Stomach Ache EVERY day

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by newteachfl, Aug 24, 2007.

  1. newteachfl

    newteachfl Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    Messages:
    115
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    I just finished me first week of classes and everything seems to be going well. But there is this one child who complained of a stomach ache every single day. I sent her to the nurse each day (today the note explained that she seems to have a stomach ache every day). The nurse agreed that the little girl seems fine and was "talking and laughing" in her office. And not 20 minutes after she got back she had a "terrible" bug bite that was really hurting--although I couldn't see even the smallest mark on her when I looked.

    I think if it happens again on Monday, I'm going to write a note home to Mom. But I wasn't sure exactly what to say. If she really is sick, I want Mom to know, and if it's just an attention thing (or a get out of class thing) I need to put an end to it. It's school policy that if a student goes to the nurse (or anywhere) 2 other students have to go with them. That means 3 students are missing out on instruction every time she's "feeling sick" Any ideas?
     
  2.  
  3. cmw

    cmw Groupie

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2007
    Messages:
    1,241
    Likes Received:
    2

    Aug 24, 2007

    What age? Is she old enough where you could talk to her? What about calling the parent? Find something positive to tell the parent and then let them know that everyday she makes visits to the nurse. Maybe she is just extra needy and is not used to school where there are so many children she is not getting individual attention. ;)
     
  4. newteachfl

    newteachfl Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    Messages:
    115
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    She's in 3rd grade so she should be pretty used to the school environment by now. I pulled her aside today and talked to her about it (although she still insisted she didn't to go to the nurse) so hopefully it'll slowly trail off. But if not, I guess I'll just have to give mom a heads up and hopefully we can figure something out
     
  5. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2005
    Messages:
    10,120
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    Maybe next time she pulls the I'm sick thing, tell her she is going to have to wait until free time to go the nurse. Than when she does go do some sort of silly little game with the others. Errr actually that might not work if she has to take another student with her. Maybe you can set it up so the nurse comes to get her at that time.:D
     
  6. newteachfl

    newteachfl Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    Messages:
    115
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    hm, that could work. Or maybe everything she misses in class becomes homework. Good idea :)
     
  7. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2005
    Messages:
    10,120
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    If you do send the work home as homework. Just make sure mom knows why ahead of time. You don't want a POed parent!
     
  8. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Messages:
    2,233
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    I like the idea of telling her to wait until free time or something fun planned. Perhaps you can ask the teacher across the hall to spare some of her students because "you're sure none of your kids will want to be missing the fun game you have planned". Of course, set it up with her before hand. I think you'll be able to tell more clearly if this is performance anxiety, lack of desire to work, or truly upset stomach. Then talk to the parents about your observations.
     
  9. interart

    interart Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2007
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    I agree that she probably just wants to get out of class, but there is a chance something is really bothering her. Does she get the stomach ache at the beginning of the day, or after lunch? Maybe she's lactose intolerant. Probably not though. Could be she's just nervous that she won't do well, which could also cause symptoms.
     
  10. kabd54

    kabd54 Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2005
    Messages:
    520
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    The next time she complains of a sore stomach, just tell her that the nurse is busy with another student right now and she'll have to wait until recess time to see the nurse. Maybe the thought of missing recess will provide a cure for those stomach aches.

    Between the stomach aches and the "terrible" bug bite, it would seem to me that there's nothing seriously wrong with her. But, definitely let Mom know what's been going on and if she's having health issues at home.
     
  11. Pisces_Fish

    Pisces_Fish Fanatic

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2006
    Messages:
    2,735
    Likes Received:
    5

    Aug 24, 2007

    I can't help but wonder what her home life is like. Perhaps it's nerves?
     
  12. sue35

    sue35 Habitué

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2007
    Messages:
    897
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    It could also be because you are a new teacher to her. I had a student who did that at the beginning of last year for about 2 weeks. Eventually as she got used to me she stopped doing it. I didn't send her to the nurse everytime though. I just told her to go to the bathroom and wait to see if it gets better.
     
