7 yr old daughter has behavior issues/learning difficulties...Anyone else?

Dee - posted on 04/02/2009 ( 29 moms have responded )

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Just wondering if any other mothers are or have experienced this. My daughter was 7 1/2 weeks early. She has amblimyopia and wears glasses. She is very active and is having trouble school. She blurts out in the classroom - talks while the teacher is talking - is having trouble learning to read - seems to have trouble remembering words as well.



We can't get her in to see the pediactrician who specializes in preemies and/or children with disabilities for months and months. We've had the school test her - they said they need to do more testing.



I have a son who is 11 and he just never did anything like this. Of course he wasn't premature either and is a totally different type of kid. In fact, we can't get him TO MOVE! LOL! But seriously, does anyone else with older preemies notice behavior or learning issues with their child/ren? If so, what did you?

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Schmoopy - posted on 04/05/2009

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Read the book called "The Out of Sync Child." (http://www.amazon.com/Out-Sync-Child-Rec...) It addresses sensory processing dysfunction issues. Autism encompasses that. But even if your daughter doesn't have Autism, many preemies have sensory issues - your daughter may, too. And if she does, they might easily be impeding her ability to "behave." The book is a great way to understand exactly how your child sees the world and what you can do to help her.

That said, your best defense is to get in to see a Developmental Pediatrician. I know it takes a loooong time to actually get in to see these docs, but they're the ones who can tell you exactly what's going on. (Well, to be honest, it's not always exact, but the advice / diagnosis will at least give you a jumping off point.)

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Dee - posted on 04/08/2009

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It may or may not. The things my daughter does are affecting her ability to learn and be accepted by her peers as well as adults. So, she stands out as doing things the other kids are not...or at least they aren't exhibiting the same behavior as often as she does. That's the big key here. My daughter wears glasses as she has amblimyopia (one eye crosses). But the glasses never affected her behavior. In fact, she kept them on as I think she realized they helped her see.  :)



In school, they have colors that indicate they behavior for that day. (green is best, blue is you got a warning, yellow is you had to sit and think, orange is you got put in another room and red is you were sent to the principle) My daughter has brought home many many many blues and a few yellows and one orange. She also gets a lot of greens. But she gets the blues for the same things: getting out of her seat and shouting at in class. When she gets anything other than a green, she has priveledges removed. (No TV or Computer until she gets a green)



Does your son have trouble at school?

Dee - posted on 04/08/2009

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Jennifer,



Tha'ts how my daughter looks when she is moving. However, she doesn't seem to be able to do things in a group. If she has to intentionally move a certain way or play by rules, it's like she can't do all those things together. Yet, if she is allowed to simply run in the yard, dribbling a soccer ball, or throwing a ball, or catching a frisbee, she is at ease. We put her in dance class for little tikes when she was five - you know, trying to give her an outlet. She would sit down when the other girls were trying to do the moves. She would twirl when she was to sit. It's like she just didn't want to or couldn't do what was being asked. And there were younger kids that did what was asked of them. So, she kind of stuck out. But I know what you mean - I think it's because she runs everywhere and is in such a hurry that she falls or bumps into things. She just goes - If we ask her to get something for us just on the other side of the room, she'll run to get it. Our son, by comparison, will walk at a snail's pace and may come back with the item in the next century. :)

Dee - posted on 04/08/2009

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Quoting Amy:



Something you mentioned about your daughter almost made me chuckle because my daughter does the same thing except I find it frustrating to a point.  When she sits next to me, "it is practically on top of me".  When I leave for work she has to hug and kiss me multiple times and tell me repeatedly that she loves me.  She will say, "Hugs and kisses, loves and squeezes" several times.  When you have 3 kids trying to say good bye and she can't just hug and kiss and say good bye, it gets irritating.  I always thought that she was trying to make sure I knew how much she loved me.  Now I wonder if maybe it is related to her disablilty some how.  I feel bad for being obviously annoyed because I can tell it hurts her feelings, but I have to leave for work.  Something to think about.  Certainly not the worse side effect!






My daughter does a very similar thing. When her Daddy left one day for work, as he does EVERY WEEK DAY, she wasn't able to say goodbye (hugs and kisses). I kid you not, that she broke down and had a meltdown. She went from window to window, screaming, and calling Daddy! Where's my Daddy!



