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Help, my kid is on probation at daycare :(

  1. DesertDreams88

    grapefruit / 4361 posts

    I'd do everything I could to eliminate the morning screen time. I know it will be hard. I have an exact 2-year age gap, with a 2-year old son and TV time worsens his behavior for sure.

    Also @MrsSRS: 's comment about 1-time directions is ON POINT. I'm an 8th grade teacher and I use this with my middle schoolers and my son, so they know/learn I mean business. I'm not trying to convince or cajole or nag, I gave a direction and I meant it.

  2. DesertDreams88

    grapefruit / 4361 posts

  3. MrsSRS

    nectarine / 2987 posts

    @LCTBQE: oh good! I'm always a little worried when I advocate for holding limits that I'm going to get slammed on here for being too strict. 😂 If there are any specific situations that regularly cause a problem for you, describe them and I'd be happy to create a script for you. And I didn't say anything before, because I've been in the weeds with a two year (and 4 day) age gap myself, but I'm going to agree with all the PP who said cut the am screetime.

    Also, my earlier comment was meant to point out that teachers should be able to handle this!! Not to shame you at all.

  4. crazydoglady

    nectarine / 2431 posts

    My gut is that it's not the right fit. So, L was at this daycare when he was 2.5 and it was a lovely place but not right for him.
    I put him in a place with more structure/boundaries and he has had very minor behavioral issues since.

  5. Mrs. Lemon-Lime

    wonderful pea / 17279 posts

    @LCTBQE: no problem, a treat for us is isn’t necessarily food related. For instance tonight LO wanted to play with Playdoh, but first he had to clean up a multi piece felt toy he took out before he started dinner that I didn’t require him to put away before eating, I also told him he had to finish dinner. Well in the middle of dinner he wanted out of his seat to poop in his diaper. He knew he had to clean up the felt toy, which he did during this poop break. But, he did not want me to change his diaper. I wouldn’t let him back in the seat without the diaper change. He started to whine and attempt to get into his chair by himself to quickly finish dinner to get to the play doh. He even told me he didn’t poop. I told him his window of opportunity was closing to play with playdoh and he had to get his diaper changed before finishing his dinner. He stopped whining and walked to where I was for the diaper change.

  6. Amorini

    persimmon / 1132 posts

    @LCTBQE: You are getting a lot of good advice. I’m sorry you are going through this. It sounds like your son is a total handful but within the range of normal. My son is the same age, in daycare and has had issues with following instructions. It is always around transitions with him and changes in routine. I only learned of his issues with following instructions at daycare because I asked. He had been having more intense tantrums, etc. as he was approaching 2 y.o. They hadn’t told me (and I take that they didn’t because it was not an abnormal thing that I needed to know about) that it took him several weeks to fall into line with their class cleanup chores after lunch. (Kids throw out their food, puts plates in one bin and cups in another). For whatever reason, he would cry and fuss and didn’t want to do it. They worked with him...first they let him go and do his own thing, then they asked him to do one of the chores, then another...and by the time I learned about it, he was completely onboard. So that’s how it can look with teachers who take their time to work with the ones like ours. I really like that some teachers have weighed in here, too, like @MrsSRS: It may be that your son just need the care of teachers who have a few more tricks up their sleeve. My kids daycare is run by a early childhood education PhD and all the teachers have at least their AA in early childhood. Many have four year degrees. I’m not saying that degrees are they end-all, be-all, but I do think it is part of what is helping make our daycare the right fit for what my kid needs. Btw, his class size is 1:5 on the busiest days and there are floaters too.

  7. Mrs. Lemon-Lime

    wonderful pea / 17279 posts

    @MrsSRS: I have a question about the hold limits. So, I am often having to repeat myself when it’s time to transition, he’ll do it, but unless it’s the next activity is something he really wants to do he moves so slow. Sometimes I feel like maybe I am not giving him enough time to wind down whatever he was doing like playing with a race car and other times I feel like he just preoccupied himself just to delay the transition. What’s your script/ hold for that?

  8. MrsSRS

    nectarine / 2987 posts

    @Mrs. Lemon-Lime: probably something like:
    "In two minutes we will be reading stories. You have two more minutes to play cars." Wait two minutes
    "It's time to finish up. Do your last thing and then we will put the car on the shelf." Wait 20 seconds
    "Car on the shelf please, it's time for stories!" Wait 3 or 4 seconds
    "You can put the car on the shelf or I can help you." Allow for a few seconds at the most, then make it happen.
    "Yay the cars are all done! Story time!"

    This is for a child who does well with lots of forecasting. Some can transition fine with a "wrap up please, it's time to be all done. Story time!" But lots of kids need several steps with clearer ends.

  9. Amorini

    persimmon / 1132 posts

    @MrsSRS: oh thanks for that! This script sounds a lot like what I do with my son around transitions. I thought I was going overboard but I guess not! He responds to this approach pretty smoothly about half the time with some minor squeals or whines. I consider that pretty good!

