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need help... extremely impulsive
Old 09-06-2007, 03:09 PM
 
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I am a regular ed teacher in a co-teaching 1st grade. I have done this for 4 years and gained many strategies for impulsiveness. However this is the worse I have ever seen.

It is only the second day of school but this child can not sit or stand still. He is very oral (everything is in his mouth....even his desk). He is jumping around the room. He is touching everything. I could go on and on. I truly believe he can not help it and this is more than hyper and impulsive.

I have tried a stress ball to squeeze to occupy his hands. It was thrown across the room too many times. I tried another cube shape that couldn't roll but he broke it into 8 pieces. I decided that wouldn't work. It did occupy his hands but also caused too man other problems. He took another one from my desk without me knowing it and began to eat it like an apple chewing and spitting out the pieces.

I've had him do jobs to keep him moving and occupied while giving him a break.

I am not sure how to get a better handle on this right away. My co-teacher and I a re a new pair so she is thinking right now also.

Any suggestions would be helpful.

Please don't think I am harsh in describing him. I just want to do what is right to help him function better. Oh yeah, he does not have an IEP. He was placed into the c-teaching team since they saw the same things in K. Our job to to create interventions and try different things before heading to an eval to see if things work for him.


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Old 09-06-2007, 05:14 PM
 
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Even though this is hard, you probably need to determine how much of his behavior is for attention, and not affecting the other children. Those behaviors need to be ignored while positive behaviors rewarded. I'd be interested in knowing how much of his behavior is for the attention he receives for doing it.

For example, if he is up and not bothering anyone, ignore that behavior, but reward him when he is sitting. Reward others for sitting as well. Another example- say he is sitting at his desk chewing on the edge.Unless he is biting chunks off that he can choke on, I'd ignore that too while rewarding others for paying attention etc.

If his behavior improves using this scenario, you may be able to combat some of his behavior through ignoring/rewarding. Give it some time though. If it is attention-seeking, it will get worse when you ignore before it gets better.

Another way to deal with him not participating because he is up and around is logical consequence. For example, if he is supposed to be in his seat working, but is instead doing something else, let him be. When it comes time for recess or whatever, explain to him that he still needs to finish his work. You can actually use this method as a cue for him to get to work instead of moving around, playing at his desk. Something like, "Johnny, if you use your time to break apart your pencil instead of doing your work, you'll have to finish it during recess because it has to be done."

I speak from experience on these kinds of behaviors, and have students who have something going on like this every year. You will be amazed what ignoring can do. I have a little girl this year who does things like not lining up when I call her. Instead of making it a big power play, I just ignore her yet reward the other students who are in line. Sometimes she gets in line too, sometimes she doesn't. If she does, I reward her immediately. If she doesn't (she usually tries to just cut in the line), then I stop her (because this will affect others) and tell her that she needs to go to the end and that if she would have lined up when I called her, she would have been in that part of the line. I also use the "have to finish your work no matter what" deal with her when she gets in the mood to just sit, or wander around trying to get my attention.

Good luck to you. I hope some of this helps.
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I agree...
Old 09-07-2007, 01:48 AM
 
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I have done all that you suggested in past years and plan and they have been successful with some students. At this point his behavior is so over hte top (most likely for attention) planned ignoring isn't SAFE yet. He is very unaware of his body and bumps into things, people, and actually moves furniture with his body.

I do plan on ignoring the behavior at some point but need to know he and other will be safe while ignoring. There are two of us in the room all say so it is a little easier.

Unfortunately, we are not allowed by state wellness programs to withhold gym or recess for the past two years and that has taken away some "power" of get your work done now or do it later.

It is only the 2nd day but I honestly could not teach anything the whole 2 days. I feel like a first year teacher again and it is my 13th year in first grade.
I know I have strong management plans in place but he on top of seven other is a bit overwhelming. I worry about the year ahead and I have challenges in the past. This year they just seem to be many.

I am setting up a rule card for quiet sitting at the desk and plan to begin a token reward system for that (some type of physical reward). I hope to see an improvement.

Thanks again. Suggestions are always welcome.
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sensory issues?
Old 09-09-2007, 06:15 PM
 
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I am only going based on what you have written, obviously, but it seems to me this child is screaming for some sensory support. You said he is oral and pushing furniture..he might be craving both types of stimulation. There are many things you can try for the oral...we have used the large thick fish tubing you buy for tanks..cut a large piece..like 6 inches long, and make a necklace out of it and let them chew on it as they need it. Controlling the spit in the tube can be the challenge, but for the most part it worked. There are also chew toppers for pencils you can buy through Integrations magazine. They have tons of stuff for sensory issues.
Carrying or pushing something heavy might be good for him too. Show him how to sit on his chair backwards so the back of the chair pushes on his chest. What about a weighted vest?
Autism? Sensory Integration Disorder? ADHD?
It is amazing what these kids need sometimes...even more exciting trying to figure it out for them.
Keep us updated!
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you're right....
Old 09-16-2007, 02:01 PM
 
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this child has major sensory issues. I like the fish tubing idea. I would have to figure out the spit thing because I can definitely see this posing a problem with this particular child. I have been giving him about 3/4 of an inch of bubblegum tape throughout the day. It has really seemed to cut down on him placing objects in his mouth. I have been given permisson by his mother to use the bubblegum and she is supplying it.