 



Likewise, when I leave or her Dad leaves to go anywhere, she MUST kiss and hug you goodbye. And she has done the same thing where she'll cling and not let us go - she always always says she loves us multiple times a day. And while it is endearing it worries me because she seems to NEED it. There is a difference when you know your child is loving you and being affectionate and when she craves it - or needs to say it and hear it. 



I think if I knew yes she has ADD/ADHD or SPD or that she was just a strong willed child - I would have a plan. But right now, it's hard to let certain behaviors slide because they AREN'T socially acceptable and DO get her into trouble at school. Some of those behaviors we have tamed -so to speak. She used to interrupt a lot and now it is not as much. She has learned that some things she just cannot do - blurting out that someone is FAT or UGLY or whatever she thinks in her head is just awful. For the person hearing it as well as for her - because other children will ostrasize her. It's such a fine line to walk - and I often feel I'm walking blindfolded...without a net. LOL!



I feel awful for my daughter too and every time we do give a time-out it's in the back of my head, could she really help herself? But then, even if she can't help herself does that mean we ignore inappropriate behavior? Is that fair to her either? I don't know...sheesh. I go round and round with myself.



 

Nanci Breaux - posted on 04/07/2009

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I have a 8 year old son, who was born 8 weeks early. He also wears glasses. I have since noticed a change in his behavior. I have never thought for one minute that his behavior has had anything to do with his being premature, but I guess anything is possiable

Camie - posted on 04/07/2009

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My son is 11 and was born at 31 week along he didn't hit milestones till later then normal and he's in 5th grade now and he's really struggling w courses he's great in math but as for reading forget it he's hates reading and anything or subject to do with reading. I've been called to the school so many time's as he can't consintrate on NOTHING I'm frustrated and irritated but there is help out there and get and seek it.He is on med's but they work when he allows them to.

Jennifer - posted on 04/07/2009

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Quoting Dee:



Jennifer,






 






My daughter is very very creative and she is physically adept. She can dribble a soccer ball on our front lawn amazingly well - yet, she seems to fall a lot or run into things. So - it's so hard to know where she is on that scale - SPDADD/ADHD. ??






 





My family/friends lovingly called me a klutz, I was constantly hurting myself just walking a long.  Yet I danced for 13 years, two years on pointe, twirled a baton at the top of my class, and played soccer up thru highschool; I made select for our city from middle school on.  I always felt like when I was dancing or had a ball at my feet my body was doing what it was meant to do!  It was always such a parody though! :-)

Amy - posted on 04/07/2009

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Something you mentioned about your daughter almost made me chuckle because my daughter does the same thing except I find it frustrating to a point.  When she sits next to me, "it is practically on top of me".  When I leave for work she has to hug and kiss me multiple times and tell me repeatedly that she loves me.  She will say, "Hugs and kisses, loves and squeezes" several times.  When you have 3 kids trying to say good bye and she can't just hug and kiss and say good bye, it gets irritating.  I always thought that she was trying to make sure I knew how much she loved me.  Now I wonder if maybe it is related to her disablilty some how.  I feel bad for being obviously annoyed because I can tell it hurts her feelings, but I have to leave for work.  Something to think about.  Certainly not the worse side effect!

Dee - posted on 04/07/2009

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Quoting Amy:

Dee, ugh - I can't believe you can't find a doc to see you! How frustrating! If you can't find a developmental ped, then make an appointment with an OT who specializes in Sensory Processing Dysfunction. You can get an eval through him/her. It won't be comprehensive, like it would with a Dev Ped, but at least you'll have something to go on!

The "not listening" thing seems like your daughter may have an auditory processing issue. She may literally need to see your face and mouth to totally understand what you're saying. Otherwise, she doesn't have all the input she needs to get the message and it's like she's only hearing the first few words of what you're saying. Try always having her look at you before you communicate with her. I'll bet it will diminish her frustration and yours!

Dinner sounds frustrating, too. We have a "disc" cushion with bumps on it that helps my daughter "feel" her body better. Here's what it looks like: http://store.schoolspecialtyonline.net/O...


