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ADHD

My 7 year old son has been labled exceptionally gifted. He does not have any behavior problem and gets along well with his peers, he is not implusive nor disruptive. He is currently in the second grade and his teacher has complained that he has a hard time staying on task, following directions and completing assignments without several prompting. He performs well in the class room, but his teacher says it is because she is constantly redirecting him. She states that he is extremely smart and capable of doing the work when kept on task. The scores on his 2nd grade achievement test places his intellectual ability at mid year 3rd grade. DO my son have symptoms of ADD-ADHD. Should I retain my son in the second grade to improve on the weakness stated by his teacher.
19 Responses
757137 tn?1347200053
Unfortunately when a child is particularly bright he is expected to be emotionally precocious as well. That is erroneous thinking. Academic achievement is not related to emotional maturity. Your boy can be inattentive for two reasons, (1) he hasn't settled down yet (boys settle later than girls), or (2) he is bored out of his skull.

The worst thing you can do to him is to keep him back. That is like a punishment for being clever and can break a child's spirit. What you might do is to find out if there are any schools in your area designed to meet the needs of (what may be) a gifted child. By the way, your son's behavior does not sound in any way abnormal.
189897 tn?1441130118
COMMUNITY LEADER
      I pretty much agree with allmymarbles.  Keeping him back would be a mistake.  If he actually did have something like ADD, holding him back is not addressing the problem.  Typically, the only good reason is if a child is very young for the grade level (like being 6 in second grade).  If he has a birthday after September, he well could be one of the younger kids in the class and is acting accordingly.  That will shortly change as he matures.
     He may well be bored because the work is so easy for him and thus he looks for other things to do.  Of course, he could have ADD.  How does he do at home - or when something is more challenging?
Avatar universal
He is a typical 7 year old boy at home.  After he has learned more challenging work he does it with ease. He makes simple mistakes on information he has learned and when ask to review it again he picks the correct answer. He enjoys reading and currently is reading books such as Diary of Wimpy Kid, and Charlottes Web. I am having his Peditrician review the comments his teacher has made as well.
Avatar universal
He was moved up a grade which did cause him to be younger then everyone else but academically he is just as successful as the students that are on grade level. I stated to his teacher that by the time he get to the third grade a lot of his weakness will start leveling out but it is as if she doesn't hear me. When I had a parent conference with her and the principal one of the key questions I ask was if I held him back what are you going to do different with him, of course no one had a solid answer. I told them he was sure to become a behavior problem by the fact that he has mastered the content well enough to pass to the 3rd grade.
757137 tn?1347200053
Sounds to me like your problem is not with your son, but with the school. Schools seem increasingly intolerant of those who do not meet their narrow conception of "normal." It is in fact the minor variations in our behavior and thinking that make us unique. Cherish your son.
189897 tn?1441130118
COMMUNITY LEADER
       I see no valid reason to hold him back.  However, the teacher who is talking about him is seeing him do something different than the rest of the class is doing - or she would not be making the comments.  The question is why is he having these behavioral problems.  It well could be as allmymarbles says its the teachers narrow view.  It could be he just gets bored and hasn't yet learned how to deal with that boredom in a way that pleases the teacher. I have seen that happen.   It could be he does have a problem like ADD.  Frankly, I think it will take until the next year and a new teacher to find out.   And that may not even be enough time.  A really intelligent kid can easily get through 4th grade and probably almost to 7th grade until the curriculum gets too much.  
      I don't want to unnecessarily worry you.  But, if I were you, I would do a bit of research into ADD, just in case.  Keeping him back won't help him.  Being properly informed about the situation so that action can be taken if warranted, will help him.  Please post if you have any more questions or need any additional information.
Avatar universal
I agree with you, I have enlisted the help of his pedatrician to evaluate him. His doctor has been seeing him since he was a newborn. I have sent the teacher evaluation form to the school but they have failed to complete them or return them. I have stated to the principal that  lack of attention and not staying on task is a behavior issue and not an academic issue. I stated to her holding him back does not sove the problems the teacher has stated but she is hell bent on retaining him although he is not failing nor is he close to failing. I have requested a meeting with the principal, teacher and superintendent to discuss this matter. THey have not followed any intervention policy that the school has that could have helped his classroom situation. Thank you so much! Your feedback has helped.
189897 tn?1441130118
COMMUNITY LEADER
           Interesting, this is beginning to sound more like some kind of a power struggle on the teacher's part for some reason.  Probably one she will lose.  Hopefully your child won't get caught in the middle.  Not sure how the policy works in your state, but I don't think that they can retain without your permission or one heck of a better reason.  Asking for the superintendent to get involved is a good idea.  Let them know that you have no problem going to the school board if you have to.  
          By the way, do try to be diplomatic.  Best wishes!
189897 tn?1441130118
COMMUNITY LEADER
      I also should add that sometimes a teacher believes so honestly that a child needs help, that they will do what this teacher is doing.  I have seen it happen before and kind of been a part of it as a principal.  
     The other thing that you want to mention is what you have said about sending a evaluation form to the school because you are trying to get your son help.  Then ask them what they are going to do next year to help him have a successful year?  Are they going to do a 504 so that his new teacher will be aware of his "problem" and will help him?   And are they suggesting that he should be tested for ADD since the teachers comments indicate that is what he has?   In short, you are saying that the teacher has said my child has these problems.  Holding him back won't help him.  So what other suggestions do you have?  And then let them do the talking for awhile.  
Avatar universal
Has your son been tested for other things.  I  some children have a hard time because they are having absent seizures and know one knows they are having them. So they think they are add or adhd.
Avatar universal
No he has not been tested for anything else. I am currently working with his doctor to address the concerns she stated. THe sad part is the principal nor the teacher is following the handbook nor state policy. If my son was as bad as she claimed, why didn't they do the proper interventions that would have been neccessary to show growth. My son is passing his courses currently with an A,B, & C. The teacher has shown inconsistencies in her grading. She lost my sons work and assigned him "0" it wasn't until after I emailed her regarding it did she state that she found the assignments and would change the grades. I don't know now to even believe anything she is saying is completly right. I really believes she stretches things I just don['t know why. My son has not shown any of the signs nor symptoms she has claimed outside of a normal 7yr old boy. I requested a meeting with the principal, teacher and the superientendent to address the concern of the principal attempting to hold my son back without my permission nor have followed the proper procedures of interventions; she has not gotten back with on a meeting as to this day.
189897 tn?1441130118
COMMUNITY LEADER
    Oh, that's an interesting piece of news.  If he is exceptionally gifted, he really shouldn't be getting any B's or C's in academic subjects.
     What you might want to do is get a book I recommend a lot.  The book is, "The ADD/ ADHD Answer book," by Susan Ashley.   Besides giving you a lot of good information about ADD/ADHD it also gives you a lot of ways to help your child in school and more importantly suggests ways to get (force if necessary) your school to help your child.  Given what is going on, I really do think that you will need some more information - and this book will prove to be very helpful.
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