Unsocial student

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by SamIAm, Aug 16, 2010.

  1. SamIAm

    SamIAm Companion

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    Aug 16, 2010

    I teach a group of mostly 3 year olds. I have a child who just isn't playing - not with the other children and hardly by herself. She is literally at my hip much of the day, and is constantly saying that she doesn't know what she wants to do. I'm sure some of this is simply shyness, but she seems to have no trouble with group activities, even ones involving speaking in front of the group like show and tell. That's why this is so weird. I have never encountered this before. I have had some kids who were immature socially - for sure, but not any who just sat around most of the day. Her mom says that she doesn't have this problem at home, and she didn't at her old school, which disturbs me. I don't know what I could be doing wrong. :( Understand, that I have TOYS. Tons and tons of toys! And I have toured her around the room showing her all the centers and what she can do in them. I don't mind helping her along some as far as guiding her toward something to do, but she SHOULD be able to choose an activity for herself. She has one game she plays, and she wants me to play it with her. I don't mind doing this some, but I can't give this one child all my attention, and what's more, I worry that playing with her too much will feed into this dependence on adults. She needs to play with the other children. She has played with the others, somewhat, at times, but only when they joined her game and even then she would often walk away as soon as the other kids started playing. Like I said, I realize some of this is probably shyness, but I wonder if something else is going on.
    Have any of you ever encountered this? What would you advise me to do? I have a small class so 1 child not playing really does impact the whole group.
    Thanks!
     
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  3. EDUK8_ME

    EDUK8_ME Cohort

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    Aug 16, 2010

    Maybe ask her mom what kinds of things she likes to do at home and if possible try adding in some of those activities at school. Is she new and/or an only child?
     
  4. SamIAm

    SamIAm Companion

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    Aug 16, 2010

    Thanks EDUK8 ME.
    I did talk to her mom today and will be purposely placing out items her mother says she may be attracted to. They're already placed at her level, but I'm going to put them out on the main table, and set them up for her. I hope that will help her, but I'm worried that it won't be enough. I am also wondering what I can do to try to encourage her to play with the other children. I have been sort of sitting with her, and coaxing her into interacting with others - trying to get her to combine her play with theirs or encouraging her to join in. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. Even when it does work, it's usually short lived.
     
  5. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Aug 17, 2010

    I have this often.......in my room it isn't that the child can't make a choice...it is that the child has made a choice. They are playing happily with their favorite toy.......YOU! At home it isn't an issue, because she is playing with Mommy. And that is fine at home, that is what happens at home. It isn't that I am saying the children are spoiled.....I am not. Just they like grown ups and talking to grown ups happens at home.

    Often, after the few days of intro time, I set up a quiet viewing spot with some books and individual toys-and two or 3 pillows or something to sit comfy on. Then I tell the child they can not follow me (for some reason)....but to have a seat and enjoy the room and the books or whatever and I will be back to check on them. Then do your regular teacher job. In a minute or maybe one 30 sec go back....reassure them and congratulate them, and remind them to stay there or to make a different choice. Sooner or later they will follow you. Just walk them back and start over, nicely.

    Later, you can include the playing with friends sort of the same way. Step by step minute by minute......but from accross the room or they will not see the friend.....just you.....friend.
     
  6. EDUK8_ME

    EDUK8_ME Cohort

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    Aug 17, 2010

    it sounds like you are doing everything that is appropriate for her. It is very common for children at this age to play near other children but not necessarily with other children. If she is socializing with others, even for a short time, and participating in the classroom routine/ activities then I would not worry so much about her playing with others. When you need for her to be separated from you, explain that you need to help a classmate and that she can play with_____(toy) or_______(toy/friend) until you come back. Try separating yourself from her maybe every 10-15 min. for at least 5 min. at a time or more if possible.
     
  7. brejohnson88

    brejohnson88 Comrade

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    Aug 22, 2010

    I think the advice given above sounds good. I would try putting things out that she enjoys playing with and once she gets engaged let her know you have to do something else and check back up on her. Many children get scared when there is alot of toys they can play with and alot of friends to choose from to play with. Also, its a new enviornment and it probably is scary.
     

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