Last Day of Kindergarten

by mo2g

Today my daughter's class had a parent program. They sang 3 songs and each read a silly sentence that they had written. I don't know why, but my daughter completely shut down. She wouldn't sing at all on the first song, did a few hand movements on the second song and participated a little more on the last song. When it was her turn to read her sentence, she just sat there with her head down and wouldn't even acknowledge the teacher. The teacher even gave her a second chance after all the others read and still she sat. When it was her turn to get cookies and lemonade, she shoved a cup and a cookie at me and said, "Here." She, of course, doesn't drink lemonade and didn't like any of the cookies so she went and sat back down on her corner of the carpet. The other kids were talking, laughing, playing and posing for pictures. She just sat--even when other kids tried to get her up. Finally, toward the end she came over and sat near (not beside) me and watched the rest of the slideshow of pics of the kids. Then she was "ok."

My daughter has been diagnosed w/ SID, OCD, generalized anxiety and symptoms of ADHD such as hyperactivity and impulsivity, but not actual ADHD. We have been on waiting lists for OT since February. The teacher continues to tell me that my daughter has done great all year and she got almost all the skills on her report card except tying and lacing. (I told the teacher I was not fighting the shoe tying battle.) She reads almost anything we put in front of her. She is going to first grade next year.

I just don't know how to help her anymore. The teacher said that she wouldn't sing yesterday either. But, for a week or so she has been so excited about this last day of school, telling me it was a surprise ("I can't tell you which songs we're singing, but we're singing..." and "It's a secret, but we're having cookies and lemonade. It's for the parents!") I didn't dare miss the program even though it was a struggle to get there on time.

I just felt so lost and so helpless in that classroom.

I kept thinking about what must be going through her mind. My instinct was to grab her and run-- just get her out of there! It was all I could do not to cry. I wasn't sure if the tears were for her or for me.

Does anyone have any advice for me? My insurance only pays for one psychiatrist's office. They have been very little help. The doc we had been seeing just moved to another state so it's like we will be starting over there. They got us on the waiting list for OT and that's about it. I figured out that she had SPD a few days before the first therapist appointment that we had to go to to be screened before we could see the doc. After I went through all of this stuff about my child, the therapist says, "So, you're here for drug counseling?" See, that's basically all this office does-- counsel people who get busted for drugs at work.

The only other thing this doc has tried to do for us was to give my daughter a prescription for clonidine. She doesn't have high blood pressure. She was bouncing around the doc's office and the doc took her BP. It was normal. I'm not giving her a drug she doesn't need.

One thing that does seem to help my daughter is allergy medicine. In the past she took Zyrtec and I could really tell a difference in her behavior. This spring when I put her on that, she didn't do well at all. The GP put her on Singulair and she is sleeping better (less tossing and turning, less snoring/snorting noises) so she is feeling better during the day, too.

I'm sorry this post is so long, but I have been out of rope for years and just need some kind of help or advice. Is there some other direction we can turn here? Am I missing something I could be doing for her? Should I have grabbed her and run from the classroom? If things don't improve, she won't go to school next August. She won't eat, drink (except for the chocolate milk) or use the bathroom at school. Knowing all that, if I send her anyway, well, isn't that neglect? We can't even go to Wal-mart anymore.

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Jun 05, 2009
Mine TOO
by: Anonymous

Hi, My daughter was also considered to be a good kindergarten student, she was well behaved and quiet in a class of 28 students. But she could'nt/would'nt sing along and shut down in large groups. We found out the following year that she would be shut down for most of the class and in a panic we took her to a behavior specialist.

She was referred to an OT whom tested her for SPD. It turns out she is auditory defensive. She can't sing along because instead of hearing all of the singers as one, her ears pick up everyones voice and to her there is no clarity like a white noise effect. Crowds do the same to her it seemed impossible for her to follow auditory direction especially if the classroom is busy or noisy.She had small muscle motor delay in her hands and writing was a chore. What I learned is the worst thing you can do is not push them to use their fingers. Tying shoes, playdough, stringing beads, actually strengthen the hands as well as strengthen the learning ability of the brain.

I hope you get your answers you are looking for school OT programs are ALWAYS over-burdened and the waiting list is extensive. You might feel better hiring someone on your own and seeing if your insurance will help.
Best of luck

Jun 04, 2009
I hurt for you
by: Jane in Milwaukee


This is the 1st I could read your story. The long range complications and ramifications of the serious problem must appear insurmountable and devastating. I've known for a long time how deeply devoted you are to your girls....but I do want to say, I didn't think her actions on the last day were SO bad.

As a parent, I understand how upsetting it is when your kid is the "weird one" or just won't behave in an acceptable way. But she wasn't disruptive, the kids mostly accept her for who she is cuz they kept trying to include her, and she didn't have a screaming fit over the snacks or the singing...she just mostly didn't partake. Maybe her mostly passive withdrawing was the easiest way to get thru what maybe was an extremely stressful day for her?

I literally feared you were going to say she had hurt another kid or shattered a window or wound up in the ER. I hate hearing "I can top that story" from parents...and I'm not saying, "ah, relax, it coulda been worse"...I just perceive that the day was harder on you than on her? As far as getting her into OT and to counseling...all you can do it keep on trying.

Can you keep trying that shrink and just tell him to get off his duff, that this isn't about drugs, and how can he earn his stripes as a doc and help your little girl?

Jun 04, 2009
last day of kindergarten
by: Anonymous

Maybe there is an in between.

Instead of trying to get her to sing or grabbing her and leaving maybe you could tell her its okay if she doesn't feel like participating and ask her if she would like to stay and watch the other kids sing? Try to include her as much as possible in the activities but with very little pressure. Maybe take a snack that you know she would like and when its snack time she could have her own snack?

Try to ask her afterwards why she didn't want to participate, how it made her feel? And just what she was thinking about the whole thing in general. Usually there are reasons why they behave the way they do, its often hard to figure it out though.

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