As I mentioned in a previous blog, I anticipated a call shortly after school started regarding my ‘adhd’ son. Then one day last week, the call came. The school wanted to meet with us to discuss how to ‘meet his educational needs’. So off we went, both my husband and I, to meet with the teacher, the principal and a resource worker…all in a small back room, to discuss my son.
I went in there with a game plan, with all of my key points already in order and ready to be put on the table. I was not going to be pushed around…I am after all…a new age mom.
The teacher went first. She started by telling us that last week he had taken a ‘tattoo’ off of her desk without asking…an example of his ‘impulsivity’ she said. Then she proceeded to tell us that often times, he was the last one to complete his work…an example of his ‘difficulty in concentrating’ she said.
I listened. No ‘ahhhs and oh no’s’ from me. Really? He stole a tattoo? He’s slow with his work…oh the tragedy. Don’t get me wrong, I am not minimizing the importance of his needs at school, but to me it was like she was regurgitating information from a text book, using all of the key words like ‘impulsive’ and ‘lack of concentration’. Once she was done her rethoric it was my turn.
‘I have to say right away before we go further, that medication is out of the question.’
oh. now what? I had just taken the wind out of their sails.
‘Ok’, said the resource teacher, so lets talk about how we can help your son.
And off they went. They discussed having a support teacher who would work with our son intensly to assist him with behavioural issues such as ‘respect for others’, ‘getting to task immediately’, etc.
‘May I suggest a good book for you mom and dad?’ asked the principal. ‘It’s called My Brain…”
“needs glasses?” I concluded for him. Read it, done it with my son, he literaly has the pictures cut out and pasted to his wall in his room.
“Great”. He said. “I also know of a parent support group called…”
“The busy bees?” I concluded for him. Been there, done that too.
‘Great’ he said.
After a long pause I chimed in.
‘You know”, I said, ” my main concern is my son’s self-esteem in all of this. I do not want him to feel ‘deficient’ like the term suggests. I want him to feel good about who he is. If he starts feeling like a he’s not as good as everyone else, you’ll lose him. He won’t engage. It’s done.”
I think they got the point.
The meeting lasted over 1 hour and by the end we had a very good, positive learning plan for my son, based on frequent positive reinforcements.
Since then, already the school has seen a difference.
‘I can do it mom”, my son said to me last night after reviewing his ‘good job stickers’.
I know you can buddy. I believe in you. You have the ability to be and do great things.
“I know mom”.