42 answers

Any Suggestions for a 3Rd Grader Struggling in School?

I have an 8 year old who is struggling in school. he's always been right on grade level (with effort) but this year has been particularly difficult for him academically. he has problems focusing, completing tasks, remembering things and transitioning from task to task. he's struggling esp. with reading and math. he is also receives speech therapy for articulation (has received these services since age 4). he's very athletic and social, but his struggles with academics are beginning to affect his outlook on life. He has a great supportive teacher--which is a help, but still need some advice! Am considering testing for Learning Disabilities, but am very concerned about labeling. any success stories? advice on tutors? books to read? providers for testing services? advice period? thanks!

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

thanks for all the ideas...the verdict..to obtain comprehensive testing through an agency that doesn't label, but rather focuses on learning styles AND pursue testing through the school system (which is the only way for him to have accommodations if needed).

More Answers

HI,
I am a mom of 4 kids...19,17,15 and 6. My 15 year old son had always struggled in school...we did testing and after sometime found out that he was in need of an IEP (indiviual education plan). This has been a tremendous help to him and many of his classes are modified so he can grasp the material. You should never be concerned with labeling...that does not matter, What matters is that your child gets the help he needs now before he gets older and the struggles become more difficult. Because I have teenagers...I decided to home school my 6 year old daughter. Do whatvever it takes while he is still young.

Blesiings,
M.
Jer.29:11

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter also started having problems in 3rd grade. She was tested and did have a learning disability. I understand your concern for labeling, but if he needs help and doesn't get it, his outlook i.e. self-esteem will suffer. Be prepared to be a squeaky wheel, it took almost all of 3rd grade to get her tested. Even with the help she was still having problems with focus, and staying on task. In 4th grade I finally had her tested for ADD. She had it, mid to moderate. At home and school, behavior modification was used. It sounds like your son has ADD also. This can be harder to diagnos since there isn't the hyperactivity with it. But there is one with poor impulse control, which my daughter has. The help my daughter received and her very supportive 4th grade teacher made such a difference. I never did put her on meds, but wish I had when she began High School. This is where her poor impulse control showed. She is a senior and graduated mid-year because she had all her credits. I know the help she received in elementary and middle school made it possible. Also this year, her senior year I put her on ADD meds and she can tell such a difference. I should also say that I have ADD also which I came to realize when she was tested. It was years before I started on any meds, but they do make a difference. Last summer I decided to take a break from them, never will again. I was so lost. Which is why I started my daughter on some. I figured she must feel like that, and it's a terrible feeling. There are some good books out there on the subject. DRIVEN TO DISTRACTION is one of them. Also OUT OF THE FOG. I do not know the authors names. I hope this helps, and I am sorry for being so long-winded.

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter went through the same thing. She had all the symptons that you have described. Has he been tested for dyslexia? It is not a label...most children grow out of it. My daughter is in 5th grade and still has problems with math and spelling but is getting A-B grades. Now a days the teachers cram so much into the day that children have a hard time trying to keep up. The teachers have changed...they use to teach to the slowest in the class but now they teach to the top and hope that the rest will catch up. Look it up on the internet, there are 7 different levels. Email me if you need more info. :)

1 mom found this helpful

I would advise that you go to Sylvan Learning Center or Huntington LC and have him tested. It's pricey, but at least you can see what you're looking at. Sometimes they have free/discounted testing. I am now a public school teacher (as well as a doctoral student in education) but I used to be a director of ed. for Sylvan. I saw miracles happen for some of the kids in the program and it was SO neat. The younger, the better, because by high school it is really hard to fix both academically and emotionally the damage of being behind for so many years. If he's only in third grade, there's no way that he can need a LONG program at Sylvan or wherever, if he's been keeping up with his classmates. I'd advise this step before having the public school test him because once he qualifies for special services, it's really hard to get him untracked, which has implications for high school graduation (diploma track and college prep). If you want to talk further, you can send me a message. Happy to help or answer questions. By the way, I have absolutley no ties to Sylvan or other tutoring services, so I'm not "marketing".
I would say though, all Sylvans and/or all tutor services are NOT equal. So choose wisely!

1 mom found this helpful

C.,
My son was struggling with 3rd grade as well. He never made below a B and yet the teacher said she could see him as being on that slipped between the cracks. They were learning so much new stuff at such a fast pace, he was having trouble keeping up with it all. He started not wanting to get up in the mornings, said he didn't feel good. He would go to the nurses station alot! When I would go eat lunch with him, he would beg to go home with me and get upset when he couldn't. He begged me to home school him. I had a few good friends who home schooled but they were all stay at home moms. I was a single full time realtor and didn't know how I could make it work. I finally stepped out on faith when my friend said, "J., God's already made the provision, you just don't see it yet." I pulled him out at Spring Break last year, and have had no regrets. Initially he went on listing appointments with me and would get his work while I did mine. I was worried that clients would think I was a part time realtor or wow, she brings her kids to work with her, but God really did work it all out, and the clients were very receptive and respectful. Then, in the fall, my 6th grader said that she wanted to be home schooled in the 7th and my child care issues were solved. My son had actually started showing out in class a bit before I pulled him out because I think he'd rather have classmates laugh at his jokes than at him struggling in school. He said he felt "dumb" at school. When they are home you can reiterate how proud you are of them and how very smart they are. You can change their lives forever. It works for us. Good luck. Have Faith. J.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi, I'm sorry i don't have any advice for ya but i was hoping maybe if you got some advice that helps you,you could possibly pass it on to me.I have an 11 yr old son who's going through the same thing in the fourth grade.We thought it might have been due to the dr,s keep upping his allergy shot meds(he gets 3 a week now)but the allergist said it should have no affect.We just took him to our family dr. they said test him for adhd well we just did that last year.All the testing came back great.He was even over average on some of the test.I just don't know what else to do.Thankyou much and good luck!
R.

1 mom found this helpful

If you are in the Raleigh area, contact Sheryl Underhill at Learning Rx on Six Forks Road. The program there isn't like the tutoring places, ie Sullivan, Huntington Learning, etc. It gets to the root of the problem. Here is where you can get more information about the program.
http://www.learningrx.com/raleigh/default.htm

Hi I am a mother of 2 girls. My 7 year old was having problems with hyperness. I had to have her tested because I worry all the time about disablities. Being that I work with kids of all types of handicappes.My advice to you is don't worry about labels. If your child needs to be tested then go ahead and do the test. This way you know if there is something wrong or not. Then you know what kind of help to get for him.Your childs doctor can set up appointments for testing. Mine did.. Like I said don't worry about labels look at it as giving your son a chance at a happy productive life.. Good luck I know its hard to think about somthing being wrong, but there is therapy and support groups out there if needed.. again good luck!!!

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