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Old 11-21-2013, 08:08 PM   #1
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Brilliant, but failing??

We had our parent-teacher meeting for DS (8) tonight.

He started grade 3 this year. When they did his entrance testing in Sept, he tested at a 4.9 grade level in English and Math (so he is cognitively ready to enter grade 5). His IQ is 141.

His report card was dismal - he can't focus long enough to finish ANYTHING and anything he deems "beneath him" is half-assed and slapped together. He has started checking out 5th grade books from the library, he has ideas I couldn't fathom, but his snowman for art class looks like our dog did it. lol (not funny, but...)

He has been dx with ADHD at age 6, but I wonder if there is more? He has 1 friend, children hide from him at the store, he doesn't get slightly upset or angry - he has a complete meltdown or explosion. Basically if I interrupt what he is doing, it's the end of the world. He still bites me at age 8?? That's not normal... He tells me that he just wants to scream or hit something if I force him to focus or do something he doesn't want to do.

Right now, we have been at the kitchen table for an HOUR doing 3 cursive writing worksheets (with 3-4 lines per page).

Although, isn't it beautiful for an 8yo??? :-)



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Old 11-21-2013, 08:26 PM   #2
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Well, my personal philosophy is "when in doubt, get testing". I might go for the full psych eval because of the behavior and motivation concerns and go from there. Does the school offer counseling services? Like a friendship building group?
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Old 11-21-2013, 09:30 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by mibarra
Well, my personal philosophy is "when in doubt, get testing". I might go for the full psych eval because of the behavior and motivation concerns and go from there. Does the school offer counseling services? Like a friendship building group?
I know - me too, but he's my "baby" and it's clouding me. I wonder where "I" went wrong- did I spoil him, is he just an entitled brat, etc etc? Is there something neurological going on, or is he just copying behaviours from his brother?? His brother is 13 and has an alphabet of diagnoses, but because we fostered him for 7 years first, lots of things in place for him and he's doing pretty well.

BUT yds grew up through the worst of his brother's behaviour. Is he copying because of the attention or is there something I'm missing?

He tries to be older than he is to "fit in" with his brothers (13 and 14). To me, he seems sooo smart and articulate, but he can't relate to kids his age. He tries, my god he tries, but they just think he's weird. He's amazing with adults though - they love him. Then it makes me wonder if we messed up with the "no baby talk, treat them like small adults" mindset.

I know he's smart, I know he KNOWS the work and his teachers agree, but he can't DO the work. School-wise, we can sort out. We had taken him off Biphentin over the summer (as we do his brother), and I've sort of been slacking in starting it back up, but he asked me today, so I know he sees it too. I will call the Ped tomorrow and see what we can do about that. Once he can sit down and focus, school should be easy-peasy.

I'm just sad for him socially - he's a giant kid (like almost 5ft tall and 90lbs) and can beat the boogers out of his brothers, but he is picked on mercilessly at school (we've been to hell and back with the school - it's slightly better this year).

I do understand - he can be hard to be around. I've seen him around kids his age; he's in their bubble, he never stops moving or talking, but he's talking so far "above them", they don't get him.

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Eta- sorry that was so long! I re-read it; I feel like I'm raising a real-life Sheldon!!
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Old 11-21-2013, 09:57 PM   #4
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Re: Brilliant, but failing??

Sounds exactly like one of my cousins, and to a lesser extent me. I was not a social person, had few friends, but the ones I had I was fiercely loyal to, and have always just kinda been socially awkward. Very very intellegent, but had a minor learning disability that frustrated me in class to the point where I didn't want to do the work, and add in a stubborn streak a mile wide, and I was my own worst enemy. Despite being able to understand things several grade levels beyond me and being able to test really really well, I rarely did homework, rarely managed to finish seatwork, procrastinated so badly that my projects were aweful. Now when I put in the effort, my projects were flawless, teachers raved about them and I got top marks. But I rarely did.

My cousin was worse. Is worse - he's in his thirties and still struggling. Just as stubborn and makes me look like a social butterfly. He has a very very hard time making friends, and affects that he doesn't want them, but I know it hurts that people don't want to be around him. He's teased mercilessly even by his own family because he has great difficulty learning to interact with people socially. He had similar problems in school, and while I don't think he failed classes or grades over it like I did, I know he certainly didn't excel like someone who was as intelligent as he was should have. It's still affecting his life, he still lives with his mother and step father, he can barely hold a job, he's had one romantic relationship in his life that went on for years, until she finally ended it, being no longer able to cope with his needyness.

I firmly believe that my cousin has a form of Asperger Syndrome. He insists he doesn't, but the signs are all there. He reminds me a lot of Sheldon from Big Bang Theory, but Sheldon has other issues too. If my child was acting as you described, I'd have him tested for asperger, as well as some learning disabilities, which was my problem. As was laziness, stubbornness and a tendancy to procrastinate, all of which I am still working on.