I read about the auditory issues and that seems to be a possibility but it also mimics ADD/ADDHD too so ... she needs to see SOMEONE who can diagnose her. Our family physican told me that they just don't do that until the child is like 9-11! So, I'm just going to have to go back and demand they either test her or refer me to someone who can. That's the only way the insurance iwll pay for it, if I get a referral.



Yeah, she won't look at you when she is getting into trouble. She often won't look at you when you talk to her or when she talks to you. We have had to tell her, Please look at me when I talk to you. But again - like the SPD site said, it's sporadic. It isn't all the time and it isn't every day. It does happen enough that she is a challenge for her Dad and I to work with. Then, I often wonder if it is because I'm older - and maybe lethargic that I just don't have the energy I did when my son was her age - maybe that is why she feels in my face?? I don't know.



 



Thank you for the site and links. I've visited them all and read the Out of Sync Child already. :)

Dee - posted on 04/07/2009

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Jennifer,



 



My daughter is very very creative and she is physically adept. She can dribble a soccer ball on our front lawn amazingly well - yet, she seems to fall a lot or run into things. So - it's so hard to know where she is on that scale - SPDADD/ADHD. ??



I will make an appointment with our family physician and let them know specifically what I want. Our insurance is such that I can't just take her to a specialist or to a psychiatrist etc. It has to come from the family physician first. Pain in the butt - ;)



She does fidget a lot. And she talks incessantly. It's like she has to talk to think. And poor girl, landed herself smack dab in the middle of two introverted parents. I am very very very quiet. I don't talk much unless I have something to say or something I want to know. She is just the opposite. Will say whatever and whenever - which is scary when we're in a crowd. I often will direct her attention elsewhere if I see someone "different" come into her field of vision. (anyone very old, in a wheel chair, overweight etc)



She also seems a little more preoccupied with her body and weight than I think is typical. She asked me at dinner once, are we fat? And she often comments about people on TV who are very overweight. She just blurts stuff out. I've told her time and time again - that could really hurt someone's feelings if you say such things out loud. Think them in your head - if you must - but keep them locked inside your mouth. She either forgets or maybe can't help it. I don't know.



:) Thanks so much....

Jennifer - posted on 04/07/2009

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Dee-

I didn't mention before but I myself am ADD (and my younger brother is ADHD). My ADD was never severe enough to need medication, and I lucked into wonderful teachers that allowed me to be creative and unique, but I did have social problems with my peers (especially in middle school and 4th/5th grade). I learned techniques that would help me that I still use today. Things like doodling or wiggling my feet allows me to "hear" even when it doesn't seem that way. I remeber in fourth grade y teacher would place my desk against the wall when we took any sort of test because I would fidget so much trying to concentrate I would otherwise scoot my desk around. Before that I remeber vividly finishing a test, looking up, and I was inthe hall. I had NO IDEA how I got there. I had actually fidgeted so much and my desk was positioned in such a way that I had scooted out of the rom into the hall, completely oblivious do to concentrating! That was how I learned i needed some sort of movement to help my focus, but I had to learn how to make it appropiate and unobtrusive to others. I kept squeeze balls in my classroom for my kids to hold. We called them "tools" and thier were very specific rules for using them, they were open to everyone, but once the novelty wore of it was my kids that needed them that used them day in and day out.

I would also suggest some councling (the school should offer groups) if your daughter is already having trouble socially. It wasn't available when i was in school but social councling is now. ADHD is emotional, you don't want to act the way you do, but it happens so fast and so naturally that you have to learn to accept it as part of who you are. There are so many sucessful people with ADHD. There are positive sides to it; it is commen for ADHD people to be very creative and/or physcically adept.

Have you tried to find a behavioral physcologist? That might be a better option then a general pedi. Also maybe a pediatric nurologist.

Schmoopy - posted on 04/07/2009

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Dee, ugh - I can't believe you can't find a doc to see you! How frustrating! If you can't find a developmental ped, then make an appointment with an OT who specializes in Sensory Processing Dysfunction. You can get an eval through him/her. It won't be comprehensive, like it would with a Dev Ped, but at least you'll have something to go on!

