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NewCAteacher 04-11-2019 08:12 AM

Tips on maintaining patience
I’m in year 4 (including student teaching, which wasn’t great...felt like mentor needed a break and put a lot of responsibility on me very quickly) and I’m feeling some burn out. It feels like most of it comes from administrators who refuse to listen to any of us and think they know best about student needs, and curriculum that is way too hard for my students, but they are forced to do it. The two I mentioned go hand in hand.

My patience with severe behaviors is starting to wane. Some days are better than others. I teach resource, so it is very challenging to teach the students who want to learn, when a few of them are going wild. I still feel a lot of purpose and enjoyment from my career. Most of the behavior kids have a combo of extreme ADHD, mental health disorders and conduct issues. I know it comes with the territory but it is wearing me out.

What are your tips for staying patient in these moments?

Lottalove 04-11-2019 09:18 AM

It is tough
Some days I feel my patience is the feature keeping me employed. LOL. I have several who test me all day long. I can usually keep my cool with them.

Do you have a para available at any point? My most active student has his 1:1 para and I have a classroom para to help with the others. They make the difference.

And too~Some days I feel like I need to pick and choose. I can give you academic lessons or you can have behavioral/emotional/social lessons but not both... Luckily my SpEd Director understands that there are days like this.

First, make sure that you build and maintain relationships with your students. My students understand and can appreciate that reprimanding them does NOT mean I care less, or feel less, or any other thing towards them. I outright tell them that I want to train them to be their best selves. (Separate the child from the behavior...)

Then, remember the good parts of the little humans you serve. Think of something good (or reframe the least annoying stuff. :D) so that you can push through the roughest days.

Next, take care of yourself. Get enough rest, eat right, lessen other stress. Think of building patience like when we build stamina in any other area, be it exercise or reading time. I think most of us are more irritable and less patient when we are tired, sick or stressed.

Get a relaxing habit or hobby. Take a class? take a bath?? Knit, crochet or paint. Get outside, walk, fly a kite or whatever.

Finally, start each day with a fresh start-"a clean slate" is what I say to my students. It is much easier to face the first obstacle of the day when you are just thinking in the present [--as opposed to thinking that it's the 8,627th time he has done that this year... ]

Hang in there. :rolleyes::cool:

Haley23 04-11-2019 07:38 PM

Oh I'm right there with you. Do you think part of it is the time of year? For us, it's getting closer to the end, there are no more breaks/even 3 day weekends, and now we're in state testing. The routine is all messed up and that makes the students even worse.

I'm just counting down until summer break. My district posted a summer school position which I hemmed and hawed about and decided to apply for since I could always use the extra money. The grant person came to ask me about an interview the other day and I asked her to tell me more about what the job would look like. It would be K-3 all together and I would only be teaching math- one math teacher and one reading teacher would split 50 kids. I ended up telling her "no thanks" and I was pretty proud of myself! I will be using this summer to rest and rejuvenate!

Some other things that typically help me:

-Thinking about kids that are being really successful this year/thinking about kids I've really helped
-Reminding myself that many of these absurd standards we live and die by do not matter in the real world. There are plenty of successful adults who do not read 200 wpm. There are plenty of successful adults, even very intelligent ones, who could not pass the PARCC assessment. There are plenty of successful adults who use their phone calculator rather than using mental math strategies. Many people with ADHD are highly successful in the business world.
-Focusing on small successes
-Planning something enjoyable for my students to do- even if it's just a more creative way to practice basic skills. At the very end of the year, sometimes I'll do Science experiments. None of the other interventions are still happening and no one really cares what we do the last week or so, and I never get to do that kind of stuff with my kids.

And when all else fails, picture yourself laying by the pool this summer!

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