. She spends over 7 hours at school and she's just pooped. Then she's got to try to focus on whatever homework she has.

We are on our second full week of school and, so far, it has been a NIGHTMARE! My older daughter is just overloaded with homework. I mean massively overloaded. And both kids are having these MONSTER tantrums about homework. Like a 30 minute tantrum to get 5 minutes of homework done. I'm in the process of setting up some reward charts because they both respond very well to that system, but we all just got kind of blindsided by the amount of homework they are being asked to do.

I set up a meeting with her Speech teacher, the most approachable of her SPED team, on Monday. I want to see what their plans are for the year and have a chance to go over her IEP again with someone who can explain it all. If they don't have accomodations for her in place already, we will talk about that, too.

Last night, as I was tucking her in, she starting talking about how "when people do bad, they get an F or a D". I told her not to worry about her grade, that she knew the material and to do her best and that's all that mattered. And that we were very proud of her for trying so hard. It made me want to just pull her out of school and teach her at home. But I know that to some extent, that's just my overprotective Mama bear coming out. Not saying it won't happen, but I've tried hard to make sure she has as "normal" a childhood as possible. Big huge quotes around "normal".

CheekyMonkey
08-31-12, 09:04 PM
Poor kiddo. No first grader should be worried about grades. :(

Black_Rose1809
09-02-12, 06:14 AM
OK y'all -

My daughter has her 1st real test TOMORROW and I am really freaking out.

Without going into too much detail, my daughter is in 1st grade. She has fine motor skills delays, speech and language delays, sensory processing issues, executive function problems, and problems with attention and impulse control. Mostly, these are fairly mild to moderate, although the attention problems seem to be emerging as her largest difficulty.

She is in a mainstream classroom, but pulled out for Speech, occupational therapy and resource (where she gets one on one help with classroom work) as well as "inclusion" where the resource teachers join her class to offer support to the teacher so Daughter gets more individual attention.

She has an IEP, but the only testing accomodation we have on there is that her resource teachers give the tests. Her IQ is well within "normal" range (high 80s) and is estimated to be somewhat higher because her attention problems prevented her from doing well on some parts of the test.

So, in helping her study for her spelling test tomorrow, there is NO way she will pass. She is exhausted, mentally and physically, by the time she gets home from school, but we've pushed past that and studied words for 15 - 20 minutes every night. She doesn't do well at all with rote memorization, so we've been working on sounding out the words. She can read and recognize the words, but she is getting lost somewhere between the 1st and last letters on 3 - 4 letter words. :(

Part of that is the executive function. She has to think about how to start, where to start, what do the letters look like and how to make them. Then she has the fine motor difficulties that make it REALLY hard for her to write the letters (her hand gets tired and is somewhat shaky all the time). While she's thinking about all that, she loses her place in the word thanks to the attention difficulties. At least, that's the best I can figure.

I'm starting to think there may also be some dyslexia going on, although I understand it's common for kids to still mix up letters like b and d at her age, so not sure.

I know that in the great grand scheme of things, one 1st Grade spelling test doesn't matter all that much. Even the final grades in 1st grade don't make that much difference. But GEEZ! I don't want her sweet little spirit to be crushed before she even gets to 2nd Grade! She works SO FREAKIN HARD. SO HARD!!!! And she tries SO HARD to do what is asked of her and do it well. She already says stuff like "I'm just not good at that" about academic type work. How will she feel when she has spent hours studying for a test only to fail it? I doubt she would even get 50% correct if she took the test today.

Her IEP meeting usually happens in February, but our school year is 2/3 over by then. I try to give her the chance to try things out because I don't want to tell her "you aren't able to do that". She has surprised me more than once when I thought she wasn't capable of doing something. But I also feel like there are many more situations where I should have stepped in to protect her from something I knew would be over her head or potentially scary (because of her sensory issues) and I didn't because I didn't want to hold her back.

So... Should I talk to her teacher and/or resource teacher today? Should I let her take the test that I know she is going to fail?

I have a few ideas for accomodations, but would love advice on this. I don't mind calling an early IEP meeting, but if I do that I want to have concrete suggestions. How long should we stay with the current system before we try something new?

I just want my daughter to have a CHANCE at making an "A", but I don't want to shortchange her education by lowering expectations too much.

Any ideas on how to help my sweet, kind, hardworking girl succeed?

