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Kreme

*Updated and thank you!* How to understand and help my 5yo DS?

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Kreme

***UPDATE***

I just wanted to say a big thank you to those who responded to this thread a couple of months ago.

 

It was really the first time anyone had suggested that DS might be gifted, and on BMJ's recommendation I booked him for testing at Gifted Minds. We went yesterday and although the final report will take a couple of weeks, the psych told me he scored in the 99.9% in his IQ test.

 

So now we will have a clearer picture of who he is and what he needs. It's quite daunting but we are determined to do everything we can for him.

 

I'm so grateful for the input I've received from EB, I think it would have taken us a lot longer to get to this place without this advice (his teacher doubted he was very intelligent because his handwriting is still so messy!)

 

Thank you!!!

 

****

 

I would appreciate any advice on how to help my 5yo DS.

 

Much of the time he is a delightful little boy. He is very affectionate and loving and so funny. But we are becoming increasingly frustrated with his behaviour. He is just so emotional and gets ridiculously upset over the smallest things.

 

His very attached to me rather than DH and every second night we have a battle when it is DH's turn to read him a story and put him to bed (we also have a 6.5 year old daughter so we alternate putting them to bed).

 

We are struggling to find toys and activities that engage him. He loves playing sports/driving games on the Wii and iPad so when we limit those we get another screaming fit. He has lots of toys and games but very little seems to hold his attention. He does love playing sports in the backyard as long as one of us will play with him.

 

At school his behaviour is perfect. He is quite shy but has made friends and enjoys it. He's a very stoic kid amd will never show that he is worried or upset in public (at home its a different story!) He had a couple of very good friends in preschool and was quite popular.

 

He is a great listener and has always followed instructions very well. He is also very bright. He is reading at level 25 at the end of first term of FYOS and knows the first 200 sight words. He can count to an indefinite number and can do addition and subtraction.

 

His memory seems to be quite remarkable, by halfway through the term he had memorised the birthdays of every member of his class from a chart pinned on the wall, and has learned all of the kids' surnames from reading the name tags on the desks. Tonight he was telling DH the birth dates of his cousins and neither of us can remember the last time we spoke about these birthdays.

 

He has a few sensory issues. Loud noises and smells bother him, I have to turn his socks inside out to keep the seams away from his feet and he doesn't like the feel of sand or fabrics that are "too soft".

 

I am wondering whether it is worth taking him to a psychologist or similar for some testing. My main concern is to try to help him with his emotional outbursts and also to ensure he is being sufficiently challenged at school.

 

I'd appreciate any opinions or suggestions on how to proceed. <img src="style_emoticons/default/original.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid=":)" border="0" alt="original.gif" />

Edited by kreme

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mum850

Hi Kreme,

Some of the things you have mentioned make me wonder if he could be gifted ( plus frustrated and anxious)... is that a possibility? Are there other gifted people in the family? I am not a psychologist or an expert at all but it sounds as though the problems could be maybe grouped as hypersensitivity( to physical or emotional stuff) which is interesting in the context of a child who is very bright and a great reader.

Just a thought!

In which case an educational psychologist might be the thing.

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robhat

Sounds a hell of a lot like my daughter!

 

I actually had my daughter tested for Aspergers just before starting school. They also tested her for giftedness and a whole range of ability tests. She was rather young to be doing such tests and the results weren't totally conclusive as a result. She doesn't have Aspergers although the psych admitted that her scores were so close that she almost did if that makes sense. Same with the giftedness although the psych said it's pretty obvious that she is gifted (and her school are treating her as such) it's just that she was so young (4.5) that the tests weren't quite suitable.

 

It can't hurt to take him for some testing, but it does take a while and to be worth it, might be best if you wait until closer to the end of the year. You may get more accurate results if he's a bit older. I should also add that my daughter's social skills weren't great at preschool, nor was her gross motor and her preschool teachers also agreed that she should be tested for Aspergers. If your son socialises well, Aspergers is unlikely to be his problem.

 

From the info you've given, there is a pretty good chance you've got a gifted kid on your hands and it's not unusual for them to be very emotional. It also needs to be said that boys do develop slowly in that area. It could just be that he's a little immature emotionally despite being ahead in other things and that given time he'll be fine.

