Our 5.5 year old son started kindergarten just under a month ago. Prior to that he was in a daycare full time that was set up like a school (pre-school once you hit 3). He's very smart, probably too smart for his own good I'm beginning to wonder. He is our oldest, we have a younger son, who is 4, and at the same daycare our older one just graduated from.
Our 5.5 YO had issues from the first day in K. His teacher called me to ask what I did to correct him when he was home. He refused to use the restroom when she was making the class take a restroom break. It has escalated since then. He has a "helper teacher" that stays with him all day now, redirecting him to stay on task. He hasn't sat through the entire day once, in his classroom. He is being removed by his helper teacher, or the principal daily.
They started a plan, with our blessing, to reinforce positive behavior by giving him a smiley face everytime they saw him doing something good. Once he reached 10 smilies - he was given a 'reward break'. That worked for about a week. They gave him a time out card that he was allowed to use when he felt himself getting upset - so that he could leave the room before he exploded. It no longer works. This week has been the worst. He has been sent home early every single day because the school feared he was a danger to himself. He would hit his head on the filing cabinets in the social workers room. One day it took 3 adults to restrain him because he was so worked up.
We had our first visit with the child psychiatrist last night and I felt relief after speaking to her with him and my husband. She obviously couldn't give us a diagnosis in 45 minutes but felt that she did think he could be helped. She has asked us to work on helping him understand other emotions - he uses 'frustrated' and 'angry' when he's exploding, but that's about it.
He blames everyone for things that happen to him, he doesn't seem to understand/accept that accidents happen. He will say everyone hates him, they're mean to him, they're picking on him. He will take on the parent roll when he feels he's been slighted and demand and 'sincere' apology from us (myself and husband) and refuses to do anything we ask of him until we apologize. Which we don't if we've done nothing wrong.
We have taken away all of his privileges, his toys. This week we grounded him to his room and have removed everything from it besides his books. Today we received a call AGAIN that we had to pick him up because of his behavior. The school has just finished up an evaluation of him to get an IEP for him - which I think may be his only saving grace from being expelled at this point. We're meeting on Monday to go over it.
My husband actually went to school with him on Wednesday and that was the first time he managed to make it through the entire day without a time out - by choice or by teacher request. Then the next day it was back to 'business as usual' with the defiant attitude and refusal to do any work or do anything requested of him at all.
Once someone shows up to pick him up from school - he does a 180 and is happy again. He doesn't seem to care that he's in his room with nothing to do. He will be quiet and do his time. We've talked and talked and talked to him. He promises to do better, he says he's sorry, he writes apology letters.
It's like school is his trigger - he's more or less - a very happy, sweet, kind, funny, smart kid otherwise. I believe he has a hard time with transitions and that is something that sets him off as well.
I'm just at the end of my rope here - I feel like the past month has been out of a nightmare, I'm so stressed out and losing my mind. I'm angry and frustrated with him, but trying to be understanding and loving. I don't know what I should be doing or acting with him. Am I being too hard on him? Too easy on him? I'm throwing my hands up every day and crying all the time.