First... calm down. It's a 1st grade spelling test... not the SATs. The reason she's tired is because you are making a big deal of this and constantly doing spelling with her. As much as I say, help you children study, you are going a bit too far. My mom was exactly the same way and kept exhausting me in math that I went into meltdown... If you studied as much as you said you did, she'll be fine, just wish her luck, show her some love on the day of the test and tell her good luck. If she fails, just give her a great big hug and tell her you are proud of her no matter what.

She's a child... and a human. Everyone does mistakes, so a bit of failing won't hurt a child. It'll make her stronger and learn from her mistakes.

holmracing
09-02-12, 01:53 PM
Sorry... one thing that concerns me.You need to talk to her teacher too. Keep a very open communication with ALL of her SPED team.

Don't be afraid to ask why they are doing quizzes often. And how much they will affect her grade. It may just be to see where the kids are at and what they need to work on.

I pulled my son out of school in first grade and taught him at home for a year and a half after fighting with the school for 4 months to get my son the accomodations he needed. Turns out to be one of the best things i have ever done for him. He did great with the one on one environment. So keep that option open. You can look into virtual schools too. They do the work at home with you but have an actual teacher and they set up social time for field trips and other things.

So if this proves to be the wrong environment for your child remember there are other options.

For now i would say please keep up lots of communication with your daughters teacher. And don't put a whole lot of emphasis on grades except to look at if your daughter is learning. If your daughter brings home a report card that is all low grades then you need to go to the school and figure out a way to help her succeed. :)

Stay strong... I know its hard as i have been there! But you are doing great just with what you are doing. I have seen alot of parents that don't really fight for their kids and it breaks my heart. You are being a great mom.. keep it up!!! :)

manismom
09-14-12, 05:36 PM
Holmracing - Sorry, I somehow missed your reply !!?!

I actually checked into something called K12 virtual school. Not sure if I need it, but it is an online school that affiliates with public and private schools across the nation. In Tennessee (and MANY MANY other states) we have the option for FREE online public school. All books, materials, etc. are covered and they even have options for low income families to buy low cost computers. So that's an option. I'm not certain that I am organized and patient enough to do home schooling, but HOLY COW!!! They pretty much do it all for you.

To anyone else following this thread (if anyone, haha) -

I wanted to let you all know that we have STILL not gotten results back for that first test. Her second spelling test was a 90 or something similar. As in she missed 1 word.

Believe me, I completely understand that kids NEED to have some failures and mistakes. Everyone has to learn how to deal with it. But she has to deal with "failure" all the time. Her body fails to do what she asks it to do, her mouth fails to form the words correctly that she is thinking in her mind, her hand fails to write the line as neatly as she wanted it to be done. If this kid wasn't persistant in the face of pain and difficulty, she would never have learned to walk. It wasn't easy for her. It took months of smashing her sweet little face on the floor when she fell because she couldn't keep her balance and couldn't get her hands or arms up in time to protect her head.

I actually try NOT to really drill her with spelling or other stuff. I try to work on it for a little bit a night, so it isn't overwhelming and she takes breaks between subjects if not between pages. But that can also mean that we work on homework ALL EVENING LONG. Just not continuously.

I wish that our school didn't give out grades. I can't see that going over well with the competitive parents that reside in my particular school district. And that's a shame because my understanding is that there is no evidence that ranking children with grades is helpful to them in any way. It is not even a helpful way to gauge the effectiveness of their teachers, contrary to popular opinion. Early childhood achievement tests are essentially meaningless in determining how successful they will be as adults. And yet, the answer to having America be "competitive" again in the global market is always "MORE TESTING". How else will we know where we are ranked?

My question is "Why do we care where we are ranked?" What ******* difference does it make if we are #1 or #5 or #13? Maybe (if we want to focus exclusively on our own country) we should focus on making sure that all Americans have access to quality healthcare and an education system that focuses on helping each individual be his or her best (rather than compared to a "norm"). Whole 'nother rant.

SquarePeg
09-14-12, 06:44 PM
ooh the poor little lamb. I agree with the view of other posts about her picking up on your anxiety. It makes me so angry the way schools make a big deal about tests in the early days.

In my kidsīold school tests in the early years were done with the minimum of fuss and in a way that the kids were not aware that they were being tested.

