Behavior Problems

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by Mama P, Jan 5, 2007.

  1. Mama P

    Mama P Rookie

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    I need some help with this one. I have tried EVERYTHING I know to diffuse negative behavior in my classroom. This is my 6th year to teach 2nd grade. My kids are such talkers they will not be quiet. I have tried rewards for good kids, I have talkers writing paragraphs and sending them for parent signature, I have taken away activity time, I have tried so manythings and NOTHING works. I will really talk to them about their talking and I am barely through talking and they are at it again. I will teach a lesson and they talk, play, and then when it is time for them to work they don't know how to do it. There is basically no discipline in our school and the kids know this. No consequence for anything. Does anyone have any ideas on how to get a handle on this? I am slowly going insane-lol- Any ideas would be much appreciated!!:eek:
     
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  3. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    What about using study carrels so they can't see each other?
     
  4. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    They either shut their mouths or they will never see the playground again.
     
  5. Mama P

    Mama P Rookie

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    We do not have recess (only 15 minutes before lunch, and I have taken that away also)
     
  6. Mama P

    Mama P Rookie

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    Where can study carrels be purchased (the cheapest possible) I have seen cardboard ones, I just don't know where to purchase them at.
     
  7. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    So, what do you do to let them get rid of their energy(and need to TALK A LOT??")
     
  8. Grammy Teacher

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    What?
     
  9. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Oh...you can make them from cardboard or even tagboard.
     
  10. Ms.T

    Ms.T Comrade

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    :love: Read Teaching with Love and Logic. I LOVE IT!
     
  11. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    You can teach all the love & Logic you want, but second graders with only 15 minutes of recess???????? No wonder they won't stop talking.
     
  12. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    Give them a 10 minute free talk time everyday! It is ridiculous you don't have more recess then that! Make your own. If they don't stop, you can reduce the number of minutes of free talk time.
     
  13. Ms.T

    Ms.T Comrade

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    Grammy Teacher,
    I agree. I have 2nd graders, and I try very hard not to take away recess! They need it sooooo much.
     
  14. vcboop

    vcboop New Member

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    This is my first time at this site and I noticed your plea so decided to share some ideas with you (especially since you sound pretty frustrated......)
    It seems like kids are more "yacky" every year. I also teach second grade. Our students have a lunch hour with 25 min. to eat and 35 min. to play. We have not had morning or afternoon recess in years. We have a snack/bathroom break in the morning and I do lots of hands on lessons in the afternoon. I've tried many types of discipline over the years and have found that a combination of assertive discipline, common sense, and Love and Logic (for the really big stuff) in my classroom works the best. If I choose to keep kids in at recess it is for not longer than 10 min.....they REALLY need to get outside and play!!!!!! Otherwise you pay in the afternoon!!! Have you tried marbles in a jar???? How about 3 signs.....Red for no talking, Yellow for whispering, and Green for indoor voices....this way the kids monitor themselves. Are your kids seated in groups???? If so, move them into rows until you get their behavior in check....remind them that this is their choice....it's all about respecting each other....especially during seatwork time. I would also go back to square one..like the first weeks of school and remind them over and over and over again what your expectations and rules are.
     
  15. 101dalmatian

    101dalmatian Companion

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    I glue two file folders together and laminate them.
     
  16. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    I have some very chatty kids and I told them at the beginning of the year that they need to realize there are times to talk and times to be quiet. It took a bit of training, but they eventually got the point. Now all I have to do is give them the "look." So, perhaps as mentioned before, start over with them just as though it's the beginning of the year. I wouldn't give them ANY chances. My 4 and 5 year olds don't get second chances. They have a choice to either stop doing the annoying thing when I "look" at them or say, "stop," OR they can lose out on some fun time immediately. It has worked well to be consistent and firm. A huge part of teaching young children, is self control. Somewhere along the line they have most likely been allowed to get away with this habit of talking all the time. Don't we all know grown ups who never shut their mouths? Well, they are so full of themselves and what they have to say next that they never shut up and worse, they don't hear what others have to say. I sincerely hope that you can get a plan in place for these kids "now." So, the only honest advice I can give you is to be firm , consistent, & maybe even downright mean.
     
  17. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    I can think of someone just like that!!!!!
     
  18. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Hey! WHat a coincidence!
     
  19. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    Maybe we know the same person!:eek: :p
     
  20. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Will the REAL person please stand up?
     
