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AIBU

Entertainment or Cruelty?

(34 Posts)
icanhandthemback Sun 06-Jun-21 11:41:01

My DGS is ASD and started mainstream school this year with a 1:1 SEN assistant. You only have to be in the room with my Grandson for 2 minutes and you realise that he is not Neuro-typical. He is a bright, happy little boy but probably about 18 months to 2 years behind in his emotional and social development. He is also dyspraxic so is very clumsy and doesn't always sense where his extremities begin and end. He trips over his own feet all the time!. He isn't naughty as a general rule but his need for sensory stimulation can mean he can be loud which obviously his key worker and the teacher have to try to quash. For the most part in school, he joins in enthusiastically but is finding some of the boundaries that the other children find easy, much more difficult. For example, the children are allowed to play pushing games (don't ask me why) and he doesn't always realise how hard he is pushing. The teacher says that he there is no malice or temper involved but wants him to temper his pushing. That seems to be a difficult ask but my son and his wife are working on it. Apart from allowing pushing games, they have no problem with the school, engage with the teacher on a daily basis to check everything is ok and are encouraged by the positivity of the teacher.
My son has had some concerns that certain children keep coming up to him in the playground and telling him that our DGS is "naughty". As they are 5 years olds, I tell my son not to worry, kids are very open, don't understand autism and are very friendly with our boy, he shouldn't be too concerned. My son is very keen that DGS should not use autism as an excuse for bad behaviour and wants him to be the best person he can be albeit with the neurological constraints he was born with.

However, at a Birthday Party of one of the children from the class last week, the "entertainer" asked who was the naughtiest child in the class. Every child pointed at our DGS and shouted his name. Our boy was oblivious (his language and understanding are very delayed) so was quite excited at everybody shouting his name but it was like an arrow to my son's heart. He is gutted that his son is seen in this light.

I asked my son what he had done and he said nothing. I said if I had been there I would have quietly spoken to the entertainer that this is not a question that should have been asked at all. Very many "naughty" children have issues which make them appear naughty and if they are labelled as such, it can be destructive to their self esteem and sets them aside from their peer group. My son didn't want to make a fuss but I think this sort of thing should be addressed even if it is only to educate. As a children's entertainer, there is surely a duty to be inclusive, show kindness and that picking on one child is not entertainment. AIBU?

Oopsadaisy1 Sun 06-Jun-21 11:48:38

What an odd question for an ‘entertainer’ to ask?

I can’t think why anyone would ask such a question and I’m surprised that the parent of the Birthday child didn’t have a word with him too.

I’m also confused about a pushing game in school, what on earth is that all about? Unless they are pushing an object rather than each other.
We never let our children push each other and wouldn’t expect others to do it either.
So NYANBU. And I feel for your GS and his parents.

nanaK54 Sun 06-Jun-21 11:48:47

Oh that is so sad, of course the entertainer should not ask such a question

dragonfly46 Sun 06-Jun-21 11:58:54

Oh this is so sad. That question should never be asked in a group of children as it encourages pointing the finger.
As an ex teacher of young children I always used encouragement as a reward. I would suggest this entertainer needs to be told so that he doesn't continue to put little ones on the spot like this.

Peasblossom Sun 06-Jun-21 12:04:21

No, it’s a horrible thing to have happened but there are no standards for children’s entertainers. Anyone can advertise as one and do it any way they want. Believe me, I’ve seen some awful ones.

As your DGS wasn’t upset by it, just let that bad moment go.
It happens. People are stupid.

I’d be more concerned about the children in his class seeing him as the naughty one. There are ways of tackling that in school and changing their perception.

Five year olds are beginning to be aware that the world is wide and full of diversity and it’s a stage when they move from what is right because they are told so, to making their own judgements. Some of them will be capable of realising your DGSs difficulties, some won’t have got there yet, but it’s part of their education to be guided.

