Hello, guest
Name: cherrymom05
[ Original Post ]
My son is 11 now and he's been off meds for about 3 months now. His Dr. and I decided to take Michael of Medication because of his weight problem. He was only 42 lbs. ( off meds he,s about 50-55 ) On medication he is a very smart boy in all the gifted and talented programs. also very depressed, doen't play with anyone. walked around like a zombie. Made me so sad to see this little playless child.

Now he can't sit still he plays all day and is having some issues on whats right and wrong. alittle more that a typical child i think, but can not focas on school work, cant remember to write down his homework, his handwriting is so bad we cant read it. looses everything, everyday. He's a happy kid, but now he's failing all his classes. on meds they wanted to skip him into a higher grade now he cant get a A in ART.

I went in for his 504 and his teachers didn't believe me that he cant focas, consintrate, write fast enough, it's a real disability for him...I need to know if i'm not happy with his 504 and i think the teachers think that "he's going to have to write alot of homework to function in H.S. we can't baby him anymore middle school is not elementary school." Thats what i was told. but he has 6 different teachers now and if they all give him homework. it takes him all night to do it and he gets no play time....I have 5 kids and michael see's everyone else playing and he is still inside finishing up class work and doing homework. How do i know if the school can do more for michael he is highly inteligent. but cant get the writing stuff done. where do i go from here. The school did make some modifications but he's not getting his class work done because he still stuck on the heading while the rest of the class is on problem # 5. The school said he can come to school 1 hour early to make up math work. and stay after to a study class to finish more work but that seems like alot of school time to me...he leaves my house at 7am to walk to school to work on math.
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Name: teresa | Date: Sep 29th, 2006 12:28 PM
What was your son taking medication for and what type? If your son was diagnosed as ADHD you might want to try Strattera. This a a non-stimulant medication that doesn't effect appetite or sleep, but will allow them to focus better. It's also a 24 hour medication. 

Name: Lisa Thyr | Date: Oct 2nd, 2006 1:54 AM
I think that you just didn't find the right medication for your son. There are alot of medications out there that won't affect his weight. Every med. has side effects you just have to find the right one. Leaving the house at seven is going to be hard on everyone in your household . Your son sounds really great I think you should talk to your doctor and try something else. It's alot of trial and error but it's worth it when you find something that works. I am still in the searching process but I am looking into the future for my son who is 8 and is also very bright. My son has excelent verbal skills but as soon as you ask him to write down anything his thoughts get lost in the translation. But we are working really hard to help him and the school has been really awesome and we talk all the time. Well I hope that you find what works for you soon. 

Name: DeeDee | Date: Nov 11th, 2006 4:29 AM
My son also has handwriting issues. you can't read his handwriting. the more stressful the work the more you can't read it. He has an IEP and is assigned a computer called an Alphasmart. he is not required to write his work. he is required to type it and they tell me that the higher grades use computers for most of their work now anyway. My son is 12 by the way and he has had occupation therapy for help with his handwriting his whole school age life and it hasn't helped. We just wrote into his IEP that they are going to assign him a typing program to teach him to type faster. i asked for this because they cut OT from his IEP because it didn't do anything for him. Ask if one is available. My son has had one assigned for him for a couple of years. he does his work on it, saves it and prints it out at school. as for math, he does the work but sometimes i write it out for him so that the teacher can read it. 

Name: DeeDee | Date: Nov 11th, 2006 4:33 AM
Ask your doctor about periactin. it is an allergy medicine that my son's doctor at Boston Children's Hospital gave him for weight gain. We added that to his medication. He was 8 and weighed 32 pounds. While on it, he doubled his weight. He is now 12 and has been off for half and year and has maintained his weight. as for the depression, ask your doctor about wellbutrin i tried it and it was great. he did what he was told, engaged with people, no fighting, etc. it has now been three months since he started it and is doing much better in class, can't wait for report card next week. 

Name: billy22 | Date: Nov 11th, 2006 6:56 PM
My son entered middle school last year and we created a 504 plan just before. They have worked and worked and although this year has been better, he still is a "classroom distraction." All the teachers love him and say how smart he is, if he could just stay focused! (If I had a nickle for every time I heard that!) So I finally put my foot down and demanded a Special Ed referll(so he will have an IEP) so that he can get MORE help. I am hoping that this is gonna work! He too has been off meds now for about 5 months and he is happier:) He's put on weight and looks healthy! So I feel your pain.....maybe you should talk to the school about additional services. Good Luck!:) 

Name: megray | Date: Dec 11th, 2006 8:09 AM
My son is 14 and has adhd, depression, and anxiety. He is currently only taking lexapro for his depression and anxiety. It has helped tremendously. We have tried adderall, concerta, strattera, and wellbutrin all of these medications have had bad side effects in one way or another (trouble sleeping, more aggressive, too emotional, stomach aching, severe headaches). We have longed for the miracle pill. We have seen doctors, a psychiatrist, psychalogist, and counselors with little help. Our son had a horrible time in 7th grade. He couldn't get his work done do to lack of focus. His teachers say he is so bright and intellegent if only we could get him to focus. They also say he is not disturbing to his classmates but only to himself. He had one male teacher that would come up behind him in class and would push on his shoulder and yell at him to get to work periodically in class. That is when his anxiety started. My son says its not that he doesn't want to do good he just can't seem to pull it together. It breaks my heart in one moment and then in another I am so frustrated I feel as though I could pull my hair out. I have now removed him from public school because he had a 504 plan, but the counselor informed me that they would not make any modifications for him other than a one hour tutorial class after school. He was failing math, English, and Science, but their answer to that is to put him in a classroom with fifteen other kids who are distractiable and not doing well in school and this is supposed to help my child. I don't understand how educated people can be so dumb. We are currently doing homeschool and it is not going as well as I expected. I don't know if i should put him back in public school and fight for modifications or maybe some testing from the school. I feel like my son fell through the cracks in the public school system and they do not care at all. If anyone can help with some advice I would gladly take it. Thanks 

