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A Child That Just Doesn't Listen And Do As We Ask


Guest terrydoo73
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Guest terrydoo73

We have tried the usual methods with this child - distracting, engaging in other play, discussing what will happen if continues to not do as asked and even my deputy came up with the idea of the little Christmas bird sitting outside our window who will fly to Santa and tell him that we are sad as she is not listening and doing as we ask. Today she came in from the toilet, went to the sand tray and with her 2 hands lifted up some sand and threw it over a child playing there. She knew she had done wrong immediately and started to laugh at us when we asked her to come out of the area until we dealt with the upset child. She then went to the couch and cried! When my deputy went over to talk to her she refused to listen and asked for a book to be read to her. We just cannot seem to get through to her and we think it is a problem with attention seeking. I am concerned however that she is slightly bored with what is available in the playroom and cannot put my finger on what exactly she is interested in so as to engage her.

 

I am also concerned from the point of view of mum. When we invited them in at hallowe'en the children recited some rhymes and then heard a story read. Throughout this activity this particular child did not do as asked nor paid attention in any way shape or form. Initially we ignored the child and then directed our attention to her when it continued as we thought this was what she wanted ie asking her questions to engage her rather than letting it continue and thereby distracting the other children who were enjoying the activity. Mum asked me directly at the end of the period if her child always behaved in this way and expressed a desire that she had hoped "we" meaning my deputy and I could have curbed this behaviour as it was something she also noticed happening at home. I did point out to mum that this child has been with us since February and if we did action replay back to then and compare it with now we would see a massive improvement which we were continuing to work on. Obviously this is going on in the back of my head when I see her acting the way she is at present and I am worried that we are not getting on top of the situation and letting it run away out of control.

 

What could we do now to engage this child more, pay attention to her in such a way that I think she needs but at the same time lay down some rules to abide by - I am not saying that we don't repeat, repeat, repeat things day in and day out but sometimes it just feels like a cracked record!

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Hi terrydoo,

has this child always shown this behaviour ?, has mum showed any concerns beforehand regarding her behaviour at home?.when you mentioned the sand incident you do not mention any consequences? does she really understand right from wrong or just appears to? is she having reflection time and are this methods consistent, have you tried behaviour observations to find any triggers or has anything changed at home , there could be many reaons for this behaviour , it may be beneficial to have an outside professional observe if this is really something you feel you can not deal with or should i say improve on. does she socialise with any of the other children ?

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Guest terrydoo73

She has what I would call a "flighty" behaviour. When she came in to us in February we had sessions where she would go to the dressing up area and put on a dress (after much talking to we showed her how to do it herself) then took it off then 5 minutes later was back putting it on again. This process would have been repeated many times over the session! She tends to move around areas fairly quickly and it is difficult to see her as I said doing one specific thing she will have sustained play in.

 

Our consequences were the sitting on the couch until we dealt with the other time - she was asked to sit there and reflect. We are not sure if anything has changed at home - mum is not forthcoming with us at the best of times. We just wonder at times if the child really knows right from wrong especially when she laughs at us so much when we are asking her not to do something or rather say we would be really pleased if ... (we chose this method rather than the negative)

 

She is a great socialiser but that is having the knock on effect of others copying her behaviour to the point where it is causing us concern as we want to ensure consistency with everyone although it is hard as she is the ringleader if you understand what I mean!

 

 

I might take time tomorrow and just sit and observe her as much as possible to see if there is something that I can see triggering her behaviour patterns. It is this continual "no" that is annoying - when asked if she is going for snack she will say no and we say OK we will pick someone else then 2 minutes later she is at your heel saying I'm going for snack now. Then you tell her to go and tidy her area before she moves to the snack table (which is a rule we have) and she will again say "no" to which we say Ok we will have to pick someone else and the whole thing gets repeated many times - hence our feeling of a cracked record all the time!