Your son should let the school know what happened in a calm way. It’s an opportunity for them to develop all the children’s social and emotional skills and make classroom life more inclusive for your grandson.

dragonfly46 Sun 06-Jun-21 12:09:51

I agree Peasblossom your son should indeed speak to your DGC's teacher. Hopefully the other children's perception of your DGC can be changed.

dragonfly46 Sun 06-Jun-21 12:10:34

Sorry that sounded like it is Peasblossom's son. I meant the OP's son of course.

FarNorth Sun 06-Jun-21 12:31:38

I expect the children see your DGS as 'naughty' because the way he behaves would be called that if they did it.
I think it could be helpful for your DS to mention this to the teacher, to discuss how it can be dealt with.

The entertainer should not have asked the children to single someone out, although it sounds as if it was good-natured.

PaperMonster Sun 06-Jun-21 14:18:26

I expect that the ‘pushing’ game will just be children pushing each other on the playground- they all do it. He just doesn’t know his own strength, but that will come with time. Odd question for the entertainer to ask though - he could do with someone having a word with him.

BlueBelle Sun 06-Jun-21 14:51:20

I can’t see what a pushing game is about at all playground classroom or wherever …..pushing game sounds ridiculous

I m glad your grandson saw it as a positive yes it might be worthy of a chat with the teacher although I presume the teacher would have contacted your son or daughter in law if he was really being naughty It could have all been good natured and he may be looked up to by his classmates as the one without as many restrictions as them so it could even be that he’s looked up to by his class mates as the leader not as negative as you are seeing it

greenlady102 Sun 06-Jun-21 14:55:54

I am 67 and pushing games were banned in my school when I was 7! I am not a parent or grandparent but I thought words like naughty weren't used in schools now? and yes I would be having a quiet friendly word with the entertainer.

Granny23 Sun 06-Jun-21 15:43:42

On holiday at a huge static Caravan & Lodges park my Son in Law took DGS and DGD to watch the children's entertainer's 6 o'clock show. He was horrified when the man went round the children asking each their nationality. They were mainly Scots [Big Cheer led by entertainer|] some English {boos led by the man] and when a Brother & Sister announced they were German, he gave a Nazi salute and shouted Heil Hitler!!!

Then addressing the boys only, he reeled off a list of allegedly hilarious 'Good things about being a boy rather than a girl' which culminated in him saying 'Girls don't have a Willy to play with when they are bored.'

SIL immediately removed his own children and went straight to the Camp Manager to complain, only to be told that the kids loved the man and all kids like to hear and laugh at rude words. DD wrote to the head of the chain of holiday parks but failed to get a reply.

greenlady102 Sun 06-Jun-21 15:47:34

Granny23

On holiday at a huge static Caravan & Lodges park my Son in Law took DGS and DGD to watch the children's entertainer's 6 o'clock show. He was horrified when the man went round the children asking each their nationality. They were mainly Scots [Big Cheer led by entertainer|] some English {boos led by the man] and when a Brother & Sister announced they were German, he gave a Nazi salute and shouted Heil Hitler!!!

Then addressing the boys only, he reeled off a list of allegedly hilarious 'Good things about being a boy rather than a girl' which culminated in him saying 'Girls don't have a Willy to play with when they are bored.'

SIL immediately removed his own children and went straight to the Camp Manager to complain, only to be told that the kids loved the man and all kids like to hear and laugh at rude words. DD wrote to the head of the chain of holiday parks but failed to get a reply.

I mean wow....just wow!

Sarnia Sun 06-Jun-21 15:50:27

A children's entertainer ought to know better than ask such a question. One thing that struck me, though. Your grandson was invited to a birthday party. This is often an occasion where a special needs child is rarely, if ever, asked to join in. How lovely that he was seen as a friend and invited.

Lucca Sun 06-Jun-21 16:14:50

Granny23

On holiday at a huge static Caravan & Lodges park my Son in Law took DGS and DGD to watch the children's entertainer's 6 o'clock show. He was horrified when the man went round the children asking each their nationality. They were mainly Scots [Big Cheer led by entertainer|] some English {boos led by the man] and when a Brother & Sister announced they were German, he gave a Nazi salute and shouted Heil Hitler!!!

