Rude Students

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Peregrin5, Jun 10, 2017.

  1. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    5,582
    Likes Received:
    815

    Jun 10, 2017

    I know it's the last few days of my possible last year in this career, so the advice will probably just be "let it go", and I probably will, but I'm curious as to how others would deal with this.

    I have a student who has been super negative, often rude and disrespectful (really this could describe most of my teenagers though) all year. She likes to make little comments that aren't overtly disrespectful but you can tell that there is disrespect behind it.

    Just recently, she heard that I had proposed to my BF from another student and she said "Oh, Mr. _____ has b*lls. I didn't think you did!" I usually ignore her little jabs and barbs. This time I just laughed and said "What a lovely back-handed compliment."

    She often tries to give me "tips" for being a "better teacher", like telling me that I should be making my class more fun like Ms. so-and-so does because my class is boring. In another class, a student who I've had respect problems with all year has resorted to muttering things under his breath or complaining to his pals since he's learned that overt disrespect is met with consequences such as referrals and admin meetings. He picks on anything he can like typos that might be present in materials I've gotten from other teachers to use in my class and complains about them under his breath. I just ignore him.

    At this point in the year there's probably not much I could do. How would you deal with these students? It's usually a few repeat offenders so I try to balance appearing to be singling them out with being tough on disrespect.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2017
  2.  
  3. swansong1

    swansong1 Maven

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    5,964
    Likes Received:
    683

    Jun 10, 2017

    Just ignore it. School is almost over and you will most likely never see these people again.
     
    Peregrin5 likes this.
  4. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    5,582
    Likes Received:
    815

    Jun 10, 2017

    Just out of curiosity though, say it was happening early or mid-year, what would you do then?
     
  5. GPC0321

    GPC0321 Companion

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    197
    Likes Received:
    116

    Jun 10, 2017

    If it's a personal jab (like the "Mr. *** has balls.." comment), I think I'd ask that student to step into the hall and explain without the audience of her peers that her remarks are out of line. Our principal likes to remind us that we teach our students how to treat us. If we allow them to make snide remarks and disrespectful comments without any consequence, we're basically saying that it's okay for them to treat us this way.
    Now, the whining about the class being boring and all of that? Meh. Just smile and shrug and keep on doing your thing. Maybe remind them that (1) teachers have their own teaching styles and no two teachers are going to teach a class the same, and (2) if they go to college, they better not expect professors to make their classes "fun" for them.
    Teenagers think this is THEIR world and we're all just living in it. This has been rampant this year in my classes for some reason, and I've been doing this for over 15 years.
    So, my advice is don't let the whining about the class get to you, but nip the rude personal remarks in the bud. There's no excuse for that, I don't care if they're teenagers or not. One of the things they must learn is that not everyone lives and breathes to make THEM happy.
     
    Tulipteacher likes this.
  6. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    5,582
    Likes Received:
    815

    Jun 11, 2017

    Gotcha. I do wonder though, do students see the whole "step outside" thing as a consequence though? I often see it done by other teachers, and usually the behavior still continues in the classroom (probably because usually the talk is a very passive "what's going on? what can I do to help?" kind of thing, and the kids see it as a joke). When I do it (which is rarely), I take on a much more "if this happens again, you're out" kinda thing, which can be somewhat effective, but I don't know if it's an actual consequence. Sometimes I start with the "what can I do to help... etc." but then make sure to end strong. I really hate one-on-one student talks, since they're not my strong suit. I tend to avoid them.

    Also I struggle with showing the student that their behavior doesn't phase me versus holding them accountable by sending them out. I think for that comment, if I sent her out, she could have seen it as me acting sensitively because she got under my skin or something, which I didn't want her to have the satisfaction of thinking, hence why I treated it like a joke. In retrospect I think you're right though, I should have given her a consequence (which I realized after I typed it out and realized how bad it actually was). High school students are definitely much better at just barely crossing the line than middle schoolers are, and I'm still struggling with identifying when I need to let it go and when I need to enforce a consequence. The line is much blurrier at this age group than I'm used to.
     