The "not listening" thing seems like your daughter may have an auditory processing issue. She may literally need to see your face and mouth to totally understand what you're saying. Otherwise, she doesn't have all the input she needs to get the message and it's like she's only hearing the first few words of what you're saying. Try always having her look at you before you communicate with her. I'll bet it will diminish her frustration and yours!

Dinner sounds frustrating, too. We have a "disc" cushion with bumps on it that helps my daughter "feel" her body better. Here's what it looks like: http://www.amazon.com/J-Fit-Balance-Trai... Also, make sure your daughter has both feet firmly planted on a solid surface (like the floor if her legs are long enough). And finally, try a weighted vest or lap sock that will help her feel grounded.

Imagine always feeling like your world was a confusing and unsafe place that you just don't understand. Then your daughter's tantrums and insecurities will start to make sense. If you give her the tools she needs to feel more secure, I'll bet her behavior will improve. (Kind of like when most kids are toddlers who don't yet have adequate language skills to express their needs - they get frustrated and throw HUGE tantrums.)

P.S.
Here's a website that has amazing tools and toys for kids who need special sensory therapies: http://store.schoolspecialtyonline.net/O...

Dee - posted on 04/07/2009

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Jennifer,



That's very sad about your foster daughter. I can't imagine how she must have dealt with all of it...and how you dealt with it too. Whew.



My Mom has thought my daughter was ADD for a long time now. She sees it in the classroom. It's funny because there are things that hold her attention but anything that she has to 'think' about - she immediately gives up. The ONLY way she'll sit and work on things is if I sit there with her. I have to lead and guide her through it. Otherwise, she's doodling or fidgeting, (which she does anyway) or getting up and messing around. Sometimes she'll just say, I can't do it. We keep tellin' her yes you can. And she CAN - but it takes a lot of work. We've told her again and again that some things come easy for some people and others things are harder for some people. Like her brother and sports - it's very hard for him. But for her - it's easy. Reading is easy for him but it takes her more time.



Kids at school comment on her too - and that is what also made me want to take her out of the system. We won't - we can't. But they 'know' she is being treated differently. She doesn't have to do as many spelling words and the teacher will stay beside her more. Very disheartening.



Thanks for your post and comments. :)

Dee - posted on 04/07/2009

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Amy,



 



Wow! Love the info, thank you. :)



I can remember when my daughter was around 9mo-1yr. I would pick her up or maybe I'd hand her to a friend. She would immediately, stiffen her arms and hold herself away from me or the person that picked her up. Like, she didn't want to touch that person. She'd stay that way for a long time. I just thought it was her preemie'ness or a quirk. She cried so much - so very much and it was gut wrenching because nothing I'd do would help. Told the Ped - told the nurse that visited but no one seemed to think anything of it. She was growing - she was healthy and so maybe they thought I was just exaggerating things, you know?



Here's an example of her behavior. All day yesterday, she was pretty darn good. No major problems. Seemed happy and went with the flow. Then, her Daddy came home and she wanted to go next door. We said fine. When she returned, it was almost dinnertime, but she wanted to go back to the neighbors. We said no because it was about time to eat.



She just kept doing what she was doing - preparing to go outside. Her Dad said, come here. It's like you have to make her stop, look, and listen. When she came over, he explained why she couldn't go - it's like she doesn't hear you. Anyways, things just went downhill. She began mildly stomping around, mumbling that we never let her go anywhere around dinner. (well, no we don't LOL)



The evening just kept on like that. Dinner was a pain. She didn't want to cut her meat. She has a kid's butter knife and we always ask her to try. She'll let others do everything for her if she's in the mood, but we ask her to always try. She gives it a pathetic attempt and throws the knife down and says, See I can't do it. But she had - a little. We explained that everything is hard for everybody when they first try. It's doing it over and over that it becomes easier.



Then, she couldn't stay in her seat. Then, she didn't want to eat. Then, she had to go to the bathroom...wanted to see the cat...fussed over her meat some more...started to argue with her brother. It just snowballed. Finally, everyone else was finished but she still hadn't cut her meat. When we all got up and put dishes in the dishwasher, she decided she was full. *sigh*



She rarely can sit still at dinner. One foot is always on the floor. She has fallen, we think because of the seat cushion, during dinner. So, now there is no seat cushion. But something is always bothering her. Oh yeah, and thenshe complained because she was cold. The sliding glass door was open, though. But it's like - when one thing starts...it seems like a loose thread that just keeps unraveling and then she is in shambles.



