Reply To: Independence for 9 year old

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I agree with finding out exactly what the teacher means. I probably have a chip on my shoulder. My son had certain accommodations related to homework and behavior that required teacher participation. For example, at 9 years old he had a daily behavior report that was sent home that was broken up into hour increments. The report was sent home daily so that I could reinforce proper behavior and/or identify and help work through problem behaviors. It worked surprisingly well, but his teacher felt it hindered his “independence”, which was code for her not wanting to have to make on a paper whether my son was good or bad every day. She was also supposed to prompt him to put his homework folder in his backpack. And in the beginning, instead of turning in individual assignments – he turned in all of his homework in his folder at once. Again, the “independence” argument was used. I received significant push back from the general education teacher, to the point where the special education teacher was going up to the general education classroom to ensure teacher compliance because she also knew how helpful these strategies were for later success. And I do understand the general education teacher’s perspective, I can only imagine how difficult it is to teach 30 kids a day AND remember that 1 kid’s special accommodations.

Over time, those accommodations were lessened. Daily behavior reports turned into every other day (and now we’re on weekly). For homework it was “okay on Mondays you have to put our folder in your backpack unprompted” and then we gradually added days. He gets no assistance with making sure homework gets home now or turned back in.

Bottom line, in my opinion, support with small increments leading to the end goal of independence is the way to go.

PS – We have the same issue with glasses. We went through 4 pairs last year! He has managed to keep the same pair of glasses for the last 5 months now. We think we’re on a roll!! (knock on wood)