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New here, some questions

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I have two children, both currently in regular PS. I've been trying to get some after/before school/weekend things done, but it never seems to work. I'm looking for some advice.


My dd (10, 4th grade) is pretty easy right now. I make sure we always have books around, and she tends to read 2-3 books per week. I'm also doing HWT cursive with her, but it's very slow going as well as some basic math facts.


My ds (6, 1st grade) is my bigger concern. He is developmentally delayed, but borderline everything, so he doesn't get too much help in school. He's in a regular class. I've been trying to get him to work on singapore math, but we're at the Kindergarten A level, so he's falling behind more in school. In school they're using Everyday Math, but even if I spent all our time focusing on that, it still moves waaaay too fast for him.


He also needs more reading help, so we use HOP. It's also slow going because every time he runs across a difficult page, he bails on me and will not touch it for a week or more. He has no patience, no tolerance for frustration, and doesn't like to try.


Our last area is HWT. It is very likely that he has a physical reason for not being able to write, but until we figure out what it is, I push just a little for him to practice.


They are out of the house from 8am-3pm. DS gets up at 6am, but goes to bed at 6:30-7pm. Between the afterschool meltdown transition time, the need for dinner, baths, HW, etc., and only being 1 adult I can't figure out where to squeeze things in! DD gets up with just enough time to shower and get ready for school, and usually reads in bed from bedtime (8) until about 10pm, so I can't justify getting her up earlier for anything.


Any advice on how to get these subjects into our lives consistently?

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Usually right after dinner is the best time for us to do anything extra. Less is sometimes more if you do it consistently. Do only 20 min. TOTAL; 10 min reading, 2 min. writing, 8 min math - you may have to work UP to 20 min. if your meeting resistance now. You MUST do it WITH your ds; don't leave his side. Help him feel successful (praise) and make it short so he won't dread doing work with you.

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I would ask the school for help. If there is an afterschool meltdown transition time, it means your ds's day needs changed. We went through this in K - turned out a violent child was not being disciplined - asked around the parent network, found out many students were uncomfortable and were either sick to stomach or melting down - had to go to the principal to get the situation corrected. Once that's fixed, you'll be able to get a short amount of before or after schooling in each day and more on the weekends/summer.


DS has some behavioral issues, so everytime I try and mention that something *is* happening at school, it gets passed off as "a home behavior problem". I've gone to the principal who always passes it off to the teacher. Teacher changes the subject to say how wonderful, sweet, and well behaved my son is (great to hear...but MY kid?!? really! lol), without ever considering that she is missing signs of frustration. The OT did give me some ideas, but comments how well he transitions INTO therapy; she leaves out that it is a struggle to get him back to class.


Basically, all of the adults in DS's school life claim to see no issue and it must be *my fault* that he tantrums right off the bus.

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My son had a difficult time with tantrums after school at this age. In his case he had social anxieties and school was very stressed. His teacher and I worked together to help him learn how to ask for help, or at least not be scared to do something wrong. He didn't go to public K so first grade was his hard year. Second grade was much better.


After school I had him run. In fact we did it at school before he even got into the car. He would run a lap around the schoolyard and then I'd take him home and immediately give him food and drink. Without this he would blow up. I had to diffuse him. It was not an easy time.


I would look at that AM time before school starts. Sometimes a good 45 minutes before school does much more good than a couple of hours when he is worn out. Plus it would make it fresh in his mind when he gets to school and maybe he'll have more success at school.


I afterschooled my son in Singapore Math when he was doing Everyday math in first and second grade. It worked very well for him, but he was ahead. I don't know if I would do this if he were behind. Its very different and sad to say, down the line the teacher may not accept his work if he solves a problem the traditional way rather than the Everyday Math way. If the child understands both approaches they become strong math students but if your son is struggling right now it might not be a good time to teach two very different methods. I haven't been in this situation but I wonder if you would be better off jumping on board the Everyday Math wagon and making the best of it since that is what he's got at school and he needs help with it. Ask the teacher how you can supplement at home to reinforce the work at school. When he catches up or maybe over the summer, then add Singapore math back in.

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