Monday, 11 June 2012

Too many teachers?

So I think we might have got to the bottom of it all.

We’re obviously a bit dim as we should have realised this earlier. As well as Mini’s obvious concerns about moving on (which we know is a concern to him because he’s been able to share it once or twice); we now know that school is playing on his mind. In a big way.

How do we know? Well, after a half term (which was awful to start with but ended nicely) with no wetting, little shouting, few minor tantrums, it all started again when it came to Sunday night and thoughts turned to school.

Dollop had been unwell most of Sunday, and Mini suddenly clocked that if he was ill, then he wouldn’t have to go to school on Monday. At various intervals he said he felt sick, so cuddles were given (although requests for the magic pink medicine were declined). As Dollop was asleep on daddy at bedtime, I put Mini to bed, where he announced that he absolutely could not possibly ever ever go to sleep because he was very very sick and he would just lay there forever! Of course within minutes he was snoring away…
During the night he wet the bed for the first time in a week.

Mini went off to school quite happily and was certainly pleased to see his friends. There was just a hint of reservation probably invisible to everyone else.
After school the other mums and I were surprised to see a new teacher letting the children out… At that point it all clicked into place.

Most of Mini’s issues became apparent at the start of this year. There have been many signs of an attachment problem since Dollop’s birth, but things have really been uncontrollable since January. This coincides with when Mini’s teacher Miss U, seemed to be having more and more time out of the classroom, and more and more sessions were led by different teachers. Usually the same teachers each week…Tuesday afternoon is always Miss X, Wednesday morning is always Mrs Y,  but then all of a sudden Monday afternoons were being taken by other teachers, and this particular Monday afternoon was yet again another teacher, one that we’ve never seen before.

On the way home from school Mini wet himself. Like the bedwetting, this was the first daytime wetting we’ve had since he finished school for the half-term holiday.

We’d linked the wetting with school before, but put it down previously to upcoming events – special assemblies, parties, parent’s afternoons etc, but no; it’s more than that. This is happening every day because Mini is getting nervous about whose going to be there. Mini never opens up about school, he seems to enjoy having something that only he knows about, and only ever shares little bits about his days. Today however, he was happy to talk about this afternoon’s teacher – the one who shouted at the children who were naughty, the one who was grumpy and unkind.

Mini’s not the only child who is nervous about all these different teachers. The daughters of the two mums I’ve become friends with (incidentally two of the girls that Mini loves best – marriage is on the cards, you wait and see!) also worry. One has been upset in the past about one of the other teachers they have and she seems to have overcome that, but she’s now worrying about moving up, and has been worrying about school during half term. The other is also concerned about moving up and growing up, but her mum sees how unsettled she is and wetting happens in their house too.

So tomorrow I am going to try to speak with Mini’s class teacher, I’m also writing a letter to the head teacher to try to find out what’s going on. It might only be for another 6 weeks but I don’t want the last 6 weeks of term to be so traumatic for Mini that he’s even more worried about going back in September…that would make the summer holidays awful for him...and us.


  1. We've had a bit of a similar situation this morning. Pickle has grown very attached to his teacher but we don't have numerous faces as is Mini's case. This morning was great. He skipped into school and was also excited to see his friends. The difference this morning was that the headteacher was at the door and she announced that everyone was to go straight to the carpet. Not one to missed an opportunity to question a change, Pickle asked 'Why?'. The head said in an overly excited and enthusiastic voice that all the children would be going to visit their new classroom in Year 1. Well that may seem exciting but it is utterly terrifying for Pickle and no doubt for most of the kids. He all of a sudden became very clingy, wanted kisses and cuddles (which we don't usually get) and to wave at me from the window. I wasn't intending to make a big deal out of this yet. I could have slapped her with a wet fish! Grrrr. I hope you manage to alleviate some of Mini's concerns. I intend to work on damage limitation this evening. (Just realised I could have made a blog post out of that reply, it was so long :))

    1. How sensitive of the head to make such an announcement - not! Hope he coped OK with it, and is calm this evening, good luck with the damage limitation.

      I've made an appointment to see Mini's teacher on Friday after school. Another mum had words this morning (her daughter is one of the ones scared about growing up), and found out why Mini's teacher is away so often. As I suspected, it's because she's become SENCO and therefore spends time training and in other classes. Great for her, and the school but unfortunately, it's affecting the well-being of several of her own class, so definitely something I need to chat to her about.