Then addressing the boys only, he reeled off a list of allegedly hilarious 'Good things about being a boy rather than a girl' which culminated in him saying 'Girls don't have a Willy to play with when they are bored.'

SIL immediately removed his own children and went straight to the Camp Manager to complain, only to be told that the kids loved the man and all kids like to hear and laugh at rude words. DD wrote to the head of the chain of holiday parks but failed to get a reply.

You are joking ?? If not that should be followed up. Your son should keep on at the company until he gets a reply

AGAA4 Sun 06-Jun-21 16:26:07

Granny23 that entertainer sounds very creepy and shouldn't be around children.
It is worrying that people set themselves up as entertainers and can behave inappropriately.

BlueBelle Sun 06-Jun-21 16:52:08

Granny23 that is awful and definitely needs a follow up beyond the resort manager who is obviously of the same ilk

DiscoDancer1975 Sun 06-Jun-21 17:17:19

What is a ‘ pushing’ game? This sounds like something parents and teachers have been telling children NOT to do for decades. How odd. I think I’d be questioning this with the school.
As for the ‘ entertainer’ honestly...words escape me! You are definitely not being unreasonable.
It does sound like your grandson has a lovely little personality though, so much so, that all his classmates seem to love him, and he gets invited to parties. I would focus on that.

DiscoDancer1975 Sun 06-Jun-21 17:19:50

Granny23

On holiday at a huge static Caravan & Lodges park my Son in Law took DGS and DGD to watch the children's entertainer's 6 o'clock show. He was horrified when the man went round the children asking each their nationality. They were mainly Scots [Big Cheer led by entertainer|] some English {boos led by the man] and when a Brother & Sister announced they were German, he gave a Nazi salute and shouted Heil Hitler!!!

Then addressing the boys only, he reeled off a list of allegedly hilarious 'Good things about being a boy rather than a girl' which culminated in him saying 'Girls don't have a Willy to play with when they are bored.'

SIL immediately removed his own children and went straight to the Camp Manager to complain, only to be told that the kids loved the man and all kids like to hear and laugh at rude words. DD wrote to the head of the chain of holiday parks but failed to get a reply.

Oh yeuch...he sounds vile. I definitely wouldn’t let that drop.

25Avalon Sun 06-Jun-21 17:21:45

Granny23 I take it that was in the uk. The entertainer should have an in date DBS for starters and is in total breach of safeguarding. I suggest your sil reports this to the NSPCC. They won’t ignore it. Sil can remain anonymous if he wishes.

Icanhandthemback entertainer may not have meant to cause offence but he really needs to be educated and told that he was out of order. Again I would hope he is DBS checked to work with youngsters.

vegansrock Sun 06-Jun-21 17:37:22

Whilst I am in favour of children being educated together, when appropriate,I fear it isn’t always the case that integration works. A child of a friend of ours has ASD and attended a mainstream primary school , he had a 1:1 assistant. His behaviour was often so extreme that these assistants rarely last more than a term which was very unsettling for the child. After several years of the child making little or no progress, the parents discovered that the child spent only 15% of the school day in with the rest of the class, the remaining time he was on his own with the assistant as he was disrupting the learning of the other children. After year 6 the parents decided to send him to a special school for ASD children, he is thriving there and much happier. Obviously the parents in this case are happy with the school, but I guess what I’m saying is that integration doesn’t work for all in the long term.

vegansrock Sun 06-Jun-21 17:38:46

Those entertainers sound awful btw.

Peasblossom Sun 06-Jun-21 17:55:57

I think there’s a bit of confusion as to what a DBS check is and who is required to have one.

All it does is disclose any convictions basically. It’s no standard or guarantee of being suitable to work with children.

CoffeeFirst Sun 06-Jun-21 19:15:52

I feel sad reading this. The Entertainer should not have asked what he did. You are NBU.

25Avalon Sun 06-Jun-21 21:38:10

Peach blossom that is true but nonetheless you should not be working with children without an in date DBS.