One hand in the mouth, one hand in the pants

by Michelle
(Clarkston, WA 99403)

I am an OT at an Elementary school. One of our kindergarten students assumes a very particular position whenever he is expected to be "calm and focused" in class. The middle and ring fingers of his left hand go all the way in his mouth. His entire right hand goes inside his underwear- way down there)Once it is time to participate, he touches everything and everyone. He also talks a lot and talks loud! His "position" of comfort needs to be altered for so many reasons. On a side note, he has very nice copying and cutting skills.

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May 30, 2012
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One hand in the mouth, one hand in the pants
by: Tammy

My 6 year old son does the exact same thing. He is very bright and we have talked about this with him, he does not realize he is even doing this. We have tried finding other ways to keep his hands busy to no avail. I would love to hear any ideas as well.

Nov 04, 2011
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couple thoughts
by: Anonymous

does this child have spd? sounds like maybe some anxiety? i have a niece who sticks her fist in her mouth with she's anxious or put on the spot. she has anxiety.

sounds like this student may have an auditory issue as well? some children are not able to regulate their tone or decibel level well. i'm sure you know that as an ot. :)

would some type of 'fidget device' work to give to the student (appears that having busy hands is a coping mechanism for this child - isn't surprising that the child is able to cut and copy well, it's structured and it's hands on, that's great.) before the hand in mouth, hand down pants situation begins? do you know what the triggers are that bring on this behavior in the student? are you able to talk to the student about why, especially the hand down pants thing is not okay?

maybe you need to involve parents and get their take/ideas on it? and in the mean time, stock your classroom with sanitizer. :)

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