Talking in Class

The Princess is really enjoying kindergarten. She enjoys it so much that she insists that she enjoys it WAY more than church. We're trying to help her remember that church is important in ways that school never can be, but I know that's difficult to wrap your head around when you're five-turning-six and you get to have recess every day at school. ;)

The teacher fills out a paper every day that tells us how The Princess has behaved at school. The paper has 3 faces on it - a smiley face, a "flat" face, and a frowny face. If The Princess has behaved well, she gets a smiley face. If she has received a warning from the teacher and ignores that warning, she gets a "flat" face. If she continues to misbehave and receives another warning after that, she gets a frowny face. If she gets 4 smiley faces for the week, she gets to choose a prize (dollar store toys) or a privilege (extra computer time, etc) on Friday.

The first week of school was great, and she brought home a smiley face every day. Since then, she's become more comfortable with the other kids in her class, and talking is starting to become an issue. Last week she brought home a flat face for talking, and yesterday she came home from school with another flat face (for talking during "rest time"). I know my child, and I know her tendencies, and I had a feeling that talking or hyperactivity was going to be her struggle in school.

I was actually looking through a box of old papers a few months ago, and I came across some of my old kindergarten report cards. I had an issue with talking in class, too. Which I totally don't understand, because I was so painfully shy back then that I don't remember ever talking to ANYone...

She also brought home her first progress report last week. Her teacher said that she's doing well academically (I'm worried she's going to get bored soon since she's already reading and some of the kids are still learning their ABC's and that it will exacerbate the bad behavior), and that she's getting more comfortable in class. She then said perhaps she's getting a little too comfortable, because talking in class is starting to become an issue.

Here's my question - what can I do with her at home, or how can I talk to her, to help her remember to be respectful of her teacher's requests not to talk in class? I know she'll be disappointed the first time that she gets two flat faces in a week and doesn't get to choose a prize (which will be a good lesson), but I worry that eventually the novelty of choosing a prize might wear off and she'll start to talk too much. IS there anything I can do or say to help her remember? I'd like to get this worked out now before it becomes an actual problem...

Since I've been diagnosed with ADD, and I think her dad has some ADD tendencies, I'm pretty sure she's going to have those tendencies, as well. I know they can't diagnose ADD until a child has started school, but I've been noticing some of those tendencies in her for a couple of years.

I'd love to help her find a way to deal with those tendencies at a young age before the school labels her as ADHD and insists that we medicate her. Not that I have anything against medication if it helps - it definitely keeps me sane and functioning on a daily basis. But I kind of wonder, if my teachers had realized back then that I had ADD (I guess I wasn't a "typical" case because I did well in school, but looking back at certain things like the fact that I was a "daydreamer" it seems pretty obvious), could I have learned how to cope with it rather than having to use medication? I use medication now, because it helps my house run more smoothly which allows me to be nice to my family, but I don't know that it would have been a necessity had I learned to deal with my symptoms in other ways.

I know some people suggest diet, etc as a way to "cure" ADD. But going all organic and giving my child an ├╝ber-expensive multivitamin is not really an option at this point in time...

SarahMayberry  – (September 30, 2009 at 10:49 AM)  

What about testing out of Kindergarten I had the same issues talking to much in class ect but it was because i wasn't engaged my mom said my teacher suggested that I test out and the challenge of a harder class the 1st grade helped me out :P

momg57  – (October 1, 2009 at 7:44 AM)  

Her dad has ADD tendencies? He had the same problem too. Back then they said if he weren't so smart they would think he might have ADD, but he was just bored. No, it was a combination of the two. There are a couple of really good books that I found too late - I will look them up. In the meantime, practicing quiet time at home - during family discussions, family home evening, etc. helps them learn appropriate times to talk. There's also considerations from the teacher and school if she does get diagnosed as ADD - under the disabilities act. Where does she sit in class? Front and center is best. How do they structure quiet time? There are a lot of classroom setting issues that can contribute to the problem or the solution. We love you! Hang in there!

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