JanaeL asks:

my son is 4 yrs old  he is not listening,and getting in trouble at per-school.

my son is 4 yrs old  he is not listening,and getting in trouble at school. an all that we have tried (taking things from him,and putting him in programs sports away from the school, etc..) is not working. when he gets in the building he's a different little boy. How can I stop it before he goes to kindergarten at a different school where he can get put out or suspended?
In Topics: Discipline and behavior challenges
> 60 days ago



Boys Town National Hotline
May 5, 2014
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What the Expert Says:

So it sounds like the unacceptable behavior is mainly surfacing while at pre-school.  You've tried to consequate his behavior by taking privileges away/delivering a negative consequence and by putting him in an organized sport in which good listening skills and sharing, and social skills can be practiced.  Both are really good ideas.

Some key things to look at are is the school being supportive with you in communicating the behaviors they are seeing and how are they dealing with it.  Since the school environment is where he is acting out, it is important to know a lot of those "W" questions.  Who, what when, where, why, how.  Sometimes the more structured schedule that comes along with attending school is a difficult adjustment for kids especially if this is their first experience away from home where schedules can be more lax.  

It's not fun as a parent to always hear negative feedback from a school.  Ask yourself if you are hearing some positive too.  If not, it might not hurt to ask a question like, "When does ______ listen best at school?" or "Is there an activity at school where you do not see these behaviors from him?"  Questions like this might also tell you, is it always happening when he is with a group of kids, does he struggle with listening more at the end of the day, does he not listen when he gets a verbal instruction, does he misbehave with a specific child in the class.

Over the summer, it might not hurt to consult with your pediarician or even work with a behavioral therapist on specific behaviors.  Call the school where he is going to go to kindergarten and ask about their discipline there especially the kindergarten program.  Consistency in delivering immediate consequences at this age is so important.

Laura - Crisis Counselor

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Additional Answers (1)

Nitz writes:
I had the same problem with my both my sons in preschool and one that went on to k, 1st, and 2nd.  Some boys, emotionally and socially just aren't ready for school settings and it is very hard to adjust for them.  I pulled both boys from public school and now homeschool, but, I would just start by thinking about what your son's personality is.  Is he outgoing, impulsive, shy, reserved?  What is going on in that school setting that is NOT speaking to him, what's his "love language"?  Does he like positive affirmation, physical touch, gifts, or quality time?  If they are not speaking his love language, he is not going to respond.  Of course, a lot of times these days the schools and staff are "not allowed" to speak a child's love language.  Physical touch is off limits completely even if its a pat on the back and 1 on 1 quality time just can't happen in that setting! Talk to your son, ask him what it is he just doesn't like about school or how his day was.  He might just give you a clue as to what is making him act out.....behavior is a language, he's trying to tell you something is going on in there!  Good luck!
> 60 days ago

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