 

Best I can suggest is read as much as you can to arm yourself with knowledge and then just deal with him as he is. Labels don't always help and if there isn't any issue at school, then you really don't need one! Just accept that he is a person who feels deeply, be there for him and try to understand him as best you can. That is what a parent is for after all! If you are having trouble getting him to do stuff on his own it could just be that he needs other people and also that he needs something more stimulating. You may have to work hard to try and find him a hobby he likes. If he is really smart, don't go with what every other 5 year old is doing. My daughter for example likes a range of things including learning new languages, board games, Lego, puzzles (300 piece ones), reading, crafts and astronomy. She likes cooking and playing piano and whole lot of other stuff too but I don't always have the time to engage her in everything!

 

I'm still working out how to deal with the emotional outbursts though! They have gotten less lately, so maybe she just needed to grow up a bit. Starting school has also helped too I think.

 

 

Sounds a hell of a lot like my daughter!

 

I actually had my daughter tested for Aspergers just before starting school. They also tested her for giftedness and a whole range of ability tests. She was rather young to be doing such tests and the results weren't totally conclusive as a result. She doesn't have Aspergers although the psych admitted that her scores were so close that she almost did if that makes sense. Same with the giftedness although the psych said it's pretty obvious that she is gifted (and her school are treating her as such) it's just that she was so young (4.5) that the tests weren't quite suitable.

 

It can't hurt to take him for some testing, but it does take a while and to be worth it, might be best if you wait until closer to the end of the year. You may get more accurate results if he's a bit older. I should also add that my daughter's social skills weren't great at preschool, nor was her gross motor and her preschool teachers also agreed that she should be tested for Aspergers. If your son socialises well, Aspergers is unlikely to be his problem.

 

From the info you've given, there is a pretty good chance you've got a gifted kid on your hands and it's not unusual for them to be very emotional. It also needs to be said that boys do develop slowly in that area. It could just be that he's a little immature emotionally despite being ahead in other things and that given time he'll be fine.

 

Best I can suggest is read as much as you can to arm yourself with knowledge and then just deal with him as he is. Labels don't always help and if there isn't any issue at school, then you really don't need one! Just accept that he is a person who feels deeply, be there for him and try to understand him as best you can. That is what a parent is for after all! If you are having trouble getting him to do stuff on his own it could just be that he needs other people and also that he needs something more stimulating. You may have to work hard to try and find him a hobby he likes. If he is really smart, don't go with what every other 5 year old is doing. My daughter for example likes a range of things including learning new languages, board games, Lego, puzzles (300 piece ones), reading, crafts and astronomy. She likes cooking and playing piano and whole lot of other stuff too but I don't always have the time to engage her in everything!

 

I'm still working out how to deal with the emotional outbursts though! They have gotten less lately, so maybe she just needed to grow up a bit. Starting school has also helped too I think.

 

 

Sounds a hell of a lot like my daughter!

 

I actually had my daughter tested for Aspergers just before starting school. They also tested her for giftedness and a whole range of ability tests. She was rather young to be doing such tests and the results weren't totally conclusive as a result. She doesn't have Aspergers although the psych admitted that her scores were so close that she almost did if that makes sense. Same with the giftedness although the psych said it's pretty obvious that she is gifted (and her school are treating her as such) it's just that she was so young (4.5) that the tests weren't quite suitable.

 

It can't hurt to take him for some testing, but it does take a while and to be worth it, might be best if you wait until closer to the end of the year. You may get more accurate results if he's a bit older. I should also add that my daughter's social skills weren't great at preschool, nor was her gross motor and her preschool teachers also agreed that she should be tested for Aspergers. If your son socialises well, Aspergers is unlikely to be his problem.

 

From the info you've given, there is a pretty good chance you've got a gifted kid on your hands and it's not unusual for them to be very emotional. It also needs to be said that boys do develop slowly in that area. It could just be that he's a little immature emotionally despite being ahead in other things and that given time he'll be fine.

