Looking for some input!

Discussion in 'Early Childhood Education Archives' started by 4Lisa, Apr 17, 2006.

  1. 4Lisa

    4Lisa Rookie

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    Apr 17, 2006

    I am asking for a little help. I am a pre-k teacher with a class of 14 3-5 year olds. We have one child that needs help and I don't know where to start. The child will be entering Kindergarten in the fall, and has been with us for probably about a year and a half. He has always had anger issues. He is so funny and talkative but in a split second and sometimes without anything provoking he snaps and will scream and yell and break into screaming fits. These are not like temper tantrums, they are fits of rage and anger!! Sometimes he becomes violent. It is very scary and we have always dealt with it, and even got the child into a 15 week play therapy program. Now within the last 6 weeks or so, I have seen an increase with the outbursts. When he has them, he pulls away from any attempts to comfort him, which is fine, because I know that some children need their own space when they are upset. He is a loner child and doesn't really play with others really prefers to be alone. He does attempt to initiate play once and a while, but will withdraw from the group within a short time. Recently it has gotten worse. As he is becoming upset more often, he now will yell that he is going to "kill himself" and says that "I am so F***ing stupid!!" It is so disturbing, because he uses it all in context and it is obvious that someone tells him that. We are having trouble now with other children saying they are gonna kill each other and it is out of hand. I have addressed the issues with all of the parents in the room and all are pretty well understanding. But I don't like hearing my preschoolers saying things like that to anyone. We are also having issues with some of the children that have now become afraid of the child, because the outbursts are sooo loud and frequent. We never know what is going to come out of the child's mouth, or when an outburst will occur because they are usually without warning. I have been working closely with the therapist so she can come up with some options. We both feel that he should have a mental health evaluation, but mom is very passive about everything saying well I am sure that he heard it from someone else or on t.v. I am so frustrated because I want to help but don't know how. I have spoken with the school psychologist in the elementary school that he will be entering, to get some advice and just to give him a heads up on what is to come.

    One of my teacher assistants said that they saw a special on Oprah on terets (i am not sure how to spell that) syndrome, and that there were children that were diagnosed with the syndrome that displayed these types of symptoms, almost exactly. I wish I could have saw the episode did anyone?

    Any advice or comments would be greatly appreciated!! I am not going to give up on a child that just needs someone to reach out and help!!
     
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  3. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

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    Apr 20, 2006

    What is this child watching on TV that he could have heard it from there? If mom is that passive about it, don't automatically put the blame on something else until you can figure out if she is taking control of her child properly! In the meantime, maybe you can make it mandatory (talk to your supervisor) that he get evaluated or else he gets dropped from the program. Parents need to be given an ultimatum when they are not willing to go the lengths for their children. Don't beat around the bush and don't sugar coat it...be honest and put your foot down.
     
  4. 4Lisa

    4Lisa Rookie

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    Apr 20, 2006

    This child watches anything and everything he wants to I am sure!! I know that mom has no control of her child, and that there are no limits at home. The play therapist had to do home visits and evaluations, and came back and verified what I already knew. In fact the therapist is almost as baffled as I am. She said the behavior at school is very subdued compared to the behavior at home. At school it does come and go in an instant, she said at home it was non stop!!! I do know that dad is very hot headed and I know that dad yells a lot and I am sure swears at him all of the time. The therapist has yet to meet dad, which we find to be very convenient. He always seems to not be there for those scheduled home visits, and I have met him only a few times. Mom always drops off, and usually picks up too. Dad did come to parent teacher conferences the first time for him, but instantly you could see a huge difference in mom and dad. I could tell from the first meeting that dad was an angry person. So I know where the child gets stuff from, so it is truely a work in progress. Our center has in the past dropped one family for a behavior issue, because the parent was not willing to cooperate. But that is truely the last resort. :)
     
  5. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

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    Apr 20, 2006

    It definitly should be a last resort. However, if the parents are not willing to cooperate, only so much can be done. There truly needs to be a consistancy between home and school. Good luck! I hope the parents are willing to put forth the effort, even if it means testing or making changes at home.
     
  6. 4Lisa

    4Lisa Rookie

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    Apr 20, 2006

    Thank you we hope so too. It is just so frustrating as a teacher!! But in the end at least I know that I did my part and tried to help to the best of my ability! :)
     
  7. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    Apr 20, 2006

    That doesn't sound like tourettes to me, but I'm no expert. If it is WORSE at home............then that suggests the problem lies in that home, more precisely, DAD! Do you think this child is being abused physically? It already sounds like he is being verbally abused. I'd worry that this will only escalate as this child gets older. How does he treat animals, etc? Sounds like some serious issues and he will need to be monitored closely!
     
  8. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

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    Apr 21, 2006

    Those are some good points Kinder!
     
  9. ABall

    ABall Fanatic

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    Apr 21, 2006

    Can you keep a tape recorder near by, and get some of the outburst on tape so the mom can hear them? Maybe even if she is the one that says these things to the child it will wake her up.
     
  10. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    Apr 21, 2006

    This is probably obvious, but make sure you are keeping documentation of the outbursts, what he says, when he says it, and what you did as a result. It may prove very important to have a written record of all of this.
     
  11. ksmomy

    ksmomy Companion

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    Apr 21, 2006

    This sounds like a child I had in my class last year. He was also 4 and on his way to school. (Except he didn't use that kind of language.) He would become very angry and upset for what sometimes seemed no apparent reason. Sometimes I could talk with him and calm him down and sometimes he just needed somewhere to chill out. (A quiet part of the room alone.) He had been diagnosed with bi-polar. Mom was very on top of what was going on with him and we communicated frequently. This child's father had had bi-polar also. (Mom and Dad were no longer together and the child had very little contact with him). Once I got to know him I could sometimes tell things that would trigger him and try to intervene. Also, I had to be careful of how I talked with him and recognize when he just needed some time to calm down. I always let him know that he couldn't hurt or disrupt anyone else. I did have to remove him from the class a couple of times to allow him to calm down. I would just talk calmly with him and let him know when he calmed down we could go back to class. He was a very smart and loving child when he wasn't having one of these tantrums.
     
  12. GSK Day care

    GSK Day care Rookie

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    Apr 21, 2006

    HI, it must be so hard to see this child go through these outbursts. I know dropping a child from your program is not what you are looking to do but I tend to err on the side of caution. There are other children involved as well. I think a smaller group as well as specialized help is definitely warranted and I don't think that the other kids should be around that sort of aggression . Hard things to do. Poor little man. Sometimes the intention to help is there but the right circumstance is not. Those are some serious cries for help. In a setting of that many kids I have a hard time seeing how he can really get the help he needs ? Best of luck to you and him.
     

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