awatson1 asks:

My first grader is falling behind

My 6 year old, who is in first grade, is falling behind when he is at school he doesn't do as asked and the teachers say he whines and has tantrums out of frustration.

At home when I try to work with him and he tries to whine and tell me he doesn't know how to do it. After I get him settled down he does great on doing his homework. But it's almost like he always has to have that tantrum before he can do his work. Any suggestions?
In Topics: School and Academics, Learning issues and special needs, Discipline and behavior challenges
> 60 days ago



Sep 29, 2012
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What the Expert Says:

Hello and thank you for writing to JustAsk!

First grade can be problematic for children because the academic expectations are more challenging as compared to kindergarten.  Therefore, you may wish to consult with the school teachers and see if a referral to the school counselor to aid with transitions may be warranted.  A School Psychologist may also be helpful to determine if there are learning concerns or can assist with this transitional period, as well.

Good luck!

Louise Sattler, Psychologist

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Additional Answers (1)

joyinthemor... writes:
It sounds as though he has a great deal of anxiety about learning.  Could he be afraid of failure?  He is at such a tender age to have developed these feelings, but I've seen it many times with older children who have experienced years of frustration over learning and are afraid to try. The best remedy I have found for this is success.  Success breeds more success.  Children need to have confidence in themselves to be able to relax enough to surmount a new obstacle.  As a special ed. teacher, I have the time to coax a student into trying and this sounds like what you are successfully doing at home with him. It is quite understandable that a classroom teacher cannot put this much focus on one child.  However, could you get a lesson your child's teacher will present before it is given to the class, teach it to your child, and with a little help on his teacher's part, let your child be one-up on all the answers?  This may be the success to launch his confidence into his expecting success instead of failure.  Perhaps then his anxiety will diminish and he will be sufficiently relaxed to learn.
> 60 days ago

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