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MsFancyNancy's Message:

Thereís nothing wrong with calling them babies. Even when my daughter is a grown woman with her own family she will always be my baby.

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Discussion Review (newest messages first)
MsFancyNancy 10-10-2020 11:46 AM

Thereís nothing wrong with calling them babies. Even when my daughter is a grown woman with her own family she will always be my baby.

GreyhoundGirl 09-06-2020 10:23 AM

I totally understand how you feel. My last year in the gen ed classroom I had a 3rd graders who didnít even know his alphabet. He wa a working at a preschool level. I couldnít even even get him an IEP. I was watching him struggle, fail and his behaviors were increasing. He was getting suspended left and right and then not getting an IEP due to absences from suspensions. We were failing him left and right. It was appalling.

I had one with an IEP working at a kinder level. She needed to be moved to a self contained class. Like your sweet girl, her learning had stagnated. She just wasnít making gains. She needed more one on one attention than she could get in gen ed.

Getting kids moved in my old district was impossible. Not next to impossible, it was impossible. When I met about getting my girl moved, I was told she needed to fail more before she could be moved.

Itís so hard when we know whatís best for the kidís, but we canít do anything about it. Iím sorry youíre dealing with this. For me, itís one of the most frustrating things about Sped.

MadiChristian 09-03-2020 09:24 AM

Hey guys. Sorry about the miscommunication on that post. It has just been a little rough around here lately and I was kind of just screaming into the void to get my feelings out. I didn't think anyone would actually read it.
Okay here is the full deal:

I am a special ed teacher for third grade. We have already been in school for almost a month now (and hopefully we'll stay in school). I have a little girl who is as sweet as honey but she has multiple disabilities that affect her ability to perform in school. The other is a little boy who is also precious but falls under a developmentally delayed category, which it is almost unheard of around here for a child labeled as DD to move on to the elementary school without a reeval. That being said their special ed classification does not define them and I know that. But that also means I have to consider what would be best for each child. And as of right now I do not see either of them preforming well in a reg classroom.

And I am trying to make sure all of their needs are being met. All accommodations are in place. The girl is the only one who has actual modifications on her iep that include lower level assignments and assessments but I do not believe that the boy has been given enough attention by central office to seriously consider where his best placement might be. At the district I work at I am able to spend the majority of the day in the classroom with them and only truly pull out during our "health" class. Which is actually more of a filler class where the school pulls out students for a rotation of the things they need more work on. So reg ed students get divided up for their rotation and special ed go to the special ed classroom to focus more on the goals that have been set for them.

This is typically a great system but because of everything that has happened the last year I now have students who are significantly lower than what is considered average even by special ed standards. And I want to give them everything that they need to be successful but within the time I have spent with them I believe a better approach would be to work with them more on life skills than "book" skills.

Another big issue I have is that the special ed teacher from the primary fought for the girl to be here. And I know and understand that she wanted her here and that she thought she was doing what was best but this little girl has basically become stagnant with her learning. The other teacher claimed that she was meeting all her goals, but I've seen the goals she set. She was in second grade with nothing but pre-kinder and kinder goals. There should have come a point where her goals should have been set higher but it doesn't appear like that ever happened. And maybe they were going to and the abrupt end of the school year messed things up, but even then we left in March. How much higher of goals could have been set by that time for her to be truly ready for a 3rd grade classroom?

And again I love these babies (yes, I said babies. The moment they are assigned to me makes them basically my kids. That doesn't mean I treat them like babies. They have the same expectations as all the other kids in the school. Even if they need a little more help to reach those expectations). But I don't know how to express my fear that these kids are just going to fall farther and farther behind without a more intense intervention than what I can give and still provide services to my other babies. I have been keeping track of all their school work and behaviors (you know, anything that might be abnormal for a child their age), but it just doesn't feel like anyone at central office is listening. I am lucky enough to have administrators here who try to help but without central office putting in the time to evaluate and assess it just doesn't feel like we are going to get anywhere. And that's really why I posted. I wanted to complain without any of this getting back to the higher ups and them getting pissy over what I have to say.