  13. sundrop

    sundrop Cohort

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Messages:
    552
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    When kids ask me if they have a stomach ache, I ask them to think about how badly they feel. I explain that they have to decide what to do because I don't know how they feel inside. Do they just need to use the restroom? Are they hungry and lunch is in a short while? or Do they feel sick enough to need to go home? If the last option is the case, then I send them to the office with the expectation that they will make the call home and mom/dad will decide if they need to stay or go. My hope is that if the child isn't really sick but chooses the last option repeatedly, mom/dad will catch on pretty quickly.
     
  14. mom&teacher

    mom&teacher Companion

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Messages:
    155
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    I would call mom and just say something like, "I'm calling out of concern for -----, and wanting to make sure that there are no medical issues that we should know about." If she says no, then let her know that ---- has been going to the nurse at least one time per day and she is missing out and making others miss out on valuable learning time. Talk to her about not allowing the child to go without having to make the time up at recess or making up the time by doing additional homework.
     
  15. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2007
    Messages:
    5,276
    Likes Received:
    1

    Aug 24, 2007

    We have a girl enacting a similar scenario (3rd grade). It seems like every day she has a stomach ache, yet she is still able to participate in class discussions, etc. (she is one of the brightest students in the class). Yesterday, upon returning from a visit to the nurse's office, she told me that the nurse said that sucking on a piece of candy (like a jolly rancher) would probably help her stomach! Huh? Never heard the like! Today, however, she actually started vomiting and felt a little warm. Unfortunately, this happened in the last 30 minutes of the school day, during which the administration refuses to allow anyone to check out. She did seem to get better after "getting whatever out of her system."
     
  16. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    Messages:
    5,280
    Likes Received:
    748

    Aug 24, 2007

    I have a rule about the nurse: If you feel bad enough to warrant a trip to the office, you will sit out recess since sick kids shouldn't be running around. That keeps the just-want-to-get-out-of-class illnesses at a minimum and if you really do feel bad, you could care less about recess.
     
  17. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2006
    Messages:
    3,729
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 24, 2007

    Stomach issues in kids are often a sign of anxiety. I think you should watch her carefully, and it may be something that needs a counselor referal.

    Also, talking to her and coming up with a "code" or signal for when she is feeling anxious can help kids who feel this way at school. Maybe just giving her that nod or peace sign or whatever will help her to know that you know she is feeling bad, and she can talk to you when the time is right, but to stick it out a little while longer.
     
  18. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2001
    Messages:
    24,959
    Likes Received:
    2,115

    Aug 25, 2007

    I rarely send anyone to the nurse. Stomach ache? Head ache? Go get a drink sweetie and try going to the bathroom. Or I'll ask what they had for breakfast and offer some juice (I keep juice packs in my closet) And then I'd mention to sweetie that I am worried about her and that I would be calling mom to suggest that maybe she needs to go to the dr for a check up...this usually curtails the 'frequent flyers' to the nurse....You'll eventually figure out who the kids are who TRULY are sick and need to go to the nurse and those who just need a walk...
     
  19. Miss_snugs

    Miss_snugs Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Messages:
    77
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 25, 2007

    I had a girl like this in fifth grade. Every day though it was something different so it was never that same reason for going to the nurse. This student struggled alot in school. If it was a cut, I sent to wash her hand in the bathroom. If it was a sore throat, she got a drink from the water fountain. I found out that her mom was volunteering in the nurse's office on certain days. I tried the "wait until we go to recess, PE, or other fun things and then by the time that came around she had completely forgotten. I would talk to the mom because I am always hesitant about NOT sending a kid to the nurse just in case.
     
  20. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,154
    Likes Received:
    1

    Aug 25, 2007

    While I suspect this girl is having performance anxiety, we had a student last year that had irritable bowels so her stomach did hurt. When she had to go to the bathroom it would take FOREVER. I didn't say a word.

    I've done the wait until recess bit. Also, have you noticed a pattern for WHEN this child is wanting out? What about the kids she sits with. Is she comfortable with them?
     
  21. BabyAngel

    BabyAngel Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 26, 2007

    With my frequent flyers who have stomach aches, I usually have them get the wastebasket and keep it near their desk. That way if they really are sick, I don't have a mess, and if they aren't sick they're not losing teaching time. Of course, sometimes you can tell by looking at them that they are sick.
     
  22. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Messages:
    2,233
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 28, 2007

    Nothing makes me more angry, though, than when I finally do send a child who is sick to the office/nurse and they send them back saying that they don't have a temperature so they're not sick. Please.