Once she is there - it takes a while to get her back. Everything is wrong - everything bothers her - everything is impossible to do. She is too tired to walk up the steps - too weak to carry her toys back downstairs. Too whatever - it's so frustrating.



She seems to need to be told that she is loved all the time. Or maybe it's just when she unravels. She'll say, I love you Mommy..I love you Daddy. And then it will go on for a while. Now, we have a game where she says, I love you, Mommy and I say, I love you "two". She'll say I love you three...etc. 



I don't know.



 



BTW - I called the only developmental Ped in within a 2 hr radius - he isn't taking any more patients! So, I started looking for a Pediatrician. The pickin's are slim here.



 

Jennifer - posted on 04/06/2009

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I am a huge fan of "The Out-of-sync Child"! I am a former kindergarten teacher, a foster parent who fostered for two years a deaf developmentally delayed child with sensory issues, and the parent of a preemie who will be three in May. All the discussion on here is really great, your daughter seems to have many of the same issues my former foster daughter has, and the things that have been mentioned were a big help. Keep presuing and learning.

I wanted to adress the school side of things. First I understand your frustration in the slowness of the process from both the parent side & the teacher side. I always told my parents that they HAVE to be thier childs biggest advocate. I am not sure about your states specific laws, but in general the school has to do what you request & push for, but they don't usually volunteer more then basics (money!!!). Research what is available, connect with other parents, and push until you get what your daughter needs. Waiting for the developmental peditrtion will be worth it because they can give you a more specific diagnosis and more leverage with the school. I also advise you to start all therapies intially with the school. I know many parents who start with outside therapy because it's faster, but then thier child has made enough improvement they no longer qualify for the school services and therfor school peformance lacks and the kids struggle in general. Outside therapy is great for supplementing, but unless you have terrific insurance it ADDS UP FAST! Also school therapy is good becaus ethen the therapist and the teachers and you should be able to work together as a team for your daughter. Also for sensory disorders it is an OT (Occupational Therapist) that would work with the child, but most regular OT's are not educated in sensory disorders, so there should be a specialist one, or you should be able to leagally request one, or be able to see one at the schools expense.

There IS a big link between preemies and ADHD, and a link between ADHD and learning disorders. ADHD is the spectrum, so even people that are not hyperactive (ADD) are usually refered to as ADHD, it being sort of an umbrella encompassing all levels of it. Same with Autistic, the Autism Spectrem covers everything from Aspergers to full blown Autism. Several of my ADHD students were preemies, that being thier only preemature symptom at that point. In my opinion your daughter sounds ADHD with sensory issues rather then autistic, but I am not a doctor, just trying to share my experiance.

My foster daughter is doing extremely well now, she has had and continues with much therapy, they have moved away from the diagnosis of ADHD for her, but she does continue to show sensory issues. She was not preemie but suffered extreme neglect and probably abuse until she was five years old. Her deafness was not even adknowledged. When she came to our home at 5 1/2 she knew 3 signs, that's all the language she had, so imagine her behavior and issues (she wasn't even potty trained!). She is now 8 1/2 years old and reading nearly on grade level, with SO much language and such a love of life! Your daughter has been loved an nurtured by you from day one, so it is hard, but there is so much hope! Just keep at it!

Schmoopy - posted on 04/06/2009

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Quoting Dee:



I just went to Amazon and looked at the book. Many things seem familiar. She craves sensory things...has to touch EVERY THING. I mean, everything. Now, this is common for very small children - infants - but she is 7. Even if she has touched something before she'll get an urge to touch it again. Like my son's violin. But is that because it's off limits??



She's also rough on things - She likes LOUD things - noise.  She also can sit and play with clay and playdough for a very long time (one of the few things that keeps her interest except it ends up on my floor and carpet!). She is very clumsy yet is very physical. She has bruises all over her shins and frequently comes home from school with bandaids because she has fallen. She'll run into corners and walls. Trip up or down steps. Yet, she loves being physical.


