I am in need of advice! My DS is 9 years old in 3rd grade. He was the calmest easiest baby and toddler you can imagine. In preschool and kindergarten his teacher's LOVED him because he behaved so well. The last 2 years he is experiencing more and more "behavior" issues.
We believe that children should respect adults and follow directions, and have raised them this way (also have 4 yr old DD) My SO and i have been together for 12 years and we have an extremely stable household with strict routines (though having enough money week to week is a stresser in our household).
As I have stated he has always been really "easy-going" and at times seems like an old-soul. But lately he keeps getting in trouble on the bus, at school, back-talking me about EVERYTHING and going into RAGES about stupid stuff (cleaning, losing at a video game, his sister). Today I got a call from his teacher that he is in BIG trouble at school. He will be bringing home a "reflection" note for us to work on together and return to school.
This year he has been almost kicked off the school bus once, in the principle's office once, given lunch-time detention for a week by his teacher once, and now this. At conferences I had a long talk with his teacher's about his behavior and had a long talk with him afterwards and I thought we had this all figured out...I was wrong.
I am extrememly upset by it. I was NEVER ONCE in trouble as a child. I ALWAYS listened and behaved.
The teacher keeps saying he's trying to be the "class clown" and that in her opinion is a VERY bad thing. I also had her as a teacher when I was young and I do remember her being overly "strict" to put it politely.
On a side note- this year (for the first time EVER) he has been refusing to let us cut his hair and has grown it very long and shaggy. I thought this was his first glimmer of idependance rearing it's head and I have allowed him to grow it. The teacher on the phone today specifically told me his hair is "part of the problem" and "I need to take him in and get it cut immidiately." I told her that it was our way of allowing him to express himself (and I've seen and been told that for the 3rd and 4th grade boys in his school long shaggy hair is all the rage right now). #1 is it her place to tell me to get his hair cut? #2 is it my place to make him?
My quetion is, I've always heard the addage that "boys will be boys" and that their more outrageous behaviors are therefore excusable...
Is it my place to severely punish him (no games, tv, sledding, etc) (gentle punishment has not worked obviously) or should I not worry about it so much?
I remember boys getting in trouble a lot in school and most of them have grown up to be productive members of society. It seems to me the boys that were the "class clowns" were often to most liked and had many friends. I want him to learn respect and boundaries and how to get along in our society. But at the same time I don't want to turn him into a "cookie cutter" that can't think for himself. I think it's important to be able to be who you are.
Another side issue that is playing in to
this is that there are 2 boys that he rides the bus with that are in his
class that he is "frenemies" with. Some days they try to go to each
other's houses to play, more often they take turns antagonizing each
other into a screaming rage, and i'm sure this is part of the overall
What do you ladies think? Do I need to lay down the law and make sure he's headed in the right direction or am I just getting worked up over nothing?