MissESL 09-03-2020 04:15 AM

First, take a step back, a deep breath, and work on changing your attitude to a more positive viewpoint. Try to think of what GOOD things these students bring to classroom first. I know when you have frustrating students that is difficult. But if you can Name a positive trait about them when you start to lose it, can help you.

A colleague had a student who needed a box. His teacher taped a ten foot square around his space, and it was on the side of the room rather than the middle, to give him an area he could freely roam. He needed the movement, but they couldnít have him everywhere due to COVID. Not that he isnít allowed to leave it, just that during his restless times, he has to stay inside the lines. They discussed the reasoning with his mom and she was willing to try it. It has worked well, though it is unconventional. A ďspace to roamĒ was written into his IEP, so I guess how you interpret that could be interesting.

I would start treating them like their peers. I find that if you treat students with respect and empathy, they will rise up to your expectations. It appears that you are a general education teacher, and I can understand the stress related to having such difficult students.

But the theory isnít that different with EL students. You have the responsibility to modify work or provide alternative assignments. So go back to what you know they can do with success and start there. Feeling successful, doing well, and receiving praise will grow their confidence and reinforce skills they could probably use practice with. Then move in small paces upward. In language, we say ďmeet a student where they areĒ but remember that they ďarenít blank slates.Ē Is hey have history where they have learned something and it is your job to figure out what they can do.

TAOEP 09-02-2020 07:41 PM

Are you a gen ed teacher or sped? I'm assuming from your post that you are a gen ed 3rd grade teacher, but perhaps not. And PLEASE stop calling these students babies. They will all act more maturely and be more independent if your mindset is one that assume they are capable of acting like 8 year-olds.

Is the one with the re-eval pending actually receiving the services that are on his IEP? If not, that's the place to start. Insist, kindly but firmly, that he needs those services. If he is receiving services, talk with the special ed teacher and see if she (he?) has suggestions for you for reaching this chinld in the classroom. Likely the school is wanting to wait a little on the reeval to figure out what progress the child makes with appropriate services and school actually happening.

Placing the child in self-contained is not likely at this point.

I'm not clear about the other child. Is he also one with an IEP? Same sort of approach.

Another possible source of help might be talking with the 2nd grade teacher. Find out what worked and what didn't for these students last year before the pandemic.

MadiChristian 09-01-2020 07:32 AM

So I have not 1, but 2 students in a gen ed classroom that need to be self-contained. Like guys, these are the type of kids you feel bad leaving your gen ed teacher alone with. Because of covid our district had decided to do that wonderful thing of just shoving all of the kids from last school year into the next grade without even so much as discussing where their best placement would be. And I know we're all in rough waters and no one really knows how to handle this situation but I have 2 babies in the 3rd grade that are both working at a kindergarten level (if not lower since they haven't done any work since March). One of them I may have been able to make central office understand needs to be in self-contained but the other has reeval coming up and they're making me roll him over until spring. And yall I love these babies but they are not in the best environment for their learning. It's not fair to them that I can't give them the attention they need to meet their goals without slacking on my other babies who can be brought up to level.

I know this isn't something that can be solved on this forum but damn. I just needed to put my frustration out into the world before I go to central office and have a melt down in the lobby. And it would also be another thing if I could slip these kids some simpler, on level material and let them work independently but when I say kinder level I 100% mean it. They just don't have the maturity to work on their own without an almost constant teacher presence. It's also not like they are behavior problems (most of the time). They are sweet babies but no where near the level they need to be on to function in a reg classroom. They have no idea what social norms are and if I have to tell them to get out of other peoples faces during a pandemic or to stop laughing out loud uncontrollably in the middle of a lesson I might lose it.

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