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Old 12-11-2006, 09:22 PM   #1
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Grade School parents roll call

I have some questions about my 8yo, and wanted to see how many other mamas of grade schoolers there are on this board. How old are your kids? Do you have them in a school? What kind? If you feel like reading on, my question is:

Currently my dd goes to a really nice montessori school. It's 'local', but not local - she gets bussed about 10 miles across a river and through the woods lol. She's finishing 3rd right now, which means that next year she'll transition into a new classroom. If we're going to switch her into a new school, it's the right time.

The issue we're having is that the classrooms in her school are (appropriately) very loud. She has a hard time filtering out noise anyway, and finds it VERY challenging to do WORK in the classroom. We've tried using headphones/CD player, without much luck. Other stuff doesn't seem to help either (pencils w/pencil toppers that she can play with, weighted blankets, single desk in a corner, etc.). She just needs a quieter environment. So I am thinking of going to the local elementary school principal and asking if there is a place for her at their school. I hate to leave the montessori env't, and I hate to enter public school in this area, because it is RIFE with values I just don't share, and bereft of ones I think are very important. BUT it might just be the right thing for her. SO

has anyone here had this kind of experience? How old were/was/are your dc? Did it work? What kind of stuff did you do to help make the transition easier?? Any advice at all would be so appreciated.

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Old 12-12-2006, 04:54 PM   #2
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Re: Grade School parents roll call

my oldest is 8 & in 2nd grade (missed the darn cutoff). she doesnt have the issues your child does, but my 5yr old does. She started kindergarten this fall & the school has been VERY good about adapting the classroom & her learning. We made sure they knew her issues & what worked & we were also open to trying their ideas. We have had a good year so far
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Old 12-12-2006, 07:16 PM   #3
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Re: Grade School parents roll call

My dd is 7 years old and in second grade. We currently homeschool but my dd is the same as far as noises go. Partly I tell her she has to deal with it because it's life, and she may want to go to college someday. But I don't try to be too noisey and sit with her and help her try to concentrate with things going on around her.

I had a very hard time with this in school as well and wish I could have been homeschooled. I'm sure there are other options for her out there but this is the best one I can offer.
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Old 12-12-2006, 09:08 PM   #4
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Re: Grade School parents roll call

Hi mama. We've been talking but I also wanted to add in MI they have something called an IEP (Individualized Education Plan) (I think..we don't have one, but many students do). I'm not entirely sure everything this encompasses, but it might be worth looking into if you are heading to PS.

Good luck!

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Old 12-12-2006, 09:31 PM   #5
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Re: Grade School parents roll call

It almost sounds as if your DD has ADD, I don't say this to be mean, I am saying this as an adult with ADHD that was finally put on meds a month ago at the age of 40. I cannot believe the difference in my ability to cope with what distracts around me and I am fully able to concentrate now, something that I have struggled with since I was a child in a small Catholic Elem school and then in public middle and high schools, not to mention college. It really is very hard to concentrate and tune things out w/out meds if you need them. I did manage, it was difficult, and I struggled quite a bit, people don't always believe kids when they say they just can't tune out or concentrate or organize their thoughts-but it is true, w/my meds I am finally able to do things that I have struggled with for many years-it is amazing and I really wish I had researched this many years ago.
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Old 12-12-2006, 09:59 PM   #6
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Re: Grade School parents roll call

I have 3 grade school kids, 8yo third grade boy, 6yo first grade boy and 5yo kindergarten/first grade girl (she's 13 mos younger than her brother but because we homeschool and can go at her pace she's pretty much doing what her 6yo brother is doing).

Montessori classrooms shouldn't always be noisy. It's been a while since I read up on Montessori but I believe true Montessori classrooms are suppose to be surprisingly quiet and calm atmospheres. We include some Montessori teachings and techniques in our homeschool. My kids really enjoy using the Montessori materials we have and really seem less stressed when we teach a lesson "Montessori-style".