 



She has to sit practically on you if she is near you. Always hugging, touching, pushing which gets her into trouble at school. Very physical child. Very unlike my son or her father and me. We hug but we aren't physical...we don't run or push and shove. So, it's not something she's picked up from us.


 



And picky - while I can't quite say she is picky - she is compared to the rest of the family. She can't have her food touch. (common for some kids) She has to have her bathwater just so. She is much choosier about what she eats than her brother, father, and me. So, again, is that just my daughter exhibiting typcial things for her age that maybe my son didn't exhbit...or something more.


 



I'm going to get the book because it sounds very similar. And we will make an appt for her at the developmental pediatrician. Thanks for the link!


 



Dee, don't discount her "quirks" (such as having to touch EVERYTHING) as purely behavioral. She may NEED that sensory input in order to understand the world around her. It's tricky because those behaviors don't fit in with society's "norms," but for your daughter, they're a necessary part of how she sees the world. When she's denied the right to indulge these curiosities, it's like asking any one of us to walk around with a blindfold on and then describe what we see around us.



When you say "She is very clumsy yet is very physical," that totally describes my daughter, too, so I can relate! It breaks my heart to see the new bruises that are constantly popping up.My daughter is undersensitive to touch and hyper-sensitive to sound. Touch is the tricky one b/c it's the one that most stands in her way - the sensory deficiency that makes her "clumsy."



Many of your daughter's other behaviors that you describe are classic SPD symptoms. Having trouble navigating through space is ver common. And her bath water being just the right temp is a prime example, too. Be sure to honor that - she needs that water to be just right! It's excruciating to her senses to feel something like a temp that's "not right."



Check out this website: http://www.sensory-processing-disorder.c...



There's a ton of great information on this site. Don't miss the CHECKLIST (http://www.sensory-processing-disorder.c...). That will help you pinpoint your daughter's challenges - the areas where she might be experiencing sensory overload or possibly an undersensitivity that would make it necessary for her to engage in sensory-seeking behavior. (It's also helpful to read the section on how it feels to have SPD.)



In the book I recommended, Out of Sync Child, there's a portion where a father describes how he initially thought SPD was bunk. But his wife dragged him to a workshop where they had a series of exercises that showed how a person with SPD sees / functions in the world. It was so difficult for him to complete ordinary tasks with the impediments placed in his way that he gained a whole new apprecation for what his child was going through. And after that he was able to help his child more effectively.



It sounds to me like your daughter would greatly benefit from Occupational Therapy. Ask your pediatrician to refer you to someone who specializes in treating Sensory Processing Dysfunction (not all OT's do). And get your daughter into therapy ASAP! It's actually pretty fun  - your daughter will love it. Especially if she's physical like you say. It's mostly playing games on different kinds of (padded) play equipment.



 



While you're waiting to work out treatment, here are some exercises at home you can try...



1. Set up obstacle courses for her (in your living room or backyard or both). Lay down a jump rope in a curvy line (for her to walk along slowly); lay down flat "stepping stones" and ask her to jump from one to the next (first on both feet, then on one); make a tunnel for her to wiggle through on her belly; etc. After she finishes the whole course, have her go through it again in different ways - backwards, sideways, etc.



2. Deep pressure & "Heavy Work" activities will help calm her down. It might sound conterintuitive, but letting her carry a full laundry basket from one end of the house to the other just before bedtime will help her settle. And when you hug her, hold her TIGHT. She can't feel it otherwise, and that's unsettling!



3. Since she likes it already, make different kinds of playdough for her to play with: some with rice mixed into it, some with strong scents (like vanilla or cinnamon). Here's a good recipe for homemade playdough:(http://www.teachnet.com/lesson/art/playd...)



4. At school, talk to her teacher about giving her a weight that she can lay across her lap (like a sock stuffed with rice or beans) during class. And be sure her feet can firmly touch the floor. These things will help her know where her body is in space, and if she knows that, she can concentrate on learning instead of exploring where her body is.



 



Feel free to email me if you have more questions...

