By Dr. Lisa Hunter, Child Psychologist
My child is 7 years old and in first grade. Her grades are all great. The thing that she doesn't do is talk in class. It has been very hard all year to get her to participate in class.
I feel that she is almost there, but she is also very stubborn. She speaks everywhere else but not in school. What else can her teacher or I do to encourage her or to give her the confidence she needs to speak up?
I would recommend having your daughter evaluated by a child psychologist who specializes in the treatment of childhood anxiety. A psychologist could help determine whether your daughter's refusal to speak in the classroom is related to anxiety or some other cause.
To make this determination, a psychologist will have to speak with you, your daughter and your daughter's teacher to get a better sense of the nature of the problem. If a psychologist does determine that your daughter is suffering from anxiety, there are very effective treatments available for helping her. Specifically, cognitive-behavioral treatment (CBT) is a short-term and highly effective treatment for childhood anxiety. CBT involves teaching children skills for coping with anxiety and giving them the opportunity to practice these skills through exposure to feared situations.
Advice from our experts is not a substitute for professional diagnosis or treatment from a health-care provider or learning expert familiar with your unique situation. We recommend consulting a qualified professional if you have concerns about your child's condition.
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