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pkthru3 pkthru3 is offline
 
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Not in love with class
Old 09-13-2013, 05:11 AM
 
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I have taught 1st grade for 7 years. I have never had a class that can't do anything by themselves. They can't follow a simple direction, they are talkative, are always worrying about what other people are doing. I am not fond of this class at all. I have never wanted to throw the towel in, but with this class. I'm not sure. Any suggestions?


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been there
Old 09-13-2013, 07:14 AM
 
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saved myself by attending to those who ARE following directions, being quiet, etc. Lots of positives for them which reminded me that not everyone was trying to make my life miserable (which is how it felt).

They sound like maybe mostly spring and summer birthdays.

Suggestion: Focus on routines for the next week. This is what we do, this is how we do it, what it looks like, what it sounds like. Let's practice. Now you know and can do it. Oh, you forgot how to _____. Lets practice it again.
Who can show what to do and how to do it. Great. Let's practice it again. One more time to be sure.

A huge pain, but totally worth it. Continue as long as needed (which is when they "forget" to follow any routine).

Don't start pulling into guided reading groups yet, but leave yourself free to teach center behavior and patrol the centers to ensure proper behavior.

This may sound odd, but pray for them. Just bless them before you fall asleep and when heading for school. I'm not a church person, but I've prayed for individual student's well being (not better behavior) and it's changed my attitude toward them. Perhaps I was the one who got the blessing.
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Old 09-13-2013, 08:10 AM
 
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yes routine routine routine. I'll have to keept at it like it's the first few days of school. Thanks for the advice
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this class
Old 09-13-2013, 09:59 AM
 
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I think I wrote this post!!! I am also teaching my 7th year of first grade. I have never had a class like this. Today I went outside to pick up my class from recess. There were 6 classes lined up. Mine was the only class running in circles and jumping on one another. One of my team members looked at my class and commented that it is usally 1 or 2 or maybe 3 or 4 who are off task but it is half of the class. I came back to the room and we practiced lining up and going back to our seat and lining up and going to sit on the carpet over and and over and over. They are draining my energy because I constantly have to be on top of their behavior. If I look away to speak to a student one on one, speak to an adult, pull out a paper for the next asignment, pull up an activity on the computer...whatever, they completely lose controll. We have been in school for 23 days and they know the routine and expectations and can tell them to me. But they lack self control. This is going to be a difficult year.
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Old 09-13-2013, 04:11 PM
 
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Totally agree with broomrider. I started the year with your same sentiments. Then, I prayed for them and started enforcing routines, routines, routines. I look at them as Kindergarterners right now with a little more maturity, just a little . Once they started to be in line with my expectations, they became a lot more "likeable". I think they need a lot more structure than most of the other 1st grade classes I've taught before and they're responding to my firm, but loving hand fabulously. I wish you the best. Keep at it. You can love them, even in spite of the difficulties.


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sorry
Old 09-13-2013, 05:55 PM
 
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My last post ended up being more of a vent. The past few weeks I have been trying some of the love and logic strategies. They really do work and I am praying that by giving my students more choices and by staying a step ahead of them that they will make better choices on their own. I do know that when you show love by speaking to them in a loving tone then they will grow to love you and want to work for you. This year I am just overwhelmed by the number of students who need redirection and lack self control. I keep telling myself that they will get better.
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Sounds like my room...
Old 09-13-2013, 06:01 PM
 
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just add a high needs special ed. child on top of that! So glad to hear I am not alone! I have done lessons on personal space, tattling, how to use a pencil, how to sit, how to walk, how not to throw away broken pencils, and so on. My list continues to grow daily.
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Old 09-14-2013, 05:10 AM
 
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Broomrider has given you great advice. I've spent more time this year with routines and procedures and it has really helped.
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Smiles23 Smiles23 is offline
 
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my class too
Old 09-14-2013, 08:54 AM
 
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This is absolutely my class this year too. They talk constantly and don't care that I am trying to teach a lesson their conversation is more important. Everyday when I pick them up in the morning and then again at recess they are the only class not lined up. We practice lining up and sitting down repeatedly everyday and they still haven't got it. I also have 11 boys this year and only 2 girls so I know all the boys really changes the dynamic of the classroom. I have seen brief moments of excellent behavior and really compliment them and reward the great behavior.
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sounds familiar
Old 09-16-2013, 07:49 PM
 
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This is a much different group of grade ones than last year. We have 22 in the class and I feel like I'm a drill sarg. and I'm not enjoying that at all. We had to start 2 weeks before the kids started - maybe I'm prematurely burned out already! Hope your year gets better as mine hopefully does.


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Old 09-18-2013, 06:07 PM
 
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I have taught k for 10 years and 1st for 9 years. This is the very LOWEST class I have ever had, I didn't have this much trouble with my k's. They are not capable of doing anything independently. I really need to do small group with them but can't because the others can't work in centers on their own. I have many who can't blend their sounds together. It is going to be a LONG year. This is my last year and it is really a shame I have to end like this, I am not enjoying it at all!!
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Incentives!
Old 09-18-2013, 06:48 PM
 
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I printed out a lot of "Behavior Bucks." If students arrive on time, have homework, and their Homework Folder, they start the day with 3 dollars. (An assistant passes these out.) If they are late, they get 2, and so forth... Throughout the day I use the one or two students who look like a "fifth grader" as an example and reward them with a Behavior Buck. It gets everyone on board remarkably fast! Alas, they can be taken away, also..) (You get the idea...) At the end of the day, any student who has 5 dollars can buy a peanut butter-filled pretzel. If they have 8 they can buy an extra-crunchy chocolate chip cookie. (Trader Joe's--TINY treats, but so worth the investment!) They are SOOOOO into it! Very funny! They love the play money, the purchasing, the treats. I love the behavior!
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Old 09-19-2013, 05:57 AM
 
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thanks for all the encouraging words and
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Eek
Old 09-20-2013, 05:23 PM
 
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It's so crazy how different each class can be. My first year, I taught K, and it was a NIGHTMARE until about January (I think that's pretty typical though). They finally started understanding how to be more independent and mature. By the end of the year, I felt proud of how much they matured. My second year (which was last year) I taught 1st. They were pretty independent, but MAN were they squirrely and LOUD. I swear, they all just wanted to hear the sound of their own voice above everyone elses. They were THAT class that would be out on the playground that were running around and screaming while all the other classes were lined up, because they had THAT much more energy. I lost my mind multiple times. At the end of the year, I was drained, and angry. I swore I would quit.

But here I am again. This year, I have 1st again, and this group is a lot quieter and more independent. I mean, i still have a couple who require CONSTANT attention, but the rest are really able to do things independently.

I suggest looking into Daily 5. It teaches independence step by step. This was my first year trying it, and I owe it much of my success already. (That and I seriously got lucky...)
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Old 09-28-2013, 01:56 PM
 
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I am right there with you, angelajw and pkthru3. I have 15 boys and 9 girls (2 boys with diagnosed emotional problems) in a small classroom. I'm having to rethink everything I do and retrain every week. I am exhausted and frustrated. More than half have birthdays in April and into the summer. I think music would work well, more songs and singing, more movement, but once we start moving, the calming down is difficult.
Any more ideas for this first grade teacher would help!!
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