Students with anger management problems

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by a teacher, Dec 13, 2016.

  1. a teacher

    a teacher Cohort

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    I have one student whose writing is awful. It's almost painful to read. I have told him that if he doesn't want to work on improving it he will have to type his assignments. What would you all do?

    When I grade and return an assignment to him and he's not happy with the grade, he will walk away with it and exclaim, usually with foul language, about how the grade is not fair. At this point I wait until the class is almost dismissed before I call him over to get his assignment, so the group is distracted by dismissal and doesn't notice him. How would you all handle a kid like this?
     
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  3. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Devotee

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    Seriously, though, you'll have to work on social - skills with him, which sadly, is a lot of what we as teachers do nowadays. And when you say his writing is "awful" is it the hand writing itself or the content, or both? Have you tried having him work on his hand writing, because unfortunately, other teachers may not be so open - minded. And how are you presenting this? Do you acknowledge ANY positive attributes of his writing or just tell him "You'll need to re- do or type this?" If that's all he hears, then yeah, he'll be mad. What is the age of the kid? I had a student practice his writing because I told him, "Yeah you're not going on to fourth grade with that hand writing." His mom, who worked with Kinder, agreed. But we didn't present it as "This is horrible." We presented to him as, "We know you can do much better and want to help you."
    It's in the approach & presentation, but also helps when you have a relationship with the kid to begin with.
    :)
     
  4. mathmagic

    mathmagic Connoisseur

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    Give a choice (Love & Logic approach):
    You may choose to write it neatly enough that it can be read, or you may type it up. (You seem fine with either solution, so I'm hoping those are two good choices) Stick to that, give a low score if necessary...if there's disrespect after you've given that choice and they've made their choice, can you just write them up?
     
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  5. a teacher

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    I've told him both options. I would gladly send him to the Dean, but it seems unwarranted. Other options on how to respond to the anger? I have heard of other situations where anger-management problem kids have freaked out about grades. How do you defend against that?
     
  6. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I have 3 students with terrible handwriting. Student A and B are just lazy and sloppy. I told everyone, every time there is a writing assignment " if I can't read it, I can't grade it" and " you don't need perfect handwriting but I shouldn't have to strain my eyes and go blind trying to read your work" student and A and B received several Fs because I couldn't read every other word. Once I asked each student to read it to me, and they couldn't. That tells me that it's just sloppy, because if it was just bad handwriting, there would be a pattern to it and they could read it themselves.
    Both of these students will fail this semester, and although failed assignments are a big part (it is an English class with essays and writing) other work also contributed.

    Student C has terrible handwriting and the worst spelling I've ever seen. Yet, I can almost figure it out, because it's not just sloppy. When I asked him to read what he wrote, he had no problem. This student feels very insecure about his writing and often doesn't do it. He was failing for months, but then I noticed he actually paid attention and verbally gave me perfect answers as well as very good scores on multiple choice tests. Because he was trying ( and I was able to motivate him), I gave him a final (50 questions, all multiple choice) about the book we read. I ended up not using this for the class, they didn't get a final about the book. But told this students this could replace many of his chapter test scores. And guess what. He did fantastic, remembered things from the book 3 months prior. He will end up passing.
     
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  7. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Is this the only class where the student reacts this way? I ask because we just had an incident at my school where a young lady went completely out of control. In her case, it was almost expected based on her past behavior, and we were able to intervene in a manner we knew would deescalate the situation most quickly. Can you talk with this student's other teachers / guidance counselor to gauge if there is something else going on?
     
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  8. mathmagic

    mathmagic Connoisseur

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    Can you talk to administration to see if they have a preference? If you've given them the choice, and they choose neither, then they get a 0. They then have a choice to react to that in a productive way or a way that causes others issues (including you), and if the latter, I'd hope that administration would stand up with you for that! Can't hurt to have the conversation, at least. Good luck!
     
  9. a teacher

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    Okay so an update. I didn't get any answers that would help, so I guess it's okay I'm reading these now.

    I passed back the kids work and he went ballistic. He came up to my desk insisting that he knows the material, his answers are adequate etc. He was loud and disruptive, so I told him I will discuss specifics after class. As he went back to his seat he continued to mouth off (and get this, something I've never even heard of a kid saying) he starting saying my class stunk, that I didn't know what I was teaching, that he knows the subject better, etc. So I took him into the hall and let him know that attitude won't be tolerated and called the Dean's office to have him picked up. Ridiculous!