Name: mar22 | Date: Dec 12th, 2006 3:07 AM
the school should supply him with a computer. as for home work why doesnt the teacher lesson his amount so he can feel successful isnt that what this is about making our kids feel success, i feel it doesnt matter how much to give but do they undersatand it and why not modify for the kids who cant do 20 questions, instead give 7. as to homework time at home why not start home work at night after supper than he will have time to socialize and play. maybe the teachers can work out a plan with you. that your son only sit for an hour to do home work and thats it. see if they will modify on how much to give him he shouldnt be expected to keep up to the others especially when off meds. he needs to put on wieght because he is so tiny maybe fatten him up with ensure drink. i just wish kids like ours were understood and the teachers more willig to accomodate to these kids. schools hard enough and with the pressures of trying to be like the other students is not fair. i remember when i was young that i would be doing homework for 4 to 6 hours anight some times. it was horrible. i hated to find out that the rest of the kids did theirs in 45 minutes. it just didnt seem fair to me. it wasnt the lack of trying by any means i too was easilly distracted, i would get tired of reading it would make me sleepy because it required allot of my attention. i often felt disapointed and stupid because i could not do the work as fast as the others. This i dont wont for your son it would just be nicer if they would accomodate and lesson his work so he feels accomlishment instead of defeatment and long drawn out nights of naging homework. Sorry to ramble hope i made some sense. just trying to help. all the best of luck to you and your son 

Name: Lory | Date: Dec 18th, 2006 5:17 AM
Kinda late post, sorry. I don't know if anyone's heard of a "CHARTER" school. It's a public school but it's still within the district you live in and there's no tuition. Smaller class sizes, sometimes mixing of grades, more "hands-on" teaching. Anyway, to my point. My 11yr. old daughter has some various disabilites. Since moving her to this school, about 3 yrs. ago,(she's in 5th grade) she hasn't been on meds, is on an IEP, and is doing great. Her class is mixed with 4th & 5th. It helps because she is still in 4th math. I guess what I'm trying to say here without writing a book...is check in your areas for these kinds of schools. In Colorado it's called expeditionary learning. The teachers are more equipped to handle our children and their disabilities. I was told it's a different way of teaching as apposed to regular public schools. Obviously I don't really know all the technical terms. I just know it's been wonderful for her and us. 

Name: Yawmom | Date: Dec 20th, 2006 12:41 AM
WOw--did your note strike a cord with me. My son is now 19, but in elementary and Jr High we had big problems.
We sat with the teachers and discussed the 504 plan--one teacher stated he didn't believe in ADD and walked out!! The Social Worker apologized but needless to say I asked if my son could be put in a different class.
By law they have to enforce the 504 Plan, it has to be a reasonable plan though. They have to level the playing field. For instance because it takes him longer because he can't concentrate to do the work, have him do 50% --as one teacher told me, it's not the assignment that needs completing, it's grasping the concept of the assignment. He should be graded on what was required that way.
Also, he can have oral testing rather than written, and in the hall or private.
Of course you have to keep on him, don't let him slack.
You can ask them to have a daily journal of assignments and have the teacher sign it, therefore knowing what is being done or what needs done.
You can have him sit in the front of the class so he's focused more, rather than have him get distracted by everything else in fron of him if he sits in back.
Have him get a "study buddy" which is common when the teacher doens't have time. Someone in class that he can ask questions to, or check on his completed assignments to keep him in check.
In elementary mine had a 3 sided large cardboard blinder so to speak, that was set on top of his desk so he could concentrate more, they referred to it as his office.
Did you do any research on the net? They may have suggestions. It's been so long I can't remember it all, but remind the teachers it's the law and they have to comply. They don't like to make accomediations but it's for his good. Life isn't fair for these kids and they need help.

Name: Lory | Date: Dec 20th, 2006 2:39 AM
To Yawmom: Great advice! We don't have what you call a 504plan...but everything you have explained is what has been working for my daughter at her charter school. Sitting in front of class, study buddy, grasping assignments, tutoring is what has all helped. She actually "likes" being @ school now. Before she would cry everyday not to go. And...I mean everyday. I had to fight the school district to get her the help.

To cherrymom05: It is sooo frustrating, but...Yawmom is right! Keep fighting, it is in his best interest. And..they do have to accommodate. There were times when I couldn't even get the school counselor to talk with us and help. She would schedule a meeting and not attend! I don't want to sound negative at all, but...you gotta keep fighting, don't let them, let him fall through the cracks! Good Luck to you! 

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