Terrified of School – Can you relate?

This one’s for the kids. And the teachers.

Several people have asked me to re-post the poem I wrote last year for my Grade 10 English assignment.  A lot of kids with ADHD go through some pretty awful years at school, and a lot of them let me know they could relate to my experiences.  (Click here to see the poem — it’s at the bottom of this blog.)

With kids back in class I wonder and worry… how many of them feel terrified of school?  

Kids with ADHD 

You are not alone if you’re having it rough at school.  Hang in there.

  • I’ve got a bunch of stories from kids who have ADHD that will be coming out on my blog this year.  You’re also invited to send me your story about what life with ADHD is like for you. I know that sharing our stories helps a lot of us realize we’re not in this alone.   (Email me with your story: jeff@adhdkidsrock.com.)
  • Have you checked out the ADHDKidsRock KIDS Section (click here)?


There are so many things teachers can do to make life better for kids with ADHD in your classrooms.

  • First — especially now at the beginning of the school year — is to get to know these kids who might be struggling with their ADHD.  Find out what they like and who their friends are, then help them with those friendships.  It’s often really hard for us to keep friendships at school, but having a few friends you can count on makes it easier to keep trying.
  • Next, ask them to help you with chores and special assignment you would normally give the super good students. Make them feel like you care, that you are listening and that they are going to be OK in your class.  It’s going to be hard lots of times because we we can be loud, busy, distracted and up to shenanigans.  Try to look past the ADHD and see the kid inside that needs you.

Click here to tweet this message out to the world: 

I’m working on developing flashcards for teachers that have fresh ideas for working with kids who have ADHD — in a format that easy for teachers to use in your classrooms.  For now, teachers can find all kinds of ideas on my site, in the Teachers Section (click here).


Terrified of School

I was 4 and I could read
I could count to 100 and six
I couldn’t wait to start school
I met all kinds of interesting kids
I was learning all kinds of amazing things
I had made lots of friends
But one day we had to do coloring
I couldn’t keep it between the lines
I was put in the hall

This started to happen more and more
Soon I was in the hall everyday
My friends started leaving me
My circle of friends got smaller and smaller every day
I only had about 5 friends left
This was just the beginning

I went to a different school the next year
It was such a different experience
I had friends and people liked me
Everything was about to go back

I lost all my friends again
Now I’m writing lines every recess
Every time it’s about respect
The teacher makes me write 2 pages of just “r”
she kept saying it sucked
Everyone thought I was a bad kid
They avoided me like the plague
I was back to square one
Even the new kids hated me

Grade 4 I had “the best teacher”
I got yelled at every day
If I did not put the sticker on the wall
You had to write in your agenda to get one
One day I was yelled at for the whole day
I was forced to stand in front of everyone
We left for lunch and when I got back
The torment returned
He started yelling at me again
This would happen every day
This teacher was the opposite of the best

By grade 5 I was depressed and alone
I couldn’t write no matter how hard I tried
I lost my recess
I lost my lunch
I lost P.E.
I was bound to the classroom
I was trapped
There was no escape
The bell rings and I’m suddenly the happiest kid in the world
It means I can go home
My house is my haven
I can’t be hurt here
At home I am safe

But my mood gets worse later in to the night
As my head hits my pillow I am sad again
Thinking about my day….
I am 9 years old

I have to go back to my school cell when I wake up

-Jeff Rasmussen (Grade 10, Spring of 2015)

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