  7. Obadiah

    Obadiah Cohort

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2015
    Messages:
    711
    Likes Received:
    381

    Jun 11, 2017

    I like what one workshop teacher suggested concerning when to conference with a student. Interrupting class to speak to the student gives the student a lot of unnecessary and undeserved power; s/he just stopped the lesson. Although there are always exceptions to this rule, it is best for the teacher to decide on a specific time to discuss the matter, perhaps during independent work or after class.
     
  8. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Comrade

    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    Messages:
    267
    Likes Received:
    51

    Jun 11, 2017

    Even at the end of the year, I would conference with that student privately and explain that her comment was unacceptable and that you will not tolerate it. Students like these are just trying to push your buttons to see how you will respond. When she gives you tips about how to teach, I would calmly say that every teacher does things differently and you will not discuss it right now if she continues.

    For the boy with the typos, I may just say, thank you for noticing and you are welcome to correct it on your worksheet. That is not something I would make a big deal about and if he sees that it doesn't get to you he may stop.

    I taught with a summer program (middle school kids) for two years and dealt with some very rude girls my 2nd year with the program. We were supposed to be friend who with our students outside of class which made it hard. These girls made it known that they liked other teachers more than me and it was really rude behavior. We sat with the kids at lunch and one girl actually put her leg on a chair so I couldn't sit next to her! I didn't sit next to her at first but now I know better and I would have politely asked her to move her leg. There were other behaviors like this that just escalated when I didn't address it. From now on, I do believe in addressing rude behavior but I would do it differently depending on the behavior and the circumstance.
     
  9. GPC0321

    GPC0321 Companion

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    197
    Likes Received:
    116

    Jun 11, 2017

    To me, the "step into the hall" isn't a consequence, it's a warning. And depending on the reason I've asked the student to step outside, and my relationship with that student, I'm either going to probe to see if something is wrong, or I'm going to lay into the kid over whatever he/she is doing. If you lay into them in front of their peers, they're going to argue back to save face. If you do it one-on-one, they're much more likely to cooperate. Sometimes, yes, they're tempted to revert back to the behavior once you return to the classroom just to prove to their buddies that they're still "winning" the game (because it is a game to them). But I'm good at reading the kids, and if I know they're not going to change their behavior, I don't allow them back into the room. I have my say in the hallway and then bounce them to the ISS room. The ones I allow back into the room know that if I have to so much as look at them again for any reason during class, they're gone.

    And Obadiah brings up an excellent point. Timing is important. If the kid has ticked me off to the point that I don't want to see his/her face for the remainder of the period, I just quickly tell him/her to pack up and head to ISS, and I continue teaching. If I want to speak to the child in the hallway, but his/her behavior is too disruptive for me to continue teaching, I tell him/her to step into the hall and wait for me. I get to a good stopping place, get the rest of the class on task, warn THEM that I better not hear a peep, and then step out into the hall (closing the door behind me) to have my talk with waiting student.

    I don't really have a lot of discipline issues in my classes, so when I ask a kid to step into the hallway, he/she knows it just "got real". In my mind, the child decides whether our little conference in the hall is going to be the end of it or just the beginning. Once I've got a kid in the hallway, I explain to him/her that it can go one of two ways. The best outcome will be the child admitting to what he/she has done wrong, apologizing for it, and agreeing not to misbehave again, and we both return to class happy and leaving it behind us. The other way it might go would be the child continuing to be uncooperative and disrespectful, which will result in being bounced to ISS and a formal referral for being insubordinate and disruptive. It really doesn't matter to me either way, because I get the same outcome regardless: no more disruptive, rude behavior from that child during my class that day.
     
  10. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Messages:
    7,630
    Likes Received:
    879

    Jun 11, 2017

    On a side note, CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR ENGAGEMENT!
    [​IMG]
     
    anon55, Peregrin5 and christie like this.
  11. christie

    christie Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2013
    Messages:
    61
    Likes Received:
    26

    Jun 11, 2017

    It is really, super, extra hard, but I've found that in most cases, simply ignoring the rudeness and not rising to the bait will cut back on disrespect. The kids are looking to get a rise out of you, because that rise means you're going to spend less time teaching. Ignoring them and/or dealing with it once you have time (and they are no longer the center of attention), is more effective than engaging with them. In my school, we had buddy classrooms. If someone was being super disrespectful, I would simply point in the direction of my next door neighbor and ask the student to take a break. If they balked, it would be a simple, "You can either go next door or I can make a phone call to your parent" (or send to the office, but I found the phone call tended to be a better weight, even if I never had to make a call).

