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Bonnie
Bonnie, Psychologist
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 2173
Experience:  and pediatric nurse practitioner with 30 years of experience counseling parents.
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Hello, My grandson is truggling with confidence issues

Customer Question

Hello, My grandson is truggling with confidence  starting as a new entrant into his  school. Cries every day and finds it hard to let go of his mum. His teacher asked him to look after the new boy but they both ended up crying? He is very confident at home...Any advice?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  Bonnie replied 2 years ago.
Hello and thank you for consulting JA,

Children who have an anxious temperament often have a harder time adjusting to new situations. He will need the extra support as he adjusts. Often it helps if someone at the school intervenes by helping with the transition into school. So, for instance, if a teacher or counselor would allow him to come to school 15 minutes early for some special time with the adult playing a simple game (even catch with a ball) or helping with a task. Then, that person helps him to transition into the classroom to decrease the dependence on mum. After a few weeks this support can be weaned.
My guess is he has displayed anxiety and difficulty transitioning before. Looking back at that experience should help you determine how long this might last.

You can also provide this book for him and teach him coping strategies:
http://www.apa.org/pubs/magination/441A314.aspx

If all else fails, and he is not adjusting, consider child therapy.

I hope that this gives you some new and successful direction. Good luck
Bonnie, Psychologist
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 2173
Experience: and pediatric nurse practitioner with 30 years of experience counseling parents.
Bonnie and other Parenting Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi is there any other option? he goes to a state school which are genrally understaffed so askign a teacher for extra time just isnt done in New Zealand??
Expert:  Bonnie replied 2 years ago.
The other options include teaching him the coping strategies found in the book. They include relaxation exercises and creative visualization. There are many books, CD's and even youtube videos about these strategies:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LFHzThaj7r4

And giving him the extra support he needs (mum staying with him for a few minutes) until he adjusts. And, then too, there is child therapy of all else fails.
Expert:  proexpert37 replied 2 years ago.
So that an expert can assist you further, can you state the age of your grandson? Is he an only child? Thank you!
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

sorry for delay have been working. My Grandson is 5 years old. his first 2 weeks at school were great. his time at kindergarden was also great. he has always been a confidnt yet polite boy...hurts us all seing him going through this and just want to help. No he is the eldest of 2.

 

Expert:  professional_Alison replied 2 years ago.
Hello there, may I help you? Any changes to a children's routine can cause them to be upset and here are a few suggestions to help make that transition. If he has a particular child he is friendly with or talks about invite them for tea. When you drop him off at school give a hug and a firm reassurance that Mummy loves you, have a great day and I will see you this afternoon. Have a positive end to the conversation like, remember after school we can play that game you enjoy, do some painting etc. It may also be worth having a progress chart so for every day he goes onto school with no tears he gets a sticker and at the end of a week he gets rewarded with an outing or a small treat. Reinforce positive behaviour rather than dwelling on the negative. If he expresses unhappiness about going to school simply say, will John be there today, I wonder if it is art today. I know you will be such a good boy and I will be so proud of you. This is just a settling in period and the anxiety will pass but doing some of these things should make it easier for him.
Expert:  proexpert37 replied 2 years ago.
Hello and Thank you for responding. Your grandson sounds like a very great fellow but has just encountered a little stumbling block. Here are some useful techniques that you or his mum can employ. First of all, children at his age love to pretend and act out things. You or his mum along with him can act out his appropriate behavior when he goes to school as well as the inappropriate behavior. Do this at home several times. Also, every day or every night before he goes to school, have a brief talk about how he needs to be a "big boy" with no tears. Tell him exactly how he should behave with no alligator big tears. Also, using a sticker progress chart is a great idea but he should get a sticker for every day that he goes to school without crying. Your grandson needs immediate and consistent reinforcement. After five to ten stickers, you decide the amount, he gets a special treat or outing. Make sure he knows what the reward will be beforehand. Also, your grandson may feel comforted by having a little picture of his mum in his pocket at school so a little part of her will be with him until she returns. Additionally when your grandson is dropped off at school, the goodbye should be brief. The longer his mum stays around, the harder it will be to leave.

Implement the above mentioned suggestions for success!
Have an awesome day!

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