  10. poppygirl15

    apricot / 400 posts

    @LCTBQE: I'm glad you contacted a new center! It can never hurt to put your name on the wait list and keep your options open.

    My daughter has what we like to call "leadership qualities." She knows her own mind and *will* voice it. The other kids at the center were all suuuuper mild mannered and compliant (which was amazing). My dd wasn't difficult, but I think her energy (for lack of a better word) was just so different from what the director wanted, it was difficult. I remember one specific instance when the director was so upset because dd hadn't liked lunch and had thrown her plate on the floor. Now, I'll admit, that's annoying, but she was also TWO. I hardly thought it warranted the type of reaction the director gave it. It was also the only time dd had ever done something like that, so it wasn't like it was a constant problem. Right then, I just felt that she simply didn't really like/connect with dd. My dd is also anxious and becomes very connected to certain caregivers. At two, she was with the "big" kids, but she often preferred to relax with the babies because she preferred that teacher. I sort of wonder if that preference irked her, too.

  11. Mrs. Lemon-Lime

    wonderful pea / 17279 posts

    @MrsSRS: thank you! I can defintely start the escalating action requests & prompts.

  12. crazydoglady

    nectarine / 2431 posts

    Just coming back to say that L legit threw a chair and broke it at his old daycare and smacked a girl in the face for talking to him and the biggest issue at his new daycare is that he tells them "no" sometimes. Environment is everything.

    Could you possibly go observe him? It won't be a true assessment because you will be there and might sway things,, but it could offer some insights.

    I'm sorry, it's so hard. I feel like daycare stress the is the worst thing about being a WOHM.

  13. looch

    wonderful pear / 26210 posts

    My son hasn't been the easiest in terms of behavior, but one thing I learned on these boards is to ask my son if there is something I can do to help him understand what I am asking of him.

    I ask one time, in a straight forward question. When he doesn't respond, I ask him if he understood what I asked him and what I can do to help him understand. It's made a world of difference and I wish I had known this sooner.

  14. maddyz

    persimmon / 1270 posts

    @kiddosc: This is my DS2 right now and 25 months... it's crazy. But also I am just letting it blow over. DS1 started biting at 19 months when DS2 was born. It was HELL for two months and then pasted. I can't imagine how that would have gone over if he was at a daycare... two is hard.

  15. Nutella

    persimmon / 1045 posts

    @LCTBQE: hi love! Sorry you’re going through this. Just wanted to say that sometimes you just grow out of daycare centres (we have been through 4 for our four yo) and it has been for similar but different reasons as above. I also got the idea that one f the places they just didn’t seem to “like” him so that made me upset... I also would trial out mixing up sleep routines and maybe more food? My little guy combusts if he’s hungry since they are so active during the day the food isn’t nearly enough to compensate.

    Hugs! I’m sure you’ll work it out - you’re doing amazingly well! Xxx

  16. LCTBQE

    nectarine / 2461 posts

    Hi all, sorry I dropped the ball on responding here! The baby has reflux and a cold + Halloween etc etc.

    But I have an update, which is that we actually did get him checked out by an EI specialist--my good friend's mother has worked as an EI evaluator for the state for like 25 years, and we saw them over the weekend at a party they were hosting. I told her everything that was going on and relayed to her that I didn't want anything sugar-coated for my ego. She played with my boy for 20 minutes, asking him to do things and asking questions, and then watched him/interacted with him for 3 hours afterwards. Then yesterday we took him to his physician. Both of them were 1000% firm and completely clear that his development is advanced and perfectly healthy, but that there IS a problem here, which is that the daycare is a bad fit. So, exactly what all of you said. I'm so grateful for all of the support from all of you

    @DesertDreams88: @MrsSRS: @looch: @Mrs. Lemon-Lime: so the EI lady told me that in the instance of kids like my son, all of the training she does is training the *parents*--I have been taking a hard look over the past week at how we deal with/talk to the boy, and am realizing that my husband and I are both (in different ways) pushovers. I realized I was doing SO much repeating myself with instruction, plus a ton of asking/suggesting to him instead of telling him. The EI woman was like, "stop asking him if he *wants* to put his shoes on, of course he's going to tell you no". So, long story short we have a lot to learn but we are working on it. Not anywhere near perfect but I've already seen a change in the boy with less fighting back--and when he starts in on whining and screaming he is actually responding pretty well to me telling him to stop. but I really do appreciate the specific advice, thank you! @desertdreams88 I am making my way through your old threads, they are terrific, thanks for this. @MrsSRS: the script is so helpful

    @poppygirl15: @Nutella: yes, this all sounds familiar. I think I've been reluctant to think about switching daycares because it's such a headache and we're really comfortable with our routine, plus the wait lists around here are fucking insanely long, plus places that would be good for the boy don't all take babies and I'm going back to work soon and would ideally like them in the same spot, but I've started calling around. it's really good to hear that this isn't atypical and that you guys have been happier in the end after doing the heavy lifting of switching. @Nutella: hi hi he is eating really well, I think--they say his meltdowns aren't related to whether or not he ate a good lunch/breakfast--I kind of wish there was a clear relationship to food or sleep because I know I could tackle that, you know? I seriously think the problem is that my husband and I aren't structured enough with him and he has a big personality and is potentially a little bored, and probably part of the problem is inconsistent sleep and too-late bedtime.