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She has what I would call a "flighty" behaviour. When she came in to us in February we had sessions where she would go to the dressing up area and put on a dress (after much talking to we showed her how to do it herself) then took it off then 5 minutes later was back putting it on again. This process would have been repeated many times over the session! She tends to move around areas fairly quickly and it is difficult to see her as I said doing one specific thing she will have sustained play in.

 

Our consequences were the sitting on the couch until we dealt with the other time - she was asked to sit there and reflect. We are not sure if anything has changed at home - mum is not forthcoming with us at the best of times. We just wonder at times if the child really knows right from wrong especially when she laughs at us so much when we are asking her not to do something or rather say we would be really pleased if ... (we chose this method rather than the negative)

 

She is a great socialiser but that is having the knock on effect of others copying her behaviour to the point where it is causing us concern as we want to ensure consistency with everyone although it is hard as she is the ringleader if you understand what I mean!

 

 

I might take time tomorrow and just sit and observe her as much as possible to see if there is something that I can see triggering her behaviour patterns. It is this continual "no" that is annoying - when asked if she is going for snack she will say no and we say OK we will pick someone else then 2 minutes later she is at your heel saying I'm going for snack now. Then you tell her to go and tidy her area before she moves to the snack table (which is a rule we have) and she will again say "no" to which we say Ok we will have to pick someone else and the whole thing gets repeated many times - hence our feeling of a cracked record all the time!

as a suggestion - do not ask her to come to snack - wait until she decides too explaining beforehand to all of children that they have the choice also when she decides \NOT to do something - give her a choice - eg: (her name) you have a choice you can do this ( whatever you are asking of her)or you can do ( name something less appealing) , by giving a choice you are giving her some responsibilty for her behaviour .

always come down to her level and insist on eye contact before speaking ,she made need clear explaination to all commands/requests , if you are asking something of her and it is a question she has a chioce to answer negative but if it a request and she says no , you can emphasise that ii is something that is being asked of her - hope that all makes sense and not like teaching grandmother to suck eggs :o

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Have you tried a visual timetable to help her plan her time with you so that she so she has some positive control over the environment? It might also help you determine what her interests are. We find when we use this method we can then move onto adding adult led activities to the timetable ie when it is her turn to the snack table etc and mix these in with the childs choices. Her attention behaviour also need strategies and these need to be clear to all adults involved with her including parents, we usually hold what we call a 'parent partnership' meeting where we discuss the issues and what the parents would like us to do to help and from this we devise an action plan - this might include things like asking for outside help or making a group focus topic on preschools golden rules. These behaviours don't disappear overnight unfortunately but a consistent approach is often the quickest.

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Guest terrydoo73

We do use visual timetables. When the children come in each morning we have our leader board and this is an animal symbol which corresponds with their own symbols on coat hooks and individual pockets for storing any art work etc. Once that leader symbol goes up the children know that the leader must put up her symbol on the snack timetable as they have first preference and then everyone else can put their own symbol up after this. Our volunteer will then announce that she is going to prepare snack and the children know that whoever is first on the list of people for snack must tidy up what they are playing with and move to the toilets to wash hands. This works and has worked perfectly well but this one child is rebelling against it over the last number of days. She used to be the one telling everyone what was happening before we even got the chance to do it hence why I am concerned at her sudden change in behaviour.

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Maybe she isn't ready to tidy up when it is her turn to the snack table, is it not possible for her to choose when she wants to have snack? The kind of visual timetable I was thinking of was a personal one just for her. we use an A4 laminated sheet of paper with the childs photo on and lines of velcro that the photos/symbols of different activities can be attached to, she could then see that, for example, after playing with the home corner is the photo of snack time so that she can see that after snack she can move onto the next photo which might be something she has chosen. We currently have 8 of these on the go and for 6 of these disruptive children it is working really well, as for the other 2, well, we're still looking for the answer.

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Guest terrydoo73

This child did not turn up at our Playgroup today. There was an open day on at a local Playgroup 2 miles from us which offers free places for preschoolers so we are thinking they are possibly checking out the opposition!

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