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KSgirl KSgirl is offline
 
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Am I awful?
Old 03-30-2010, 01:56 PM
 
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Just curious about what you do with students at this grade level who sit and do nothing when an assignment is given? I have two kiddos this year that do this on a daily basis. Some teachers would say "nothing", but when I do nothing, they just sit there, mess around, zone out, etc. I am at my whits end. I am sick of reminders about stuff that these students should know, but when I give a student 30 minutes to do something that takes 30 minutes, he just sits there and does nothing until I go stand by him. It is making me highly irritable and I feel like my patient-self has gone out the window. Any tips?


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working lunch
Old 03-30-2010, 02:23 PM
 
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I bring them back to the classroom during lunch so they can spend their "social time" doing work.
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Old 03-30-2010, 03:21 PM
 
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I'm so with you. I have two kids like this too. We just had a student led conference, so it was very evident to the parents. I had the parents see and hear what I had to say without any sugar-coating. At the end of the conference, I had the students fill out a feedback form. One of the kids wrote, "No, I don't think we should do student-led conference next year because I don't like to tell my parents bad news."
Our school doesn't have any place to go to do unfinished work , so the only place I can send them is to the cafeteria to finish work after lunch. Usually that's only about 10-15minutes, so they don't get much done.
So, I don't have much to offer you, but sending the kids to the counselor's office or elsewhere to do the work individually is about the only thing. I know these things are temporarily and the support service people get tired to them really quickly.
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Direct Questions
Old 03-30-2010, 05:12 PM
 
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I have had success by asking point blank, "Are you refusing to do your work?" If the answer is yes, that is defiance and an office referral (or you could ask what the consequences should be). If the answer is no, I say something like, "Your answer was no, but your actions say differently." The important thing to remember is that you CANNOT get into a discussion. You are asking a yes or no question--repeat it like a broken record until you get a response.

I have used this type of questioning (Do you know you are being disrespectful? Are you refusing to mind? Are you talking back?) with students ranging from 3rd to 12th grade. It has generally been effective.
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Old 03-30-2010, 06:14 PM
 
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there are certain things that i let go, and others that i hold students to.

i let things like math worksheets go as long as the student has proved they've mastered the concept. if not -- i do whatever it takes to make sure they understand. that might mean sending home problems to finish for homework, staying in at recess to get help from a peer or from me, staying after school, etc. it's not so much the worksheet i care about as the understanding.

at my charter school students make self-created textbooks for each unit, and each of those needs to be completely finished. i give out a checklist at the end of the unit that lists all the work i expect to see. if they haven't finished in class, then it becomes their responsibility to find time to finish. most kids then take the initiative to work during lunch or take the work home.

of course, there are always those who are less responsible or self-motivated. those ones, i stay on top of -- calling parents to let them know what is expected, sending homework, having them stay in at recess to finish, etc. but since i've set the expectation that i will make sure the important work gets finished, most of my students get a lot done in class and take their work seriously!


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Old 04-01-2010, 06:29 AM
 
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when this happens in my room, I plan a really fun activity at the end of the day. Everyone who did their work gets to participate, the others must do their work without participating.

I've also had them bring out their work at recess.

I do the "fun activity" thing randomly, so they never know when they will get to do a fun activity or not.
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Homework
Old 04-05-2010, 07:49 PM
 
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When students choose not to do their work in class, it is automatically homework. I make sure I give a couple of reminders about this and then at the end of work time I take the paper, write a note such as, "Dear parents, your child was given 30 minutes to work on this assignment in class and chose to complete it, even with reminders from me. Therefore, he needs to complete it for homework and turn it in tomorrow. Please sign this note so that I know you saw it."

The paper and the note go in the child's home folder and that's that. There is not another in class opportunity given. Plain and simple. I am not willing to spend my lunch supervising students to do assignments when they have made a bad choice.
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Old 04-07-2010, 08:04 PM
 
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I do this too...AND THEN if the note comes back the next day NOT signed, I make them call their parent on the phone RIGHT THEN AND THERE!!

I once had a parent ask me to stop calling her because if I kept it up she would lose her job!!! My response? I told her that her student is causing my WHOLE class to not learn, so in effect I would also be losing my job!!!!

Needless to say, the student started behaving better after that!!
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Doing Nothing
Old 04-15-2010, 04:34 PM
 
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Tell them that's fine if you don't want to do it. You can just do it next year when you are retained in this grade! We take away privileges such as recess, they get pulled out of PE to finish work, they miss computer lab time, they take it to the cafeteria to work on, and if nothing gets turned in by a specific date, they get a big fat 0.
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3 cheers for the cell phone
Old 04-16-2010, 06:27 AM
 
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I agree w/ noclue. Call the parent right then and let the child explain the reason for the call. I also invite parents to sit with their darlings for an hour or so to "encourage" work completion.

I also do the phone call home for outstanding work or answers. Parents love getting these calls and the kids smile all day long.


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think like they do
Old 04-19-2010, 05:28 AM
 
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If a student refuses to do work on my time, I infringe on their time. If it's ok with the principal or the specials teachers (gym, art, music, in that order) I make them come in during gym to do the work they did not complete. A few times of taking away gym or art or something they enjoy usually lets them know you mean business!
Another option is to pick the 5 most difficult problems. If the student can show me they can master the five most difficult, then they don't have to do the rest of the homework. This can prove to be motivting for ALL students and is an option that gives them some control. If they miss any of the five most difficult, then they still need to do the assignment. Hope this helps!
 

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