HELP? Really struggling with a particular student!

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by Kaylaxx032, Oct 28, 2017.

  1. Kaylaxx032

    Kaylaxx032 Rookie

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    Oct 28, 2017

    Hello!
    I'm new, so excuse me if I'm using this incorrectly...
    I've had a student that previously has been A-B honor roll, still is, excluding my class.
    In my class, no matter what I've done, I cannot get one ounce of effort.
    I've talked to other teachers, they say in their classes they are engaged, paying attention, and turning in completed assignments that show effort.
    I get head down, texting, skipping class, doing other work, etc.
    I've took the work from other classes with promise to return it after next class, but the head just goes straight down.
    I tried to take the phone, but the student got extremely confrontational, yelling, screaming obscenities, to the point I feared for my safety.
    I've tried taking the chair to prevent sleeping, they just sit on the floor.
    I've tried having them walk somewhere and back, but they never show back up.
    The administrator can't get anything besides the silent treatment, confrontational body language, or head down. The counselor can't get anything besides head down.

    The time they became extremely aggressive over the phone, their peers and close friends report never seeing any behavior like that from them, ever.
     
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  3. Mr.history

    Mr.history Cohort

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    Oct 28, 2017

    Have you contacted this student's parents? What did they say?
     
  4. Kaylaxx032

    Kaylaxx032 Rookie

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    Oct 28, 2017

    Hello! I've tried, and was then threatened for calling that number at the time I did. (5pm)
    I passed it on to administration, they called, they informed the parents of what has been going on. Parents seem rather uninvolved and not interested.
     
  5. Zizka

    Zizka New Member

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    Oct 28, 2017

    Have you tried calling the parents yourself? I find this gives the best results. The thing is, if you talk to the parents, you can give examples of what's going on.

    Do you take notes? It can be useful to refer to.

    I like to collaborate with the parents. Ask them for advice even if you don't need it. They'll feel like they're being considered and involved. In turn, they can interact with the student when he/she gets home.

    I'm not saying it's going to work. But it's worth a try. If it doesn't work, then you can try something else until you find what works. I mean, there's got to be a solution.
     
  6. Kaylaxx032

    Kaylaxx032 Rookie

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    Oct 28, 2017

    I've tried, and the parents were very hostile in nature (much like their kiddo) so I had admin make the call, which got a similar response.
    I'm kinda at a loss!
     
  7. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Oct 28, 2017

    What content area do you teach? What time of day?
     
  8. Kaylaxx032

    Kaylaxx032 Rookie

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    Hello! I teach Freshman Biology, and roughly 12:45 is my classes start time.
    Most behavioral issues in my class consist of coming in after lunch, and I recognize that and I'm pretty sympathetic to that. That student isn't typical to what those misbehaviors are. I hate calling people out. I feel like I went wrong somewhere.
     
  9. Loomistrout

    Loomistrout Devotee

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    Oct 28, 2017

    I'm confused. You start out by referencing "a student" (singular) than switch to "they" (plural). Is this happening with one student or many?
     
  10. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Oct 28, 2017

    Loomistrout, as I read it there's just one student, and I suspect the use of "they" is to avoid divulging the student's gender.
     
  11. Obadiah

    Obadiah Groupie

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    Oct 29, 2017

    I'm elementary, so I'm a little out of my territory, but I see some red flags with this student. I hope I don't sound like I'm demeaning your professional knowledge, but I know from experience sometimes a person outside of the situation can see things that I don't notice when I'm involved in the situation. It happens right after lunch. Is it possible the student is obtaining or using some kind of drug, illegal or even legal, during the lunch period that's altering their mood. Another possibility, does the student have diabetes. If they are taking medication at lunch time that is too strong, it can cause hypoglycemic symptoms, the most severe being what you are describing. Of course, that would still present a mystery, because if this is the case, then they must be taking some glucose after your class--why not during? It is possible for the body to naturally self adjust, but I don't know if it can adjust when glucose levels are low enough for those symptoms. I've recently read that undiagnosed hyperglycemia can cause mood changes: off hand, I doubt if it would be that severe, but I really don't know how severe the symptoms of untreated Type I diabetes might be, and that would explain the eventual change back to normal behavior if the sugar is eventually absorbed by the cells. Some psychological disorders or even normal adolescent experiences have triggers that cause alternate behavior; something about lunch or biology class might be triggering their episodes and the results of the episodes can increase their reactions in future episodes. An example of this, a trigger causes initial reactions, the student is unaware of the severity of their reactions and considers the teacher to be intervening unfairly. The student then responds to this misperception in an aggressive manner. They report this to their parents, and because this is the first teacher to ever experience this student's misbehavior, the parents assume it's the teacher's fault. One precaution I'd like to mention: whatever is occurring, it's not your fault. You are not the one who's behaving against classroom protocol. If anything, you are proactive in trying to assist this student.
     
  12. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    Nov 4, 2017

    Biology can be difficult. It might be that your student has finally met a subject that is challenging and has decided to give up instead of try. This can result in the behaviors you've described.
     
  13. Ramon

    Ramon New Member

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    Nov 8, 2017

    What kind of consequences do you give the student for not following the classroom rule?
     
  14. veronicanoel

    veronicanoel New Member

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    Nov 15, 2017

    high school students will not hesitate to put up a fight, especially over their phone. things that engage a lot of students is games. it sounds ridiculous, but it works. Doing warm ups for a piece of candy or a small reward always helps. Sometimes when warm ups are simple brain teasers, like a riddle, it can get students engaged. One thing pretty much all students hate is seeing their classmates getting disciplined. It makes even the most obedient student talk bad or turn on you. I'm not saying don't discipline students, but instead, give them a cold shoulder. Try not to yell or threaten to take away phones, or seats, but instead try to get their attention in a better manner. giving a small talk before class starts about how students treat you also works. it makes them realize what they are doing, but also let them know it not only on them, but also some of the blame on you. always reassure them that after yo give them class work, you will be available for help when they need it, and before they leave, remind them that you can stay after for some tutoring. Usually, I never go directly to a student who doesn't care, I just say it to the whole class. But, if it is a particular student, don't threaten them, don't challenge them, and absolutely do not give them all of your attention. It will most likely make things worse. try going to them at a more approachable manner, by asking them to talk in private and discussing their grade and asking what can be done to make things better. Always work with your students, not against them. I hope this helped and I wish you the best of luck with your classes!
     

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