Before I had even finished your post dyslexia or disortografia (sorry I live in Spain and donīt know the word in English but itīs a similar, and itīs a problem regarding writing) sprung to mind, just because my son has been tested recently.

Do the school suspect anything?

I think just as important as giving her academic help kids need help to cope with the stresses of school and tests and boosting their self esteem is so important.

I hope she is at a school where kids are being regularly rewarded, just a little gold star or something for their achievements, whether itīs behaviour, good work, trying hard or being a good friend to someone.

pooka
09-14-12, 07:29 PM
I wanted to let you all know that we have STILL not gotten results back for that first test. Her second spelling test was a 90 or something similar. As in she missed 1 word.

Believe me, I completely understand that kids NEED to have some failures and mistakes. Everyone has to learn how to deal with it. But she has to deal with "failure" all the time. Her body fails to do what she asks it to do, her mouth fails to form the words correctly that she is thinking in her mind, her hand fails to write the line as neatly as she wanted it to be done. If this kid wasn't persistant in the face of pain and difficulty, she would never have learned to walk. It wasn't easy for her. It took months of smashing her sweet little face on the floor when she fell because she couldn't keep her balance and couldn't get her hands or arms up in time to protect her head.

I actually try NOT to really drill her with spelling or other stuff. I try to work on it for a little bit a night, so it isn't overwhelming and she takes breaks between subjects if not between pages. But that can also mean that we work on homework ALL EVENING LONG. Just not continuously.

I wish that our school didn't give out grades. I can't see that going over well with the competitive parents that reside in my particular school district. And that's a shame because my understanding is that there is no evidence that ranking children with grades is helpful to them in any way. It is not even a helpful way to gauge the effectiveness of their teachers, contrary to popular opinion. Early childhood achievement tests are essentially meaningless in determining how successful they will be as adults. And yet, the answer to having America be "competitive" again in the global market is always "MORE TESTING". How else will we know where we are ranked?

My question is "Why do we care where we are ranked?" What ******* difference does it make if we are #1 or #5 or #13? Maybe (if we want to focus exclusively on our own country) we should focus on making sure that all Americans have access to quality healthcare and an education system that focuses on helping each individual be his or her best (rather than compared to a "norm"). Whole 'nother rant.

90 is a very good score.

Make sure she knows that.

And make sure she knows it doesn't matter what other people get.

Improvement is good. Trying your best is good. The numbers don't matter.

My heart aches for your daughter, as I was certain from your original post that you were putting pressure on her to do well on that test. She is in first grade, and no child should face that kind of pressure so young.

manismom
09-14-12, 11:37 PM
Linda - She has been tested, both by Neurologists and other therapy professionals up to a certain point. We know that whatever is going on with her is not easily "fixable" by giving her a simple vitamin supplement or something similar. She has had an MRI and no irregularities were found. Her Doctors say that finding a diagnosis will not change her treatment plan and from here on out, the testing gets MUCH more invasive. We have not done genetic testing and the next tests are spinal taps and muscle biopsies. We don't want her to go through that to satisfy our curiosity.

But her school is aware of her various difficulties and have, so far, done their best to accomodate her differences and help her be her best. They've recently set up a school wide reward system that awards the kids "tickets" when they are caught being GOOD. And I know that her teacher last year (and the teachers for the previous 3+ years actually) have been AMAZING.

But this year, she got a rather unpopular teacher. In all the parents I have spoken with about our school, I have not heard anything negative, except about this teacher. People talk about it being "better than a private school" and it is consistently ranked in the top 6 schools in our entire state. But even the parents who said that they didn't personally have a problem with this teacher said that there were many other parents who did.

Pooka - My heart aches for her, too! I tried very hard not to let my anxiety show, while emphasizing that it was important to stay on task, not act silly, and do her best. But that particular morning, I felt like I was sending her off to the lion's den.

She ended up doing really well on the test from what she was told, but I haven't seen it. She also did really well on the next test.

I found out that one of her Special Education teachers gives her the spelling test either by herself or in a very small group. And they use modified testing techniques to make sure that the test is fair.

My latest "beef" is that her main Special Education teacher said that she did "surprisingly well" on the test. I know that she didn't mean anything by it, but I couldn't help but think "Why was it a surprise?"

pooka
09-15-12, 02:44 AM
Of course, she may really surprise me and score fine, but I just don't think its going to happen this time.

umm...don't think you're being fair with this "beef" here. You said it yourself.