I have spoken to his mother about our concerns, however she doesn't seem to think it is as out of control as it is. remember this is a child without an IEP. His mother does see him as extremely hyper and out of control (she used those words) but I don't think she understand where I am coming from in needing to educate the other 19 students in my class. I honestly haven't even begun doing what I need to. I feel like I don't have a clue about the other 19 kids. I do know they are needy but I and my co-teacher are overwhelemed by this particular one. The students are beginning to isolate him or copy his inappropriate behavior. I think over all we have a needy behavioral group in a ddition to academic but I CAN'T teach with things the way they are.

I have had my principal in the 3 day of school. He stayed for 25 minutes and was astonished by the child behavior. I know the child has no control over it. You can tell just by observing him. My principal also was aware of this through his observation. My major issue is WHAT CAN I DO ABOUT IT? Yes, I can encourage mom to take him to the doctor. She had gone in May and she stated the doctor told her he was immature and a young 6 and that is probably the cause of his behavior. I am not one to advocate medicine but if ever there was a case this is the child. I can't imagine what it is like for him. It must be confusing and overwhelming because he is constantly putting himself in danger because he is so impulsive.

Currently we have him on a 1 minute positive reinforcement system. It worked a little the first day but the second it fell apart. He doesn't possess the control to implement this type of plan but we tried just because we needed to try something. We took two days of data about his behaviors. I am not exaggerating when I say he had lifted his desk 167 times, called out 125+ times, been out of his seat 79 times, touching materials and objects around the room 114 times all in two days. This is impulsive on steroids.

I am sorry I am going on and on but I am stressed and don't no how to proceed especially even if an IEP does get in place it is not going to change his placement or our situation.

Any suggestions welcome.


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feel for you
Old 09-16-2007, 05:46 PM
 
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IT is hard to say what to do because I don't know how extensive support could be if he did qualify for special ed. Could you invite the doctor to observe him...granted if you breach the request the school would have to pay for their time, but it might be worth it. What about director of special ed observing? All states and districts work differently, so this is when advice gets tricky.

At my school teachers submit papework for the GEI/SST (teacher assitance team). Interventions are brainstormed and then if the student continues to have challenges then a referral for special ed testing can be made. Even if you could get a diagnosis for ADHD, you could go with services under OHI (Other Health Impairment). With that, your special ed dept should be able to provide support to the student/you during extremely high frustration/energy times and help the student learn skills and replacement behaviors for the negative that you are seeing now. The most important part of the IEP will be to document the special services for the student, the times that he/she will need remediation, behavior support, in class support, etc...also any accomodations the student will need to be able to succeed.
What did your principal say after he observed? Perhaps he/she needs to be involved when behaviors are out of your control. I always believe in following a chain of command to seek support, but if your special ed or crisis team can't assist you now, admin is the next link on the chain.
Keep us updated!
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We are talking
Old 09-22-2007, 04:37 AM
 
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with administration along with our CST. Ideally I believe this is an extreme case and probably warrants medication. I am not a believer for medication for all but for this particular child I think it is a start to allow him to be in control of some of his behaviors.

Our reinforcement system has shown some positive outcomes. It is taking much of one teachers energy to keep up with his intervention. We have 4 other IEP's for children we have not been able to address and several other students we feel as teachers need to put things in place to get more out of them. Really it feels impossible to truly co-teach if one alays needs to be managing him and putting out fires all the time. His behavior sets the other students off and quite frankly distracts me from my thoughts and plans for the day.

It has been a little better but still no where near what a co-teaching classroom is supposed to be. If he does get an IEP under OHI it really will not change his placement or services at this time. He is in co-teaching. That is all our district has unless a LLD classroom is warranted. I really don't care if an IEP is in place or not I am looking for strategies to make it through the day and actually teach. I feel the rest of the class is suffering. Our class as a whoe is significantly low. It is the first time I have had just an overall low class. In the past we have had students with needs and IEP but also your average to above average children to even it all out. We are completely without the above average students and may have 2-3 considered at average level. It is still early but the future looks like a real struggle.

I want this year to be a success. If we can get this boy much needed help and address all the needs in out room it will be a greatly successful year. I am hoping for that even if the road is long, dusty, and uphill all the way.
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