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Behaviour Concern


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We have little boy in our setting 3.5yrs. He has been with us a year but has made no friends and does not play

with other children. He either wanders round the room not settling at anything for more than a couple of minutes or spends most

of the time seeking out an adult to have a conversation with on a 1-1 basis. He speaks well and is able to communicate

his wishes. He never takes part in snack but has just started to wash his hands and sit at the table, reluctantly. If a child comes

near him he tends to flinch, back off or just burst into floods of tears making lots of noise. He is able to switch the tears

and noise on and off instantly (Dad says he does this at home too!) He has recently started screaming when his dad leaves him in the morning and Dad had to stay at a recent easter party. I spoke to Dad who says he thinks his son is a 'little bit OCD' as at home, everything has to be done just so or he gets very upset. This behaviour at home apparently goes as far as using particular phrases or words when he wants something and his parents & grandparents conform to these 'phrases' and routines to avoid upsetting him! I asked if they had spoken to either their health visitor or doctor about this behaviour, but Dad just said 'We know what he's like so we stick to his routines and phrases so as not to upset him!'. The child is rather stubborn and rarely follows adult instructions although we are sure he hears the requests, he chooses not to respond. I have not come across such behaviour before and wondered if anyone could give any advise? :o

 

dottyp

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I too though the same although again I am not an expert. However we had experience of a child who was quite similar and in this case it turned out that actually it was the parenting which was causing the problem. Although on the surface it looked as though it was more serious it seemed to work out that as the parents had started to conform to the child's "rules" the child decided that everyone should. Her behaviour got worse because she just expected everyone to do as she wanted them to including using specific words etc. She was an only child and spent a lot of time in adult company which led her to having problems relating to children exacerbated by the fact the did not conform to her rules.

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sounds to me as if the parents and grandparents need some help...................if they continue to 'try to keep the peace', of course the child is going to continue to respond to that! He is, in effect, ruling the roost at home , not necessarily autism, merely 'learned behaviour'..........in other words, HE knows who is boss in that household, and it's NOT the adults! I suspect that he can't understand why you aren't behaving in the same way at the setting.I do feel sorry for him

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Thanks for all your replies.

 

holly35 and narnia - i think you have just 'hit the nail on the head' and i totally agree with your thoughts.

I will get in touch with our Early Years SEN today to see if I can pick up some stategies to help this little fellow.

 

thank you :o

 

dottyp

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Hi dottyp

 

Poor little boy and poor you.

 

If everyone in his life 'dances to his tune' it must be an awful shock to him to have to conform to others ideas. I try not to be judgemental - but really his family are doing him such a disservice (sp?).

 

Do let us know what your area SENCO advises - I'm sure lots of us reading this thread will have worked with children/families like this.

 

Sunnyday

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that all very well asking for help from the senco but you need the parents permission first! and it sounds to me like the parents like it the way it is keep to his rules to keep the peace. So if the parents do not agree with you or do not want to deal with the tantrums then you are fighting a losing battle with the parents because for the childs best interests both you and the parents need to work as ateam to support this child.

sorry for rant but just had a review with senco and parents about a child like you were discribing and parents said they had given up after two days because they didnt want to upset the child

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Hi littledawn - you may well have a point about parents not wanting to change their sons behaviour pattern, but by

observing how many things he misses out on during a session and having not made any friends he must be feeling very lonely.

I feel we can't just stand by and let this happen at pre-school. I am asking early years/sen for advise on strategies to support him during his time with us to make it a place where he can be happy and free from 'home routines', not try and change this 'learned behavouir'. As you say, his parents may be comfortable with the way things are at home.

 

dottyp

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