How to Find Help for Your Child by Accessing Community Resources
Joey just came home from school. He was crying that he no longer wanted to go to kindergarten because he did not have friends. Joey complained that the teacher put him into timeout again for disrupting the class. He suddenly had a stomach ache. Mom was beside herself. This was not the first time that Joey complained. It was becoming a weekly and sometimes a daily event.
Mom finally phoned her friend, Jasmine, who was great in finding help when needed for her four children. Jasmine assured Mom that all would work itself out and provided her with the following:
Community Resource Action Plan
- Talk with Joey to determine how he was feeling about the challenges at school. Find out if there were children bothering him. Try to determine if he was creating the conflicts with his classmates. Ask Joey if the schoolwork was bothering him? Ask Joey if something at home was upsetting him? Brainstorm solutions for resolving some of the conflicts as school.
- Meet with the teacher to find out what was going on at school. For example, was Joey being too aggressive with his classmates? Was Joey having trouble focusing on classwork? Was Joey bored with the assignments and did he need more stimulation?
- After meeting with the teacher, mom might need to meet with her physician to identify any health-related issues that can be contributing to Joey’s anxieties and stomach aches.
- When meeting with the doctor, mom may want to request a referral for a family therapist that can help her assist Joey in reducing extreme and recurring anxieties at school.
- Mom can also receive referrals for family support through the school, at community social service agencies, and by asking friends for their contacts for help. Sometimes, anxiety issues come from changes in the home. Other times, children can be a victim of bullying.
- Occasionally, the problem may be an indication of a learning disability that has not been previously identified. If there is a potential learning disability, the school will ask for the parents’ permission to evaluate the child for further special education services. Parents can also seek outside support and obtain referrals from community-based agencies. Parents Helping Parents provides extensive information and referral services for families of children with special needs.
More Time for Play
As Joey’s mom further investigated Joey’s fear of school, she soon learned that Joey was reacting to typical stresses of being a big brother to a new baby sister. When meeting with his teacher, mom learned that she could give Joey more encouragement and autonomy in the home as a big brother and helper with his new baby sister. Mom arranged for Joey to have play dates with classmates after school. Joey’s mom also scheduled special times for Joey to have individual quality time with mom or dad. His teacher addressed his need for attention and coping by giving him added encouragement and responsibilities at the school.
A Happy Ending
Today, Joey is in first grade. He is happy to be at school. Joey has many friends and he brings them home for play dates after school. He is performing well academically. Most of the time he is happy to be a big brother. Joey is a leader and loves to show his baby sister how to play with his big boy toys.
Much success with accessing essential services for your family!
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