  21. vcboop

    vcboop New Member

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    Good advice Grammy. I often wonder how much time is spent talking and listening to each other at home. Family time spent sitting down to dinner, sharing about their day etc.....has certainly changed over the years. So, the kids have alot to say when they get to school and find ears to listen to them. Our job is to focus all of that energy onto their learning. Kids are begging for limits and we as teachers need to set those limits so that all students have the best learning environment. Another idea might be to get the parents on board by doing daily behavior communication (with the worst talkers). It's extra work for us, but well worth it if you see results. Usually parents want their kids to be successful at school and will work with you to solve behavior problems.
    Catching them doing the right thing has still given me the best results. If they work quietly for 2 min., drop in a marble....gradually they will work for longer periods if they know you are looking for it..... You'll find that peer pressure from kids making the right choice works wonders. Then reward the group with whatever they choose....Hope this helps!!!!
     
  22. Mama P

    Mama P Rookie

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    Thanks for all of the help. No, we do not have recess and they do need it soooo bad. This is the first school I have been at where there is no recess. I was totally in shock when I found out. I do tell them they will have "free talking time" if they are quiet and work well in the morning. That hasn't happened yet. I have NEVER had a problem with classroom management before, that is why this is so frustrating to me. We are not allowed to take them outside unless it is for an educational reason. (science experiment, reading lesson, etc...) So I can get pretty creative when the weather is nice for a reason to go outside. I have a hard time staying in the classroom for 4 hours at a time, so I know 2nd graders do. I do take that into consideration.
     
  23. ElementaryJane

    ElementaryJane Rookie

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    Mama P, I can only sugest that the promise of free talk time is too distant to motivate children of this age.

    As you acknowledge, the environment is not conducive to their being quiet. So someone has to adapt. The better plan for long term survival is that you, the adult, adapt, rather than trying to reward or punish the second graders into adapting.

    I suggest you have scheduled free talk time. You could start the day with 5 or ten minutes and have a mid-morning 5 minute free talk time and another in the afternoon. The point is that it is a scheduled part of the day, not a reward if they have been quiet and you do not take it away as punishment if they have been noisy.

    Adapt to the environment your school has instead of trying to coerce unreasonable behavior. Requiring your students to be quiet when they get no recess is unreasonable. Both rewards and punishments are forms of coercion. When you stop trying to force them into an unnatural behavior (which has been forced on you!), you remove the power play "I win/you lose" element of behavior management and replace it with a cooperation between teacher and students. Isn't that what we'd all prefer - teacher and students pulling in the same direction?

    Don't coerce, adapt.
    (This maxim works in a multitude of classroom circumstances!)

    I've done this. We called it "Wiggle time" and they could do whatever they liked for two minutes. It wasn't scheduled because we didn't need it daily, but when they were losing focus I would just call a "Wiggle time". They didn't earn them or lose them; I just adapted to the fact that we needed a short break and then they could refocus. I might have been right in the middle of a lesson, a math problem, or a song - I called them as I saw the need, and the students saw this as a mark of respect.

    It is not our job to "manage" students' "behavior". It is our job to teach them, which means we must manage and adapt to the environment as best we can to make it conducive to learning.
     
  24. Ms.Jasztal

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    I realize that students are social. However, I never try to take away recess because for us it's just once a week and for 30 minutes. They are children and need to be... well, happy.

    What do your students do, specifically? Do they call out or talk to one another while you're teaching? Do they talk while working? How is it at dismissal time? Have you had six classes like this one? What kinds of positive reinforcement do they have?
     
  25. Doublescoop

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    Just a little idea that may help in the long run. I find that ALL my first graders want to give me their ideas when I ask a question but, of course, they won't sit still long enough for everyone to answer so...I will often ask a question and then tell them to quietly tell the person next to them or their desk buddy. Then I might ask a few what they said. That way they are pretty much always answering EVERY question I ask--it keeps most of them very on-task AND they get to use their voices productively.
     
  26. Peachyness

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    When do you and the students get bathroom breaks!!! :eek:
     
  27. Ms.Jasztal

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    That's even good advice for fourth graders. :) The only thing is that this needs to be modeled a bit- or it will instantly become chit-chat time for a select few.
     
  28. Ms.Jasztal

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    Ummmm. What does your principal do, by the way? You said there is NO consequence for poor behavior at your school? There needs to be some type of school-wide behavior plan... right? What if some kid reemed another kid? Would the school shrug that off?
     
  29. Pidge

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    What? In Florida, you only get recess one day a week?
    That's just not right.
     
