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January 10, 2013

Sitting on the Other Side of the Desk

In the past 13 years of teaching I have filled out numerous ADHD screening surveys.  I have SST'd students.  I have pulled students closer to the board, used play dough and velcro to help fidgeting, used privacy boards to help with distractions, used highlighters, reduced "red" colors, worked in small groups, taught after school intervention, etc...

Had many talks with parents that consisted of a conversation like this, "I'm not able to diagnose... but what I'm seeing in your child makes me believe that a visit with his/her doctor might better clarify the focus/attention issues."

This morning I sat on the other side of the desk.

I was the mom in the ADHD group screening room.  I was the mom that filled out the parent questionnaire a month ago.  I was the mom sitting this morning through a class on the characteristics of ADHD (wondering to herself how much information has changed since those college courses), the history of it and the whatnot.  I was the mom that tried to convince her child that going to the doctor would be "fun".  I was the mom that dealt with her child throwing a temper tantrum while refusing to go with the kids in the group.  

I was the one wondering what had happened to her child, what she could have done differently, if there was anything in the past 6 years that should have clued me in earlier.  

It's not a done deal.  This may not be what he's dealing with.  Something needs to change though because life is only going to get more challenging, school will get harder...

My son means the world to me.  If nothing else this experience has made me view the process that parents go through - the emotional roller coaster.  It has made me realize the different steps and evaluations that the kids are also subjected to.  I have heard the speech that the specialists tell the parents.  I have filled out the same paper.  I know how they feel.  I only hope this will help me be a better teacher and support system to parents dealing with the same types of things  

Thanks for listening to me ramble.  


  1. What a challenging experience. I don't have kids of my own yet, so I have no idea what it would be like. Hopefully there is an answer. Keep strong through the process!



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