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  #1  
Old 08-18-04, 09:38 AM
dolphinea dolphinea is offline
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Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten

Hi everyone,

My son has ADHD, and with his medication and our behavior mod system at home, I think he has a fighting chance now.

BUT he's starting Kindergarten next week, and so far the information I've gotten about the curriculum is giving me a sinking feeling...

He's in the Gifted range with verbal and analytical skills, and then learning delayed with motor skills. So, all the cutting and pasting is going to be a big frustration for him.

And at the same time, the teacher says they'll learn addition and subtraction up to 10. Miles can already do that, before the first day of school.

They'll be playing phonics games about letter sounds, for pre-reading skills. Miles can read 1st grade level and higher books, unassisted, already.

They'll be doing lots of cutting and pasting and coloring. Great, just what he hates the most! LOL

Oh, and they'll be learning to count to 100. Guess what Miles can already do?

HELP! I've got an appointment with the school counselor on Friday, and I'll make a time for a conference with the teacher.

Honestly, she seems like a very caring, nice lady, but probably not an appropriate teacher for gifted kids. And no, there is NO gifted K program in my son's school. They have to wait until 1st grade.

Sheesh, all this, and I'm not even thinking about what will happen if he gets put down too much for bad behavior, and starts letting it all hang out, like he did all last year... the bad boy of PreK. We're praying the Adderall he's on will help at school as much as it has at home, the past month, in that area.

Worried to the point of physical symptoms, here...
~Amanda
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Old 08-18-04, 11:12 AM
MsPooh MsPooh is offline
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My son is in 1st grade, kindergarten was definetly a HUGE hurdle, teacher called me everyday!She was old and did not "believe" in ADHD, and discouraged medication, my child was the bad boy of kindergarten,and the other kids laughed at him (I believe he thought they were laughing with him) BUT we got through it and you will too!What doesn't kill us can only make us stronger,right?Keep in constant touch with the teacher.My sons IQ test showed that he was above most kids scores,but he got SO bored he had to "entertain" himself by acting out.He is on Adderall as well now, and I do believe after months of trying we have found the right dose.And you will also see that the older he gets,maturity kicks in and things do get better.Oh by the way..that teacher is retired so maybe noone else will have to go through what I did.
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Old 08-21-04, 09:52 PM
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As a teacher of ADHD kids and a teacher with ADHD, I know that kindergarten is a very important step, even if a child already knows things. More important than reading and math and science are the social skills a child picks up. Keep in close contact with your child's teacher. Offer to volunteer in the classroom as often as you can (hey- they'd be CRAZY to turn down free help!). Just sit back and let your son learn about standing in line and sharing on the playground and how to sit in a circle and be read to. Also, for the teacher's sake, remember that unless she's fresh out of college, she's had a student with similar behaviors as your son's. She's a professional. She also has a whole slew of people around her to help her out. Including you! Best of luck, to you AND your son!

Marie
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Old 08-29-04, 05:35 PM
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I was going to say the same thing as Quilting Marie. The social skills are very important especially if they are gifted. My daughter (now older) went through that. She was reading before Kindergarten (taught herself). The academic work was boring but the other kids were fun to be around. They need to learn all the rules of being in school. First grade you can be tested and then they will pull your child out for a time period to pursue other things that are more interesting. They will also be expected to catch up to what is going on in class. My daughter had no problem.
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Old 08-30-04, 01:30 AM
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Your strength is in knowing your son's strong points as well as his week points. This is good because you *don't* want to come off as the mother-who-thinks-her-child-does-no-wrong. If you let his teacher know where you think your son needs help, and, where he needs a challenge, she'll probably appreciate the insight. You'll be a great advocate for your son, it is always good for kids to know their mom is in their corner!

There are a lot of ways for the teacher to challenge your son in the classroom. A little girl in a kindergarten class could read well, so, the teacher had her read to the class during story time. There will be plenty of ways to keep him challenged and engaged. In my daughter's class, the kids were in different reading groups and were grouped by ability. Each small group was able to work at their own pace. It worked well for both the kids who were reading and those who were gaining pre-reading skills.

I think, though, that the main things kindie's learn at school is what is *expected* of them at school. So, while it's great that he is advanced academically, he will still have plenty to learn! Stay in line. Quiet in the Hall. Don't run with scissors. Keep your hands to yourself. Don't eat paste. Wait for directions. Use your words. Treat others with respect. If your trying your best you're doing great! etc., etc.

Your son sounds like mine with the motor skills delay. I think his teacher's biggest challenge will be trying to convince him that cutting and gluing is fun! But then again, children will often do things for their teacher that they will *never* do for us!

My son gets frustrated easily when he doesn't understand verbal directions and I made sure his pre-k teacher knew what to look for *before* he got to the point of frustration. But, I shouldn't have worried, she was so tuned into the kids, it is almost like she has a sixth sense. She is able to guide him so gently that he doesn't even realize that he was about to lose it.

My daughter's kindergarten teacher had a similar affect on the kids, she could help a child regain control just by saying his name, quietly! And, she could restore a child's confidence just by smiling reassuringly and letting them know she knew they were working really hard.

Good luck. It is so hard to let go of them when they still seem so young and vulnerable. I think that your concerns are *completely* normal and that you'll *both* be fine.

