Reply To: Upcoming Teacher Meeting About School Struggles

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Devon Frye

This reply was originally posted by user cynyoung in ADDitude’s now-retired community.

I agree with the above. We resisted medicine until our son was in second grade, but it has made a world of difference. One of the most frustrating things is that each year you have a different teacher and they have different levels of tolerance, patience, and experience with students like your daughter. The teacher’s attitude makes a world of difference. I have no doubt that all of the distractions at school make things harder, but with my son, if he sensed the teacher was frustrated, he just retreated into his own world and focused even less. The teachers who have demonstrated trust and caring toward him get my son to work for them. It is really that simple. Of course, his issues make things sometimes difficult for him, but he’s also able to show that he’s intellectually gifted when the teacher has faith and patience with him.

Sounds like the empathy piece may be missing with the teacher. That was very true of us in first grade, and we enlisted the principal to put in place specific accommodations that they were willing to provide. His teacher didn’t always follow them, but we could refer to our agreement and sometimes get her back on track.

I’d ask when concentration seems to be worse? Is it related to hunger? Can your daughter have an extra snack, if so? Does working in a quieter part of the room at a separate desk make a difference? Does wearing headphones?

What I’m saying is ask questions that get at whether or not the teacher has discerned any patterns, specific situations (like transitions), or times that pose a problem. Then offer various solutions to see if you can get her to think more creatively and proactively about how to help your daughter.

I would also suggest beginning an evaluation process to see if a 504 or IEP is in order.

All best,