The Norman Transcript


November 1, 2013

Finding the root of child’s class behavior

NORMAN — Q: I just attended parent/teacher conferences at my son’s school. He is a second-grader and, although he makes good grades and his work is on time and done well, the teacher told me he can’t stay in his seat.

I’m not a fan of medicating my young son, but I think his teacher was hinting that he might need it. What are your thoughts?

— Robert, Oklahoma City

Dear Robert,

Thank you for attending parent/teacher conferences. We appreciate parents who take time to visit with teachers.

Over the years, we have dealt with many students who are medicated for hyperactivity and many who probably should have been medicated. This is a serious decision that requires testing and involvement with your son’s physician.

In children as young as your son, often times hyperactive students aren’t doing well in class, not only because they aren’t able to sit still but also because they aren’t able to concentrate long enough to finish an assignment or listen to full instructions or follow all directions.

Since your son is finishing his assignments and his grades are good, he may be one of the behavior problems that is seen in education that results from boredom. When these kids act up in class, it’s because they have finished their work and are simply looking for something else to do.

Some suggestions might be asking the teacher if he/she needs help with certain tasks in the classroom, he might be allowed to bring a book to read once work is completed or teachers have enrichment activities that reinforce the lesson being taught. You should probably have another conversation with the teacher to find out what he/ she has to offer.

You also need to have a serious conversation with your son about his responsibilities while in the classroom. Explain to him that not only is he upsetting the teacher but he also is bothering and/or disrupting the other students in the class. If it comes down to him not minding, consequences should be assigned and enforced both in class and at home.

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