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lchristineinc 08-08-2013 12:35 PM

Advice needed - extreme behavior student moving to my room
School has been in session for 2 weeks now (for Kinder) and it's been a wild ride so far! There is a long term sub in the room next door. He's been having major problems, the parents complained, and now he'll be place in my room starting on Monday.

He has hit the teacher twice (once in the face) and will hit other students. He kicks and screams, as well as rolls around on the floor. He talks about killing and poisoning other students when they won't play with him and has drawn a picture a gun aimed at another student.

The parents are basically blaming the situation on the long term sub and claim he learned all these behaviors in school. The principal and vice principal as well as the school counselors have been supportive and encouraged communication about any little thing I need. I'm not upset or even wanting to complain, I simply wanted to be prepared with a multitude of strategies. I will be seating him in a separate desk and not at a table and will pretend that he is simply a new student, not treating him by his reputation.

Any and all advice you may have would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

Mugs 08-08-2013 03:21 PM

In two weeks - this kid has turned into a monster by a substitute. Yeah, right! Okay . . .

School pschologist's observation needs to be called in immediately with the "killing and poisoning other students" and drawing a gun in a picture with other children type "threats."

Evaluations as to whether he should have a one-on-one associate???

I've had (in the past) a thick rubber band that was wrapped around the legs of the student's desk that slowed down the "kicking" of others.

A positive motivational type system - such as a race car (a velcroed car that runs on a small poster board illaminated track) - where when positive behaviors are displayed by this student, the car is moved to several locations on the track each time the teacher/aide notices a positive behavior (goal behavior to be predetermined) - and when the car reaches a "star" on the track - student is rewarded either with extra time on the computer or given a teddy graham cracker and whatever. Usually at the beginning, the student is "rewarded" after two positive behaviors displays, then the intervals require more positive behaviors between "rewards."

Since learning occurs on a carpeted "meeting" area, use masking tape to create a space for him to sit that is close enough to see everything the group is doing -but far enough where he can't hit and kick others. Can either use the space as his permanent space to sit when activities are done on the carpet - or when he can't seem to get himself under control - he can be asked to go to his space until he can keep his arms, hands, feet, and legs to himself. This would be like "safe space" in Love and Logic.

I have 3 "X's" with masking tape on the carpet in my classroom a little distance from the carpet meeting area. When a student is having trouble controlling his/her actions after I've warn him/her - and he/she continues, I have him/her go sit on an "X" until he/she can behave the way I'm asking him/her to and then he/she can return to the carpet with the rest of us.

A location in another classroom where the student (when totally out of control) can go until they obtained self control. Could be a neighboring classroom - a chair sitting by a wall in their classroom or a chair in the office?

When things get "HOT" with this student, another adult who could take the student for a quick 5 minute walk around the building or on the school track to "COOL" off.

A communication system - daily - with the parents about choices that he made each day. I've ask the parents how they want to be informed. Many wanted e-mails - - which I tell them the e-mails will be short and sweet descriptions. Great documentation! I also let parents know that communications go both ways. I expect to read e-mails from them as well - and once in a while get responses back from them about my e-mails. I had one student who I had come to my desk at the end of the day and we, together, write an e-mail to his/her parents and the student hit the SEND button. Sometimes we'd download a picture of the day and send it in the e-mail - as a "reward" as well. He picked the picture that he wanted to send to his parents.

Good Luck!

ICrazyTeach 08-08-2013 05:17 PM

So sorry!
Why do they do this to students and teachers!?! The kid needs help. I get so fed up being told about the behavior problem kid's rights and needs when the safety and education of the other students is at risk.
Yes, with TONS of support and intervention your new kiddo may eventually function in a regular classroom. Much of your time, attention, and energy, though, will be focused on that and NOT on teaching students academic content. Right now, he needs to get HELP and he needs to gradually come into a regular classroom as he learns how function in that environment.
The parents apparently are not going to seek help for him. You need to make your voice heard loud and often with administration to get him the help he needs.
But, you have to do your best for him in your classroom until (if ever) he gets that help he needs.
From the start, be in constant communication with the parents (if they will answer the phone, it's much better to call then to just send notes/reports).
Choose the "worst" behavior first and focus just on that one thing. It sounds like the violent behavior will come first. The first time the target behavior happens he needs to be moved away from other students and as soon as possible have a conversation with you. There needs to be a consequence for the behavior.
At a separate time, he needs direct instruction in what to do instead of the target behavior. He sounds extreme, so I would say he needs a daily mini-lesson to practice alternative behaviors (take a break--go to a set place in the classroom like a time out, take deep breaths, count to 10 or more...there are lots of strategies to offer him). Then frequently check-in with him and remind him of the strategies throughout the day and have a final check-in before dismissal. LOTS of encouragement and gushing when his making good choices and using those strategies. It is EXHAUSTING!! If you are consistent, it will work (unless there are mental health or other issues that are out of his control).
The Second Step program is a great resource for teaching kids to recognize and handle their emotions (and teaching students how to be learners and respectful of others). And I'm sure there are other great resources. BEG for funds.

Best of luck!! And, who knows?? Maybe the classroom switch and a fresh start with you and your positive welcome to the class will be all he needs.

sevenplus 08-08-2013 05:25 PM

Document everything. If he has frequent misbehaviors, you can create a chart and use tally marks. Or wear a piece of masking tape on your wrist (doubled over to make a "bracelet" so the sticky part is not on your skin) and simply tally redirections or whatever you are tracking. Write everything down every day. Write down what happened, your response, and his response.

Document every communication with parents. Make copies of written notes. Either type them and save a copy or handwrite them and have someone make a quick copy of anything you send home. Recently I got some of the old carbon paper so I could make a copy that way since it was sometimes difficult to get a photocopy at the end of the day.

Involve support staff immediately (counselor, etc.) and document every conversation you have with them.

All of this information will expedite any process involved with getting more help for him.

Do whatever you can to build a positive relationship with this student. Do not react emotionally to his misbehaviors.

jacque/Wa/K-1 08-12-2013 01:45 PM

Be very prepared by spelling out/modeling the type of behavior you expect in your sure to call on him to model some things. Find something you can compliment him on, no matter how small or how you have to almost manufacture it...

Be prepared to be super-consistent and more on top of things than ever before. Maybe you'll be lucky and it will just be more of a personality conflict with the sub, the child will LOVE you and be an angel. Realistically, be prepared. Back-track and do your rules all over again. Do not hesitate to take privileges away for non-compliance....and have your principal and counselor standing by ready to help you.

Good Luck....

MalibuBarbie 08-12-2013 04:36 PM

Meet with parents
I would call a face to face meeting with the parents immediately...or after a day or two. Build that relationship with them so that they know you are a loving, caring teacher who expects the very best out of every student and will be right there helping him get there...WITH THEIR HELP.

I would agree....he didn't get this way because of a substitute. Reaching out, getting to know those parents and stopping that blame game is key. See how they react to him and how they talk to him.

Best wishes to you! I congratulate your attitude. <!--apple-->


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