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Sublime Sublime is offline
 
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Sublime
 
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"I don't want to do it."
Old 01-28-2017, 08:47 AM
 
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I think the next time a student tells me, "I don't want to do it," I'll give that child a choice of doing the work or writing the teacher a note explaining why he or she didn't do the assignment. Would students ever say that to their teacher???? This isn't something I would put in my teacher's note (Sue said she did not want to do this) because it's my problem to deal with for the day and I don't write down behaviors unless they are disruptive. Aaarrgg!


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seenthelight seenthelight is online now
 
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Old 01-28-2017, 09:53 AM
 
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They do say it to us too. My response is usually, "I didn't ask you if you wanted to do it. I TOLD you, you were going to do it."
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MaineSub MaineSub is offline
 
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I understand...
Old 01-28-2017, 05:03 PM
 
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I see this as an invitation to a power struggle and a trap.... sometimes just a mere statement of fact that I'll acknowledge and keep going.

Sub: "Turn to page...."

Student: "I don't want to..."

Sub: "I understand, turn to page..."

Most of the time, that's all it takes. A little empathy, then onward.

If "I don't want to" turns into a refusal to do the work, I have several approaches depending on how "aggressive" the refusal is... they usually follow the form of a sincere question along the lines of "And what will happen when Mrs. Regular Teacher returns and sees that you haven't done the work?"

That usually catches the kid off guard because they're baiting you, expecting an argument--not a question. So you'll likely get an honest answer. "She'll make me stay in from recess."

Sub: "Okay... and you're okay with missing recess tomorrow?"

The answer is either yes or no... if it's yes, you're probably done. But what are the other options? You can't really force compliance. I think negotiating with a student and helping him or her make good decisions is an important part of our task.

It's hard to write a script for this because the conversation can go in several directions. But my goal is to get them to accept the consequence of their decision. I know can't make them want to do it (and so do they), and I certainly can't make them do it. But I'm also not going to let a kid make me responsible for their decision. In the dialog I've written so far, I would leave a sentence or two in my sub report telling the regular teacher that "the student refused to do the work but understands they will be staying in for recess..."

We need to remember that ultimately, the only behavior we can truly control in our classrooms is our own. As a sub, I don't mind explaining to a student that his or her refusal to complete a task doesn't have much impact on me, but might on him/her.

I might just add that in a sub report, I would suggest we include any information that will be useful to the regular teacher (who may well be facing the same challenges we are), not just disruptive behaviors. I tend to write fairly lengthy email reports... mostly about how the teaching/learning went but also how I handled situations that arose. My personal preference
is that I'm not going to dump the problems I had on the regular teacher--as the OP said, "it's my problem to deal with..." but I take the position that it's actually not my problem -- it's the student's. I'm there to help him/her solve it.
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NJSubteacher NJSubteacher is offline
 
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Old 01-29-2017, 02:59 PM
 
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In my opinion it is based on the grade level regarding how to handle it. If a MS or HS student refuse to do the work, I simply leave a note for the teacher because normally these students are known for this behavior and are just looking for an argument. This is the parents' job to speak to them about not doing their work. These students are old enough to know that they are getting a zero for not doing it.

However, if an elementary student continues to act defiant, then I would at least let the school admins (Principal) aware and let them deal with it, IF they choose to, and I'd also leave a note for the teacher (it is the main teacher and/or admins job to notify the student's parents if that kind of behavior renains constant. I do not see it as the job of a One Day sub to intervene beyond kindly asking the student once or twice to please follow directions. My primary obligation is to make sure the students are behaving and keeping their hands to themselves. I do try to enforce the fact they should be working, but do not look to start arguments with them.
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twin2 twin2 is offline
 
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Good for you
Old 01-31-2017, 02:04 PM
 
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I would not put this kind of thing in the teacher note either. The teacher will figure it out when she sees the lack of work, or the lack of quality in the work. Does the school or teacher have a self reflection form for students? If so, this would be a good time to have the student fill it out and leave it for the teacher. If not, you can find some free ones online. Just suggesting they do a self-reflection is enough for some kids to decide they might as well do the classwork.

Years ago, I had a student who was very upset because his teacher was frequently out (ended up quitting) and his behavior in class was just awful. He took her absences personally, saying he did not know why she didn't like him. The assignment was to write a complete paragraph. This was a fifth grade class, so instead of fighting him over it, I suggested that he write his paragraph to the teacher telling her his feelings. Cruel or not, I felt like she needed to hear it and I was happy to be able to motivate him to write the paragraph. I'll use whatever I can to get a kid to do his work, but I haven't had anything like that since.


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MaineSub MaineSub is offline
 
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Ironically...
Old 02-01-2017, 03:28 PM
 
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Just the other day I had a kid refuse to do an assignment. (He's known for anger management issues, so it's important to know when to fold, although I suspect he's also learning to use his problem to his advantage.)

I do not allow disruption by a kid who refuses to work. No problem with that, fortunately. He just laid across his desk basically trying to look angry while pouting.

When the period was over I went to collect his paper. It was of course blank. I said, "One of us has to write your name on the paper so Mrs. Regular Teacher will know you didn't do the work." He smiled and scrawled it in crayon. Hey, at least I got one thing out of him!
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Kailey123 Kailey123 is offline
 
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Old 02-01-2017, 07:10 PM
 
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I had a 1st grader pull this one on me today! lol. I was subbing for a reading specialist who rotates from room to room to work with various groups. My first group was four future lawyers I'm sure, going by the way they could argue. The first one said "I don't want to do it that way. Mrs. C. doesn't have us do it that way." hmm... I said "well first of all I am not Mrs. C. And 2nd, do you see this paper here in my hand? It's the plan for today from Mrs. C. And right here it says exactly what she wants us to do. So get out that book." [insert stern look from me...although sometimes it's hard with the little ones because they're so darn cute].

Anyway, I won because it's hard to argue with THE paper from Mrs. C. that explains everything. lol
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