Take care,

wheezie
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Old 08-30-04, 02:36 AM
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I would request the teacher have a higher curriculum for my child. I am going through a similar dilemma with a 2nd grader who is reading at 4th grade level. The teacher had my daugher reading at 1.8 level books, and my daughter was letting me know that the books she reads at school are baby stuff. After I contacted the teacher, and challenged her assessment that my daughter was at the appropriate reading level, she had a reading specialist test her the next day, and the result was 4.0-4.4 level, which is 4th grade. Now I am challenging the school to put her with 3rd graders reading groups, which would be more appropriate for her, and to assign her extra homework on reading. The school has complied with the extra homework, getting her 4.0-4.4 books to read, and assigning her a book report every week. Waitiing to see if they will adjust her classes to put her with 3rd graders for reading.

I told the teacher she is a kid who will do as little as possible and I don't want school to be EASY for her or she will not learn any study habits and she will be bored. I asked the teacher to up the bar on her till I report back that she is crying and then we will notch it back a dash.

I did the opposit with my other daugher, and in that case told the teachers to give her less homework. Each kid is different and i think as parents we are pretty good judges of what is best for our children. Teachers have to know we are involved, it makes them pay more attention and customize what our chidren get out of school

Good luck and hope that view helps

Jon
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Old 04-19-13, 10:04 PM
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Re: Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten

My oldest son was reading before he started kindergarten, and they allowed him to participate in the Grade One reading group. I think most classes have at least one advanced kid (if not more in different areas), and there are usually things that can be done to challenge them.

About the cutting and pasting: does the school have an occupational therapist or do you have access to a private one? Also you can spend the summer practising fine motor skills at home, to help lower his frustration.

My ADD son is going into Kindergarten with a speech delay and possible fine motor delay (had him assessed and waiting for results). The school has both a speech and occupational therapist that he will be able to see. I don't know how often yet.

Thankfully your son has a mom who is making sure she knows what options are available.
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Old 04-19-13, 10:14 PM
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Re: Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten

Based on the date of the original post (2004), the poster's son is likely about 14 years old now, so I hope he's managed to get past kindergarten and get hooked in with whatever classes and/or enrichment and/or assistance he needs to be successful. (If you don't hear back from the original poster, don't be discouraged...it doesn't look like she's posted again since then.)

Still, it's useful to see what challenges other people have faced and how they've dealt with them.

CanadaMom, I'm glad to hear your son will be able to receive speech and OT early. He, too, is lucky to have a parent investigating his options and advocating for him.

Last edited by namazu; 04-19-13 at 10:38 PM..
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Old 04-19-13, 10:18 PM
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Re: Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten


The OP hasn't been back in 9 years. Every newbie seems to bump a really
old thread at some point. That's okay. This brings up a very valid point.

Kids with ADHD have delayed development in both fine and gross motor
skills. This is something to talk with the teachers about, and the child
should get credit for doing his or her best - rather than be compared to the
children who can do so much better because they don't have a disorder.
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Old 04-20-13, 11:30 AM
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Re: Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten

I saw the dates were old after I posted. Oops.

I don't understand why the thread was on the main page though. I didn't go back through the archives to find it...
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Old 04-20-13, 12:04 PM
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Re: Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten

Quote:
Originally Posted by CanadaMom View Post
I saw the dates were old after I posted. Oops.

I don't understand why the thread was on the main page though. I didn't go back through the archives to find it...
Hm, maybe something in your display options? When I check out the listings,
all seem to be for this year.
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Old 04-21-13, 12:38 PM
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Re: Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lunacie View Post

The OP hasn't been back in 9 years. Every newbie seems to bump a really
old thread at some point. That's okay. This brings up a very valid point.

Kids with ADHD have delayed development in both fine and gross motor
skills. This is something to talk with the teachers about, and the child
should get credit for doing his or her best - rather than be compared to the
children who can do so much better because they don't have a disorder.
Is this always the case Lunacie? Our son with ADHD was advanced physically...so much so it was terrifying. There's nothing quite like running after your 10mth old or tearing your two year old off the monkey bars.
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Old 04-21-13, 04:58 PM
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Re: Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hml1976 View Post
Is this always the case Lunacie? Our son with ADHD was advanced physically...so much so it was terrifying. There's nothing quite like running after your 10mth old or tearing your two year old off the monkey bars.
Dizfriz explains this much better than I can: The 30% Rule

Quote:
With ADHD, there are a number of parts of the brain involved and each kid has a different mixture of symptoms characterized by a slower development of these areas.
My ADHD g-daughter walked at 6 months and was climbing ladders with
ease by the time she was 2, and scaring me to death. But in other ways
she was certainly showing slower development than her peers.

I think the trick is to praise them for what they can do well, and not to
blame them for what they really struggle to do - they really are trying very
hard to do what other kids their age can do without much thought.
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Old 04-22-13, 05:04 AM
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Re: Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten

Sometimes, I think parents (myself included) look at kindergarten as some sort of cathartic validation of their kids immense intelligence. For me, after 3 kids 2 with really high intelligence, kindergarten was more to do with following directions and playing with friends, and less about how high of a reading level or math level they were on.
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Old 04-28-13, 11:28 AM
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Re: Gifted with ADHD & Starting Kindergarten

Kindergarten can be awful for smart kids with ADHD. It's all structure and then if they can do all the kindergarten things, torturous boredom.

I think you need to advocate for your child and with the teacher. They have to make special accommodations. They should give him more advanced work in verbal areas. I'd be pushy and insist on it.

Sometimes there is stuff that is concepts that is not boring. It's not all counting to 100.

Be sure not to convey your attitude to your child though.

It's really a bummer to start out like this because then they get the idea school is awful. It took a few years for my kid to get over that idea.

If there is any way you can find a public school with project based learning or something like that, it would be perfect.

Ultimately, we learned to work within the limitations of the public schools and just go with it. We've had ups and downs. Kindergarten and 1st grade were tough but since then things have really improved. There's more open endedness to the learning process.
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