Dee - posted on 04/06/2009

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Quoting Amy:

Read the book called "The Out of Sync Child." (http://www.amazon.com/Out-Sync-Child-Rec...) It addresses sensory processing dysfunction issues. Autism encompasses that. But even if your daughter doesn't have Autism, many preemies have sensory issues - your daughter may, too. And if she does, they might easily be impeding her ability to "behave." The book is a great way to understand exactly how your child sees the world and what you can do to help her.

That said, your best defense is to get in to see a Developmental Pediatrician. I know it takes a loooong time to actually get in to see these docs, but they're the ones who can tell you exactly what's going on. (Well, to be honest, it's not always exact, but the advice / diagnosis will at least give you a jumping off point.)



 



 






I just went to Amazon and looked at the book. Many things seem familiar. She craves sensory things...has to touch EVERY THING. I mean, everything. Now, this is common for very small children - infants - but she is 7. Even if she has touched something before she'll get an urge to touch it again. Like my son's violin. But is that because it's off limits??



 



She's also rough on things - She likes LOUD things - noise.  She also can sit and play with clay and playdough for a very long time (one of the few things that keeps her interest except it ends up on my floor and carpet!). She is very clumsy yet is very physical. She has bruises all over her shins and frequently comes home from school with bandaids because she has fallen. She'll run into corners and walls. Trip up or down steps. Yet, she loves being physical.



 



She has to sit practically on you if she is near you. Always hugging, touching, pushing which gets her into trouble at school. Very physical child. Very unlike my son or her father and me. We hug but we aren't physical...we don't run or push and shove. So, it's not something she's picked up from us.



 



And picky - while I can't quite say she is picky - she is compared to the rest of the family. She can't have her food touch. (common for some kids) She has to have her bathwater just so. She is much choosier about what she eats than her brother, father, and me. So, again, is that just my daughter exhibiting typcial things for her age that maybe my son didn't exhbit...or something more.



 



I'm going to get the book because it sounds very similar. And we will make an appt for her at the developmental pediatrician. Thanks for the link!

Dee - posted on 04/06/2009

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Quoting Kristen:

My son was a 36 weeker weighing in at 3pounds 7ozs Hes 8 now in second grade he is having trouble with everything reading is a big thing he touters 3 days a week and is improving but now math and spelling are a problem even words he could once spell im not happy that your daughter is struggling but im glad my son is not the only one i really hope you find the help you need hang in there!!



Yes, I know exactly what you mean. ;)  It's just taking so long to get the school to do anything for her. We thought about taking her out and homeschooling her only because she needs intense repetition and the school cannot give her that. HOWEVER she is incredibly social and it would just kill her to be away from her friends and other people. I also don't think I could have that constant one on one with her like I did with my son. Very sad to say that - and she probably needs it more, but it's so hard when I don't know what is just a 7 year old testing her limits and what might be related to her being a preemie. I just never know...Sometimes it feels wrong to give her time-outs when I consider she may not truly be able to help herself. Yet, the behavior is not accpeptable and gets her into trouble at school too....so???

Dee - posted on 04/06/2009

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Melissa -



Yeah, see, we have to do the same thing regarding repetition. She has spelling words every week - about 10 words. That is far too many words for her. So we cut them down to like three or four. And I simply make her write the words 7 times each and spell it out loud. She has to have intense repetition to remember. One other thing she does, maybe you'll relate to this too, is she'll ask a question (Can I ask my friend to come over?) and we'll answer her. A few minutes later, she'll ask, Can my friend come over, again. And we will say we've answered that question. She has done this numerous times at some points. 4-5 times over a half hour or hour period. We have NO idea if this is normal child behavior or preemie behavior or what. My 11 yr old son, never did this. We ended up putting her in time outs because it is so draining and so frustrating to have her ask the same question 4 and 5 times - sometimes in different ways but always the same idea.



 



Another thing I noticed with her is that she can't censor (at least it seems this way) what she thinks. She'll see someone overweight on TV and just blurt out - that person is so fat! Or whatever she thinks or notices. And again, I have no idea whether this is a quirk in her personality, whether it is age appropriate (certainly not socially acceptable) or something related to her being a preemie. My son only did this for a very brief time and then we explained why it was not acceptable to say those things aloud and he stopped.