Amtram
09-15-12, 11:44 AM
manismom, I'd imagine that the teacher said "surprisingly well" because she was looking at the previous reports in the record.

Please don't take offense, because I certainly don't intend it, but it seems like you are so emotionally invested in this that you're more stressed than you need to be, and reading more into what could be perfectly innocuous statements and reports. Obviously, telling you "just calm down" is ridiculous and inappropriate, but the emotional tension you seem to be showing in your comments here is going to be a barrier to helping your daughter if it's any indication of the stress you're feeling in real life.

I spent most of my life fearful of confrontation, and all it did was make me stress and ruminate and imagine that other people were thinking and saying horrible things about me, and all those kinds of things. As terrifying as it might be to speak up and ask "why do you say that?" or "I don't agree with that - can we discuss this in more detail?" or "I'm terribly worried about what will happen if we do/don't do this, can you tell me the pros and cons and give me some idea of the possible outcomes?" it's a dang sight better than making yourself nuts worrying and trying to figure it out yourself without having all the information.

As others have said, it also translates into your child's stress level. This goes for the teacher as well. Don't listen to the people who tell you about their experience with the teacher except as possibly informative information. Establish your own relationship with the teacher, and try to make it as positive and cooperative as possible. Expect the best and show that you're in this together with her, working as a team to help your daughter, and you're more likely to end up with a good result. (I've dealt with "difficult" teachers and coaches and others like this, and it's never failed me!)

I guess I'd say it's like expecting the best of people right from the start and giving them the opportunity to live up to your expectations. It really does take away a lot of worry and stress, so I just wanted to put that out there for you to think about if you haven't already.

manismom
09-15-12, 01:03 PM
Pooka - Touche

But, I guess my point was that as the SPED teacher, she might want to choose her words more carefully.

I knew that she didn't REALLY mean anything by it, but... it didn't ~sound~ very supportive.

Amtram - I completely appreciate what you are trying to say!! I am actually trying to get all the fears and worries channeled into this discussion rather than acting it out in real life, but there's no way anyone else could know that.

And your advice about creating my own relationship with the teacher is very good. I try to give everyone the benefit of the doubt (contrary to what this discussion seems to say. Haha). And I had made the decision to do the same with this teacher. Although it appears that a few other parents chose NOT to do the same and had their kids transfered out of her class as soon as they found out. :eek:

I must admit that it has been difficult to ~not~ form an opinion since NONE of the people I spoke with said that she was a "great" teacher. The BEST things I heard about her were "I, personally, didn't have a problem with her". Then there would be the BIG "BUT". "But, I know that alot of parents didn't like her".

I know that we can't win the teacher lottery every year, but considering that in her IEP meeting, the School Principal said that she would "carefully consider" who she chose as Piper's teacher, I was VERY surprised. This teacher is known as "no nonsense" and "not very cuddly" and "strict" and the Principal "carefully" chose to put in her class my lovey-dovey, snuggly, kid who has immense trouble staying in her seat and a small list of other behaviors that, if done by a typical child, would almost certainly result in discipline. Not to mention that my daughter can have a little difficulty making friends because of her speech issues and there was not even ONE child from her kindergarten class with her?

Maybe the Principal did have a good reason for her choice, but I have no clue how to ask THAT question without causing some defensiveness.

In terms of conflict, I completely understand what you are saying! Now, I ~usually~ remember that, for the most part, people are too wrapped up in their own lives and their own problems to give mine much more than a passing thought. But if I have inadvertently acted like a jerk, I will ruminate on it FOREVER.

My biggest problem with conflict seems to be that I am entirely too direct or something. I've talked this over a bit with Husband that somehow, he can confront someone about something potentially upsetting and they end up laughing about it and no one gets offended. I confront someone and start World War 3.

This is something I've only come to realize recently. I don't know if it is something about my tone of voice or eye contact or what, but when I try to stick up for myself (or my family), I end up starting a big old fight. In the past, this wouldn't have bothered me. I'd just chalk it up to them being too sensitive. But there are people in my life that I feel I can't afford to tick off. The School Principal being one, my Mother-in-law being another. I don't seem to be able to be assertive without offending people and I don't know why, so I avoid conflict.

manismom
09-15-12, 01:11 PM
Amtram - I realize that the above sounds like I have already formed an opinion of this teacher, when actually, I haven't.

