I have a problem with a student who constantly talks back. I find him to be very disrepectful and I am unsure of what I can do to change this behaviour. Today, before we left for Gym, I took a minute to remind my students about my expectations about their behaviour during Gym time. I mentioned that we have a limited amount of time in the Gym and they waste time by not listening to instructions and fooling around. One of my students blurted out "You are wasting our time right now". I was absolutely floored and took him aside. What else can I do??
It is amazing, the things that come out of the mouths of kindergarteners these days. It's amazing the things that come out of the mouths of any kid these days, but we've had that discussion before.
Anyway, I'm sorry about your situation. I don't have any ideas though. I have the same problem with extreme disrespect in my K classroom. I have tried having face to face talks with the student(s) about how those words and comments hurt people. I've given them silent lunch, sent notes home...nothing seems to be effective.
I will be interested in the responses too.
I think if I were in your situation, and I was allowed(which I would be), I would have taken this student to sit in the office during P.E. rather than going and let them know that they were now missing P.E. for their disrespectful comment.
One thing I've realize in the years I have been teaching is that our precious little ones are a product of their environment. I've always known that, but I don't know that I actually "knew" it, if you know what I mean. I have a child who is very hesitant to come to me. When I call him he immediately starts walking baby steps, or crawls on his knees taking forever. It drives me crazy! I have tried many things, but to no avail. I mentioned it to another teacher and she simply said, "He must have a hard time trusting people." That comment hit me like a load of bricks! I remembered his comment about grandma (his guardian) hitting mom with a frying pan when mom tried to take them "just to spend some time with" them. I remembered the comment about another family member getting up in the middle of the night and shooting a dog that was barking and then "kicking, kicking, kicking the dog." Her comment about trusting made me realize that he had no reason to trust. His experience with people was mostly violence and I guess he wasn't sure if he came to me what was going to happen. It still makes his behavior wrong, but it helped me understand why he did it.
I understand your frustration. I hate disrespect from a student! I have to wonder, though, where he learned this talk from. It is quite possible that he has had no other type of talk modeled at home. It becomes our responsibility (among others) to teach our children what respect looks like and sounds like. We can't assume any more that children are growing up in the type of homes that most of us grew up in. When my children say something disrespectful, I do address it instantly so that my other students hear it as well. (You know how things like that can spread once it is started) I explain gently but firmly that I do not allow that in my classroom. I let them know that they may hear talk like that at home, TV, or other places, but it is not allowed in my room. We then talk about how what was said could be said in a respectful way. For example, your student could have been trying to say, "I want to hurry and get to the gym and the longer you talk, the longer I have to wait!" and was saying it the only way he knew how. I explain that if the behavior continues there will be consequences the next time. Please understand that I am not trying to OK his behavior. I just know that too often I just assume that children know that disrespectful talk and actions are wrong when they are just doing what comes naturally at home. When they are punished for something at school that they get away with at home I think they become very confused. I hope this makes sense. Sorry it is so long.
I'm not sure how I would react if one of my kindergarten students said something like that to me. I think my first response would be have you lost your mind to speak to me that way and after that I'm not sure. I think I would probably take the rest of the class to gym while my assistant had a talk with him. (I know her well enough to just hear her say if you will take them to gym and let me talk to him) The sad thing is if he is speaking to his teacher like that, he probably is even worse with parents/guardians. You will be in my prayers!
My class is mostly boys. I only have 7 girls and two of them are twin sisters. They boys in my class are very rough with their bodies and with their language. One little boy called me a "dirtbag" last week. I was appalled, but realized he must have heard it from his family.
I had to do something, so I instituted this behavior plan. I have very high expectations that every child in my class will be safe. That is my only rule. They have to make sure they are not hurtful with their bodies or their words. If they do not follow the rule they will be asked to leave the classroom. I am lucky enough to have a wonderful behavior assistant in the class next door and she will process behavior with my children. I can attach the plan if someone tells me how. It is basically a check list for each child and on the back it gives a narrative so you can write to the parents. The parents have to sign the chart every day it gets sent home. It has worked so far.
I also have a "no talking zone" in my class when I am directly teaching. I have signs that say "no talking zone" and the other side is green so they are allowed to talk for snack, centers, etc.
I feel like I have turned very strict, but my class was so out of control I have parents complain their children were not safe. Now I have parents say I am too strict, but that is another post.
I read about a strategy in a behavior book ( I wish I could remember the title, maybe a Fred Jones book) that has worked for me with Pre-K student. When a child is openly disrespectful to you that way, he is trying to get your attention and the other students are watching to see how his disrepect affects you. At the moment when the disrespect occurs, ignore it. The other students will see that you are the adult in charge of the situation and the disrespectful student will get no power or attention from the rude words or actions. But, as soon as possible when the other students are engaged in something else, pull the disrespectful student aside. He needs to understand that his action was inappropriate and apologize or "make it better" in some way before moving on to the next activity.
I hope that makes sense and good luck! I know such disrespect can be very frustrating and discouraging, even if (and maybe because) it is coming from such a young child. Remember, like URMySunshine said, the child is not really attacking you personally even if it might feel that way. You are a good teacher and he is just reacting to what he's experienced! Hopefully he can learn some respectful words and strategies in your classroom that will help him be more successful in the future.
I agree with QueenRosie she is absolutey right in saying not to cause attention to the child with all of the other children around because this is really what we tell the children to do "don't give in or respond just walk away" so we have to be mindful also i have this one little girl she always cries for her mom (my boss) at quiet-time she gets louder and louder at first i use to try and get her to stop but then one day i just decided to ignore her and not give in she stop and looked at me and i didn't let her see me watching her she started again and i still didn't respond she stop and went to sleep so hang in there it really does work
Thank you to everyone who responded to my post. I have to constantly remind myself that he isn't attacking me (although sometimes I find it hard to believe) because this isn't the first time he has made a comment like this one. I know that he is frustrated with my program because he pretty much knows everything that I'm teaching in Language Arts (letter name/sound identification and a few basic sight words) and I believe that his attitude is partly a result of this. Being a first year K teacher I'm trying to find the perfect balance where everyone is challenged, but I'm not sure how to do it.