    I don't send them unless they look flushed, tired, and not acting themselves, it's not often, and you're going to question my judgement? I just call Mom on my cell phone when that happens. Then I get fussed at by the office, but I don't much care. If you're going to tell me they're not sick just because they don't have a temperature, then I'll break the rule and call Mom.
     
  23. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    Messages:
    5,935
    Likes Received:
    1,427

    Aug 28, 2007

    I have older kids . . . 7th grade . . . and if I notice them having multiple medical issues or one recurring medical issue, I have a private talk with the student and tell him/her that I'm really concerned for their health, and I need to talk to the parents and someone in the guidance office so they can get the problem fixed.

    Occassionally they DO have a problem, but often it's just an "I want out of class" problem.
     
  24. hatima

    hatima Devotee

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2005
    Messages:
    1,081
    Likes Received:
    2

    Aug 28, 2007

    I agree that it could be a "I just want out of class" trick. When I was in third grade and sooner (since I was really little) I would get bad stomache aches after I ate. I went to the doctors over it and they said my digestive track was fast and explained that I had to eat slowly (I sped ate to get to recess--there was no wait until the class is done). Once I ate more slowly the stomache aches did subside.

    In general a school nurse told me juice and saltine crackers should take care of most somache aches.
     
  25. newteachfl

    newteachfl Companion

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    Messages:
    115
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 29, 2007

    I sent a note home to mom just to let her know about all the trips to the nurse and to "find out" if there were any medical issues I needed to be made aware of. Mom kindly wrote back that her daughter is "playing me" and I shouldn't let her out of class unless she truly looks sick. Which really, I kind of already knew, but I didn't want to forbid a child from going to the nurse and have Mom throw a fit about it. But now with Mom's permission, she hasn't been to the nurse in the past two days.

    Thanks for all the advice!
     
  26. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Messages:
    2,233
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 29, 2007

    When I was a second-year teacher, I had a student who told me about her Dad dying in a car wreck. She started describing it, and I kept trying to cut her off, and it got worse and worse until I finally got her to promise to talk to me about it at recess.

    So the next time I saw her mother, I told her that I was sorry that the girl had "lost" her father, and that it seemed to bother her still..Her mother (you know where this is going) told me that it was news to her since she just left the girl's father at home.

    Oh well, typical softy. I've grown into a "If you're not dead, dying, or bleeding, go sit down and get to work."
     
  27. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,154
    Likes Received:
    1

    Aug 29, 2007

    I remembered last year the aides from pre-k and kinder were apalled that I didn't send the kids to the nurses office the first second they said anything about it or mentioned a booboo. Most of the time they just want some TLC and attention for their small drama. Well this year those same students dropped their jaws open. I told them I had a CPR card which means I'm trained and qualified to take care of smaller injuries and that helps the nurse out. Then I tell them the nurse showed me what to do in xyz situation. I act like I have all this authority with it and they accept it (slowly). Today one student got a cleaning (water) for a small bruise and wet paper towels in a zip lock back to apply to the area. (The nurse freaked out once when she saw one of these. It turns out theirs is fancy and has alcohol and she doesn't want me apply that. No worries...it is just TLC). Then another one had a very small bug bite and I cleaned it up and she was good to go. If it aint bleeding, the scrape is cleaned and bandaged. If it has any blood, they go to the nurses office.
     
  28. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,154
    Likes Received:
    1

    Aug 29, 2007


    A teenager told me her brother just died and she was texting her mom. LIED. She didn't want to give up the cell phone. The whole table was pushing it. The bad part was her sister was in my class (1st grade) and I almost said something.
     
  29. tchecse

    tchecse Companion

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2007
    Messages:
    175
    Likes Received:
    0

    Aug 29, 2007

    I second that. When I was in 2nd grade, I was that little kid-I went to the nurse everyday and always had a stomachache. It had nothing to do with school, what it had to do with was that my parents had just divorced, we had just changed schools, and my mother was keeping up her visitation rights with my brother and totally ignored me. I really did feel physically sick, but there was no way for me to know the real reason why at that age :(
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. MntnHiker,
  2. howard ellis
Total: 269 (members: 3, guests: 241, robots: 25)
test