That said, my kids have had teachers where I knew INSTANTLY that they would be an amazing teacher and I trusted them completely with my kids.

But even giving this teacher a HUGE benefit of the doubt and meeting her myself a few times, I just don't trust her. Not saying that she is untrustworthy, just that she hasn't made a very favorable first impression.

Even my normally unflappable Husband has asked me to go to the school and listen outside the door to make sure things are going OK after meeting her.

I am "Expecting the best, but preparing for the worst" if that makes sense.

holmracing
09-15-12, 02:00 PM
Amtram - I realize that the above sounds like I have already formed an opinion of this teacher, when actually, I haven't.

That said, my kids have had teachers where I knew INSTANTLY that they would be an amazing teacher and I trusted them completely with my kids.

But even giving this teacher a HUGE benefit of the doubt and meeting her myself a few times, I just don't trust her. Not saying that she is untrustworthy, just that she hasn't made a very favorable first impression.

Even my normally unflappable Husband has asked me to go to the school and listen outside the door to make sure things are going OK after meeting her.

I am "Expecting the best, but preparing for the worst" if that makes sense.

This reminds me of my sons 1st grade teacher... Everyone said she yelled at the kids and was just not a good teacher... ect, ect, ect...

She is still to this day (he is in 8th grade now) his favorite teacher of all time. He loved that teacher.

So try not to listen to other parents too much.. Take note but don't let it make your decision.

I don't trust any teacher until i get to know them. I have issues with being forced to let these strangers take care of my kids before i even meet them!!!

There are two virtual schools that i know of... K12 and Connections Academy. K12 is a little less challenging so would probably be better for her. Actually we were going to put my son in k12 this year if we hadn't got him into the special ed class in a neighboring school district.

And one quick question because i have a son with asperger's... Have you had your daughter checked for Autism? You don't have to answer that if you don't want to. I was just curious.

manismom
09-15-12, 02:49 PM
Holmracing -

I don't think she has had a "formal" evaluation for Autism spectrum, but only because her docs have felt that it wasn't needed. I guess they felt that they could rule it out based on meeting her.

People skills seem to be one of her strengths, actually. Despite some of the behaviors that I see as interfering with her ability to make friends and interact with adults, she's like a little movie star at school. We can't go more than 10 steps without someone saying hello to her. Many of the teachers know her by name and take time out to talk to her.

But - it takes a little time with the kids. They have to have a chance to get to know her. And as an adult who interacts with her, she can be a challenge (among many many other wonderful traits). If you were an impatient adult who didn't know much about impulsive behavior and sensory issues, she could potentially be infuriating.

That's very encouraging to hear about your son's experience. So far, my daughter has only had positive things to say. But, quite frankly, she gets along with everyone and anyone. In her special ed preschool, they paired her with a little boy who had some trouble expressing himself in a non-aggressive manner. She was supposed to be a model for more appropriate behavior. She would come home from school almost every day and talk about what "Mike" (not his name) had done to her. Usually pushing or grabbing and the teachers monitered things pretty closely to make sure it didn't go too far. But she would still go back and try to play with him every day.

holmracing
09-15-12, 06:09 PM
Actually my 8 year old DS with aspergers... everyone at school knows him but he won't go introduce himself to play with kids. He will play with them for a very short time if they make the first move (so to speak). But he still will only just parallel play or shadow play.

One thing you could try if you truley want to know what is going on is to find a place where you can put a voice recorder on her. I have thought about doing that to my son before just because he can't verbalize most things in a way that make since. And even though he can recite an entire tv show or commercial... he can't tell me what his teacher said at school.

Lunacie
09-15-12, 06:33 PM
Actually my 8 year old DS with aspergers... everyone at school knows him but he won't go introduce himself to play with kids. He will play with them for a very short time if they make the first move (so to speak). But he still will only just parallel play or shadow play.

One thing you could try if you truley want to know what is going on is to find a place where you can put a voice recorder on her. I have thought about doing that to my son before just because he can't verbalize most things in a way that make since. And even though he can recite an entire tv show or commercial... he can't tell me what his teacher said at school.


Very much like my granddaughter with atypical autism.