Wednesday, May 6, 2009

End of school year RAD

The end of the school year is always EXPLOSIVE at our house. Always. I worked as para in our grade school off and on over the years and May is tough. The kids are excited about summer vacation. It is hard to keep them on task with the sun shining and the outdoors whispering their names over their books. They are talkative and many are ornery and hyper. A child with RAD feeds off this energy and takes it several steps further. Here are a few things we do to help.

Regular bedtimes: As the days get longer it gets tempting to let the kids stay outside later to play. A regular bedtime routine gives them enough sleep and the structure they need.

Healthy foods: Try to avoid sugar and a lot of processed foods.

Down time: Have time at home where they sit or lay down to read, do puzzles or some quiet activity.

Homework: Have a quiet place for homework at a scheduled time. If they refuse to do it do not become emotionally involved. I just tell mine that it is their decision they will sit there the allotted time. Do not get sucked into drama. Stay calm and let it be their problem.

Teachers: We start getting a barrage of calls. I support the teachers as much as I can but I cannot make my child behave at school.

Fun times: Right now it is hard to do fun activities at home because of the level of hyperactivity. Outdoor activities like walks, basketball or picnics seem to work the best.

Remember school will be over soon. Do not say or do anything that will damage your relationship with your child. It just isn't worth it. At the same time they should not be walking all over the family. If need be give them a nap time to rest until they can compose themselves or extra chores to burn off energy. Mine seem to love the rhythmic activities of raking, scrubbing floors or sweeping. Something about moving their arms back and forth seems to calm them.

When their behaviors escalate remember to care for the caregiver more intensely at well. They can wear you down. Have a healing day!


Lorraine said...

We have also found that the knowledge that a change is coming gets my RAD kid riled up. Just knowing that this school year is ending and next year will be a different grade and a different teacher, knowing that there won't be that familiar schedule of school for the summer gets him nuts. Add to it that his birthday is at the end of school and the fact that he has pushed away most of the kids in his class so has no one who will come to a party, add to that his brother has the same birthday as him and has lots of friends wanting to celebrate and well it's bee interesting. Lots of tantrums, lots of rocking, lots of bruises on me.

truevyne said...

I've haven't had my radish in school in a many, many years, so thanks for the post to keep me on alert.

I totally gave over school to the teachers (and sometimes have to pry my hands back off the details), so I'm off the hook there.

I pray I can handle phone calls cause I know he'll feed off the end of school chaos as you described.