    When all else fails, if a student continues to be rude, I'll pull out, "You're sorely mistaken if you think anything a 12-year old has to say will hurt my feelings." It's a last resort because the response of other students tends to burn any bridge I have with the student in question. To be fair, if I'm pulling out this response, it's generally because there isn't much of a bridge to burn.

    A couple of things stand out for me in this response. Cornering students anywhere seems like a bad idea. Cornering students in the bathroom seems like a very bad idea. Setting aside the idea that cornering seems to suggest that a student was trapped and couldn't remove themselves from the situation, doing so in the bathroom seems to invite trouble. I'm not at all surprised that she got mad at you, but I'm sure you showed her who was boss.

    If a grade is supposed to represent what a student knows about a subject, having a grade drop from a B to C because of a bad attitude doesn't really reflect the student's understanding of the subject.
     
  12. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    5,582
    Likes Received:
    815

    Jun 11, 2017

    I like this. I rarely try to exhort apologies out of students because I don't really care if they're sorry, I just want the behavior to stop. Also I know that if I try to get a student to apologize they likely won't actually be sorry. But I think it could take on a symbolic effect. Even if they aren't actually sorry, by apologizing they are deferring to your authority, and you are very clear with what the next steps are if it continues.

    When I talk to kids outside, I also just send them out and tell them to wait, which is very new to me at this school, because at my old school we weren't allowed to do that because students needed to be monitored at all times. I'm always surprised that they didn't just wander away through the halls when they get sent out. I think it's because we have a roaming hall monitor who is pretty brutal.
     
    GPC0321 likes this.
  13. GPC0321

    GPC0321 Companion

    Joined:
    May 24, 2015
    Messages:
    197
    Likes Received:
    116

    Jun 11, 2017

    Yeah, the apology may or may not be legit, but as you say, it's at least a step in the right direction.
    If one of mine were to wander away and not be there when I went into the hall, that'd be an automatic write-up for skipping class. It'd also qualify for insubordination too, since I specifically told the student to wait for me.

    Basically, once the kids pick up on the fact that you're confident in yourself and the system in place to hold them accountable, they are more likely to cooperate. Some are still going to blow a gasket and cause a huge scene, but to me that's even easier since a major outburst of disrespectful behavior is going to result in the kid being removed by an administrator and a formal referral. The kid that chooses to throw a fit will be out of my room at least a couple of days, so that's good for me! :)

    Life is too short and there are too many good kids that are a pleasure to teach to waste much time, thought, or energy on a rude one.
     
    Leaborb192 and Peregrin5 like this.
  14. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2010
    Messages:
    4,499
    Likes Received:
    721

    Jun 14, 2017

    When I had kids trying to tell me how to teach my classes, I had a few comebacks that shut them down right away.
    "This is not my first year teaching, I have this whole thing planned out"
    "Thanx. When you become a teacher, you can choose what and how you teach, but for now, I know what I'm doing"
    "This is my 5th year, so I pretty much have this figured out. If I need advice, I will come to you".
    My favorite, shutting down the kid in the middle of his sentence as in "Ma'am, you know what you should do...?" me: "I got this, thanx. So Like I was saying..."
     
  15. Geologygirl

    Geologygirl Comrade

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2009
    Messages:
    340
    Likes Received:
    12

    Jun 23, 2017 at 11:46 AM

    The "balls" thing verges on sexual harrasment....
     
  16. anon55

    anon55 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2014
    Messages:
    348
    Likes Received:
    78

    Jun 23, 2017 at 12:42 PM

    Can you remind me what your plans are for after this year? I think you said you're taking a break from teaching for a while? Honestly, I would just take it easy the last few days of the school year, especially since you're leaving. If the kid's been a jerk all year, there's nothing you can do at this point to change it. I think just learn your lessons from this year to apply whenever/if you go back into teaching.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. MrsC,
  2. Kenz501,
  3. blazer
Total: 348 (members: 3, guests: 221, robots: 124)
test