Learning difficulties in our own children

Suzanne - posted on 02/04/2009 ( 8 moms have responded )

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My daughters preschool teacher just informed me that she believes my daughter needs to be "tested" for a learning disability because she can't "keep up" with the class. Asa mom who is an educator I know the difficulties ahead for her if there is a "problem." I am having difficulties coming to terms with this. I have a Biology and teaching degree, my husband is a CPA... how could this happen to us? To make matters worse, it will be MONTHS before the IU will be able to have her tested and diagnosed. I'm starting to feel that I put my students learning ahead of my own children because I didn't have enough energy at the end of the day to teach letters, numbers... etc.

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Cheri - posted on 02/12/2009

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I'm an American living in Japan and have a 10-year-old daughter (a double...her daddy is Japanese).  It has been a challenge keeping up her English, since if I don't make an effort then she won't be bilingual, since I'm so busy runnying my small English school.  I have found it to be easy to teach other people's kids, but sometimes frustrating to teach my own daughter.  She goes to a Japanese school and is fluent in Japanese and is fluent in English as well, but is behind her writing and reading skills in both languages.  My husband and myself are both teachers and so I've tried not to push her too much to be as motivated as we both were/are, but she's about a year behind her peers level wise.

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I 100% agree with you Andrea...we push these little ones too early! The most we can do is provide a supportive home life where we use expanded vocabulary and expose them to everday skills. Their little brains will grab it when they are ready. And I think prek & K is way too early to say a child is "behind" & way too early to be "testing" them! Your not even giving them a chance to develope and prove themselves on their own. Every child is different & learns at different rates...we try to classify them all into one little block. I have a learning disability of my own and it took me college yrs to pick up things from HS. There is nothing to come to terms with yet...wait till at least 1st grade. And then don't think it is such a "bad" thing....there are so many things I would have never learned without my LD...it has forced me to be my own advocate & much more. I see being an LD student has enhanced my life!

Andrea - posted on 02/11/2009

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Though I have replied on a couple of your comments, I have to add...



I think we ask WAY too much of our students who are in preK and early primary grades! PreK teachers are being asked to do things that used to be part of grade 1 curriculum (like phonics in preK) and not all these things are developmentally appropriate. Young children learn and understand best when activities are hands on, a mix of structured and discovery/experimentation and there is guided play supported by an knowledgable and caring staff. THey need concrete experiences that they can see and touch and hear--not abstract concepts (like phonics)--especially in preK. Sadly, we are pushed to do SO MUCH with the students so that they don't "fall behind" that what is appropriate for their developmental stage has been lost in the shuffle. Kids are being considered "behind" when they haven't mastered skills that are not even appropriate for them to be learning.



Sorry if this sounds opinionated. I"m just a frustrated preK teacher who loves her little ones!

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My step daughter is 5.5 and she also was held out of kindergarten.  It doesn't seem like her preschool teaches her a whole lot.  I teach Pre-K, but she doesn't go to my preschool, and I don't think that her preschool has much of a curriculum.  We only get her every Wednesday and every other weekend, so I don't get to work with her as much as I would like - and I'll be honest, there are many Wednesday when we don't have time for any instruction.



She is starting to recognize letters more and more, but she has no phonics training at all - she doesn't even know how to rhyme.  I had to teach this poor little girl how to write her name last year!



Her mother works at the daycare that my stepdaugher goes to, so any time I mention a concern, she acts like i'm attacking her personally - any suggestions??

Dana - posted on 02/05/2009

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my daughter is 51/2, I held her back from kindergarten last year and she is still having trouble even recognizing letters. Her preschool teacher is concerned. As a special ed teacher I am trying to use some of my strategies at school with her at home.

Tonia - posted on 02/05/2009

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I completely understand where you are coming from. My son is in the fourth grade. He's struggled with reading since kindergarten. My issue is with the teachers in my area. I know from personal experience that the children at our particular school are struggling because of some of the teachers there are not in it for the right reasons. Our school is one of the lowest in reading. Their priority is with fluency rather than comprehension. Then, when the child gets into a higher grade, they want to focus then on comprehension. How do fight against this? My son struggles with reading and gets frustrated because everyone is higher than he is. He can't sit still, so they are forcing us to have him tested for ADHD. The problem is, his grades are very good except in reading.

Ngaire - posted on 02/05/2009

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Teachers often feel guilty about the commitment they make to their students versus the commitment they make to their own children. Seriously, you go to work and do your job (and no doubt do it well!) so don't feel terrible about lacking the energy to come home and do it for another few hours. Your daughter is only in preschool! My second eldest had difficulty reading and still finds spelling a bit of a mystery but she has recently written a verse novel!  She is now at Uni and doing well. I think you should focus on fostering your daughter's love of learning through her natural curiosity and just have fun. You and your husband are fantastic role models and she will value learning because you do.

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I feel the same way.  No one has told me a thing, yet; but my kindergartener is having difficulty reading and remembering sight words. I am either  "reading the writing on the wall" or over-reacting.  Since I teach first grade, (as selfish as this sounds) the last thing I want to do when I come home is teach reading.

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