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set82 set82 is offline
 
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set82
 
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Challenging students
Old 10-07-2012, 05:45 PM
 
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Hi All!

I'm searching for a little advice. I am a brand new special ed teacher (7th grade) even though I've been out of school for 7 years. I started my position last week and have been a little overwhelmed with the job as a whole: getting to know students and teachers, IEP's, meetings, oh yeah, and teaching! Most of my students are great and I feel like the year will be a good one. However, I have one student who consistently sleeps in class or appears to be sleeping. When I or the classroom teacher tell him to sit up and that he can't sleep, he simply says he isn't sleeping. He isn't organized and because of that, is missing a lot of work. I'm lost at how to motivate him to work harder. Any tips?

The majority of my caseload is 7th graders, but I have five 8th graders as well. I only go to one of their classes and none of them come to me for resource. One of these students is currently failing every class. She just does not care about school. She has countless medical problems, including being on the transplant list for a kidney. I don't want to make life hard for her at school because it's already hard enough at home. However, she obvious cannot fail the 8th grade. She is definitely going to be my toughest case this year. What, if anything, can I do to help her?


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teabreak teabreak is offline
 
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Old 10-08-2012, 06:49 AM
 
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Look through the IEP and see if there is anything about medication in there that might make this child so tired. If there is nothing, then make a phone call home and inquire about the sleeping habits of the child. Ask the parent/guardian if there is anything they can think of to help you out.

As for the organization piece, do weekly grade checks with the student and teach some organizational skills such as using her calendar on her cellphone to put in assignment dates and how to not eat the whole elephant at once (on Monday do the brain storming for a writing piece, Tuesday do the outline, Wednesday do the rough draft etc....)

This student is probably more worried about staying alive than school work. Keep this in mind and perhaps adjust her school work via IEP so that she only has half the work that everyone else has.
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Old 10-09-2012, 03:49 AM
 
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the kid who's sleeping....I'd talk to the kid one-on-one to see what's going on. Approach him as that you're caring about him and want to get to know him. Ask if he has a job or has siblings...see if there's a reason for his sleeping. Then if there's no change in a day or so, call home.

As much as my 7/8th graders liked to pretend their parents don't care. I got a world of change when I made phone calls.

If he doesn't have folders/notebooks, provide them for him and teach him where to put his belongings. Even at his age, it's surprising how many kids don't have that organizational skill. Perhaps even a binder with folders that stay in so he only keep up with one thing.

As for the girl, I'd call home and with both parents, perhaps have them come to school for a conference.
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