My 5 year old son is having staring spells at preschool, his teacher says he is sometimes staring off "thinking by himself" this happens at circle time quite a bit and he gets very quiet, also he is not transitioning at times when he is supposed to be moving on to other sections within the classroom. He is a happy, curious child and he seems to be on track as far as knowing all his letters, numbers to 20, shapes, colors. I don't know what is happening at school. Any input would really help.
At this time of the school year, your son is still adjusting to his new class. Taking bits of time to tune out all of the hustle and bustle of his classroom is not unusual, though it could be a sign of a bigger problem. People often get scared when they see 'staring spells' if they know a little about absence (aka petit mal) seizures. Sometimes people associate staring off into space as an indicator of inattentive ADHD or even an autistic spectrum disorder. The symptom is a good one to pay attention to, and the teacher was correct to bring it to your attention. Keep in mind, however, that the most likely explanation is that your son is getting a bit overstimulated, and is managing his own comfort level as best he can.
I would want to find out more about what is happening in the classroom, particularly with regards to his having trouble transitioning. I would ask for a teacher conference, and request that an administrator or guidance counselor to observe your son so that you can get more information about where he is having trouble. Then the three of you can meet and discuss his functioning and how to help him.
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