    The Dean came by to get the details and said the kid still hasn't cooled off.
     
  10. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Devotee

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    How about giving him an alternative assessment? It's not ideal, but it may work. What is it that you're trying to get him to demonstrate through writing? Could he do it orally or in test form? And isn't this an art class or did I completely make that up?
     
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  11. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    I was going to suggest oral assessment as well. If he can tell you what he knows, he is demonstrating his understanding of the concepts.
     
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  12. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Devotee

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    And it may even build the relationship with the student if he sees that you are willing to work with him. I mean we want all students to do the same things, but we know that each child is different and has strengths/ weaknesses. Our job is to meet them where they are.
    :)
    This is why I like standards-based grading. I didn't understand it at first, but it really looks at assessing what the student know, NOT necessarily HOW he's able to show it. If my student takes a test, for example, but flunks it, but I KNOW that he can do the skill, I'll find some way for him to show me.
     
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  13. MissCeliaB

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    If his answers are correct, but difficult to read, I can understand his frustration. What standards are you grading, the content of the class, or handwriting? Does he have access to a computer or other device to type his answers in class? Have you checked with other teachers to see how they handle his handwriting? Usually by high school if a student has that severe of deficits in handwriting they have a 504 plan and some kind of adaptive technology and a plan in place. He should not have reacted the way he did, and may need to work on some skills to manage his anger. However, he may have a valid point, however inarticulately he may have expressed it.
     
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  14. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Devotee

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    I remember when I student taught in 2nd grade, we had a student who had a similar problem: he couldn't write to save his life. So when it was time to test, he would just sit there and not do anything. It was coming time to collect them and I noticed he had NOTHING written on the essay portion, and I pushed him on it, he just shrugged his shoulders. He was a good (but very low) student. So I said, "You know what, you talk and I'll write." I asked him to tell me everything he knew about volcanoes (which was the topic) and he went on and on... it was amazing! He gave me MORE than enough to satisfy the essay's requirements.
    And he was genuinely happy too because I had taken the time to sit and talk with him and allow him to show me that he actually did know the material. From that point forward, I told him to write what he can but to include pictures as well. I did that in my own classroom too with my ELLs.

    :D
     
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  15. a teacher

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    Look, this isn't the issue (how to assess). The kid can write legibly if he tries. The point is that he doesn't want to put the time in because he is arrogant and thinks he knows everything about the subject. There is no reason to hold him to different standards as he is not a special ed student. Also, what about the fact that he insulted me and said my curriculum (which is stellar) was bad (he put it in much ruder terms). Hello?!
     
  16. MissCeliaB

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    I've had some of my best students lash out sometimes in the most cruel ways. I always remind myself that they are children and are still learning how to cope with emotions and express themselves. It's part of my job to teach them that. Since I teach speech, I try to model what we learn in our curriculum. I ask to speak to them in the hall. I use a three-part statement, like "When you say that my curriculum sucks, I feel upset because I work hard to plan activities I think students will find interesting." Usually, the student will apologize. Then I ask, "What can I do to help you be successful?" and then "What will you do to help yourself be successful?" It doesn't work 100% of the time, but it's the best thing I've found.
     
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  17. TeacherCuriousExplore

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  18. a teacher

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    I hear you but that is not my style, which is no-nonsense. A kid talks trash, they are going to receive the consequences. I am treating them like young adults, not like children.
     
  19. a teacher

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    Did you have something to add?
     
  20. mathmagic

    mathmagic Connoisseur

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    If you're wanting only ideas that are only circling around consequences, then ask for that!

    Personally, I try to listen to all ideas, and while I may not follow any one of them specifically, I at least try to glean something from that that I can use to adjust my approach. Don't dismiss something just because it isn't "your style"! Just don't go 100% in that direction, then.
     
  21. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    well, I'm sorry if my thought out response didn't help you. I put a lot of effort into describing what I did with 2 students, and explaining my no-nonsense attitude, which is what you're looking for.

    Next time just say "thank you for the responses everyone" instead of saying none of this helped.
     
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