 



She also doesn't seem to be ashamed when she does something inappropriate. She'll smile or just listen and then happily go off when we're done talking. If the scolding is harsh, then she understands that she's done something really wrong and cries...but do you know how you can see in a chld's face when they're caught - or when they know they are in trouble? She just doesn't have that...unless it's an exaggerated reaction on our part. Again, my son never exhibited this type of behavior. 



 
I don't know. I just get so frustrated with her and myself because I don't know what is just a child pushing their limts and what maybe is something she just can't help. I worry about her at school and things she might say. But she is so lovely and so happy. She loves everybody. Sorry to go on...I haven' had any other moms to talk to about this so I'm venting.

Dee - posted on 04/06/2009

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Amy Eaton,



 



Yes, my daughter isn't exactly hyper active either, but she has trouble staying on task. She can sit still but not for long. I don't see that as much different than other kids her age that have energy...but it's her inability to block out other stimuli as well as her inability to remember that alarms me. My Mom thinks my daughter is ADD too - not ADDHD. :)

Dee - posted on 04/06/2009

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Amy,



Thank you for mentioning a book referencing such issues. I'll look into that. :) It's funny you mentioned autisum and the sensory issues as her school sent us a flyer for an invite to an autism behavorial discussion. I didn't realize the connection and we did not go... :( Thank you for your response and advice.

Kristen - posted on 04/05/2009

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My son was a 36 weeker weighing in at 3pounds 7ozs Hes 8 now in second grade he is having trouble with everything reading is a big thing he touters 3 days a week and is improving but now math and spelling are a problem even words he could once spell im not happy that your daughter is struggling but im glad my son is not the only one i really hope you find the help you need hang in there!!

Amy - posted on 04/05/2009

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My daughter is going to be 11 in July.  She was born almost 8 weeks early.  She was the perfect preemie with no health  issues.  She hit her milestones on time for her corrected age.  The only side effect she has had, showed up when she hit school.  She does have a learning disability.  I am pretty sure that she has ADD as well, but that is another story.  She is not hyper active, though.

[deleted account]

Hey Dee,



When it comes to the reading, Mario still does that, he will read the first couple of word in a sentence and by the fourth, he has forgotten the begining words, we just repeat the sentence about five times and it seems to help. We aslo read books about three times in a row...always in fun ways...different voices, come up with different questions that he and I both ask, its just to see if Mario is comprehending what he is reading. it is so nice to talk with a mom that has the same trials with her preemie. Please let me know of different things you may try at home with your little one...trade some strategies?. Melissa

Dee - posted on 04/03/2009

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The school sent me an invitation to an autism behavior discussion...kind of scared me because I wondered if they thought she was mildly autistic? Thank you both...Melissa and Louise. It sounds like my daughter is similar to your son, Melissa. She too can't stay on task, also leaves off the beginning of words (like 'member instead of remember or puter instead of computer or get instead of FORget). She can't recall what she just said at the beginning of a sentence which would help her with reading comprehension. She'll read three words and then by the time she gets to the fourth or fifth can't recall any of the others words. It's very frustrating. But I will put my daughter on the waiting list for the doctor. :)

Louise - posted on 04/02/2009

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My preemie didn't have any behavior problems however he had speech/communication disorder.  When he was a toddler, he would scream, throw things and didn't talk.  We thought at first that it was normal, till he got fixated on rotating objects and had no focus on people.  So we took him to a developmental pediatrician.  He put my son into therapy and observation, she didn't want to declare him autistic but said he could be in the spectrum.  After 3 years of therapy, he's doing good.  He had expressive and receptive problems but was treated through speech therapy.



If you're really concerned about your daughter's behavior, it might be worth to wait  months and months.  We did.

[deleted account]

Hi Dee, My son was 15 weeks premature and I can fully understand the difficulties that you are experiencing. He is now 9 and in an oppotunity program at school. He is reading at a grade one level and has difficulty staying in task, speaks when the teacher is speaking...basically everything you are experiencing with your little one. We had him tested and found out that he has ADHD and he is currently on meds for it and WOW..what a big improvement. He can now stay on task, he is much better at reading, no repeating himself as much, lots more concentration at school. Please keep me updated on how she is progressing I would like to know.  Melissa

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