  30. MollyT

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    I just can't imagine having no recess. We have 20 minutes morning recess every day as well as a 40 minute lunch break (half and half eating and playing) and I know it helps my sanity ........ let alone the kids.
     
  31. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Well, it could be because there is sooooo much focus on education in this country that some places are taking away the fun of learning. Man what a bunch of dopey people we have in charge. Teachers are too pressured and this is being passed on to the little ones. NO wonder there is so much stress kids.
     
  32. Peachyness

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    I 100% agree with you! I know of this one, young teacher, who has those lovely bleeding stomache ulcers because of all the stess from teaching. And you see these little kids who are unable to think creatively, think outside the box, etc. That's why I would like to teach at a private school one day.
     
  33. MusicMaker

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    I am having the same problems. There are a few kids in my class with behavior problems, one of them pretty severe, which makes it difficult to accmplish anything.

    I feel like the kids don't respect me and I have to talk over them. I've tried a lot of things that haven't worked so far.

    I have kids trying to pick on each other, calling names, and the boys are kinda rough with each other.

    We also have a 15 minute recess time. By the time we walk back from lunch to the playground, it's only 10 minutes.
     
  34. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    Oooooohhhhhhhhh!
    I have a super talky class and several that have tried my patience to breaking point (some of you probably read my post from Nov. about losing my mind!) I actually told my husband I wanted to quit my job and that I hated it!!

    Here are a few suggestions:

    1) in lieu of recess, put on some music and let them dance - there are great CDs that teach also ( look at learningstationmusic.com). This is so fun!!

    2) I give them contained periods of time for quiet listening - 15 minutes of quiet listening during a lesson, they earn a point. We are earning points to get some fish for our fish tank. Key here is to limit the time period so they can be successful, then gradually up it.

    3) separate the talkers from the group. This really helped me get some of the wild guys under control. After a day or 2 of isolation, they understand that being part of a group is a privilege.

    4) Accept that some kids won't meet your expectations and accept them as they are, to a degree.

    5) Train them in listening skills - Simon Says, art projects, etc. I try to train my kids that I will not be repeating instructions so they must listen or figure out what to do themselves. I think we actually train kids to NOT listen by repeating things over and over.

    Hope this helps! I love teaching again and understand the extreme frustration when there is a gang of kids that just won't respect the teacher and be obedient. I have to say, with consistency and being creative in the approach, it has paid off. They still are far from perfect, but I am enjoying them again.
     
  35. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Even our 6th through 8th graders get 20 minutes recess after eating.
     
  36. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Well, as long as I have been teaching, there have been problem kids. I guess it's not really anything new. When my youngest was in school(grade school,) he would tell me that he couldn't find any close friends. I asked his teacher about that and she said it was because nearly every boy in the class was naughty and disrespectful and he just didn't fit in. His only close friends were us and a nice neighbor boy for quite some time. I have seen this same thing in my years of teaching. THere would be one or two who have good manners and they just didn't fit in. I feel sorry for those good kids.
     
  37. Ms.T

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    Not to get too sidetracked here, but I've never heard of a school that has only 15 min of recess!! What is the reasoning behind that?! I work at a charter that only allows a total of 30 min a day and I feel that is not enough. Everywhere else I've worked always had lunch recess and another recess, so I was very surprised to come to my current school.
     
  38. Mr.Jeff2007

    Mr.Jeff2007 New Member

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    My school only gets 15 mins of recess all day, and the kids are in school from 8am to 3pm...........
     
  39. Payton

    Payton Rookie

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    You may want to try having a yacker tracker. Red light for learning time, no talking. Yellow for independent time, whisper. Green for cooperative group time, classroom voice. I also have a stoplight chart. Whenever they are not obeying the yacker tracker they turn their light. Yellow= warning Red=loose 10 minutes of recess. If they turn their light a traffic light goes home and needs to be signed and returned.
    I have also tried using a stop watch with my third grade students. Whenever they start talking, I start the watch. At lunch time, they owe me the time wasted. This really works!
    You may want to try team points and award tables points for positive behavior.
    Good luck!
     
  40. Payton

    Payton Rookie

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    I've also tried talking cards to get more class participation, maybe you could use them in reverse. Students get one card and can use it once. When the card is taken away, they can not longer talk.
     
  41. Starista

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    I agree 100% whole heartedly that 15 minutes of recess is NOT enough.

    I teach grade one and those kids need more outside time.
     

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