ADHD child entering middle school need advice on what needs to be done before school starts?
I love my son dearly and do not want him to have the frustrations that he delt with last year with teachers and other students. He has a high IQ but was bringing home d’s and f’s which is not like him and his teacher was not helping to work with him at all. It took me going to the pricipal to get things straightened out (this is after numerous attempts to speak and work with teacher). Please help me decide a plan of action to help.
I don’t think there is any set format to follow unless the school has procedures.
The problem is that no matter weather those procedures are followed or not, the teachers are not trained and or educated on how to deal with ADD or ADHD. Two schools and several teachers later, there has been one good learning class for my child and that was because the teacher’s own child was ADD and she understood how to communicate etc. with my child. That year was very rewarding for my child and enjoyable.
And I know there are people that feel the same way the teachers do when they read this that Add is nothing, and that it is the way the kid is brought up and the child’s actions etc. are deliberate. Well, I have nothing to say to those people!
Good luck to you and if you come up with more answers than I do, please e-mail me.
I just want to add that for the mommy that suggested things be organized etc., I agree, but with an ADD or ADHD child you can organize and routine them all you want. I have done all the binders etc. and the problem is them remembering.
I disagree with the 125 student thing as an excuse for not being able to deal one on one with a student.
The teachers now a days have student aids, assistant teachers, room moms. etc. There are more people in any one of my daughters class rooms than I ever saw when I was in school.
The teachers that I deal with now adays are not working past 8am to 3pm. They don’t take nothing home with them. They don’t make phone calls on their personal time. They don’t give up thier lunch hours…..there is no extra effort what so ever like there was when I was in Junior High or High School.
Shoot, they don’t even grade their own papers anymore.
To those teachers reading this that do, God Bless you all!
I teach 6th grade (still elementary school in our district) and I’ve helped many students with IEPs transition into junior high. I would highly suggest having your son’s IEP on hand (make many copies) and within the first few weeks of school, take the time to meet his teachers in person so they can put a face to a name and also hand the IEP to them. Sometimes, because junior high teachers deal with SO many students on a regular basis, they can’t take the time to look through every students’ files, but if you make them aware of his IEP, they’ll usually be very receptive to it.
There should also be an IEP meeting with the special education department toward the beginning of the year, so make sure it gets scheduled. If you don’t hear anything by mid-October, I suggest you call the school.
If you find this year, the school is unwilling to comply with the IEP, then I would call your state’s coalition for children’s rights. Believe we, they would gladly jump on this. I have seen it happen.
The frustrations that your son dealt with last year were minor compared with what will happen in middle school.
Talk to the Counselors first, then speak to the Principal, then teacher. Find out where they are coming from. Are they able and willing to make a special effort to educate your son. If you find that they are not capable of giving your son a good education then perhaps you will need to find another school that has a good solid track record for the Learning Challenged kids.
I run a school for the Learning Challenged kids and find that most of them come from public and private schools because these schools are not equipped to teach kids who have a different learning style. Don’t stop talking to your son’s teachers, counselors, or the principal. You are your son’s best advacate for his education. Be totally involved in it and never stop no matter what others say. Your son has a right to a good education, so get in there and fight.
Going to the counselor probably isn’t the way to go because they have very little say over special education. I would go to the sped coordinator and his specific case manager. I’m surprised you didn’t have a transition meeting to make that bridge between elementary and middle.
Getting organizational routines and being his own best advocate (and then you being there to back him up) are going to be his best best for future success.
Approach the teacher by asking how you can help her help your son gain the most from his year under her tutelage. DO NOT start by criticizing last year’s teacher, although it sounds like criticism was in order. Let the new teacher “open that door” before you recount past difficulties.
I don’t think it would hurt to approach the counselor the same way. Paint a positive picture of your willingness to help but don’t give the impression of meddling and interfering.
I’ve had many students who are labeled ADD and ADHD. I am also ADHD. Imagine that – a teacher with ADHD. It is actually as funny as it sounds.
I have had many days when other teachers would bring their students to my class (I teach Band and Elementary Music) and woefully explain that so-and-so has been quite a handful because they didn’t have their medicine. My usual response is “Don’t worry about it, everything will be fine.” And it has always been fine.
I have found that the primary “trigger” for problems with ADHD is lack of interest on the student’s part.
I am NOT blaming the student. What I do is: Everyday, I do my best to make the lessons interesting and fun for all students.
And, that generally works about 95% of the time.
The other 5% of the times – when the student starts to be a little rambunctious – I openly and very briefly discuss ADHD. I remind the students that I also have it and that I have stopped taking my medicine for it. Then I’ll ask the student, in question, to describe my behavior and demeanor. And, I then ask the student to give me one good reason why he/she doesn’t try to behave like me – especially since neither one of us had taken medication that day.
Understand that when I do this, I do it as respectfully and politely as possible. I model the behavior that I expect form my students. I never act harshly towards them. I never have to raise my voice.
When their normal classroom teacher comes in to get the students, I always have a good report for them.
Of course, I have the benefit of having these students every year. I have their many of their relatives, and I talk with the parents.
As a side note: Talk with the band director and try to get your son in band – anything but drums (drums make most people to energetic to focus and stay on task). One thing band teaches is self-discipline. And, self-discipline is one of the best ways to begin to overcome ADHD. I have several ADHD students in my band and we’ve won the competition “Sweepstakes” Award each year for earning all “Ones” at contest. The ADHD students, in my class, no longer get into mischief in their other classes – even when they forget their medication.
What it all boils down to is this: We must all do our best to make education fun and interesting. Interest is the “trigger.”
Feel free to print this and give a copy to your son’s teachers and principal.
i would start with the special ed teacher, just introduce yourself and tell them that you just want to make contact with the school and so they know that you are very involved in your sons education. you can also tell them of your concerns, but let school start and see what happens. things could be better. speak with the special teacher. it will make you feel better at least. they like parents to be involved and since its a new school, think positively!
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