I really don't have much advice for switching schools since my children have always been homeschool (except my oldest who went to public pre-k for 6mos before bringing him home) and I don't have any intention of letting them go to public school until high school and even then it will be community college courses. My oldest son has hearing issues and works with a computer program called Earobics. One of the exercises on that game works with learning to work with and filter out background noise. Basically training the brain to hear what's important. It's an expensive program (about $70 per level if I remember right. There are 2 levels) but so worth it.

Good luck

Jeni
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Old 12-12-2006, 11:11 PM   #7
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Re: Grade School parents roll call

Wow - thanks Mamas! I had a discussion w/dd today about whether she'd like to homeschool. We know some homeschool kids, and she likes them. There have been days when she comes home from school so socially drained, wishing (her and me) that we homeschooled. But today she said she doesn't think she's cut out for it. Hmmmm. Not sure where it came from. When I asked, she said she thinks that she needs more stimulation than she'd get here at home, socially. I asked whether she knew that we'd be doing stuff w/other hs families, lessons and special outings and stuff - probably at least once a week - and she said she knew that. So??? I guess I'll go call the principal and find out what he thinks, people at the school say he's really terrific. I really appreciate your words.

IEP's are standard for kids who are evaled by the school system and who require them. I had her observed in 1st grade because I KNEW there were issues, but the observation reported that whatever her issues were, they weren't effecting her school work. I don't know if that's because she wasn't 'in their system' or because the teacher said that she was on target academically or what. But this kid should be soaring ahead, and she isn't. She isn't because she's so easily distracted etc. I would prefer to look at options to drugs, but yeah, I know they might really help. My dd is just like me.

oh, and about the noisy classroom, I think there are some rooms that are quiet, hers just aren't, and the 4-5-6 class is HUGE at her school - over 30 kids and 3 leaders - so not likely to be quiet any time soon.
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Old 12-13-2006, 11:19 AM   #8
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Re: Grade School parents roll call

I have an 11 yr old 6th grade girl. She has also had sensory issues as well but mostly tactile deffensive. We really didn't know what Sensory Integration was till my son came along and also had major sensory issues as well. Unfortunately we couldn't get her the help early on but for the past year and a half or so we work with her at home on becoming awared of her sensory issues and teach her how to cope with them. She was in a regular public school, which she had some good and some bad teachers until 4th grade. A new k-8 Charter school opened up in our area and she got in for 5th grade. This school focuses on the Arts/Preforming Arts, which she loves. It has been so helpful for her and we just love it.

I unfortunately do not have the patience to homeschool my dd, nor does she have the motivation to complete some tasks on her own; we just have personality clashes when it comes to that....I tried it for a few months of preschool and was too fustrated. But this Charter school is set up for a sensory kid.......they don't sit at a desk for too long, there are movement activities and they switch rooms for different subjects with different teachers.

I am looking forward to my son going there as well. But the only thing is it is a lottery drawing to get in.....so my fingers are ++++ when my son gets to K.
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Old 12-13-2006, 08:45 PM   #9
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Re: Grade School parents roll call

If your daughter has trouble with distractions... I would recommend that she go to a school where the teacher will have enough time to have one-one time with her, and the classroom is geared towards respecting her learning style. Some kids do really well in large active classrooms. Most of my students don't. I've got students who need me to sit next to them. Not everyone need medication but everyone needs to know that I (teacher) respect their need to have a peacefully quiet environment.

I hope that you can find a place for her that works better. What about the public school's "values" bothers you the most? Can you find a way to make it work?
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Old 12-13-2006, 08:46 PM   #10
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Re: Grade School parents roll call

That school sounds wonderful! I have friends in the Vancouver (CA) area who have both thir kids in a great school - Choice School for Gifted Children - and they have had an awesome time. Great teachers, loads of integrated learning, lots of tactile learning, and individualized learning. There is just nothing here like that. I am not really holding out much hope that the public school will be 'better' than the montessori, but I think that she'll get more discipline than she has had, and she'll be in with a ton of kids, some of whom will have similar issues (according to the principal I spoke with today). He seemed quite nice, and willing to listen to our story which was encouraging. My dh doesn't want to move her out, so this is all still very up in the air...sigh.
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