Trying something new with Leora

Leora's ganenet, Chani, has been meeting regularly with the psychologist from the city and with the head of gans or something like that to try to figure out how best to deal with Leora. They really haven't given her any great ideas. My impression is that she's pushing to try to get them to put someone extra in the class for some time each day to work with Leora. Last night the psychologist called to tell us about their latest and greatest idea. Leora always eats very well in gan so they felt that if I brought Leora (Chani had previously told us that it's better when I bring her because she screams a lot louder and longer when Shira leaves than when I do) with food it might help. Maybe if I left her with Chani while she was eating they'd develop some kind of relationship.

There are really two problems at the gan. One is the separation; Leora has a very hard time parting from us and she screams every day when we leave. I usually walk her to the gate and she stands there screaming as I pull away. Recently, she went in a couple times on her own after about 5 minutes. The other problem is that she doesn't pay any attention to the teachers. When anyone talks Hebrew to her she completely tunes them out and now even when Chani tries to talk to her in broken English she doesn't listen. So the idea was that this food trick might help with both.

So I went with Leora around 8:35 to gan. It officially starts at 8 but we usually go at that time because it's too hard for the guard to keep her locked in when too many parents are coming and going. We brought "Shabbos cereal" and milk for Leora to eat and Chani went into a back room with us. There are 35 kids in the gan and the teacher and her assistant. So for a half hour it was 34 kids just with the assistant. Leora refused to eat or to even look at Chani for the first 15 minutes. Chani drew a picture of her bowl with cereal and Leora wouldn't look at it. First I tried not saying anything but Leora kept clinging to me so finally I told her to count how many of each color were in the picture and she counted together with Chani. Then they made a crown together but Leora continued to glance back at me to make sure that I wasn't going anywhere. I kept inching away from her and she seemed OK with that. Finally at 9:05 Chani had to go out to the classroom. Leora realized that meant that I was going to leave so she started running out the door. I pulled her back in and tried to talk her into staying in gan but she refused. So she went outside with me screaming just like she'd done on every other day. I asked Chani if she wanted to try the same thing tomorrow. She said that she was off until Friday and we'll see what happens next. I don't think this was any great success but we have a meeting on Sunday with the psychologist and we'll see what she says.

2 comments:

tnspr569 said...

Hope it all works out...

Shira said...

P.S. I also told the psychologist that it wasn't really a wise idea to calm her anxieties with food as this would be a bad habit to have when she is older.