10 years in, experiencing behavior burnout and need to refuel- ideas?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Kippers, Mar 25, 2019.

  1. Kippers

    Kippers Companion

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    Mar 25, 2019

    I'm an elementary mild-moderate special education teacher in a self-contained classroom. Today is the first day of spring break and I went in to clean today. I realized how much I have let my classroom fall apart.

    I have my bag of tricks in play. I won an award for excellence in teaching last year. This year, I am finding myself falling apart. Some, or likely much of it is due to not having a regular, or often any, aide this year. I have at least two kiddos who would likely qualify for 1:1 support, but due to issues with our administration and school psychologist, nothing has been done since the start of the school year.

    I have applied to move to another position where I would work with small groups all day, but it does mean walking away from my class. My kids have so many needs well beyond learning challenges- this would mean yet another adult in their lives walking away from them. The behavior has been non-stop this year, even with my social skills lessons, empathy games, strict stern teacher, positive rewards and community building. I don't feel like I am teaching and I am shortchanging them all. One third of my class is housing insecure, the entire class receives free lunch, we have parents who are incarcerated and children who are starving for attention. My latest challenges are a child who is incorrectly placed and is nonverbal and needs 1:1 support for the most basic of tasks (handwashing, etc) and a child who is on the autism spectrum and copes with social stress by yelling out racist slurs. (Possibly also Tourettes?) Then there are the other 15 all of whom have varying behavioral and social-emotional issues.

    I'm doing my best to be consistent, follow regular routine, keep all the calm down routines in place, and be my old warm loving self. I have yet another new aide starting when we return. (No, I am not chasing them off- I asked in earnest).

    I love what I do but I am so darned tired. I'm not creative or inspired anymore. How do you relight you fire when it is only a flicker? What hurts most is the kiddos with the greatest learning needs and the most mild behavior getting the least support due to the enormity of behavior.
     
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