Son Told Can't Write about Trains

Christine A - posted on 03/13/2015 ( 8 moms have responded )

5

0

1

Hi all.....I am brand new to this site. My son is 7 years old. He has severe anxiety stress disorder, I could barely get him to go to school in kindergarten. He is in 1st grade now and is doing better . He still has severe anxiety stress and struggles with studies. He has now been diagnosed with dyslexia as well . He LOVES trains . It is the one thing in his life that gives him joy, makes him shine, light up and have confidence . When nothing else cheers him, or shakes him from stress & worry ...talking about trains can bring him back from the darkest of times. Trains are his happiness and his safe place so to speak. He recently was pulled from class by a teacher, not his 1st grade teacher but another first grade teacher and told " you need to stop writing about trains , you can't write about them anymore, do you understand....they are just ...well they are boring ." He was heartbroken, crushed. He was confused and so am I . He was only able to write about them when they were given free subjects of their choice to write on, which wasn't that often . I am just wondering if anyone else thinks this is really wrong ? Am I over reacting? Over thinking this ? I should add there was no reason academically he was told this, I checked . Any feedback would be appreciated.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Ledia - posted on 03/13/2015

204

0

1

I think I would be very upset as well! I would definitely schedule a formal conference with his teacher to discuss both incidents. I might even schedule a formal conference with the person managing your IEP if you have one, and the principal. It is up to you whether to speak to them together or separately, or both. (I'd do both).

Three things bother me.
1. If your son is passionate about a subject, that is a WONDERFUL learning tool--and trains are so super easy to incorporate into just about any subject at the elementary school level! Prohibiting your son from writing about something he is passionate about will only make the teacher's job more difficult, so I can't understand why any teacher would do that.
2. It is common for young teachers to ask others for help if they cannot read a student's writing, but NOT to call the child in from recess (being called in from recess is usually associated with punishment at the elementary level), and have him read in front of 4 teachers. She should have taken him aside during another part of the day--such as during free reading or writing or random practice time--and asked him to read for her. Then she should have had him rewrite the sentences on a NEW piece of paper, while working with him on his letter formations, so that he could compare the two and see the difference.
3. Lastly, I don't understand why another teacher who does not teach him was pulling him out of class and dictating to him what he could/could not write about. HIS teacher should be the one designing the parameters of his class assignments.


If I were you, I'd speak to the teacher first--formally set up an appointment to meet via email, and keep a record of the communication. Then I would speak to the people who handle your IEP and/or the principal, and share with them your concerns about the situation. Then I would schedule a meeting with everyone together--teacher, IEP person, and principal to establish a plan to keep your child relaxed and on track that works for everyone. You don't need to be confrontational at all--in fact, don't be, that will only make them want to work against you. Instead, use a tone that implies that you know the teacher is having trouble with him/his work, and you want to help make her life easier.

Angelina - posted on 03/13/2015

5

0

1

Honestly, if your instincts say there's something odd about the situation, then I'd follow them. If you're not satisfied with the instructors' explanations (& they 'just don't sit right') request a conference. Or perhaps a sit-down chat with the teachers & principal is in order.

Raye - posted on 03/13/2015

3,761

0

21

If his writing fits the parameters of the assignment, then he should be able to continue to write about trains.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 03/13/2015

13,264

21

2015

Have you spoken with his actual teacher? With the school authorities? You need to address your questions to them, and ask for explanations.

Angelina - posted on 03/13/2015

5

0

1

Hi. I just read your post & my gut feeling is 'Wow, how inappropriate!' (of the teacher). What I'd do is track down the 'other' teacher, ask about it & get his/her perspective. Take it from there & advocate for your child.

8 Comments

View replies by

Christine A - posted on 03/13/2015

5

0

1

THANK YOU ...I printed this so I can refer back to it. I agree with all you said , and was troubled with the same things , like pulling him from recess for example. I agree 100% about me not being confrontational in the meetings. (It isn't my nature anyway, but when it comes to our children we can all change and rear up ! ) Good reminder to keep my cool . Thank you for the great advice and support Ledia !

Christine A - posted on 03/13/2015

5

0

1

Thank you Angelina. I think I may do that very thing. I wanted to get some opinions to be sure I wasn't being too sensitive with all my son has going on / :

Christine A - posted on 03/13/2015

5

0

1

I did ask his teacher. She basically had no valid answer . She was talking in circles ) : My son was just diagnosed with dyslexia . The day this train bit happened he was called in from recess and asked to read in front of all four 1st grade teachers sentences he had written on an assignment . They said we don't understand it because we can't read it. you read it to us .The sentences, "I do not like pie. It is gross. " Dyslexic children, as I am sure you already know struggle sometimes with writing . My son is no exception. He read the sentences to all of them . They then made him erase it and rewrite it in front of them . The entire situation was ODD . It was not part of an evaluation or an IEP . I have no clue why the teachers did this on their own . His teacher said it was because she couldn't read his writing so all the other teachers were trying to help her ? I don't want to think the worst , but .... its very strange. It was after this meeting the one teacher again pulled him out of class and told him about not writing about trains anymore . THANK YOU for your response . I do appreciate it .

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms