long post, sorry!
My son just started at a new preschool on Jan 2. He is coming from a daycare that had very few "rules" or structured activity, so I feel like not only is he getting used to the new building/friends/teachers, he's also getting used to having much more structured play and learning.
He's started acting very physically aggressive in the past 2 weeks. He hit a couple students, knocked over their block towers, kicked teachers when they were attempting to discipline him, spit at one of his teachers the other day, etc etc. He rarely displays that type of behavior at home. When he's having a tantrum, it can get a little nasty sure, but the worst of what we experience on a day-to-day is basically just him yelling"no", or not listening. My question is: is his acting out actually part of the transitioning process, or is it a whole other beast that we have to start addressing? If it IS part of the transition, and he just needs time to get acclimated to his new structure, what is the "normal" amount of time that it takes to get over the hump?
We're on the defensive with his school because it's almost starting to feel like they're hyper sensitive to his issues, and every day there's more and more bad news. I'm sure they're just trying to keep us in the loop, and need to maintain a safe environment for the other students, but there's almost a lack of understanding about the fact that he's new. One even suggested he be "evaluated" after not even 3 weeks of him being there. We were horrified at the thought (he's not even 3 yet), but brought it up with the pediatrician anyway and she was outraged - saying it was ridiculous that they don't understand normal toddler behavior. Having said that, his physical behavior HAS gotten worse according to the school - but again I'm just wondering if we should wait it out, or if we actually do have a problem on our hands (with either the school itself, or my son).
pomelo / 5084 posts
@leighleigh: Hugs mama! That sounds super rough. I am sure the teachers are stressing YOU out and your son feels it, making the whole thing feed off of itself. To me (not a doctor or teacher), I would assume the huge new change is the issue. He lost his familiar surroundings, friends, structure etc. It is a pet peeve of mine when teachers or preschool directors expect age-inappropriate behaviors from toddlers. He is not even THREE. He cannot control his big emotions. I would inform the school that you appreciate being kept in the loop, and drop it. Other than that, give him extra understanding and hugs. I am thinking it will dissipate over time.
pomelo / 5563 posts
My son did the same thing when he moved from the toddler to preschool room at his school - he started hitting. Always out of nowhere, and always the bigger kids - his teachers suggested that he was just trying to find his place in the room and establish a presence among kids who were bigger, older, and more advanced. I’d say it lasted a few weeks? And then he settled in and has been back to the kid we knew.
cherry / 154 posts
@erinbaderin: thank you! funny, because it seems to be happening with the older kids! this is helpful, thanks again.
cherry / 154 posts
@wrkbrk: thanks mama - much appreciated
understanding and patience are everything!
grapefruit / 4492 posts
@leighleigh: Not exactly the same, but when our babysitter takes our son to playgrounds, indoor activity centers, anything with a bunch of kids. He has only ever been aggressive with the older kids (pushing/hitting). I talked to his ped about it, and he said that it's basically just him trying to establish himself. If he was around the same kids all of the time, it would fizzle out in 2-3 weeks.
cherry / 154 posts
@Sams Mom: helpful nonetheless! thanks for your response.