Getting daily reports about your child with ADHD's constant behavioral problems at school can be frustrating for many parents. These persistent reports of ADHD behavior problems often make us defensive and contribute to feelings of frustration and failure. We may feel that the teachers "have it out for our kid" and that they are being mistreated.
If you are dealing with a situation where you're receiving constant feedback from your child's teacher, especially if that feedback is mostly negative, we recommend doing the following things to help you and your child's teacher improve communication and find success.
First, remain calm and take a step back. Remember that email can mask the true meaning of what someone is trying to say as it can't convey body language or emotion. It can be easy to misinterpret what your child's teaching is trying to say, and that can inflame the situation or add to your stress level. Keeping calm will allow you to begin addressing what's happening positively. Understand that your child may exhibit different behavior problems at school than they do at home and that your child's behavior may make it difficult for them to do their job.
Second, determine what information you need from your child's teacher and how often. For some parents receiving a daily report may be too much, and a weekly report would be better. Other parents having a daily report is beneficial. In addition to determining how frequently you need the report, figure out how detailed you need the information to be. Do you need a summary of every negative behavior or would a checklist of frequency be enough?
Third, set up a face-to-face meeting with your child's teacher to discuss expectations for daily reports. Your child's teachers may think that you want detailed reports. We HIGHLY recommend that you do the meeting face-to-face as it allows you to improve communication and come up with solutions that are focused on helping your child.
Fourth, establish a behavior treatment plan. Getting all this information isn't help if there isn't a plan to address it. Determine consequences and rewards for specific behaviors. Discuss what you're doing at home with behavior skills and invite them to learn the behavior skills on Smarter Parenting so that you're both working together.
Fifth, ask for positive information. When children are continually acting up, it can be hard to remember to find the good. All children need praise and encouragement that they are doing things well. Praising positive behavior is one of the quickest ways to reduce negative behaviors and increase good behavior. Ask your child's teacher to include x number of positive things that your child did in the reports. Doing so will help them better see the good things your child does do! Learn more about how to use praise to improve behavior on SmarterParenting.com.
Remember, the goal is to find a way for you and your child's teacher to work together to help your child find success with their behavior problems at school.
For full show notes and transcripts visit: https://www.smarterparenting.com/adhd-parenting-podcast/