maijajo's picture

6-year-old first grade boy not connecting

Hello. My son is 6 1/2 and in first grade. His teacher began sendind emails about 3 weeks in that he said he hated school, didn't want to do work. I discussed this with him, and he said he didn't really hate school, just wanted to play more. I explained that school is for learning first, and that he had to focus on completing his work. Also that he shouldn't talk about "hating" things. All was quiet, he was better. Many moms told me that he behaved well when he was there.

Now teacher says he can't follow directions, that she has to repeat them. At home, he reads very well, writes well, and is good at math. He has a good memory - if you ask him any date for the past 2 years, he can tell you which day of the week it was. Also, already knows the names of all 30 teachers in school, just by looking at last year's yearbook.

I get the feeling that the teacher thinks he isn't smart, talks much about inability to comprehend. Also says he would rather color than work on math (she puts 3 sheets out every day, including one art page, and lets kids pick which they want to start with).
I'm frustrated. I don't know what to do and would love guidance.

concerned mom's picture
concerned mom

On the contrary, it sounds like your son is very smart. I don't totally understand what his issue is, but it's obvious that his needs are not being met. Different kids learn in different ways. Maybe it's the teacher's methods, maybe your son is not being challenged enough.... Do you work w/ your son at home? I find that I learn more about about my kids from doing activities w/ them at home. This way if they're having difficulty in school, I can tell the teacher, well this is how they learn best. I think teachers try to reach each child, but in a large setting, it's hard to instruct 20 children who have different learning styles. Maybe you shld consider homeschooling and see how that goes. Also, if things don't improve, you might want to get your son evaluated by a professional to see if anything else is going on. There's no doubt in my mind that your son is smart. There just may be an underlying condition that's interfering w/ his learning or interest in learning. Get all the info you can, and explore different options. The sooner you help your son, the better. I wish you and your son all the best. Keep us posted on how things go for him. Good luck.

2xstepmom's picture

Also, look at the Kindergarten Woes post. Sound like it could be a similar issue.

AlabamaX3's picture

I'm having issues with my kindergarten son with not listening, so I feel for you.

When my son's teacher started "complaining" I decided to go to our family doctor and asked about testing for ADD/ADHD. I didn't believe that was my sons issue but his teacher was more cooperative. Our doctor gave me 2 identical papers, one for me, one for my son's teacher. The paper had a list of questions like, "does your child fidget, lose things..." and we had to circle how often those behaviors occured. Once we completed the papers I took them back to the doctor. If the papers added up to a certain number our doctor would have helped set up testing at school. The school would have to had make allowances if he had ADD. My son would have had to go to Title I class for one hour once a week, where he would have received one on one attention and help with his specific academic issues.

My son doesn't have ADD, but his doctor has referred us to a child psychotrist to help determine if he has some other type of learning disorder.

I'll also say I'm not afraid of my child being labeled. So long as he's happy and gets the help he needs then I'm happy too. Also if we get a diagnoses maybe his teacher will stop complaining and do something to help the situation.

2xstepmom's picture

The biggest issues we had was teachers and school administrators not understanding my daughter's diagnosis. This was 18 years ago, but in my current professional capacity I still see this in my clients schools. (I can't count the number of meetings and conferences I have attended for my clients and the teachers still do not get it or make any attempt to understand how to deal with the diagnosis.) The school personel continued to expect my daughter to behave and react in ways that she was just not capable. Finally, at the beginning of 10th grade, my daughter was so miserable in school that we chose to remove her from that setting and home school which was very succesful. I only wish we had done so sooner and avoided many difficult school years for my daughter.