    @crazydoglady: I remember when you were going through this and thinking how stressful it must have been for you! hahaha, so now I'm here and yes, it's stressful I'm glad L is in a better spot.

    @poppygirl15: my kid sounds really, really similar to your girl and sounds like a similar situation. I actually get the sense that the caregivers (there are two) DO like him but that the director is the one who either doesn't like him that much, or just doesn't have patience for him. their ratio sucks (6:1) so they really need all the 2-year-olds to be super placid and tow the line. bleh.

    @Amorini: ahhhh your place sounds so great, that is wonderful that they're patient and working with your kid instead of throwing their hands up in the air. I really liked the home-y/no-nonsense attitude of our current place when I toured it, but now I see the flip side of it is that our kid just needs more

  17. MrsSCB

    pomelo / 5257 posts

    @LCTBQE: This is a great update! I also felt he sounded like a perfectly healthy, typical two-year-old, so I'm glad you were able to get some reassurance from pros. I hear you on the daycare switching, though....It's a total pain. We're on the waitlist for a preschool, because I'd like to switch F to a bigger school when the new baby comes and have the baby go to his small, in-home. But I don't know if we'll get off the waitlist in time! So I need to find backups, and ugh. It's all so time-consuming...

    And I feel like striking that balance between too much of a pushover and too authoritarian can be so tough. F has been getting more difficult in terms of following directions lately for sure. One thing that I find can help is capitalizing on the fact that he likes to do things himself. Also giving him choices, but I'm happy with either option, haha. For example, if I want him to get his shoes on, I'll say, "F, do you want to put your shoes on or do you want mommy to put them on?" Pretty much 100 percent of the time, he'll say, to anything, "I do by-self!" and then he'll do it. Also, when I feel like he's not listening, I do a lot of, "F--look at me. Look at mommy" and make really deliberate eye contact before saying something like, "Please don't throw books at me. That can hurt" (yes, this was an actual issue we had recently...). For whatever reason, it seems like that eye contact makes him more likely to listen.

  18. Chuckles

    persimmon / 1495 posts

    @LCTBQE: I'm glad you got some answers. Even if it's something that you need to work on, plus the school not being a good fit, it's still good to know the path forward. I might recommend that you seek out a local parent training program for parents of preschoolers. It's not just for kids who are having major issues, but it can also just be some teaching and coaching around setting firm limits while still obviously being caring and having fun together.

  19. PawPrints

    pomegranate / 3658 posts

    I haven't read every single comment but wanted to chime in to ask if you and your husband maybe could use some space to focus on communication around this? I was really alarmed by your description of him snapping at you when you suggested changing your son's sleep schedule. Something is up there, it is not at all okay for him to act like this is all on you and you have to magically solve the problem all by yourself. Is everything okay with him? Is this a normal way for him to treat you?

  20. LCTBQE

    nectarine / 2461 posts

    @MrsSCB: thanks for the support and commiseration yeah, the planning is time-consuming and stressful, and then what could be more time-consuming and stressful than dropping the kids off and picking up at different places?! my only hope long-term is that as a country we move to a 4-day/week work-week that's all I can think of that would be somewhat of a relief.

    Since I read your post I've been doing the two choices thing, which is something that the EI lady also told me about. I'm coming up on a lot of him (still) just flat-out ignoring me and not answering. But that's where the eye contact really works--if I kneel down and get in his face and make him look at me, it works 100% of the time and we can communicate and he'll tell me what's going on and I can direct or re-direct. the only issue is that it's not always possible, like if I'm nursing the newborn--but it's going better than it did a couple weeks ago. F's doing it himself is cute, he sounds similarly like a two year old

  21. LCTBQE

    nectarine / 2461 posts

    @Chuckles: yes, this is a really good suggestion and something that I want to do with my husband so we can be on the same page. it sounds kind of nutty to say this, but we did puppy kindergarten/training together with our new dog and it really helped for us both to be effective in the same way. we're kind of in survival mode right now with the newborn, so right now we're just reading the same book (No Drama Discipline--anyone?) and trying to talk a lot and touch base a lot about what we're doing so we're consistent.

    @PawPrints: see above re us working together on this-- but yeah, it is unfortunately typical of him to react with hostility to situations that are threatening to him. he *really* does not like being told "we have to do this"--he has to marinate on changes and then come to terms with them and think through things on his own, it's the only way he feels empowered in the decision. It's exasperating, but almost always he comes around within a few days and is (ultimately) pretty reasonable and flexible. In this instance, about two days after he adamantly refused to change bedtime, he started making a good-faith effort to get the boy to bed earlier and has gotten serious about trimming down his insanely complicated bedtime routine, and then was encouraged by immediate good results, which has motivated him to keep at it. And he came back to me and was like, you're right, this is working, and let's do it. So... eh. Nobody's perfect.


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