 

Best I can suggest is read as much as you can to arm yourself with knowledge and then just deal with him as he is. Labels don't always help and if there isn't any issue at school, then you really don't need one! Just accept that he is a person who feels deeply, be there for him and try to understand him as best you can. That is what a parent is for after all! If you are having trouble getting him to do stuff on his own it could just be that he needs other people and also that he needs something more stimulating. You may have to work hard to try and find him a hobby he likes. If he is really smart, don't go with what every other 5 year old is doing. My daughter for example likes a range of things including learning new languages, board games, Lego, puzzles (300 piece ones), reading, crafts and astronomy. She likes cooking and playing piano and whole lot of other stuff too but I don't always have the time to engage her in everything!

 

I'm still working out how to deal with the emotional outbursts though! They have gotten less lately, so maybe she just needed to grow up a bit. Starting school has also helped too I think.

 

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baddmammajamma

Hi kreme:

 

I agree with the others -- sounds like you might have a gifted boy on your hands who has some sensitivities/overexcitabilities:

 

http://www.sengifted.org/archives/articles...-and-the-gifted

 

You are in Melbourne, right? There are some wonderful educational psychologists in your area who can do an assessment. If you visit the Gifted & Talented thread on EB, I'm sure some of the Melbourne mums would be happy to PM you with recommendations. Even though I am in Sydney, I'd be happy to send you some names of trust professionals as well. :)

 

If I were you, I'd go ahead and plan to get the testing done. The sooner you have a better picture of your son's profile, the best. FYOS is not too soon for a child to undergo cognitive testing.

 

One cautionary note -- sometimes with gifted kids, there is more going on than "just" overexcitabilities. That is, the kids might also have some needs in play -- in my daughter's case, ASD + ADHD along with her giftedness...in other kids, it might be anxiety or Sensory Processing Disorder, just to name a few. Cognitive (IQ) testing alone isn't going to rule in or rule out issues like those. A comprehensive developmental assessment will help fill in the pieces.

 

Good luck!

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courtney-b

This may or may not help, but the failsafe diet has been a revolution in our household. My DS is younger than yours and had some other things going on (deliberately annoying, impulsive, emotional and often too rough). All of these less than desirable traits have completely disappeared in the last week and half of following the elimination diet. In addition, his often upset stomach has also vanished. I am not sure what it is yet that he is affected by as I haven't started adding foods back in, but I have read in the stories section a lot of people who have had overly emotional children who are much more even tempered after following the diet.

 

I think you should follow the advice of PP and still get an assessment, but this might be something to try while you play the waiting game.

 

Good luck.

Edited by courtney-b

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Kreme

Thanks everyone for your responses. It sounds like an educational psychologist might be the first port of call for us.

 

Robhat, thanks for the suggestions of activities. We are desperate to find something that he loves to do that doesn't involve a screen! I hadn't thought of astronomy, we might swing by the library on the way home from school today and see what we can find.

 

DH and I both agree that we don't want a label for the sake of having one, but right now DS isn't as happy as we think he could be, so we need some guidance.

 

BMJ we are in Sydney, on the north shore. I would really appreciate any recommendations you can provide :)

 

Courtney-b thanks for your response. I will definitely keep it in mind.

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baddmammajamma

Why did I think you were in Melbourne??? :wacko:;)

 

Gifted Minds is probably the best known educational psychology practice in Sydney for testing and advocating for gifted kids. They are in Coogee.

 

http://www.giftedminds.com.au/

 

My daughter was tested by them & many other EBers have used them as well. They are first rate on the identification & support of gifted kids.

 

What they don't do (as they state on their website) is assess for any disorders. So again, if a child has more than "just giftedness" going on, he/she would need to get additional support from either a clinical psychologist or developmental paed for instance.

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Kreme
Why did I think you were in Melbourne??? :wacko:;)

 

Gifted Minds is probably the best known educational psychology practice in Sydney for testing and advocating for gifted kids. They are in Coogee.

 

http://www.giftedminds.com.au/

 

My daughter was tested by them & many other EBers have used them as well. They are first rate on the identification & support of gifted kids.

 

What they don't do (as they state on their website) is assess for any disorders. So again, if a child has more than "just giftedness" going on, he/she would need to get additional support from either a clinical psychologist or developmental paed for instance.

 

 

We were planning a move to Melbourne this year and I posted several questions about it here, but it was called off at the last minute :)

 

Excellent I will give them a call, thank you. I have a friend who is a clinical psych working with kids, so I'll contact her too. Don't know why I didn't think of her earlier :rolleyes:

 

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Kreme

Updated in post 1.

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