I wrote about Malcolm’s strategy at the playground more than a month ago. It worked for a while, he made friends and his friends played with him at the playground. But recently, after the 2 weeks break from school, things seem to revert back to where it begins.
The other day, he got so upset when I picked him up for lunch. He told me, while choking back tears that he didn’t want to go back school because no one plays with him at the playground.
He tried walking around groups of children, hoping that they will invite him to join in. He was afraid to approach or request to join in, firstly he is still not comfortable with the language and secondly, he was afraid of being pushed by kids who didn’t welcome him. We knew he tried his best.
His problem is specifically at the playground, he can tell us he has no problem in the classroom. He enjoys singing and he enjoys going to the gym but not having anyone to play with at the playground is enough to ruin his day. It is like a devil’s place for him and it pains us to see that he is having such a hard time on this foreign land.
After much talking, listening and brainstorming, he insisted that he does not want to play with the boys who play fighting, we came up with a few solutions for him to handle the playground situation
1. Approach kids whom were nice to him in the classroom.
2. Approach kids who are alone or playing in small group of 2, bigger groups are usually more difficult to get in.
3. Learn to fold paper planes so that he can throw them at the playground and hopefully attract kids to join in.
If all fail, he can take out his 2 little pin planes we put in his pocket and play with them.
We are having our fingers crossed and hoping that things will get better.0