Overwhelmed at Age 5?

My son's days are packed with school, therapy, and appointments — so when does my little boy get a chance to be a kid?

Kim Clary Cafiero & son 280px

How do parents let their kids be kids, while giving them all of the support they need? I wish I knew.

— Kim Clary Cafiero

My son receives a fair amount of help. He needs interventions that could make a big difference in his life. The earlier he gets the help, the sooner we can lessen the learning gap between him and his peers.

Because he receives support services at school, he has a full day of classes, while his peers attend only half a day. Because he receives help from teachers and therapists, and gets homework from each of them, he has lots of work after school. He has speech and occupational therapy, vision therapy, appointments with neurologists. He is five.

In the middle of the school year, he hit the wall. He works his butt off, and he was tired. He needs to run and play and race Matchbox cars in the basement. But when? Being at school every day is important for learning. He can’t afford to miss anything. Yet he feels overwhelmed. Should I let him take a vacation day or play hooky to do something for his soul?

His teachers suggested that he attend summer school, and I agree that he should. But doesn’t he deserve to go to camp and show off the things he is good at — running, sports, swimming, catching bugs?

How do parents let their kids be kids, while giving them all of the support they need? I wish I knew.

—Kim Clary Cafiero

 

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