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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2006 10:32 am 
I have a 14 year-old daughter who has always found it difficult to sit down and just do her work. Procrastination is her middle name. Getting her to do her homework (especially essays!!) is like drawing teeth. She will say that she just needs to pop out for a walk or a run; up and down getting drinks and snacks from the kitchen; reading a book or a comic hidden under the table. She spends her time getting hauled over the coals for handing homework in late and generally being disorganised. She has had to be banned from borrowing fiction from the school library (our idea, not school's). Yet, somehow she pulls it off when it comes to exams. She's at Grammar school, and managed level 7s for English and Science, and level 8 for Maths at Key Stage 3.

At times, I have wondered whether she suffers from ADHD, but other than keeping an eye on food additives (she does react badly to reds, including a spectacular hives reaction sometimes) and caffeine levels, I have avoided going down that route, as I don't want medical staff thinking that I'm asking for Ritalin etc. She is very easily distracted by noise. She had a lot of hearing problems when younger, and although her hearing is now in the normal range, she is unable to filter out background noise (rather as people using hearing aids hear everything amplified).

I reckon that if she were a boy, the school would be more tolerant of her behaviour. Indeed, I would have preferred her to go to a mixed school, because I reckoned staff might be a bit more accepting; however, she was adamant that she wanted to go to an all-girls school.

What do people think? Reading other strands, people seem to describe this sort of behaviour as a 'boy thing'. Are girls' schools less accepting of behaviour that would be considered normal in boys? She's a super girl, but sometimes I despair as the school seems to expect me to sort it out.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2006 12:46 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
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Location: Buckinghamshire
Hi Mum of 3

I read your post with great sympathy, as I can understand your despair, but I also found it quite amusing! I think you have a boy in girl's clothing! And, from your daughter's point of view, why worry about being organised or handing homework in on time when you get the right exam results anyway? That is boy behaviour all over.

I'm afraid I may have been much the same myself at her age - life was too interesting to be bothered with school work, and like your daughter, I always got the results on the day. And yes, I went to a girls school, and no they didn't tolerate me particularly well either!

I doubt that she has ADHD, having had some experience of kids with ADHD - she sounds as though she is energetic, lively and has lots of interests. Anyway, as you say, even if she does have ADHD, you don't want Ritalin or drug treatment for it - all you want is for the school to accept that she is functions in a different way to all those studious, dutiful, well-organised, passive girlies.

I think you should tell the school what you have told us. Tell them that you remain committed to supporting them, but you would like to focus specifically on helping her to adjust the least acceptable facets of her behaviour and attitude from their point of view. You cannot change the whole child, but you can perhaps help her to realise that there are a few obligations that we have to fulfil in life in order to work within the system.

She will perhaps always be different, but whilst she is happy and getting good results, she is still a credit to you and also to the school.

Sally-Anne


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2006 3:06 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 1:06 pm
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Hi Mum of 3

Your daughter sounds like most members of my family!!! :D Have to say though that we are riddled with different degrees of learning difficulties. Your daughter might have mild dsypraxia, and the symptons can be very similar to ADHD.

If this were to prove the case and she is succeeding as you say in spite of any possible hinderances then she is doubtless very, very bright. The only way to be certain is to have her assessed by an Educational Psychologist to determine her IQ and see if she is underperforming, which can indicate a previously undiagnosed difficulty. You could also have her assessed by an Occupational Therapist for dyspraxia.

Can post links on how to go about this if you are interested.

HP


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 11:27 am 
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Joined: Sun Nov 19, 2006 12:48 pm
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Hi Mum of 3

Yes, she sounds very much like me at that age too!
HP's right though, it could me mild dyspraxia. My daughter has been diagnosed with this, and she too has trouble screening out noise and can be easily distracted unless fully engaged. She has an extremely high IQ though, so is able to 'compensate' for a lot of her difficulties. I'd suggest you get an Ed Psych and OT assessments done. My dughter is seeing an OT once a week and it really seems to have helped her a lot-the school has noticed this too.
Good luck!
Jess


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 4:05 pm 
Thank you very for all your comments, which are quite reassuring. She sees at Ed Psych at school and has nice cosy chats with her about coping strategies. At the moment, the Ed Psych is on Maternity Leave; so my daughter hasn't seen her this term or last term.

I hadn't thought of Dyspraxia, as she is quite a sporty and well-coordinated girl physically. Good at swimming, hockey and netball. Enjoys going for runs. Less good at things like Gym and Dance, but then those are really activities for smaller people - my daughter's 5'7" and quite solidly built!

I tried to back off at the beginning of this term, and tried to be less of a helicopter Mum (my 11 year old and 8 year old do their homework without my constant supervision!). But I have been sucked in again to seemingly constant nagging!! It is extended project work, and general organisation that is the problem. Maths and Science homework gets done without any problem. Roll on A'levels when she can do Maths, Further Maths, Physics and Music (and I can sit back and relax!) She wants to be an Aeronautical Engineer!!


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 12:47 pm 
I have now found out about a condition called Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD) or Auditory Processing Disorder (APD). This seems to fit my daughter: history of glue ear and many ear infections aged 0-4; successive ear operations though normal hearing now; can't work in noisy environment; doesn't socialise well; difficulty with aural instructions; lip-reads; likes sitting at front in class; likes having sub-titles on during DVDs; can't spell; finds it difficult to make notes in lessons.

Does anyone else know anything about this condition? Is it readily diagnosable? Is it worth getting her labelled?


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 10:02 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2007 10:40 pm
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Your daughter sounds exceptionally bright,but i do wonder if the medical conditions she had/has caused this imbalance? I dont like to put children into a box,and label them,but i would investigate this.....Just go by your instincts as her mother. You are the only one who really knows her. You know there is something wrong,so get all the help and support she deserve's...Do not stop until you are happy. :) You are a good mother with concerns. :)


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