It's highly unlikely that you did anything to cause it. Please stop beating yourself up mama. Some people are just wired differently than the norm. The important thing is that you're there and you care enough to try to help him.
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Old 11-22-2013, 08:18 AM   #5
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Re: Brilliant, but failing??

He sounds a lot like my oldest, who has Aspergers, ADHD, and anxiety. He's also incredibly book smart, but struggles so much with social things. He was diagnosed between 1st and 2nd with ADHD and ODD, and between 3rd and 4th it was changed to Aspergers, ADHD, and anxiety.

I once read that kids with IQ's higher or lower than the average (and by that, I mean significantly higher or lower) have trouble relating to their peers. It makes sense, if you think about it. That said, my son is still different. He struggles with non-verbal communication. He still has meltdowns regularly. If something goes differently than planned, or his schedule is off, or... he melts down. If he has a bad day at school, he can't come home and say "I had a bad day" he melts down. If I change his schedule, and he isn't aware of it, he melts down.

On the cursive... it came so much easier for my son than printing did. I am hugely in favor of cursive, because for 2 of my kids (my 3rd not having learned it, yet) it was so much easier, and legible than printing ever was.

I think it's worth getting him evaluated. I'd look into a pediatric neuropych or pediatric pyschologist, or we see a pediatric neurologist.
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Old 11-22-2013, 03:39 PM   #6
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Re: Brilliant, but failing??

I would get counseling too. Is he medicated? As a teacher, I have a kid that takes it as soon as he walks in the door in the morning. He is bouncing off the walls and can't get through his bellwork much of the time. About 45 minutes later, when it starts kicking in, he starts to calm down, and by an hour later (I have him for the first 2 hours), he does great. I hate that his mom won't give it to him at home before he gets on the bus so it kicks in before he gets here. It is amazing the difference it can make.

What the counselor told us for DD/DS is that ADHD kids don't pick up on social cues the same because they are so overstimulated a lot of the time. So, their hyper behavior, plus lack of social cues often makes relationships with peers hard. That is why we opted to medicate DS. Medicating DD wasn't an option because she is only 38 pounds at almost 7...psychiatrist is worried about her weight and her grades are ok. She told us that if she starts failing to come back.
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Old 11-23-2013, 09:48 AM   #7
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Re: Brilliant, but failing??

Yeah it sounds like it's time to get him tested. Part of the school stuff could be he's bored so he doesn't want to do it(slap it together & get it done), or it could be he doesn't know how to do it properly.

Why do children hide from him at the store & why does that set him off so bad?

biting, getting in kids bubbles, monster tantrums, anger all say get tested. There is probably something going on other than the ADHD(or the ADHD diagnosis isn't correct).

What does he do differently that the other kids think he's weird.
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Old 11-23-2013, 10:05 PM   #8
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Re: Brilliant, but failing??

Actually this is VERY common for gifted kids. My son is six and although we haven't been able to afford testing, is almost certainly gifted. He is about to start fifth grade math in the new year and can read on at least 8th grade level. If he is bored, he acts like he has ADD, he hates arts and craft type things (waste of time in his opinion), yet if something interests him, he has the longest attention span in the world. We homeschool him, because I know our school system here would not know how to deal with him and would likely end up labeling him.

I highly recommend you get on some forums for parents of gifted kids before thinking your son has mental or social/ behavioral issues, though there are a fair amount of gifted kids who are 2E, not all are, by just aren't in the right learning environment (and the higher the IQ, the harder it will be for him to fit in). Hugs.
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Old 11-23-2013, 10:08 PM   #9
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Re: Brilliant, but failing??

Also the not relating to kids his age/ talking above them is SO gifted kid life!! My son tries to make friends and he has a few but they are are years older than he us and he truly relates best to adults. I see no issue with this at all.
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Old 11-26-2013, 02:55 PM   #10
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Carrie, he is very loud and in-your-face with other kids. He gets "stuck" and will tell you the same thing over and over. He'll run up before I can get ahold of him and hug a kid that you can tell does NOT want him to. He has no boundaries in public. If I try to hold him back, I get bitten or he squirms out and runs. At the rink, he runs to other people to sit with and will bite and kick if he is made to sit with me. He's so sweet to others that they say, "aw, he's fine" and that doesn't help ME get him to come back.

If I get told to bite him back one more time, my left eyeball might pop out, so no thank you!

Kali - I would love to homeschool, but I don't know if I have the patience. We can barely make it through homework alive most nights.

We are very different from other parents in this hardcore oil town. Our children need to listen and be respectful - the other kids around here seem to just do whatever they want and the parents roll with it. They are rude to adults, loud and wild --- even though it sound like Nate too.

Maybe that's my problem - he is turning into the other children in this town and I don't like it!! lol

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